Using modern IT tools requires increasingly specialist knowledge and skills. This is particularly visible in the areas of cloud, programming, security and network engineering. Does IT outsourcing help to meet market challenges?
Growing customer demand, development of new technologies and their forms, as well as intensification of competitive activities make it increasingly difficult for companies to enter the market without appropriate IT solutions. Spending more and more money on the IT department does not guarantee success. Staff members need to continue training on new solutions, they often have their own responsibilities and do not have time to undertake new projects. For many companies this is a difficult and expensive challenge. This is one of the reasons why more and more entities are looking for support from professional service companies, including IT outsourcing. Using outsourced IT services is nothing new, and small businesses have been using such solutions for a long time. More and more outsourcers are mapping growth, implementing new technologies and transferring knowledge.
How to convince yourself to outsource
There are many factors that go into using an external company to achieve your goals:
- cost reduction
- improvement of management (implementation of the solution can be accelerated by not absorbing internal company processes)
- improvement of effectiveness (easily measurable effect)
The effectiveness of IT technology in business depends not so much on the sum of the costs incurred, but on the accuracy of the decision to choose an IT solution.
Advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing
The advantages of outsourcing are:
- The ability to focus on your core business.
- Acquisition of expert knowledge and skills in narrow areas (such as network engineering, cloud solutions, etc.).
- The ability for your own employees to acquire new knowledge and skills.
- Multiple experts can be used simultaneously without having to fully employ them.
- Ability to use the latest technology without incurring acquisition costs.
- Improved efficiency, speed and flexibility in the use of new technologies interacting with the market.
- IT methods and tools that better adapt to customer preferences.
- In the case of a well-structured contract, sharing of responsibilities and risks.
- Image effects associated with cooperation with well-known companies.
- Lack of full control over activities undertaken on behalf of the company but outside the company.
- Risk of deviation from strategic assumptions, e.g. concerning brand building.
- The ability to change the communication strategy set out in the contract during the contract period is limited.
- Risk of disclosure of trade and market secrets.
- Managers are less involved in marketing activities.
- Potentially higher fees associated with the existence of intermediaries and their commissions.
- Lack of determination as to whether the proposed solution is effective and, most importantly, whether the institution is viable.
- Difficulties and costs associated with choosing the right company.
- The intuition and “customer understanding” of the company can be lost.
- Damage to the organisation’s reputation can result.
When will IT outsourcing work?
Is it a good idea?
YES, provided that we get the right partner who approaches the strategic issues of what IT solutions are with prudence and responsibility, who knows IT technologies based on the company’s fundamental values. So, if a potential partner at the first meeting proposes to the company: miraculous solutions and completely cost-free – such proposals should be treated with distance. However, if the company meets an experienced partner who will delve into the history of current solutions, take into account the strategic objectives of the company, carefully select activities and the necessary technological tools, it is worth considering whether it is necessary to develop its own IT department. Because why take on something that others will do better, faster and cheaper than you?