There’s no doubt that the Internet has evolved significantly over the past few decades. It has led to the proliferation of Information Technology and a virtual digital domain, which has adversely impacted brick-and-mortar businesses. Almost every business operation can now be augmented, made more efficient or remodelled via some form of IT intervention. Thus, having an in-house robust IT team/department or hiring external IT support services has become indispensable for the success of modern entities.
What are IT support services?
Every modern organisation, in some form or another, utilises computers, technology and the Internet for various tasks. These tasks can vary from digitally recording employees’ attendance to protecting the client’s data from theft, from designing the company’s website to utilising AI for better sales prediction. As these tasks may not form the core objective of the entities, they are sometimes outsourced to a third party providing IT support services. Therefore, any IT-driven external paid assistance is called an IT support service.
Some of the common and upcoming IT Support services are briefly discussed below:
- IT design– The most basic of all IT services, IT design services include website designing, upscaling of digital infrastructure, etc.
- Cloud services– A considerable amount of company and customer data is generated in almost every IT operation, which must be stored for analysis and productive use.
- Data protection– With a high amount of data comes the requirement of protecting the same. A firm thus may require anti-virus software or the development of firewalls for the protection of sensitive data.
- Communication services– The cost of communication can be considerably reduced using IT tools. For example, VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) utilises the internet instead of analogue phone lines, which may save costs considerably.
To make operations more efficient, save costs, and exploit upcoming opportunities, having a robust IT Setup is essential, but it may not always be economically feasible. Let’s take, for example, a case of a small boutique owner who wants to upscale her business and open branches in different states. It may not be feasible for her to set up an IT department or learn web designing as it will distract her from her core textile business. Therefore, to efficiently upscale her business, she must outsource her web designing needs. It is here that IT support companies come into the picture.
The IT support companies cater to all your IT needs; while some may help you with data protection, others will fulfil your digital needs. All you need to do is reach out to a company providing your desired IT requirement, or contact B2B companies like Expand My Business.
6 Popular IT Support Services to Scale Your Small Businesses
While big companies and conglomerates can afford to set up dedicated IT departments for all their IT needs, small businesses will find it more prudent to outsource their IT necessities. Any sort of horizontal or vertical upscaling in a digitally connected world is impossible without IT interventions.
The following IT services can substantially assist a small business in meeting its day-to-day, intermediate and growth needs.
1. Digital Infrastructure
With continuous technological development, a similar-paced change in the IT interface is necessary. If what a customer requires is not readily available on the website, they tend to seek it elsewhere. Thus, a continuous upscaling of IT infrastructure is essential.
For small businesses, all the more, continuous upgradation in digital infrastructure can cause a large number of disruptions. From updating websites to anti-virus requirements, from firm-specific software development to IT-led automation at the workplace, done by a substitute firm can impact a small business adversely.
Small businesses cannot afford to have IT departments/teams. Still, no worries, as almost all the infrastructure-related IT support services can be readily outsourced to maintain a competitive edge without incurring extensive costs.
2. Communication Services.
It would seem communication services are a component of the IT infrastructure discussed above, but it’s so essential that it must be addressed extensively. Primarily, communication can be divided into two parts: Intra-firm communication and interaction with current and prospective customers.
1. Intra-firm communication
VoIP, as discussed above, can reduce costs and provide seamless communication in a local area. Similarly, some entities require in-house individualised e-mail services for communication.
2. Interaction with customers
Customer interaction can vary from passive help to active support. In passive help, AI-based chat boxes can be developed, whereas, in active support, product/ service experts must attend to the customers.
For small businesses to develop the above-discussed communication systems may be too cumbersome, but they are fundamental for every business, and their importance is paramount. Small businesses can benefit a lot by hiring the services of IT service provider companies in this regard.
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3. Digital Marketing
Conventional marketing techniques are both less effective and costly. This is the age of digital marketing. A firm can easily identify the needs of customers using Artificial intelligence, collect data about the customer and customise the product to gain a competitive edge.
While a dedicated marketing department or team can be assembled to undertake these activities, a small business might not find it financially prudent due to less scale of operations. Yet success without optimum marketing is non-realisable. To save costs and optimally market their product, a small business can hire the services of digital marketing agencies. These agencies act as a substitute for an in-house marketing department.
4. Employee Productivity Tracking Tools
The covid-19 pandemic started a culture of working from home, which has continued even post-pandemic. WFH saves costs, enhances work-life balance, saves time and provides many other benefits. Most firms have now adopted WFH to some extent as a matter of competitive advantage.
The scope of work from home jobs is quite extensive for small businesses, but it comes with an exorbitant initial cost. From providing hardware such as laptops and internet connectivity to core software support, WFH is no longer a less expensive affair, especially without the benefit of economies of scale that accrue to only large firms.
Moreover, dedicated software must be developed to track user activity, without which delinquency may creep into the work environment. To make WFH effective, IT services can be adopted, which can provide both infrastructure and employee scrutiny tools.
5. Business Intelligence- Big Data Analytics
Data is the new oil. Every business considerably collects customer data to understand customer outlook and gain market advantage. While collecting data is not an issue, storing it, protecting it and analysing it to gain a market advantage is a whole different ball game.
Small businesses need hand-holding regarding data analytics, as it is still a relatively new arena. Data analytics can distract a firm from its core business. Moreover, cloud storage services and data protection facilities are also essential for data analytics.
Business intelligence develops a core competence that can give a small business a USP which cannot be replicated by competing firms, thus ensuring perpetual success. Companies can also seek data science and analytics services to improve their business performance.
6. Human Resource Development
In the 21st century, where business is people, a comprehensive focus must always be on developing employees. Employee development requires costly training programmes, e.g., vestibule training involves simulation of the actual workplace by providing job tools and machines outside the job area.
Small firms are at an inherent disadvantage when training their employees, as these programmes require huge costs, time and dedication, but not anymore, as simulation can now be provided via virtual reality. A small business can hire an AI service provider to develop a simulation game, which can help in employee development.
Let Us Expand Your Business
If you have read this far, you must have identified some IT support services that you or your firm require. Now, your most significant concern must be identifying the vendor for these services, negotiating the price and articulating your exact requirement. Worry not, as Expand My Business has got you covered for all your digital needs.
You’ll be fascinated to know what can be achieved with the help of digital technology. We will connect you with the best-in-business agencies for all your IT needs. We’ll take care of the terms and conditions of services and oversee that the services are delivered on time and with the utmost quality. So, don’t delay and contact us to seek the much-needed IT support services for your business growth.