Technology and Economy: Q & A with Sean Ferrel

Technology and Economy: Q & A with Sean Ferrel

Founded in 2002, Managed Solution was barely 6 years old when the 2008 financial crisis hit. Yet, even as a young company we managed (pun intended) to pull through and grow to become the organization you now know today. That is why, today, we're talking about technology and economy.

With that in mind, we sat down to interview our CEO, Sean Ferrel, to discuss the recent economic events and how they pertain to Information Technology and the Tech industry in general. Read on to explore a top-down examination of a post-covid financial climate and gather insight and advice for your business.


A Top-Down Look at the Economy

A lot has been a lot going on with the U.S. economy since the pandemic. Recently though, we’ve seen some real negative indicators with bank collapses on a level reminiscent of the 2008 financial crisis. As a business leader, could you share some insight with us about today’s current economic environment?

Sean: In the last 3+ years there’s been a lot thrown at businesses. From COVID-19 to hybrid workforces; all the way up to how the housing markets have been affected. When people started to work from home it changed the places where people wanted to live. This drove a lot of inflation in certain areas that didn’t previously have these high-salary workers in the market before.

However, the housing market is one aspect. At the core of it, we could argue that there’s been a supply problem across the board. We see it an automobile makers and shipping components. For example, we rely on other countries for things as simple as [computer] chips. Manufacturers couldn’t get the chips to put into cars so a lot of cars couldn’t be built, which then created low supply, and the big companies with low supply were able to charge more for the commodities and goods we needed.

Even with our food and beverage companies. There was a problem there as well due to the lack of potential employees. So, whether it was auto-parts or workers in factories: businesses couldn’t produce as fast as they [normally] would. The demand for goods was still high, the supply was low, and ultimately people charged, and are still charging, more for their product.

Now, the more supply that these companies create and market - the less demand they might get for the product if it becomes more saturated. Meaning they’d have to bring down their inflated costs.

They also have to pay more in taxes if they produce more of something. So, a lot of companies have kind of sat for a minute and said, “well, we're getting a lot of money for our product than we used to get, so why should we produce anymore just to get taxed more for it?”. Which is why many have continued to drive the same amount of supply out of their organization and the inflation has remained. Of course, there’s more nuance to it, but essentially that’s where we’re at.

I think the reason why we’ll run into the “recession”, however, is simply because the dollar goes less far. Things are more expensive and the only way to combat that is businesses paying their employees more. This is challenging and leads to businesses charging their customers more and it becomes a very vicious cycle. One that, unfortunately, will eventually come to a head when businesses can longer afford to pay their employees more and will likely automate their processes instead, or they’ll have to downsize. So, I do think there will be more layoffs coming.

What’s interesting though, we all read about the layoffs at Google, Amazon, and Microsoft. It wasn’t because the companies were doing poorly -- they have more cash in the bank than ever. It’s merely due to the fact that their demand is going to go down because of people’s dollar’s not going as far.


2008 v. 2023

How do you feel our current economic situation compares to that of 2008?

Sean: Compared to 2008, it’s a very different market. Back then it was the way banks were lending with negative amortization loans. Essentially, saying “we're going to loan you for this half a million-dollar house -- which you probably couldn't afford with your salary this much money -- and in three years we're going to increase your interest rate adjusted from an initial 5% or 4% interest rate up to 12%.

That increased the cost of the mortgage and people just got wiped out really fast. They couldn't afford it and hence we had a huge market where things were foreclosing, people didn't have the money and they borrowed against the home and their credit was tapped.

In today’s world though, people have been making a lot of money. It’s been a good economy for a long time, and I don’t think people are tapped credit-wise at this point, so we’re not going to see a big downturn where people are liquidating everything they have. But we definitely need to see some changes happen.


The Tech Industry

From your perspective, what are the main shifts the economy has had on the tech industry?

Sean: In the whole tech-sector; you have four things that happened in the workplace:

  1. Hybrid Workforce
  2. Heightened concern for cybersecurity
  3. Workplace culture shift
  4. Increased interest in the cloud

What I see there is a problem in general with “can technology solve it?” one, but two, “does the workforce for technologists -- like the people that we employ -- have the skill set”?

Technology has sprawled a ton, so it’s almost impossible to find enough talent out there to keep up. There's a huge lack of it from security talent to cloud talent, etc.

So, companies are struggling to find the right IT people who aren’t over-charging for the cost of their labor because, again, the employee-cost has inflated. That’s why now there’s this notion of Do More With Less. Technology and economy, obviously being closely interwoven in this concept. 


Doing More with Less (Technology and Economy)

Could you tell us what “doing more with less” looks like?

Sean: I think one question is; are companies ultimately building tools that are easier to manage by bolting them together? For example, Microsoft owns Microsoft Azure (the cloud).

They also own the operating system within the cloud, which is windows. Then they own the productivity software we all use, which is Office 365 -- and in that you have your communication tools like Microsoft Teams, collaboration hubs like Microsoft Viva -- all the way down to the computer with Windows operating system.

With that, they can control the market from a cost perspective and drive down costs for these suites of products. Not to mention, more Microsoft people in general are probably out there in the world studying and learning.

