IT Services For Small Businesses

IT Services For Small Businesses – Why You Need Professionals at Any Size Business

IT Services For Small Businesses – Why You Need Professionals at Any Size Business

Smaller businesses, whether just starting up – or forming part of a long-standing enterprise – requires some form of IT solution; you are the expert in your specific field, so why not call in the experts in their respective fields to ensure you are always on, always safe and always ready for whatever comes next?

Simply performing routine backups to external hard drives and trouble shooting your own IT problems may have worked for you up until this point, but technological advancements are making it easier for cyber-attacks to occur, putting smaller businesses at a far higher risk.

Large corporates have all possible measures in place to ensure all their employees are protected, their data is secured and they have proactive measures in place (e.g., – firewalls, anti-virus and spam filters) – so why exempt yourself from the same benefits they enjoy?

Small Business IT Support Tips

“Every business has different IT support requirements. That makes defining what you really need an important part of the selection process.”

“The business owner should decide what result he or she wants to achieve and determine how frequently it’s required. That process can guide them in finding the best solution for the best price.”

Your IT support options can involve farming out specific tasks or activities—from setting up computers and networks to keeping everything up and running to email set up and support—or specifically addressing backup or security. These days, there’s so much flak from spyware, popups and viruses that it’s smart to have someone on call to deal with the consequences.

But IT support needs are not a static thing. As your business grows, the level of support that you need from vendors may change as the business matures. Further, you need to calculate the cost of not bringing in help.

“When selecting the level of support for a service, you need to think about how much you are losing each hour due to down time.”

h/t to smallbusinesscomputing.com for this info!

 

Outsourcing Small Business IT Solutions

“For many small business owners, outsourcing their IT support needs may seem extravagant due to the hourly rate that such companies charge. However, this type of support can be extremely cost-effective because of the expertise being purchased, the experience the techs who visit are able to offer, and the backup provided by the team that supports them. Further, as a small business owner, you should easily be able to budget for the monthly expense, based on the system evaluation and recommendations of the company you employ as your IT support team.

A responsible IT support company will always begin with an objective assessment of your information system, along with recommendations for the work they will perform to meet your needs. In other words, they will not “pad” the bill, but will only perform the tasks you request of them. This can greatly reduce the cost of IT support for your small business, rather than hiring an in-house tech and paying an annual salary, as discussed above.

Beyond this, a reputable IT support company will guarantee the expertise of the tech they send you. The tech will also possess a great deal more experience than an employee, as they deal with a variety of systems every day. In most cases, there will be little they have not seen, which will allow them to handle your specific needs more efficiently. Further, they will most likely assign a particular technician to your account, someone who will visit you regularly, allowing them to become intimately familiar with your information system and the needs of your business, and with whom you will build a relationship of trust over time.”

h/t to nssit.com for the information sourced here!

 

Why not get in touch with SwitchedOn IT today? We’ll assess your small business IT needs and tailor a solution that suits your requirements and your budget! Click here to have a consultant call you today!

Cover Image Credit: Nimble.com

In-House IT vs Outsourced IT

In-House IT vs Outsourced IT: Pro’s and Con’s Discussed

In-House IT vs Outsourced IT: Pro’s and Con’s Discussed

It’s been debated time and time again – should your company outsource their IT requirements, or should they develop a department solely dedicated to that specific aspect of their business?

The reason nobody has found a conclusive answer to this is quite simply because there isn’t one catch-all answer! There are major advantages and disadvantages to each type of solution, so the trick is to find one that will fit and satisfy your needs.

In-House IT: What are the Pro’s and Con’s?

An in-house IT department looks very different from company to company. Some teams may comprise of one or two “Jacks of all trades”, monitoring, implementing and maintaining your IT infrastructures.

Alternatively, it may consist of a fully-fledged team of trained professionals, each monitoring their own specific field. That being said, the major advantages and disadvantages are exactly the same.

Benefits of an in-house IT Department

  • You have a dedicated team during office hours, which you can “throw into the deep end” if or when something goes awry.
  • You can train up individuals who are stronger on certain aspects of IT management, to ensure they can handle anything that may go wrong in their specific field.

Disadvantages of an in-house IT Department

  • If any of your team is off sick, especially during a crisis, or in the midst of a crucial project, it is hard (if not impossible) to delegate their workload and keep abreast of your project’s timeline.
  • The staff may not be fully qualified, trained or experienced to handle disasters, such as cyber-attacks.
  • You have “work hour” support; if you are at the office until 22:00 on a Friday, chances are you won’t have any of your IT staff who is willing and able to come out and assist if you have a problem on your hands.

 

Outsourced IT: What are the Pro’s and Con’s?

Outsourced IT can be structured in numerous ways; either bring an executive or manager on-board to oversee your entire department, or bring in a full-time team to manage and improve your systems.

