Should your tech be in-house or outsourced?

Computer help keyComputer technology may not be rocket science, but let’s face it—when computers start crashing, most business owners are in over their heads. Someone’s got to take care of your computers, email, and website, so the real question is this: should you hire an employee or outsource to a vendor?

The appeal of an employee is clear…he’ll be available when needed, and you’ll be his top priority. No worries about juggling appointments, no confusion about how your network is set up. And as an employee, there’s no reason for him to sell you new products and services you don’t really need. Sounds great, right?

Of course, that employee may not want to be on call all the time. Will he really be there when you need him? And what happens when several things hit at once—how do you get it all done quickly, without waiting for him to have some free time?

Even more important, will that employee really know everything you need? Just because someone is “good with computers” doesn’t mean they can do it all. A programmer, for example, can probably build a website, but not design it; maybe they can do tech support but servers might be a stretch. A network tech can handle your server just fine, but that doesn’t mean they know a thing about how to make your accounting system work. You get the idea. And don’t forget the hidden costs for training, special software tools, and support subscriptions.

Outsourcing certainly has its challenges; making sure your vendor understands and values your business are top of the list. But when you find the right match, for the same cost as that employee—or even less!—you’ll benefit from a variety of expert resources equipped with the right tools to meet all your business needs.

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