Making it a little bit easier to find people who do work in that area. And at the ultimate goal; it's easier to manage the process and the technology by consolidating into one or two platforms as opposed to having many, many vendors.

It’s similar to security too. Everybody's coming to market with amazing security tools that do detection at the endpoint or do secure app management to secure applications in the world. But now there's a lot of them and there's not enough resources out there to ultimately manage many different types inside of one business.

So, that's where the big picture of the project-based work consolidation is happening. You have more talent to manage better and more control & cost optimization by consolidating these infrastructures. Today's technology and economy are extremely closely related so business leaders need to emphasize having the right technology for their companies.


The Role of Managed Services

Could you speak about how this all ties into managed services and IT outsourcing? What benefit, if any, could customers gain from these types of services and solutions during this time?

Sean: As I mentioned before, you have the whole thing around hybrid and remote workforces. There are two things that happened:

  1.  Shifted working hours
  2. Changing workforce (great resignation)

Where previously companies had one IT person in the office. That’s not the same anymore. If people are working from home, they're working 24 hours a day. There's not really a regular 9 – 5 anymore.

That means the calls are coming in more than ever. The person who worked internal IT doesn't want to be the person hanging on the phone taking those calls all day every day and it’s not like they can run into anyone’s house to get everything set. That’s why we see technical call-based Help Desks becoming more and more popular. So, outsourcing will continue to grow in a bad economy. Outsourcing and centralizing the tools that are being managed by companies.

The second reason why outsourcing is becoming bigger, is due in part to the great resignation. With the inflation of salaries and expense of increased employee turnover, people are looking at companies, like Managed Solution, instead.

 Beyond that, when it comes to enhancing security, making their users more productive, or having collaboration tools move into the cloud -- many companies are finding that the traditional IT teams are not always tooled up for this. That's why we're seeing more companies outsourcing a lot of that strategy as well; to help them build a long-term footprint that looks at the total cost of ownership. They’re asking organizations like us, “How do we optimize costs and better productivity for my new hybrid workforce of users and make sure we’re secure?”.

For us, it's a nice place to play in the industry right now, being sort of the managed service provider who outsources all this stuff and the consulting arm to be able to go out and help build the future architecture.


Advice to Fellow Tech Companies

We’ve established that the economy today is different than it was in 2008, but one thing they have in common is their negative impact on people and businesses financially. As a business leader who came out of that, do you have any advice or words of comfort for fellow tech companies like Managed Solution?

Sean: For tech companies like ours, it’s always been a good thing to have multiple vendors on your website such as Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Dell, etc. A lot of the traditional sense has been that those are kind of like VARs, or ‘value added resellers’, who could resell all these products and services.

But my advice, is that you’ve got to pick a horse. Make sure you understand what suppliers (Microsoft, Amazon, Salesforce, VMware, Cisco), are building that understand the economic climate. If cost is a big factor and businesses are having to do more with less technology, who's building the technology in one stack of products to ultimately give you all the tools that you need to be successful?

Consolidation is really where I think all businesses should try to head and are trying to head right now. So, ultimately, as it pertains to technology -- I think picking that horse that you think is going to be best in the race is key. Technology and economy is a huge conversation right now. Technology and economy are both make or break aspects for businesses today.


If you’re interested in speaking to one of our team members for more tech-guidance? Contact us and we’ll be happy to help.

Want more resources or interested in more tech content? Head over to our blog page! Technology and economy is a huge conversation right now. Be sure to keep up with us to stay in the know!

8 Tips to Prepare your Business for a Recession

8 Tips to Prepare your Business for a Recession

Don't lose your shirt during a recession -- read on for helpful tips and tricks to keep your business thriving!


Recessions can be challenging times for businesses of all sizes. Due to recent events, many businesses are fearful of what lies ahead economically. Thankfully, there is wisdom abound from the financial crisis of 2008, and a plethora of strategies to help you prepare your business for a recession so that you can maintain growth!


Diversify Your Offerings

During a recession, customers may be more cautious with their spending. As a result, businesses that rely on a single product or service may struggle to generate enough revenue.

That's why diversifying your offerings and opening new streams of revenue is a great way to get ahead. By expanding your product or service offerings, you can appeal to a wider range of customers and reduce your reliance on any single product or service.

To do this, consider areas of value your business has the capabilities of providing that you aren’t currently making any revenue off of, or additional products that you can invest in creating that may provide a great profit for you.

For example, a restaurant might consider offering catering services or selling branded merchandise. Alternatively, you could expand your menu to include more options, such as vegetarian or gluten-free dishes.

If, like us, you’re a tech company, this concept can still apply to you! Perhaps you have an abundance of expertise in your field that you can use to create and sell courses through sites like Udemy.

You might also consider challenging your expertise and adding more value to existing clients. For example, if you are a software provider with content writing talent, you can potentially use that to create a content writing service for existing clients.


Focus on Customer Service

During a recession, customers may be more selective about where they spend their money. That's why it's essential to focus on providing exceptional customer service. Providing consistent, quality customer service will help you build customer loyalty while also attracting new customers through word of mouth.

To do this, consider the areas that may affect the quality of service your staff provides. If there is opportunity to boost your teams’ internal engagement and morale, be sure to tune into that. Creating a healthy and engaged working environment sets the stage for your teams servicing to improve.

