Is your business struggling to stay ahead of mounting IT demands? Embracing new technology while facing IT talent shortages and budget restraints is a big burden to Chicago businesses.
Your in-house staff might not have the training needed to manage every sector of IT — like cloud computing, cyber security and infrastructure management. Instead of staffing a full-time IT department or relying on your limited team to cover every area, consider hiring a local Chicago managed IT services company.
A managed IT services company is an extension of your current IT staff. The firm controls key IT functions so your internal IT department can focus on profitable business activities. Outsourcing IT can dramatically reduce IT costs, streamline core processes and increase productivity for your Chicago business.
7 roles to expect from your Chicago managed IT services company
There are many Chicago managed IT services companies to choose from, but not every company will offer the level of support you need. Your managed IT services company should fulfill these seven critical job functions.
1. Networking and infrastructure management
Do slow computers and unpredictable system outages drain productivity from your team? When you experience network trouble, every passing second can result in lost business.
As part of ongoing network management, your managed IT services company should first assess and document your existing infrastructure. They will identify where new technology solutions can provide a higher return on investment of time and resources. They might recommend an infrastructure cloud migration to speed up your network and reduce hardware costs.
The firm will also monitor your network 24/7 to maintain constant visibility into network health and potential issues.
2. Help desk support
Small problems like printing issues and accessing files can become huge burdens to internal IT staff. Your IT team might feel frustrated by low-level support tasks that take up hours of time.
Good managed services companies should offer fast and reliable help desk support. They can resolve most computer issues remotely and escalate urgent matters directly to the right department to minimize downtime.
When your IT team is freed from support tasks, they can spend more time on projects that drive the business forward.
3. IT security management
Cyber security is a growing threat to your business. Outsourcing cyber security to a managed IT services company will unburden your staff from time-consuming security and auditing initiatives.
Your MSP should monitor your security posture 24/7 and mitigate threats quickly. They will assess your firewall, servers, virtual private networks, patch management process and security controls to determine potential vulnerabilities. With an MSP keeping a constant eye on your infrastructure, you can rest assured knowing your sensitive data is secure.
4. Software upgrades
You might rely on a legacy system that is slowing down operations and needs to be replaced. But with so much software on the market, how do you decide which one aligns best with your goals and budget?
Whether you need a custom web application or commercially available software, a quality managed IT services company will recommend the best software solutions for your business. They will help you install new software across devices, set up user accounts and transfer data with minimal disruption to your employees.
Your firm will also ensure new applications and software are secure and compliant with company policies.
Related content: What onboarding reveals about your Chicago managed services provider
5. Business continuity and disaster recovery planning
When was the last time you tested your backup plan (if you have one at all)? Eighty-nine percent of IT managers test their disaster recovery systems once a year or never.
No system is fail-proof. Cyberattacks, natural disasters and innocent employee mistakes can cause crippling data loss. More than 90 percent of companies that experience one week of data downtime go out of business within a year.
Your managed IT services company should document a disaster recovery plan and test backups daily. In the event of a disaster, your provider should be able to get your network back online and restore data with minimal downtime.
6. Cloud services
Moving key resources to the cloud can drastically reduce hardware costs and make your business more efficient. But planning a cloud migration is a time-consuming process.
Transferring resources to the cloud while minimizing business interruption requires time and skills that your internal IT department might not have.
Outsourcing cloud services to a local Chicago managed services company takes away the need to train your existing staff on cloud technology. MSPs are experts at migrating to the cloud and managing cloud applications and servers. They keep your cloud infrastructure up-to-date with the latest technology and security requirements and understand how to optimize your cloud environment to control costs.
7. Going paperless
Manually transferring data from paper documents to a digital system requires significant time and labor. Plus, keeping track of paper forms is one of the biggest gripes of businesses today. In fact, 10 percent of paper documents go missing and need to be reproduced each year.
Most businesses don’t have the resources to shift complex paper processes to digital on their own. A managed IT services company will help you migrate to an electronic document management system. Instead of spending hours on manual data entry and document retrieval, you’ll be able to access and send important information in seconds.
Choosing a Chicago managed IT services company
Business growth is dependent on technology. Your IT support firm should take time to understand your goals and align their activities with your long-term business plan.
At MXOtech, we help Chicago businesses keep IT systems running smoothly with our best-in-class managed IT services plans. When you partner with MXOtech, you benefit from:
- Fast response time
- Predictable IT costs
- Real-time communication
- Decreased IT security risks
- Strategic IT planning
Looking for a Chicago managed IT services company to help you manage your IT infrastructure and generate more productivity? Claim your free network assessment or contact us today to learn more about MXOtech’s managed IT services.