The advantages usually far outweigh the disadvantages in this case, but it is still good practice to  thoroughly consider both the pro’s and con’s before deciding.

 

Benefits of Outsourced IT

  • You have access to specialists, trained and qualified in their respective fields.
  • This access is not limited to work hours, and thus, neither is your work. Need someone to remotely log in and assist you any time? This is a great solution for you!
  • Set costs – no need to worry about increases, bonuses or the other stuff that comes along with having dedicated staff. You know what to expect when billing time comes, each and every month.
  • You have no need to worry about staff calling in sick, scheduling leave so that your IT department is always covered – and all the other stress that comes with an in-house team. You will always be covered.
  • You are guaranteed a solution that works for you. Instead of waiting three months to judge a new employees’ aptitude for their position, undergoing probation and all the red tape associated with taking on new permanent staff – you have access to individuals and specialists who know your technology like the back of their hand; these specialists guarantee their level of work – so if you’re not happy – you’re not obliged. Simple as that.

Disadvantages of Outsourced IT

You may initially feel uncomfortable in taking on a new manager for your entire IT setup; this a entirely expected – you built your company from the ground up, and may have hesitation handing over such a big aspect of it to a new, external company.We suggest you always research who will be  taking over and ensure you are happy with what you can see and hear of their ethical and business standing.

 

If you want to see what we can offer your business, click here to get in touch!

When Should Your Company Outsource IT

When Should Your Company Outsource IT?

When Should Your Company Outsource IT?

Moving from an in-house IT structure to an outsourced one can be a daunting task to say the least; the same can be said for those with no current IT systems or departments in place. While Outsourced IT might be an excellent turnkey solution to most companies, other companies might not see immediate, or as extensive results as they had hoped they would see.

We detail the best and most suitable times and situations in  which opting for an outsourced IT solution might be the best solution for your company.

 

When to Outsource IT: Your current IT solution is not working for you anymore.

Whether you currently have an outsourced IT department, or you’re running your own in-house department, if it’s not working for you – then it’s time to move along. You can choose to only outsource high-end executives to oversee your current structure or team, or you can choose to entirely overhaul the department and have a fully-fledged team of professionals come in and get your systems in place.

When to Outsource IT: Your enterprise is growing and your needs have become greater.

Your business should be growing – isn’t that the whole objective? You might have been handling your IT systems alone, and find that you are no longer able to dedicate sufficient time to monitoring and improving on your systems to keep them in line with your business needs. This is an excellent opportunity to sign up for an outsourced IT department, one that can offer trained and qualified professionals to take over – and free up precious time you can now dedicate to growing your business even further.

When to Outsource IT: You do not have capacity to train and develop new staff.

This may be one of the biggest challenges companies face; taking the time and resources to train up a new employees to efficiently oversee and maintain your systems. Training a new person to understand the system and be entirely familiar with any possible threats may take up to three, perhaps four months, with no guarantee that they will be able to execute and perform their designated duties to the standard you would need them done. Bringing in professionals will eliminate this risk entirely.

When to Outsource IT: You have implemented new, complex technology or faced a cyber-threat that compromised your work.

Not all IT systems are created equal; a complex back-end may hamper your current structures ability to handle it efficiently. You may choose to up-skill your current staff complement, or call in an expert who is already qualified in that field to oversee and train / manage your team to get them to the point where running the new system is easily within their realm of capabilities. If you have recently suffered a cyber-attack, you may want to seriously consider bringing someone on board who can not only mitigate future incidences, but also boost your current systems to the point where a threat of that kind no longer poses a problem to your systems integrity.

 

If you’re considering hiring an outsourced IT company, check out our list of Outsourced IT Companies in Johannesburg, or simply click here to get in touch with our team of qualified and experienced professionals.

 

 

switchedonit Outsourced IT Solutions

SwitchedOnIT Outsourced IT Solutions – The Business Behind the Brand

SwitchedOnIT Outsourced IT Solutions – The Business Behind the Brand

Outsourced IT solutions are an expansive, in-depth and specialised spectrum of IT management; removing the day-to-day stress from business owners and managers, IT professionals with extensive experience and qualifications are available to you and your company – providing industry-related knowledge and real world applications for the simplest through to the most complex of IT needs.

We’d like to say we’re no different, but that would be a bold lie.

SwitchedOnIT’s Outsourced IT Solutions boast a professional group of IT engineers, managers and leaders focussed on achieving all that is laid out within a client brief; we lend our insight and background to allow any customer to not only feel safe when entrusting their IT solutions to us, but also offering a deep-seated understanding of the IT industry as a whole, benefitting any sector that requires IT solutions.

What does SwitchedOnIT Outsourced IT Offer to Customers?

