usinesses that value their high-touch environments are sometimes reluctant to utilize a managed IT services provider. However, high-touch companies and IT outsourcing can go hand-in-hand. For any business, maintaining a high-touch environment requires establishing trust-oriented relationships with its clients, customers, and partners. Companies that classify themselves as highly personable sometimes believe an IT managed service provider (MSP) is incapable of handling the complexity of their operations and will detract from the close-knit culture of their business. However, if an organization outsources to a mature MSP, it will benefit from the extensive knowledge, resources, and advisory services the provider can deliver.
“Our goal as a high OML provider is to raise our client’s OML. When we do that, we enable their ability to be more personable to their own customers.”—Jamison West (President of Arterian-subsidiary of Aldridge)
High-touch means highly complex
It’s common for high-touch business environments to correlate with complex internal processes. A small to a midsize business may not have the standardization in place to ensure operations are streamlined and resourcefully controlled. Often, businesses of this size have lower operational maturity levels (OML) and lack the experience and resources required to implement structured protocols both within their IT environment and throughout their organization as a whole.
Any changes that occur are the responsibility of multiple departments and in addition, staff training may be inconsistent and devoid of prescribed roles, thus assigning a variety of responsibilities to each employee. While this complexity may be common for smaller businesses, it does restrict the level of efficiency that can be achieved, especially where it concerns the business’s technology.
Complexity can be managed
There’s a trending fear among highly personable companies that outsourcing to an MSP will affect the high-touch relationships they have with clients. These organizations are often unsure of how to run their own operations and are skeptical of a managed IT services provider’s ability to understand what it takes to make their business work. However, an MSP with a high OML will function as more than just a vendor to such a company.
An effective managed IT services provider should work as a partner with its clients and perform a thorough IT environment assessment which results in a detailed analysis of the client’s technology processes, needs, and required improvements for their business’s IT environment.
The MSP should employ a highly communicative onboarding process to align its strategies with the company’s goals and obtain a firm understanding of the existing culture. Essentially, the MSP will conduct its relationship in a high-touch manner and should work to increase the operational maturity of the business it serves.
Culture is not concrete
Often, high-touch companies question an MSP’s ability to match the performance of their internal IT department and are skeptical of the firm’s remote support and monitoring practices. Such businesses are accustomed to the physical presence of their technology support staff and this skepticism is generally a result of a cultural preference within the organization.
Outsourcing to an MSP may appear to entail a more distant relationship with the company’s tech support, but when employing a mature IT services provider, the opposite is true. A managed IT services provider can streamline the business’s operations and provide fast, high-level customer service and network operability via 24/7/365 remote monitoring and customer support.
An experienced MSP will have standardized procedures within its own organization and a vast pool of resources to ensure it can support the needs of its clients. However, an MSP cannot deliver this level of service without the support of its client’s executive team.
The leadership of a business must be willing to work with the managed IT services provider to develop a suitable IT strategy. The synergy of the MSP’s efforts and the client’s cooperation can result in a more functional IT environment and increase the business’s ability to provide personalized service to its customers by increasing their availability and uptime.
Aldridge specializes in working with small to midsized businesses that are looking to align their technology with their business objectives. Our company provides high-touch customer service and will work alongside our clients to achieve their business goals. Learn more about how outsourcing your IT can help you.