It’s also wise to consider investing in additional training for your staff. Ensure that your employees understand your business's values and are equipped to handle customer inquiries and complaints. You may also want to consider offering incentives to customers who refer new business to you.


Invest in Marketing

History has taught us that businesses who lean into advertising and marketing during recessions tend to perform better. It can be tempting to cut back on marketing expenses to save money. However, investing in marketing can actually help your business grow during tough economic times.

For one, increasing your marketing efforts in general allows you to reach new customers and increase brand awareness. However, and most importantly, marketing during a recession means there will be less competition.

Many businesses will try to get ahead by giving into cost-cutting temptation or will sadly not have the means to advertise, giving a small amount of other businesses more opportunity to shine. That being said, you want to be sure you budget your advertising and marketing efforts appropriately.

To make the most of your marketing budget, consider investing in online advertising, social media marketing, and email marketing campaigns. These forms of marketing can be highly effective and cost-efficient.

Leaning into free marketing tactics can also make a large impact on lead generation. For this we recommend rolling up your sleeves and putting in the effort to boost your SEO and social presence as much as possible.

Another great and cost-effective strategy is collaboration. Consider partnering with other businesses or organizations to co-promote each other's products or services.


Improve Operational Efficiency

This part probably goes without saying but it's essential to focus on improving operational efficiency to reduce costs and increase profitability. To better help you prepare your business for recession, look for ways to streamline processes and eliminate waste.

You may also consider outsourcing certain tasks to reduce overhead costs, but we’ll discuss that more later.

To improve operational efficiency, consider using technology to automate manual tasks. For example, you could use a customer relationship management (CRM) system to manage customer interactions, or a project management tool to streamline your team's workflow.

If this sounds a bit overwhelming, you can also look into freelancing or booking a consultant to help you identify inefficiencies and implement solutions.


Keep an Eye on Cash Flow

Cash flow is critical during a recession. Make sure that you are closely monitoring your cash flow and again, taking steps to reduce expenses where possible.

If possible, try negotiating with suppliers for discounts or better payment terms, and be on the lookout for opportunities to reduce inventory levels.

To manage your cash flow effectively, consider creating a cash flow forecast. This will help you anticipate your cash needs and plan accordingly.

You may also want to think about working with a financial advisor to help you develop a cash flow management strategy.


Partnerships and Collaborations

As the economy slows, it may prove challenging to fund new projects or initiatives. However, by forming partnerships and collaborations with other businesses, you can pool resources and achieve common goals.

To form partnerships and collaborate with other businesses, start by identifying businesses that share your values and target market. Reach out to these businesses and propose a mutually beneficial partnership or collaboration.

Using social media platforms or attending industry events are also great ways to network with other business owners and find potential partners.


Outsource Non-Core Functions

During a recession, it may be difficult to justify hiring new employees to handle non-core functions. That's where outsourcing can be a valuable tool. By outsourcing non-core functions, you can reduce overhead costs and free up resources to focus on your core business.

To determine which functions to outsource, start by identifying the tasks that are not critical to your business's success. This may include tasks such as accounting, human resources, or IT support. Then, research outsourcing providers and compare their costs and services to find the best provider that fits your budget.

Keep in mind that when outsourcing, it's critical to choose a provider that aligns with your business's values and goals. Look for a provider with a proven track record of success and good customer reviews.

It's also essential to establish clear expectations and communication channels to ensure that the outsourcing relationship is successful.


Outsourcing for Information Systems

Diving a little deeper here into our area of expertise, outsourcing some or all of your IT services can greatly benefit your business during a recession and in general.

Read our full article on that here. But to keep it short and sweet, outsourcing your information systems can help you reduce costs, improve efficiency, and access specialized expertise.

To outsource your information systems, start by identifying the specific functions of IT that you want to outsource. This may include software development, data management, cybersecurity, or Helpdesk support. Then research outsourcing providers that specialize in these areas.

Like all outsourcing goes, you want to be sure to choose a provider with experience in your industry and a proven track record of success. Look for a provider that offers a range of services and can provide customized solutions to meet your business's specific needs.


Final Notes

As unpleasant as economic crisis are, there are so many creative strategies and opportunities to help your business thrive. By expanding your offerings, boosting your marketing, collaborating with other businesses, outsourcing, or doing combination of these things – you can prepare your business for a recession and whatever else life throws at you!

If you’d like to learn more about IT outsourcing, let us help walk you through the process to give you a better idea of what it looks like and how much you can save!

6 Benefits of Working with a Managed Service Provider

6 Benefits of Working with a Managed Service Provider 

(For small or one-person IT teams) 


There is nothing wrong with having a small IT team. When your company is starting out and the caseloads are simple, that small-scale department works well! Benefits of working with a managed service provider.

However, as your company grows, and your IT needs begin to stack up – you might find that working with a Managed Service Provider (MSP) could be a match made in heaven (compared to traditional in-house additions). 

We understand that outsourcing may feel like a big step, so we want to speak to that and shed some light on all the ways that teaming up with an MSP can help you and your team succeed in all things IT!


Save Money

You may be surprised to find out that outsourcing usually saves companies money or provides more value for a lower cost. This is primarily because when you outsource, you no longer pay for the expenses associated with hiring a new team member, or members for that matter.

