With the wave of resignations sweeping the nation in "The Great Resignation," many companies are being left in the lurch with their IT manager putting in their notice.
This is leading organizations to consider outsourcing IT instead of replacing the departing in-house IT manager. Outsourcing some or all of the IT function typically gives companies broader expertise, an expanded team, and better business results.
But sometimes, that transition can be rocky.
The main reason for a bumpy ride from in-house to outsourced IT is the lack of a proper transitioning strategy, making the change a headache-inducing process.
Fear not -- with mapped-out objectives, a clear plan, and detailed communication, transitioning to outsourced IT can be a smooth road.
Communication is Key to Transitioning From In-House to Outsourced IT Support
Here are four strategies to make the transition from in-house IT to outsourced IT seamless, quick, and effective.
1. Arrange for a Knowledge Transfer With Your Outgoing IT Manager
Chances are good that there's a lot that your IT manager has been doing that hasn't been documented. That makes it vital to arrange for a knowledge transfer with your IT manager and your new provider.
This will allow your outsourced IT team to get a deeper understanding of your infrastructure and its status. It will also prevent the password ruckus and discrepancy associated with moving your IT services to new management.
But what if your IT manager is already packed up and is inaccessible?
The next best thing is to arrange for an inventory of all your IT infrastructure. In fact, even when you have a good knowledge transfer, it's a good idea to do an audit to help the new IT service provider start with a clean slate.
An audit provides a good lay of the land for your new IT team. It's also likely to reveal situations that have been wasting money or creating security gaps. There may be a server everyone thought was out of use but still exists, or account privileges for terminated employees were never completely deleted.
2. Be Transparent with Staff During the Transition
There's nothing that your employees will appreciate more than transparency and communication during any change. Aside from letting your employees know that everyone is heading in the same direction, communication takes away the confusion and stress.
First, have a plan for communicating during the transition. For example, will an email be sufficient, or will we need a virtual or face-to-face meeting? The communication medium you choose should be inclusive and reinforce the reasons and benefits that outsourcing your IT function will bring.
Next, provide regular updates as the transition into outsourced IT begins. Answer pressing employee questions such as:
- Which departments will be directly impacted by the changes in IT management?
- Who will they talk to for their IT needs?
- What's the new process going to look like?
- How do they contact the help desk?
Many of these can be facilitated by the incoming outsourced IT provider. Our process at Accent Computer Solutions includes communicating with staff about how to get support, who to contact, and what the process will look like for your requests.
Finally, understand that for the transition to be a success, communication needs to be two-way. Be open to hearing from employees on how the move is working from their side, and deliver feedback to your IT support provider.
3. Phase Into Outsourced IT with Staff Augmentation (If Needed)
Are you having doubts about a smooth transition into outsourced IT?
A hybrid outsourcing solution can make the move easier. You can outsource your core IT infrastructure and processes to a managed IT services company, then use staff augmentation to have in-house personnel.
This hybrid arrangement means that you will have dedicated IT personnel onsite and a whole team behind the scenes to drive your business in the right direction. You'll get access to comprehensive IT expertise, including guidance on IT strategy to proactively plan and manage IT while your onsite technician can quickly provide assistance with a personal touch.
4. Have Candid Conversations About Your Goals
Outsourcing IT services is more than simply handing over the reins to another company. To be successful, there has to be a cohesive relationship between your business and the IT service provider.
If you're outsourcing a significant part of your IT department, such as user support, cybersecurity, network management, and server management, your high-level goals will need to be communicated to the IT provider.
Communicating these goals will ensure that the IT services align with your long-term strategy, goals, and objectives.
Look Beyond the Transition
Outsourcing your IT to a managed IT service provider may be different from what you're used to, but this is not always a bad thing. Chances are good that if you were looking for a different option, you weren't so happy with how things were going in the first place.
Undertake the transition knowing that you'll be better off in the long run.
📖 Related: Get the Guide to Managed IT Services for Southern California Businesses
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