5 Ways Managed IT and Security Services Help During an Economic Downturn
August 11th, 2022 by admin
With inflation rising and the economy still reeling from the aftermath of coronavirus, many organizations have started thinking about ways to stay competitive and maintain their profitability going forward.
The overall cost of doing business that we're now experiencing – including energy costs, a labor shortage, and the demand for higher wages and salaries – is a growing concern. For organizations that have a small in-house IT support team (or possibly none at all), economic pressures are exacerbated by a network prone to persistent slowdowns, downtime and security-related disruptions. All these factors contribute to productivity drains that significantly increase the cost and risk of doing business.
Leveraging the resources of a Managed Services Provider (MSP) or a Managed Security Services Provider (MSSP) to provide robust IT and cybersecurity support, is an effective way to overcome the biggest issues related to managing mission-critical technology.
In periods of economic uncertainty, management is likely to reassess budgets and look for areas to cut back. During these times, cybersecurity programs may mistakenly be seen as a non-critical expense. These misperceptions can lead to a poor overall culture of security which, in turn, creates increased vulnerability to threats and/or a full-blown crisis.
Cybercriminals thrive in times of uncertainty, making cybersecurity more important than ever during an impending recession. Security threats are a major business issue, and an attack can have serious financial and reputational consequences.
Addressing Your IT Gaps and Security Risks
It's a common scenario: as organizations grow, they need to scale up their network to deliver more capabilities and accommodate device growth. But, over time, the pressures of growth also make it easy for the appropriate management, cybersecurity and business continuity measures to be overlooked.
Part of the job of a Managed Services Provider is to ensure these things don't fall through the cracks. An MSP will perform a preliminary network audit to assess your network's health. A network audit includes a review of each key network component (control, availability, performance, security) and analysis of the data collected to identify threats and weaknesses. A formal audit report is created that provides visibility into any potential network issues (with prioritization based on severity) so they can be corrected before impacting business performance or causing full-blown system failures. The audit report provides specific insights and a concrete, informed plan for taking the right actions to reduce these risks.
Working with an MSP that also provides managed security services will enable your organization to address the dynamic more effectively, and increasingly damaging, nature of cyberattacks. A true Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) will provide a service model designed to actively prevent and manage both known and emerging security threats. Including vulnerability scanning, cyber threat monitoring/management, incident response, endpoint device security, and more. They utilize the latest adaptive technologies, the most current threat intelligence, and can leverage highly-skilled talent to address current and future threats. Threats designed to disrupt your operations, steal sensitive data, extort money, damage your reputation, or all of these.
Cost of Network Support
Reducing Unplanned Downtime
In the last three years, 82% of companies reported at least one IT-related incident that resulted in significant downtime (most suffered 2 or more)1. Regardless of where technology failures happen – whether it's individual computers, a core server, or a critical application – downtime takes a bite out of your bottom line. Executives who've taken the time to calculate the cost of idle employees and operations understand the cost of lost hours of productivity that can never be recouped. Costs like overtime, reduced capacity, or possibly wasted product – plus, the hidden costs of lost sales, missed opportunities, and reputation damage. A quick tally shows the serious money drain downtime represents.
Managed Service providers reduce the need for reactive, emergency IT services. For a predictable monthly rate, they manage critical network operations using industry best practices, including continual systems monitoring, proactive maintenance, and lifecycle planning for devices and services. Because managed services shift the focus to preventing IT issues before they happen, they support operating at peak efficiency and maximum profitability.
Addressing the IT/Security Labor Shortage and Knowledge Gap
In today's market, two major IT/Security staffing issues seriously impact the business operations of most organizations. The first is an across-the-board shortage of technical talent, and the second is a need to pay top dollar for the talent that does exist. For small and mid-sized organizations, these factors make hiring for the depth and breadth of needed technology and security expertise cost prohibitive.
The advantage of using Managed Service Providers is that they have one focus – which gives them the ability to pay salaries that attract top-notch talent. That talent is then available to your organization for a monthly fee when you sign up for a service program. Partnering with an MSP significantly reduces the need to hire and keep expensive IT staff on your payroll. Or it allows you to focus your in-house staff on special projects and more critical IT tasks. A managed program can provide the right combination of IT and security support services with certified expertise in every functional area you need, every day of the year.
Increasing the Lifespan of Your IT Resources
Your IT infrastructure is the engine of your organization. With that said, it also represents a big investment. It's a fact: proper maintenance can significantly extend the useful life of your current hardware. Even something as simple as dust can impact the lifespan of expensive equipment. A shortened technology lifespan impacts your return on IT investments across the board, reducing the health of your bottom line. When you partner with an MSP, your equipment is maintained and serviced on a regular basis, increasing its lifespan, and making a quantifiable difference in your overhead costs for technology.
Redirecting Financial Resources to Your Growth Strategy
Unpredictable IT costs are both frustrating and difficult to manage. Using a Managed Service Provider strategy converts IT costs from an unpredictable and variable capital expenditure (CapEx), which depreciates over time, to a predictable and fixed monthly operating expense (OpEx), much like a utility. It frees up cash for those investments that drive revenue and growth and can be budgeted for.
At the same time, because MSPs offer automation of basic tasks, resources can be redirected toward strategy and key business operations. Thanks to the efficiency of IT automation, working with an MSP can reduce administrative costs and risks, plus increase the ability to scale operations up or down more quickly.
Can You Benefit from Managed Services? Find Out – Risk-Free and No Obligation
If you're interested in finding out if Managed IT or Managed Security Services could help your organization, just set up a 10-minute discovery call with one of our specialists. It's designed to be a completely risk-free and no obligation conversation. You can discuss your unique situation, and any concerns you may have, and of course, we'll answer any questions you have.
Posted in: Cyber Security