Most Managed service providers offer tiered (silver, gold, platinum) packages that allow you to set a budget that works for you while giving you a larger breadth of talent and support. 

Managed Service Providers can go beyond managed services to save you and your team money. From procurement to security, there are plenty of cost-saving services and software’s that come with the right outsourcing partner.  

Many MSPs (Managed service providers) have procurement experts that can provide you with more affordable and robust licensing opportunities. Furthermore, the right MSP should also be able to help you bolster security measures to ensure that your data and networks are secured.  

The latter being especially important for cost-savings, as Cybersecurity prevention is now estimated to save businesses up to $1.4 million per incident. 

Learn more about the financial benefits of MSPs in our recent article, where we discuss how outsourcing IT can help with cost-savings and potentially boost revenue.


Scale Support 

With an MSP you can scale your reach as needed. For example, at Managed Solution, cases are escalated up the ladder until resolved.  

blog post image for managed solutions blog on the 6 benefits of working with a managed service provider.

Meaning that if you get a case that you would like to assign to our team, we will align it with expertise according to its priority level and it will escalate up from there until resolved. 

Another great benefit of working with an MSP, like Managed Solution, is if the MSP you work with is a Microsoft partner – you also get t Microsoft Premier Support as a final escalation for the especially challenging cases that revolve around Microsoft services/ software. 

Furthermore, as your company’s IT needs grow, you will have the support you need to increase your overall service level in real-time. 

Your MSP will monitor your needs and offer guidance on what services should be scaled up or down. Helping to optimize user-satisfaction and cost-effectiveness, simultaneously.



By 2025 humanity’s data will reach 175 zettabytes. We’ll take a quick pause for you to look up zettabytes. There are about 21 zeroes following that 175.  

There is a TON of data available now, and as that pool grows, so too do its attackers. Last year alone global cyberattacks increased by 38%. 

Now more than ever security should be brought to the forefront of business conversations. When considering working with an MSP make sure they are security focused and can offer the abundance of tools and services you can leverage to ensure that your data is protected.  

Another one of the great benefits of working with a Managed Service Provider? Many MSPs offer the markets’ best and most current cybersecurity products and services. These include company-wide training, email two-step factor authentication, and network monitoring.  

Some can also provide software that leverages artificial intelligence to help you detect potential viruses and attacks. Another vital aspect of security is having a solid plan for data backup and disaster recovery, which, you guessed it, MSPs can provide. 

With disaster recovery comes the benefit of minimized downtime which can save companies hundreds of thousands of dollars. An equipped and adept managed service provider can prove to be a vital resource for those worse case scenarios.  

But of course, with the amplified support and governance of your system and technology, the chances of disaster streaking are greatly decreased 


Onboarding and Remote Work 

With an MSP, your onboarding process becomes streamlined. You can work with your MSP to acquire, track, and manage technology for new hires as well as employees throughout your company. 

This is all done through a suite of Microsoft technologies including Active Directory, Intune and Autopilot. As a Microsoft partner, we recommend one of the best active directory software on the market, Azure.  

Azure active directory allows companies to manage applications, authentications, devices, domains, maintain governance, identity protection and so much more!  

Beyond Active Directory, if you need support in multiple cities/states, you will need to find a national or international MSP depending on your locations. This way you can ensure that you’re being supported in the correct time zone so that cases are promptly worked to completion. 


New Technology 

With technology evolving quickly and constantly, staying up to date on all-things tech can prove to be extremely costly.  

It isn’t always financially viable to invest in single-use technology. However, with an MSP, you can access the latest tech without having to make huge financial investments.  

This is because many MSPs offer procurement services that allow you to harness the latest technology at an affordable price. 

The right MSP should provide you with expertise and guidance as to which technology licenses and opportunities best fit your current and ever-changing needs. 


Focus on Tasks You Love 

When you outsource IT you get to be in control of what kind of work you do in your day to day, and how much you do in your day to day. 

You’re more in control than ever when you outsource. When you delegate tasks and projects, you free yourself up to focus on areas that you enjoy more or that matter most to you! 

In our recent case study with Red Door Interactive, Dennis Gonzalez, their sole, lead IT servicer claims that he is now able to spend less time focusing on low-level helpdesk tasks. Saving him both time and stress. 

Now Dennis is able to focus more on overseeing important projects and maintenance of cybersecurity, while also leveraging a large team in support and services. 

If you are considering outsourcing some or all of your IT, but do not know where to start, reach out to us! We are happy to help give you an idea of what an MSP partnership can look like for you.


Viva Connections: Building a More Engaged Work Environment

Viva Connections: Building a More Engaged Work Environment

Microsoft’s Viva Connections is one of four facets of the Microsoft Viva Suite along with Viva Insights, Viva Learnings, and Viva Topics. Viva connections, specifically, is an application that drills into the employee experience to enable connection and engagement like never before.

With remote and hybrid work settings becoming the norm, connecting your team and preventing isolation is more important than ever. Read on to learn more about how this powerful tool works and how you can implement it to better your organizations culture.

The Objective

Viva connections’ goal is oriented around (drum roll please) …keeping people connected! It does this by offering users a a personalized view of news, conversations and groups with the same applications and devices they already utilize in their day to day, giving your employees have everything they need to stay engaged.

