As well as being a world-renowned center for higher education, Boston is also considered one of the best SMB hubs in the United States. Over 40,000 small-medium-sized businesses call the City of Boston, MA home, and few would be positioned to succeed without an understanding of technology’s critical role in business growth.
Advances in technology have revolutionized every sector in recent years, and IT has become the fuel behind any successful business venture. However, this progress also comes with increased challenges and risks.
Cybersecurity threats faced by small businesses are evolving and increasing all the time. And, with the exponential growth of remote and hybrid workplace models, businesses are being forced to rethink their IT strategy. For instance, organizations need mobile device management policies to reduce downtime and protect themselves from ready-to-strike cybercriminals.
Although IT is crucial, staffing an internal IT department can be beyond the reach of many Boston businesses. This is where managed IT services can step in. Considering the low IT budgets in most SMBs, outsourcing to a managed IT service provider (MSP) can offer access to first-class Boston IT support at a lower cost than developing an in-house team. This article outlines the services and benefits you can expect from an MSP.
Understanding Boston Managed IT Services
Partnering with a managed service provider for your IT needs essentially involves outsourcing this aspect of your business. Managed IT solutions can include mobile device management, cloud computing, data backup, disaster recovery, hosting, cybersecurity, network monitoring, project-based IT services, and more.
What is the Role of a Managed Service Provider?
A managed IT provider specializes in one or more IT services, which it offers to other organizations through a contract agreement. Many small to medium-sized businesses in Boston and elsewhere lack the required IT talent and expertise to run their day-to-day IT operations in-house. Instead of overwhelming your team with technology responsibilities, you can partner with a third-party vendor to take care of some or all of your IT needs.
The responsibility of an MSP is to support your business IT in line with your service level agreement. When choosing the right service provider for your business, take the time to do your research and compare the support they offer. Prioritize finding an MSP that understands your needs and can uniquely tailor services for your company accordingly. Other factors to consider are:
- If you’re sourcing an MSP to support an internal IT team, the service provider should complement the expertise you already have and be able to offer services to fill identified gaps.
- All businesses are different, and so are MSPs. Find out if the service provider you are considering has previous experience in handling the type and scope of IT support you will need.
- Proactive support and communication by managed IT providers is crucial to ensure problems will get solved on time. Make sure to ask about expected response times as part of your research.
- Before selecting an MSP, make sure they can help you scale up as your business grows, and that they offer flexibility in their packages.
How Can Boston Businesses Benefit from Managed IT Services?
Outsourced IT services are set to grow steadily in the coming years. In 2020, the global market for managed service solutions was valued at about $152 billion. This value is expected to almost double to $274 billion by 2026. It’s clear that a record number of small, medium, and even larger businesses are considering outsourcing IT services rather than building fully-fledged in-house IT teams. Give your Boston business an upper hand by reaping the following benefits of managed IT services.
A lot of investment goes into building and running a complete on-site IT team. Apart from employee wages and bonuses, you’ll incur several other overhead costs that can easily be avoided by outsourcing. Most managed IT services use a customizable or subscription-based model, meaning you pay only for what you need.
2. Access to top-notch talent
It goes without saying that there is a global shortage of IT talent. This means you have to invest heavily in recruitment and retention if you choose to build an internal team. Even so, any employee can decide to leave at any time, leaving you to struggle to fill a gap while finding their replacement. On the other hand, managed service providers boast industry-standard experts and consistent service.
3. Cybersecurity and compliance
Trusting a third-party provider with cybersecurity measures can offer more effective protection from data breaches and system attacks. MSPs, especially those specializing in security, can recommend the right technology and provide skilled specialists to monitor, report, and respond to threats against your business. Additionally, outsourcing your IT needs can make it easier to fully comply with various industry and government regulatory guidelines. These include HIPAA, GDPR, FERPA, CMMC, among others.
4. Proactive support
Real-time IT support is vital to keep businesses moving, and ensures your employees have resolutions to any problems within the shortest time possible. Therefore, disruptions to business operations are minimal, and employees can focus on their job, which also improves productivity.
5. Ability to scale
One common limiting factor for startups is the inability to scale expertise and technology as the business grows. To maintain or improve output, you will need to find efficiencies and automate tasks wherever possible. Customers will notice if your business is unable to meet new, more significant expectations, which might cause them to leave for a competitor that provides more reliable services. A managed service provider can assist you in scaling up your business IT to meet these new demands.
Find a Managed Service Provider in Boston, Massachusetts
Small businesses in Boston need IT support they can rely on. At Electric, we offer the services you need to boost productivity, eliminate repetitive admin tasks, and get back to focusing on your business. Get in touch to learn how you can grow your Boston-based business with Electric. Or, check out our directory to find IT support near you.