Are you noticing an increase in computer or other Information Technology problems? If you aren’t the company IT support person or liaison, you may be bearing the brunt of other employee's frustrations.
If you're the office manager, or one of the more “tech-savvy” employees, you may be tasked with fixing the computer problems your peers experience. If this solution is efficient and cost-effective, great. But if your valuable time is being increasingly spent solving nagging problems, or if other key employees are becoming less productive because they aren’t able to perform the work they were hired to do, it may be time to find another solution.
By now, you're likely familiar with the most common complaints from staff: “my email is down, the internet is slow (or down), my computer is slow.” While someone on staff may be adept at solving these computer problems, an increase in the frequency of these problems can cause unwelcome diversions from day-to-day core activities.
To remove these nagging problems from your plate, you may need to find professional IT help. If that's the case, it is important to be prepared. The first step is to establish the criteria you require. Here are some steps you can follow.
Define the need. Put together a list of the most common IT problems you are encountering, and how frequently they occur if possible. You might also want to to quantify time spent either by you or other employees solving the problems. This information can help you understand productivity suffered fixing IT problems (and the loss of productivity suffered from core staff that are experiencing those problems).
Establish a budget. Before you search for professional IT support, establish a budget. Setting a budget establishes an important parameter. If you decide to hire outsourced IT support, many outsourcers will attempt to provide a solution that works within your budget. If your needs are greater than your budget, they’ll let you know.
If the boss is reluctant to put resources towards a solution, outlining lost productivity can provide the impetus for a cost-effective solution. You may even discover that a professional solution is not only worthwhile, but necessary.
Choose the ideal level of support. This sounds more technical than it really is. This simply means that you should think about whether you need someone onsite 8 or more hours per day during the full work week, or if roughly a handful of hours per week done remotely will suffice. This usually comes down to budget and how critical your IT system is to your operation. While you may not know the exact answer to this question, if you have a rough idea before speaking to some IT experts you’ll get an idea of what you need.
The good news here is that professional help is available, and there are many flexible solutions to solve all types of computer problems.
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