This application also focuses on enabling team members to contribute their ideas easily and freely, to ensure everyone’s voice is heard. Not only are you sure to gather key insights from your team, but you can drill deeper into them with polls and surveys.

These features and capabilities are imperative tools that allow you to create a culture where everyone feels their voice is heard and build trust in a fun and easy way!

Furthermore, Viva Connections lets you curate your dashboards to provide fast and easy access to company resources, such as events, holidays, even health and wellness reminders! With Microsoft Viva Connections, you can have all the benefits of a remote workspace, while still maintaining that ‘togetherness’ feeling of an in-office setting.

Primary Benefits

What Makes Connections Different?

Viva Connections amalgamates content from Microsoft 365 services like SharePoint, Teams, Yammer and more—into a fully-integrated and personalized, singular view for every employee. You can even integrate Viva Connections with other services such as stocks, weather forecasts, and vacation/ holiday schedules to boost engagement beyond Microsoft 365 content.

What ultimately sets Viva Connections apart from other engagement platforms is how customizable and scalable the service is. With Viva Connections, you can build your apps for specific objectives (as needed) and continue to personalize content to improve users’ overall experience as your company grows!

What all is Included?

Viva Connections combines the power of your SharePoint intranet with Microsoft Teams, Yammer, Stream, and other Microsoft 365 applications to allow companies to create and display more intentional content for their employees. These functionalities are delivered through three primary aspects of the application: Dashboard, Feed, and Resources.


As we mentioned, the Viva Connections Dashboard lets you to create a customized experience with Dashboard cards that give your employee's access to the most useful content, tools, and task lists for them. It is essentially a digital toolbelt for your team that allows you to pick the best resources for your current needs -- and change them out as you grow and evolve.


The Feed on Viva Connections allows users to connect from a tailored view and explore important announcements and relevant information -- and join in on conversations throughout the organization. You can optimize your Feed by delivering SharePoint and Yammer communities together.


Resources are the navigational links that are set up and customized in the SharePoint app bar from the home site. These resources will get displayed on both the desktop and mobile instances of Viva Connections.

In the mobile app, users can view resources by selecting the Resources tab. This type of functioning provides users with a familiar navigation structure and allows them to open sites, pages, news, and more—right from their mobile devices.

How to Increase Engagement with Viva Connections

It’s no secret that better engagement leads to higher creativity and productivity. However, a huge challenge for businesses in the remote era we find ourselves in, is developing a culture where that kind of engagement flourishes.

What we (and obviously, Microsoft), have found, is that by connecting and unifying your employee’s, you can build that spectacular culture and enthusiasm in your workplace. Viva Connections allows you to do just that in following ways:

  1. Personalize

Delivering a modern, custom experience by pushing relevant content, information, and resources to your users in one place, enables a more purposeful way for your team to engage.

  1. Simplify

Personalizing your engagement platform not only makes the experience more tailored to your team members, but it also makes it easier for them. By customizing the dashboard to your preferred settings for navigation, appearance, and etcetera… you can simplify and therefore streamline communication throughout the application.

  1. Target

Keep your eyes on the prize, so-to-speak. If your goal is to build connection and unity within your company, then you need to get involved with resources that are built to specifically target that.

Ultimately, finding an application or tool that fits your teams’ specific needs for improved connection can be a major step to reaching your engagement goals.

How to Implement

Viva Connections integrates seamlessly into with Microsoft Teams where users will be able to access it. Your organization can easily deploy Viva Connections by building onto existing capabilities in Microsoft 365. Click here and let us help you and your team adopt viva connections today!

Outsourced IT: Maintaining Growth During Economic Downturn

outsourced IT during an economic downturn blog feature image depicting happy call center workers.

Outsourced IT: Maintaining Growth During Economic Downturn

Since the pandemic began in 2020, businesses have faced one financial strain after another. The economic state we’ve found ourselves today has certainly raised concerns. Although we are not currently in a recession -- most experts agree that we may be heading for one in the following year.

That being said, no one can really predict the future – especially not when it comes to economics. However, we can prepare for it. Regardless of what is thrown your way, rest assured that there are tools and resources that can help you can tighten the financial belt while also increasing revenue.

One key area of opportunity is in your very own IT infrastructure! In fact, there are many ways that you can leverage and optimize IT assets for growth, even during economic downturns.

Reduce Costs

Reducing costs are important for an onslaught of obvious reasons, but you may be surprised to find just how much an outsourced IT infrastructure fit can help your company’s cost-reduction.

Having fully staffed senior expertise in-house can be expensive. By outsourcing, you can provide your team and clients with the support of knowledgeable IT professionals at an affordable price. You can even find a plan that is customized to your business’s specific needs – learn more here!

Leveraging a quality MSP is not only a wise-investment in-and-of itself, but the money you save by making this calculated switch is then free to be invested further into revenue-building initiatives. More on than below.

Maintain and Increase Revenue

As we mentioned, saving money by utilizing external IT will allow you to re-invest that money into your revenue operations. But furthermore, by putting necessary but mundane tasks into the hands of outsourced IT support, you and your team are free to build upon key strategic ideas to bring in even more (you guessed it) revenue.

