When it comes to managing technology in the workplace, things have gotten a little more complicated in recent years. That’s maybe an understatement. It can be challenging to keep up with and understand emerging computer technologies, let alone make the best use of them in the workplace. The following will explore the potential reasons you might want to bring an IT services team onboard.
What Is IT?
IT stands for information technology, but the meaning of this term differs depending on who you’re talking to. Originally, IT pertained to the following: computational data processing, business software, and decision support. The Harvard Business Review presented this three-pronged definition in 1958. However, this isn’t how the term is used today.
In popular culture, we use IT in reference to any computer-related work, but this broader definition evolved as more businesses began to include computers in their daily work. Over time, companies began to fill positions in IT departments to help manage the computer technologies that their business needed to run. People began to associate the term IT with whatever the people in these departments were doing.
Things like computer technology support, database administration, business software deployment, information security, computer systems architecture, business software development, project management, and business computer network administration became part of the IT umbrella.
Managing IT Services Today
As the world and the technology we use daily becomes ever-more complex and capable, the average person might struggle to troubleshoot and resolve or workaround technical problems that arise within the computer technology they use in the workforce.
Positions are becoming increasingly specialized, which often means that people don’t know how to take apart and repair the devices they’re working with or manage the security steps required to ensure that hackers or other cybercriminals don’t access their work—their specialty is the work that they do on the computer. This is where IT management services come in.
If you have an in-house or out-of-house support team, you are more likely to resolve technical problems that arise quickly and smoothly so people can get back to work with minimal headaches. At the minimum, this means having an IT support team that you or other staff members can call when something goes awry. Of course, IT management can go a lot further than this.
Cloud Services Management
Given how much data we all have and the storage space this takes up when we back everything up on traditional hard drives (and the risks associated with damages like fire, flooding, or dropping devices), many businesses are looking into cloud storage and services.
Cloud computing also allows for employees to work from anywhere as long as there’s an internet connection. These benefits have piqued the interest of many businesses.
Still, not everyone is confident or comfortable transferring company data and software to virtual storage space, nor do they know how to provide accurate security for this data floating in the digital ether. IT management services can help companies set up and maintain cloud services.
Speaking of security, it’s not only the data we store in a cloud that we need to be protecting. Cyberattacks are increasing at rabbit speed (64% of companies worldwide have experienced one form of a cyberattack, and 30,000 websites are hacked every day). It might be easy to think you’re not a target, but you would be surprised what people can do with stolen data that seems harmless to the average person.
Hackers can cost businesses hundreds of thousands of dollars in repair costs and missed productivity — not to mention client losses when people find out hackers stole their private information under your watch. An IT management team can provide a risk analysis and set up security measures to protect you, your employees, and your customers.
With things developing rapidly and new technologies being released every day, it can be hard to keep up and determine which technology you should include meeting your business goals.
This isn’t to say that IT management teams are going to be pushing new software or hardware down your throat all the time — more so, they’ll give you an outline of what tech can do, what it will cost, how long it’ll take to implement, and how to train employees for best usage of this new technology.
You can then use that information to decide what you want to include and what you want to skip over. IT management teams can even develop software specifically for your business’ and employees’ needs in some cases.
The above information outlines some of the more general features included in IT management services. Of course, every business and every industry is different; this means that your information technology needs might expand beyond the above list. For the most up-to-date information about IT within the context of your business, consult an IT professional.