As a business owner, you may think the decision to hire an IT professional is a simple one. After all, you need an IT expert to provide a wide range of services, from technical support to security, and help your business adapt as it grows. But if you want to hire successfully, there are a few questions you need to ask before you start the process. Let’s take a closer look at the factors that might play into your decision.
What Can an IT Professional Do for Me?
Modern businesses rely on technology, so it’s vital to have someone dedicated to addressing IT issues as they arise. No one wants the headache of continually researching and addressing technical issues, especially if their talents and time are needed somewhere else, so you might reason that the answer is hiring someone to keep your technology running smoothly and effectively.
When considering this option, the first question to ask yourself is: What do you want them to bring to the table? What skills and services are important for your business? Whether your focus is eCommerce, security or troubleshooting, the “why” aspect is an important first step toward finding an IT expert who is right for your company.
Once you’ve decided what you need from an IT pro, you can move on to the next question…
How Much Does Hiring an IT Professional Cost?
When expanding their team, many businesses make the common mistake of only considering the new position’s salary. In reality, the true cost of hiring a full-time employee is typically 30% more than their stated salary. This is called the burden rate and can include a variety of expenses, including Social Security taxes, 401(k) plans, medical benefits and paid time off. It can also include additional investments in equipment, required travel, consistent training, certifications and cell phones. Another consideration is the expense and time it takes to onboard and train a new employee.
Many small companies don’t have a dedicated HR department. According to Entrepreneur.com, small businesses spend up to 40% of their time on tasks — such as hiring — that don’t generate income. It can be very difficult to find an IT professional with the right experience to address your needs. If you’re concerned about sensitive data or security issues, the character and integrity of your new hire matters almost as much as their professional background. As such, it may make sense to bring on an external hiring team to find the perfect IT professional, but those services aren’t cheap — they often charge 15% to 25% of the desired employee’s annual salary. And as you know, the more experience a position requires, the more expensive it can be to bring on the right person.
Once you’ve calculated the total actual costs of bringing on a new IT professional, you might decide that it doesn’t make financial sense for your business, but your technical needs still have to be addressed somehow. There is another option: a dynamic way to support your business without breaking the bank — a Managed Services Provider (MSP).
An Affordable, Creative Solution
A Managed Services Provider is a team of dedicated technical professionals that can address a wide range of IT and security needs with the knowledge and experience of an entire IT department. MSPs provide all of the functionality of a full-time IT team for less than the cost of hiring just one IT professional. Plus, you won’t have to worry about any hidden recruitment or hiring costs. You also eliminate the need to bring on an external hiring company or take risks on a person who may or may not be the right fit. MSPs have transparent costs and a wide range of experience, so the perfect expert to address your company’s requirements and goals will always be available.
When a company relies on a single IT employee, that person might need time to outsource to other professionals when a problem arises that doesn’t fall within their area of expertise. MSPs, on the other hand, are able to address a wide variety of technical issues in an efficient manner. From day-to-day fixes to big-picture strategies, an MSP can support your business from both an operational and a growth perspective. Instead of putting out fires as they come up, your MSP is able to take a long view and be proactive about your company’s technology needs — saving you time, stress and money.
Peace of Mind
Unlike a hired employee, whose hours are contained to the business day, an MSP can offer around-the-clock support. If your server goes down in the middle of the night or there is an after-hours security breach, an MSP will address the issue as soon as it occurs. Help is always just a phone call or email away. This type of speed is crucial for small businesses, especially where security is concerned. Small businesses are the victims of 70% of security breaches, resulting in tens of thousands of dollars in recovery costs. MSPs allow you to focus your time, money and energy where it belongs: on the success of your business.
If you’d like to learn more about managed IT services offered in Atlanta, Georgia, download our free eBook, Managed IT Services: Better Than Hiring an IT Pro?” In this free ebook, you’ll learn about the additional advantages and disadvantages of hiring an IT pro, which things to consider before making a hiring decision and the unique challenges you might encounter when hiring a new employee.