This makes outsourced IT a wise investment of both time and money, and only enables your company more access to resources that will allow it to thrive in any climate. Not to mention, you’ll be advancing your customer service during a time-period where nurturing long-term business relations is especially crucial.

With a quality MSP, you’ll still be able to meet your IT needs and while also satisfying the needs of your customers. Quality IT technicians with excellent customer support are a critical part of maintaining the business of clients.

It is important to note that where you outsource to is a critical part of your success. International IT companies are notoriously unsatisfactory for callers. Likewise, a spread-thin in-house IT team simply won’t be able to meet the demanding needs of customers.

That is why we encourage you to look for companies who can offer 24/7*365 support on a national level. This quality service allows you to really boost your position in the eyes of clients, form those lasting relations, and reap in new business via word-to-mouth marketing from satisfied clients.

Protect Data During Vulnerable Times

Not only does having the support of an MSP allow you to capitalize on areas of opportunity, but it also ensures that your key data is protected. It’s no secret that hackers are increasing their attacks daily, and they know that economic stress leaves companies vulnerable and spread thin.

Thriving though economic decline makes maintaining security, compliance, data protection all-the-more important. This can be achieved with a pro-active IT management approach when you leverage the support of outsourced IT experts.

In short, working with an MSP will enable to you focus on the important strategic decisions while also ensuring your data is secured.

In conclusion, as we go forward into the economic unknown of 2023 considering IT outsourcing can give you a leg up in the game. The right managed service provider can allow you to reduce costs, increase revenue, and keep that precious data protected in even the most tumultuous climate.

Also do keep in mind that even outside of economic crisis these benefits remain true for clients that utilize an MSP.Outsourced IT Service blog featured image depicting group of helpdesk workers at their desks.

“Our switch to Managed Solution was like a breath of fresh air. They carefully and competently analyzed our entire ecosystem and suggested changes (not one option, but multiple) to better our systems. There were a number of cost efficiencies put into place…”– Jeffrey G. Penta, CEO, San Diego Eye Bank”


The Top Business Benefits for Using IT Help Desk Support [Updated for 2020]

helpdesksandiegoWhat is an IT help desk? An IT Help Desk is a resource center designed for users to contact when they are having problems with their IT services, software, applications, and more. An IT Help Desk, which can also be referred to as a Managed Operations Center or Network Operations Center, creates a multi-tiered troubleshooting approach by having personnel with extensive technical knowledge available at all times. An IT Help Desk provides your business with a team of experienced, certified engineers ready to assist your users with their technical issues.
In this article, we'll cover the various benefits of using IT help desk support and why it might be a viable option for your business.

Learn about the top 6 benefits in this video:

Business Benefits of Using IT Help Desk Support

  1. 24/7 technical support improves operational efficiencies by reducing time users spend to fix incidents or problems. This is especially beneficial if you have a fully or partially remote workforce or operate a 24/7 business yourself. With those employees working around the clock, 7 days a week, it's imperative to have someone there that can support them when software or hardware goes down or stops working.
  2. Speaking with a certified technical support specialist makes resolving IT issues quick and easy, which can reduce crankiness in the workplace. We all know how frustrating technology can be, whether it's your fancy new TV or a software update on one of your devices. By providing employees with an IT help desk, you're giving them the support they need when challenges arise, leading to less frustration and more productivity. As a result, happier employees.
  3. A local IT Help Desk provides immediate response time to support tickets and communication with an actual person (not a recording) the same day. Additionally, if they are local to you, then they can provide on-site support if necessary. Sometimes hardware needs troubleshooting that can't be done via phone, video conference, or remote sign in.
  4. Having an IT support system in place provides a smooth and easy mechanism for users to receive service while eliminating internal technical service requests, which can reduce downtime for multiple employees. Your technical employees on staff should be focusing on bigger, more strategic tasks and projects rather than the mundane, daily tasks of software and hardware issues.
  5. With diverse credentials, training and experience, technical support specialists have resources to fix a wide variety of system errors - not just basic speed bumps. Additionally, by having an outsourced IT team support you, rather than one or two internal IT employees, it widens the skillsets available to you.
  6. Having a strong technology infrastructure can boost efficiency leading to increased ROI and allows those organizations to get ahead of their competition. If your employees' technology works, they're working and ultimately, are more productive.
  7. IT Help Desk engineers practice incident management to help spot problems before they occur, identifying the root cause of frequent recurring incidents. This allows you to protect yourself from external threats, eliminate repetitive issues and complaints, and prevent issues from becoming a larger problem.
  8. IT support specialists have experience working with many different industries and likely organizations similar to your business. This can provide a strategic advantage.
  9. IT specialists not only support your employees, but they can recommend tools that make it easier to communicate and collaborate on tasks. Additionally, they can help justify or eliminate IT spend where necessary to optimize your investment.
  10. Additional support for your IT staff. Mid-size and large businesses partner with IT companies that offer Help Desk support to provide an additional resource for their internal IT staff.
  11. When you apply the cost per call for the various call flow models for IT Help Desk services, you can see financial impact.
  12. IT Help Desk support services can give your business a new way to generate revenue, attract and retain clients and compete in a quickly changing IT environment.