SwitchedOnIT leverages technology, systems and skilled people to manage IT departments to improve, strategize and develop systems that are fully customised to meet all the criteria set out by each client. We can guarantee that we dedicate ourselves to fully understanding the scope that needs to covered by our services, and finding the easiest and most cost-effective solution for each and every client.

How do we do this? Our qualified teams and individual specialists focus on building efficiencies into every aspect of the IT division of business; this encompasses building relationships with each client, performing  regular follow-ups and analyses, fore-planning all our implementations and tailoring each and every IT offering to meet as many of your companies’ needs as possible. We like to consider ourselves a one-stop-shop, one which will alleviate unnecessary stress from non-specialised business owners as well as assist in bolstering the IT aspect of each business we work with.

 

Who can benefit from SwitchedOnIT’s Outsourced IT offerings?

We enjoy transparency; the world is full of loopholes, and we believe that being upfront and entirely honest with a client will allow them to trust us and our work completely and without reserve. We understand that we might not be the perfect fit for each and every business out there – take for instance a well-known banking firm with a fully-fledged IT department, in-house CIO and full spectrum management of all IT related issues, stemming from one department. We would not expect you to dissolve an entire department in the hopes of saving money (while we could achieve this objective, it won’t stand equally with a specialised team with sufficient structures and leadership in place).

However, if you are interested in engaging an outsourced IT company to grow your business leaders who need a break from managing their IT systems, or perhaps you’re in search of an IT solution that can obliterate the need for an IT department at all, then we are likely a great fit for you.

 

What Sets SwitchedOnIT Apart from other Outsourced IT Solution Companies?

Our promise to you is simple. Satisfaction. We will deliver you a smooth-running IT department at incredible value within 3 months. You can hold us to that. Within the first three months of signing up, you can expect to experience extensive interaction, strategizing and “tweaking”. If you’ve already got a great system, we will endeavor to improve it. If you have little to no systems in place, we will go out of our way to develop one for you that not only satisfies your current needs, but preempts possible future needs. No more worrying about any aspect of your company in which you are not an expert – we have highly-qualified, trained and dedicated personnel who will ensure the smooth running of any aspect of your enterprises IT needs.

 

Put us to the test! Click here to get in touch with us and allow us to exceed your expectations!

 

What Does an IT Support Company Do?

What Does an IT Support Company Do?

If this headline conjured an image of Pennywise – or “IT” the clown – we apologise profusely. Not our intention!

IT companies have been gaining popularity in leaps and bounds; people are gravitating more towards a one-stop solution for an aspect of their business that is exceptionally time-consuming and sometimes quite costly.

So – you’re paying a premium each month – and you know your servers get backed up each week. There’s also a guy, somewhere, who fixes bugs sometimes. But is that all they do?

What exactly are IT companies doing – and what should they be doing?

What Work Will an Outsourced IT Company Do For Me?

  • 1) VoIP

Not all IT companies include this – it seems to be a standout feature of a few companies. However, we consider anything that is technology-based to be within our scope of work, which is why we cover VoIP. What can you expect from this particular service?

Firstly – what is VoIP? “Voice over IP is in the most simplest terms a telephone service which runs over the internet. The experience is the same as traditional phone systems which the key difference being that you no longer have a dependency on a fixed line operator as your calls take place over your internet connection.

Our Cloud PBX solution hosted offsite which means your phones can connect from anywhere so long as they have an internet connection. This is a pretty powerful as you can receive an incoming call to your head office and transfer your call to a site thousands of kilometers away in the same way you would now allowing your staff to work from anywhere.”

How Does VoIP work? “VoIP works over your standard data network on which your computers are connected and breaks out over your internet connection which makes the solution inherently simple to maintain. Our larger VoIP deployments include a free managed firewall which allows us implement auto fail over to your secondary internet connection keeping your voice online for longer.

Because your traditional PBX is now software based and hosted in the cloud hardware failures is a thing of the past as all management and maintenance of the system is included with your subscription. You can read more about the cloud here.”

 

What are the benefits of VoIP?

  • Free calls between branches – if you have multiple offices you can enjoy free calls between your sites on our cloud PBX systems. By not breaking out from our network you aren’t costing us any money so why should it cost you?
  • Call Recordings – we can keep a recording of every call which is placed both internally and externally which allows you periodically review calls and ensure that your customer service quality remains tops
  • Conference Calls – bring your key players together for that important phone call with a large client or have a quick meeting with your team on the line from anywhere. Our conference call feature allows you to do this with ease
  • Music On Hold – no one likes being on hold but unfortunately this does happen, choose your own music on hold to keep clients calm while they hold on.
  • Voicemail – need to keep track of important missed calls? Why not have the called leave you a voicemail which is delivered straight to your inbox.
  • Auto Attendant – with our smart routing features you can have clients choose which department they need to be connected with a voice prompt speeding up the time it takes to get through to the right person

 

  • 2) Business Internet Solutions

The www. It’s what IT all boils down to – and it can be your friend or your foe. Again – nobody has the scarcest commodity of all – TIME – to research what type of internet your business actually needs. Did you know there are three types to choose from?

