managed service providerWe’ve certainly got your attention with that headline, right? Too good to be true? Not at all. Entrepreneurs are known for having great ideas, but they are equally notorious for thinking they can do it all. Many SMB owners are the first to admit that they “wear many hats”. They tend to hold the reigns, from accountant to manager and sales to procurement, potentially to their own detriment. So how can you possibly make more money while doing less? Smart outsourcing of day-to-day tasks.

Previously, outsourcing was reserved for the enterprise-level operations with big budgets. But, technology in general, and cloud computing specifically, has made these services realistic and applicable to businesses of any size. How can paying someone to do a task you could do in-house make you more money? Because you are buying yourself the time to focus on revenue-generating activities. You are using your expertise in the best way possible, and letting others do the same.

What Services Should I Outsource?

There are some functions that are quick to be outsourced, like payroll and background checks. Then there are the more complex or vital functions like marketing, blog writing, IT management, and accounting. When deciding what to outsource, determine which functions of your business make you different from your competition, your “core competencies.” The services that aren’t in this group you can consider outsourcing. There are a wide range of service providers from independent freelancers to small firms that specialize in being outsourced service providers for SMBs.

Who Is Providing these Services?

There are many providers who recognize that specializing in a particular business function could create great economies of scale for clients. These managed service providers can leverage their expertise to get the best results for their clients. Additionally, technology has enabled us to work remotely without a disruption in level of service. When it comes to functions like IT hardware management, data and network security issues, and printing functions, having an expert focused solely on this technology can be a boon to your bottom line. Even if you have in-house IT staff, do they have time to maintain all your hardware and networking needs while also innovating to help you grow?

How Do I Choose a Service Provider?

Today’s world runs on recommendations. We don’t go anywhere, or buy anything, without doing some quick research on what others have experienced. Managed Services should be the same. Ask other business owners that you trust. Ask for a list of references, and take the time to call them. Find a provider that understands your business needs and that values security. Check out our blog post Top Criteria for Choosing an IT Managed Service Provider.

How Do I Outsource Successfully?

The biggest factor in success, once you have chosen a function and provider, is to clarify your expectations. For example, if you value quality over speed then they need to know that. Don’t keep providers in the dark about your goals. You are paying them to act on your behalf, so give them access to the tools and information they need to successfully do their job. The challenge here is to outsource functionality securely, in a manner that does not put employee personal information or customer data at risk. 

When you outsource, you can focus your time, attention and resources on your company’s core competencies – and spend your time setting new goals and finding ways to achieve them.

Investing in the services of a Managed Service Provider pays off in dividends in the form of more time to focus on and grow your business. It also reduces the potential costs resulting from catastrophic hardware failure or data loss. The key is to find a provider you can trust. Your MSP is not just a vendor, but a partner that wants to see your business succeed and operates in your best interest. Great Lakes Computer can be that partner. We offer a range of Managed Services that can manage your IT and help you get back to what you’re good at.