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Download the Checklist: 10 Questions You Should Be Asking Every Managed IT Services Provider before outsourcing your IT help desk.

The Complete Guide to Information Technology and IT Support in 2020

In this article, we'll go into everything that encompasses IT support, why businesses need it, whether it's in-house or outsourced, and tips for how to select the best IT support for your business.

Startup and small business owners face many challenges when trying to grow their business – client dependence, insufficient staff, and balancing the need to increase sales with the desire to create quality products and services. When it comes to allocating limited funds, the lack of capital leads to making some tough decisions, and one area that they often neglect is IT support. Today’s businesses rely on IT networks and systems to conduct their daily operations. Also, more and more businesses report suffering cybersecurity breaches.

Without trained IT professionals on your side, experiencing tech issues or breaches could inflict a lot more damage to your IT infrastructure. If you are relying on non-qualified professionals or IT support from your local tech store, it is time to reassess your strategy to protect your organization’s and your client’s best interests. In this complete guide to IT support, we will discuss why IT is essential to businesses, management systems, and customer success. 

Why Is IT Support Necessary for Every Modern Business?

The best IT support options improve efficiency levels and are flexible enough to grow with your company, particularly during a digital transformation. An efficient IT support team is equipped with the technical skills to support productivity, network performance, and information security by:

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What Is IT Support?

Commonly known as tech support, IT support is composed of IT professionals with computer science expertise that are available 24/7 to provide help to a company with various problems related to their computer system or network system. It covers a wide range of areas or any type of hardware or software that your personnel might be using at the office. The two main options a company has when it comes to choosing IT support are outsourcing and employing an in-house IT support team. Are there any differences between in-house or outsourced IT management? How can you decide what is best for your company?

In-House vs. Outsourced IT Support: Pros and Cons

When choosing between in-house and outsourced tech support, there are many issues and differences to consider. The majority of companies today have at least some IT support requirements, and their requirements are integral for establishing the seamless and smooth running of daily operations. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of both in-house and outsourced options.

In-House IT Support

Having an in-house IT support team means that your IT department is located inside the business. You need to hire IT experts to run that department and will have complete control over their actions. The benefits of building an in-house tech support team include.

As for the disadvantages, we need to point out the high costs and additional spending when forming and maintaining an in-house team of IT professionals. If any issues appear after-hours, the employer may incur overtime expenses. Staff members may not have enough experience or time to provide the necessary IT support. Relying on a very small in-house team could cause problems in terms of holiday cover, sickness, or resignation. If one person falls sick and another is on holiday, who is responsible for covering issues outside normal business hours? You cannot expect one or two people to be on call every day during the year because you will be putting business continuity exposed to huge risks. That’s something you don’t need to worry about when your IT helpdesk is outsourced.

When you take into account the cost of hiring, benefits, employment, ineffectiveness, downtime, or turnover, the costs may hit the ceiling. Because of this, building an in-house IT support team is a viable option for larger organizations. 

Looking to hire Outsourced IT? Download our guide for the top 10 questions to ask when hiring an IT provider.

Outsourced IT Support

Outside providers or IT support are called Managed Service Providers (MSPs), and thanks to them, companies can outsource every IT support needed to a third-party team of IT professionals. These industry experts have the skills, resources, and time to fully manage your data storage needs, IT infrastructure, and cybersecurity needs from a remote location. MSPs can help come up with an efficient and cost-effective IT solution that's flexible enough to support your growing business needs. They will also reassess your needs at regular intervals to determine whether your IT solutions need to be adjusted or upgraded. 

With an outsourced IT support team, all your IT issues will be resolved externally by a third-party IT support provider. The benefits of outsourcing IT support include:

The cost is the most apparent benefit when outsourcing IT support. Because they specialize in IT support, MSPs usually have more experience, talent, tools, and resources for dealing with IT issues. The best MSPs provide 24/7 support, so if any tech issues arise during off-hours, you can rest assured that they will be handled as quickly as possible. They will proactively monitor your system to prevent problems from occurring in the first place.

The disadvantages of your outsourced IT support provider will mostly depend on the quality of service of the provider. These may include problems such as unexpected costs written in the fine print and terms and conditions of the contract. Furthermore, overseas teams cannot visit you on site, so if you have any hardware issues, they may not be able to resolve them quickly. Outsourcing a local team, however, comes with benefits such as regular system checkups and dedicated on-site support.

Why Do Businesses Need IT Support?

Whether in-house or outsourced, regardless of the company type and size, businesses that use technology for performing their daily operations need professional IT support. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why your enterprise needs an IT support team.

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1. Introduce the latest technologies to advance your company goals

Are your company's technological assets up-to-date in regards to the latest tech advancements that fit your business? If not, your IT support team can bring cutting-edge technologies that can advance your company's potential. Also, you will invest less energy and time learning about new technologies. You can use those tech advancements to look for further means of development and expansion to propel your company's objectives. In this regard, IT support provides access to special resources that might not have been accessible before.

2. Improved cybersecurity

Regardless of the type of business you run, you collect data and sensitive information that’s essential to protect. Having a solid cybersecurity strategy and backup systems in place are absolutely critical to help protect that information. Your IT support team will ensure the majority of the security and backup functions to help keep the confidential customer, employee, and company data safe and secure against cyber-attacks. In case any documents are lost, your IT support team will be able to recover it.