What are the benefits of high-speed fibre?

 

What are the benefits of wireless?

 

 

 

What are the benefits of ADSL?

 

 Still not the droid you’re looking for?

Click here to find out about alternative internet solutions from SwitchedOn IT!

 

 

  

 

  • 3) Networking Solutions

 

 

  • 4) Cloud Backups

 

 

How can this save you in a tricky situation? 

 

 

Click here to chat with SwitchedOn IT about their internet offerings!

* Any omissions or incorrect facts are unintentional. Please let us know if you spot any! 

IT Support Companies in Johannesburg

IT Support Companies in Johannesburg

IT Support Companies in Johannesburg

As we discussed in a previous blog post, outsourced IT has become just about as popular as the fidget spinner; except- it has a real purpose. Outsourced IT has too many benefits to narrow down into one little article, which is one of the reasons the industry has seen a boom in the last few years.

We also understand that the need for transparency is as necessary as backups; our aim is to give a face to the name IT has built up for itself in Johannesburg – the well-known hub of Gauteng. While we know that finding an outsourced IT provider is a few ticks and a Google search away, it’s just not as convenient as having all the names in one spot.

If you’re looking for an IT company, here’s a list of the who – the what and the where. You can thank us later 🙂

 

Softegde Solutionshttp://www.softedgesolutions.co.za/it-support

softedge IT

 

Uthanda IThttp://www.uthanda.co.za/

uthanda-it-support

 

ASGhttp://www.asg.co.za/

asg it

 

Wired-IThttp://www.wired-it.co.za/

wired-it

 

Westechhttps://www.westech.co.za/

Westech-IT-Support

 

Vision Network Solutionshttps://www.vns.co.za/

vns-it

 

IT Trust – https://www.ittrust.co.za/

it trust it

 

Dial-A-Nerdhttps://dialanerd.co.za/it-support-areas/johannesburg

dial a nerd

 

SwitchedOn IT (that’s us)https://switchedon.co.za/

swtiched on it

 

 

If you need a free quote, more info – or just a chat – click here to connect with us!

 

  • Any omission of facts is unintentional. Please let us know if you’d like to be listed!

 

Benefits of Outsourcing Your IT Company

What Are The Benefits of Outsourcing Your IT Company?

What Are The Benefits of Outsourcing Your IT Company?

Information Technology – the life essence of the 21st century. We have progressed unbelievably quickly, into such an expansive place that an entirely new market has opened. IT management solutions are growing exponentially – and not everyone has the capacity to keep up with it.

What about a solution that is all-inclusive? What if that solution is an external company? What if this is the droid you’ve been looking for?

Benefits of Outsourced IT Solutions

  • The most blatant benefit of outsourcing your IT company is undoubtedly the cost saving. There’s no need to consider overheads, the hiring and retaining of permanent staff, dealing with crises when “The IT guy” is off sick and the server has crashed – and of course – the hugely reduced amount you could pay for a one-stop solution, as opposed to multiple staff fulfilling various roles within the IT department.
  • Outsourcing your IT “guardian” (if you will) frees up precious time for you to focus on your business and your work; no CEO needs – or wants – to be riddled with the countless issues you can experience on any given day when dealing with any aspect of IT. Allowing an outsourced company to handle the entire scope means less stress, more productive time and far less of a daily hassle to handle.
  • Your IT Company already knows all the tricks of the trade; they are miles ahead in terms of assessing potential risks – and can negate them effectively. Training up new staff to be at the forefront of potential risks is costly – in terms of time as well as money. And who’s to say that the employee is actually fully clued-up? If you’re not an IT expert, there’s no way you can be expected to spot one. Rather head straight to the professionals without the worry, hassle and delay.
  • You get the amalgamation of qualification AND experience. The amount you would spend, on average, for a qualified AND experienced permanent staff member could likely cover more than a month’s worth of fee’s payable to an outsourced IT firm. Essent.com has put this quite eloquently: “An in-house IT employee leads an isolated existence no matter how much they train. We’d all rather an experienced doctor; the same is true for IT.” 
  •  Ensuring your compliance and security is at the top of the agenda for many firms – for good reason. Malware can undo years, even decades of irreplaceable work, and avoiding that should be a top priority. Ensuring your virus-protection systems are up to date, your servers are backed up – all the “dirty work” is the core of keeping your business online; using a trustworthy company can save you a lot of unnecessary setbacks and shortfalls.

Need an IT company to do all of this for you – and a little more? Click here to get in touch with SwitchedOnIT!