Case Study: Managed Services
Many companies are in a position to be too small to hire a
full time IT staff person, but too big to have one person manage all the issues
they might have. Add servers and a
complicated network to manage and one business can find themselves losing a lot
of productivity and money.
An Architecture firm had about 35 employees, of which over
20 were producers. Their computer hours
were around 40% billable if not more during big projects. They had a server which managed everything
from logging into resources to managing printing, and from storing all the
files to handling email.
They had a part-time person doing some technical tasks like
software installations and troubleshooting applications but was primarily an office
support role. They would hire IT
consultants when needed for any problems they had, or any upgrades they needed.
Growing IT Costs, Shrinking Productivity
This seemed to work ok but there were some losses in
downtime. Problems occurred with some
regularity since they changed IT providers a couple times, and there was no
continuity of service. The IT
consultants were usually just asked to fix a single problem, and wouldn’t
document the solution or the environment for the client or other IT support staff.
These consultants, because they weren’t asked back to
monitor or maintain anything had no real dedication to the client. If they saw some other problem occurring, it
would be reported as another opportunity for a service call. Some problems languished and became worse
over time. Lost passwords – tough
luck. They didn’t keep copies of the
passwords resulting in some serious downtime.
Worse yet, it might take over a day to fix a critical work-stoppage
issue because the consultants were busy or otherwise unable to help when they
were so desperately needed.
As if the lost productivity wasn’t cost enough, because
these were all emergencies, the consultants needed to charge premium hourly
rates. Charging over $150/hr was made
even worse when the aforementioned environment documentation was not available,
every service call time was nearly doubled because the consultant needed to
figure out how something was put together before they could attempt to fix
Solution: Managed Services
The firm decided to go with a managed services service plan
from Stewart and Son Computer Services.
Stewart and Son took over all IT support. We coordinated through a single point of
contact at the firm that collects information on the issues employees are
having and assigns a priority. We come
in, sometimes on less than 4 hours’ notice to get people back to work.
Systems are documented & monitored so
there’s no guesswork as to how service is delivered and we are able to cut
service times significantly.
Since the firm is now under a managed services agreement, we
charge a lower hourly rate in case of emergencies and the downtimes are shorter
resulting in more productive billable hours for employees and less IT spend to
support critical systems.
If you are interested in seeing how a managed services
agreement can help you save money, make systems more secure and keep your
employees productive, contact Stewart and Son Computer Services today!
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Content Copyright Wade Stewart (C) 2013
Labels: configuration, managed services, networking, small business