The managed IT services model can help a business significantly control costs and deal with a wide range of problems. However, anyone looking into managed IT solutions needs to have a plan. Whether you already use the managed model or wish to adopt it, you should build your plan by doing these five things.
Study Your Organizational Chart
If you can't describe the organizational structure of your business to a solutions provider, you're going to have a tough time coming up with a contract. You need to know the basic layout of your operation to determine which services will help which parties. Assembling the organization chart will also give you a sense of where your current IT assets are and which ones might be lacking.
Assess the Company's Needs
With a better idea of the organizational scale of the issue, you can start to get more granular. Look at the sorts of IT systems your operation uses. If you don't maintain websites, for example, there's no logic for buying a managed IT services plan that includes support for web servers.
Be nitpicky in your assessment. Look at the issues your company may have in terms of help desk support, hardware issues, security, networking, and so on. Itemize everything so you can produce as detailed a plan as possible in terms of the systems and software that will require managed IT solutions.
Speak with Your IT People
Many people assume managed IT solutions will eliminate their IT departments. This is rarely the case. Even if a business wants to downsize its on-site IT footprint, it will likely need a few people present to deal with projects and daily needs.
Talk with the IT folks. Oftentimes, they have problems they'd love more support dealing with. You may get a torrent of suggestions once you loop the IT folks into the conversation.
Study How Others Do It
Case studies are often useful, especially when they allow you to examine near-pear businesses and their managed IT solutions. Look at their hardware and software stacks. Examine how they integrate managed IT into their overall workflows. Study their costs and savings. Develop a clear idea of what you'll get from a particular model of managed IT services.
Build a Written Plan
Write out how you want what you've learned from the previous sections to go into action. Develop a plan that reflects the realities of business both now and up to 5 years into the future. When you enter a contract with a managed IT solutions firm, use the plan to set the terms.
Contact a managed IT solutions company to learn more.