IT services are quickly becoming some of the most important services in the world of business. With so many high-profile data breaches, and with the vast amount of damage that they can cause, it’s no wonder that people are looking for new solutions. Managed IT service providers offer a greater degree of professionalism, and that’s just one of the ways in which your law firm can benefit from them.
The first (and most obvious) benefit of a managed service provider would be improved security. While many standard IT technicians might have the expertise to give you the security you need, not all of them do. Instead of rolling the dice and hoping you get a good one, you can go with a company that has already vetted their employees and (hopefully) ensured that they are competent enough.
Aside from that, most managed service providers provide 24/7 monitoring. That means that they have enough competent employees to do the job without distraction. By contrast, an in-house IT person will probably have to balance their efforts between network monitoring, problem resolution, and system maintenance. Those who work for an MSP don’t have that problem.
This is important because only close network monitoring can make for a truly secure system. Any automatic security measure, whether it be encryption, firewalls, or an anti-virus program, can be outsmarted by human intellect. The only thing that can defeat that is another human intellect. By using software like Wireshark and Nmap, network monitoring isn’t all that hard, but it does require constant attention to be effective.
Better System Stability
When you go with a managed service provider, it is likely that your IT infrastructure will be a little bit more stable as a result. When you have a professional group of people monitoring the network 24/7, that is the result one might expect.
When a business network goes down, the work of the company is brought to a screeching halt. Some businesses may be able to operate without that network, but even they will find their operations greatly hindered. Network downtime can be very expensive, with some estimates as high as $1,000,000 per hour. In the research study linked above, about 33% of businesses that responded said that network downtime caused them to lose 1-5 million dollars worth of productivity per hour.
An MSP will also probably provide a more consistent service. This is an obvious fact since all of your IT people will be working for the same company and following the same orders. Of course, IT technicians can work as a team too, but they are more likely to disagree. All of this comes down to one thing: An MSP will usually have better cooperation among its employees, and less variation in their methods. This leads to more consistent results and more reliable performance.
Most in-house IT people will be paid by the hour, but this isn’t the most efficient way to do things. After all, you probably aren’t experiencing technical problems every hour of the day. If you are, something is definitely wrong with your IT staff anyway! Because these are hourly employees doing a sporadic job, you can end up wasting a lot of money on employee wages. For most of their day, they are sitting around waiting for a problem to occur, and that waiting can add up and become expensive.
Of course, we should address the fact that managed service providers tend to be a little more expensive. If you want better service, you must be prepared to pay for that improvement. At the same time, an MSP isn’t really that much more expensive when you factor in the cost of personal equipment. In-house technicians will usually have to be provided with a computer and/or a tablet (at a bare minimum). You might also have to invest in your own servers or a separate cloud membership.
When you go with an MSP, all of those IT expenses are lumped into one sum. This makes your IT budgeting a lot smoother and more consistent. Short of a serious crisis, you know that your MSP is going to charge you the same amount of money each month, and they will already have their own equipment.
When you go with an MSP, you can also reduce or eliminate your existing IT department. You might want to keep one or two trusted people around, but most of them will become non-essential. That means more company resources that can be used for other projects.
For a law firm, compliance with all applicable regulations is very crucial. Naturally, the legal profession deals with a lot more of that than most other businesses. With such a tangled web of rules, even the best lawyer can have trouble sorting them out. Even something as simple as a company website can be subject to compliance issues. T/hat’s why an MSP can make things a little bit easier in this department.
Most of these MSP companies will have a department that is focused on compliance, and that means you don’t have to do the same. Of course, you should go ahead and check their work to make sure that they are as competent as they say. Still, these services will allow you to worry a lot less about such matters. From a legal standpoint, it probably reduces your liability as well. When you consider the potential cost of lawsuits, that amounts to some serious savings.
As you can see, there are several important ways in which a law firm can benefit from the services of a managed service provider. Like any other business, a law firm needs to operate with efficiency and precision. Because these people are often trusted with the legal fate of their clients, those factors become even more important. We hope that our short introduction to this subject has been helpful and that you will fill out the contact form.