3. Save money and increase ROI

Over time, your enlisted IT support will help you save money and bring a higher ROI to your company. You won’t need to stress over software investments and costly repairs. You will pay a fixed rate on a monthly basis and won’t experience unexpected costs or fees. MSPs offer service options that are adaptable to different financial plans. In other words, the tech support area is a costly part of businesses today, and putting resources into the right service provider implies picking monetary security.

4. Get specialized and customized service

Every company is unique, and its needs and demands vary, which means that there’s no one-size-fits-all type of tech support service. You need a specialized IT support team to make sure you get modified administration that is customized to fit the ways your company works. The personnel in MSP tech support teams have been carefully chosen from a pool of qualified candidates and have been thoroughly prepared for the job. Your IT support provider will have alternatives and abilities you will not find elsewhere.

5. Expanding company efficiency

Company owners are always trying to find new ways and approaches to improve their company’s productivity, and technology itself can help them achieve that. However, both hardware and software solutions experience bugs, issues, and perplexities, and without the right people to take care of those issues, your technology can diminish productivity. An IT support team will guarantee that the productivity from using tech solutions is augmented and that you’ll be able to use it for what it’s made for – to help you achieve business objectives more rapidly.

6. More time to manage, less time to worry

What's more exhausting and stressful than having to deal with computer-related issues? We all face those issues from time to time. The truth is that you and your staff know how to use the technology but don't have the tech-savvy to fix it when it malfunctions. Your IT support team is there to take on those issues and relieve you of the stress that comes with them. That will give more time and energy to focus on tasks and projects significant to the business, such as employee management and strategy building.

Access to Expertise with Managed Service Providers

Managed Service Providers are usually specialized in providing IT expertise that would otherwise be hard to find. Larger organizations can afford to build an in-house IT department, segment it, and assign different IT roles, such as CIO (Chief Information Officer), CTO (Chief Technology Officer), IT Director, Vice President of IT, IT Support Engineer, and others who are responsible for driving their tech development, protecting against cyber-attacks, and taking care of the organization’s technologies overall. In startups and small businesses, all these roles fall onto one or a handful of people that can’t manage the workload themselves or don’t have the knowledge or experience to perform all the functions. By hiring an MSP, you will get access to the expertise you need at an affordable price and a fixed monthly rate. 

Managed Service Providers offer services such as:

How to Hire the Right MSP for Your Business

So, you've decided to hire an IT support provider. But how do you choose the right one for your business? When it comes to choosing among the many MSPs out there, we advise you first to understand what makes an IT support provider good and reliable. You need to know what questions to ask to see whether the MSP you are interviewing is worth your money and time.  

1. How long have they been in the business?

The MSP business model has been around for years, meaning that there was enough time for a company to build its reputation and establish a good track record. Ask them how long they have been in the business and take a look at the historical data to check for any red flags in how they conduct their business.

2. What services do they offer?

Once you determine your IT needs, you will know what kind of services you need from an MSP. Ask them what services you will be receiving according to the pricing model you choose and figure out whether they fit within your current IT needs and business model.

3. Ask about their service-level agreement

Does the MSP have any service-level agreement (SLA) in place? An SLA is a commitment between you (the client) and the service provider. What you want from your MSP is fast response times to any issues that might arise, keeping your systems managed and your data secured, and this is where SLAs are essential. If a service provider doesn’t have an SLA in place, you might end up waiting for hours or days before they respond to your request. As for the contract they offer, ask what the contract duration is and how transparent it is. With businesses such as Managed Solution, you get a 60-day no-fee opt-out clause that allows you to test the service and cancel whenever you feel like it. 

4. Are they local or overseas?

Local IT issues that need immediate attention usually cannot be solved by an IT support team located somewhere overseas. Due to the lack of on-site support and language capabilities, overseas service providers often offer much lower prices for their services. Also, these companies may experience unreliable Internet speeds that result in slow upload/download speeds. You need to know that your business won’t suffer because your IT support team from a remote location has a poor Internet connection. As for local IT support, you will have peace of mind knowing that your IT support provider uses the same Internet provider that you do.

5. Are they available 24/7?

What if a tech problem occurs after-hours and you don’t have anyone to address issues or customer requests immediately? Leaving an issue unaddressed for several hours is enough for that issue to turn into something more serious. Customer success relies on around-the-clock IT support availability, but not all MSPs offer that. Improve the customer experience by finding an MSP that can begin to work on your IT problems immediately, even if your in-house personnel are at home sleeping.

6. Does their IT expert’s skillset align with your company’s business objectives?

Every business is unique when it comes to their online business operations, so you'll want to hire an MSP that is familiar with how your business functions. While IT professionals do not focus on having a marketing and sales approach to close more deals, they need to understand your branding, public relations, and marketing strategy, especially if they engage with your customers via live chat. They need to grasp your product description and recognize your needs, along with your target audience's pain points, so that they don't cause more problems, such as ruining the buying experience for potential customers.

7. Are they proactive?

Instead of reacting to issues arising from customer feedback, satisfaction surveys, and ticket systems, your IT support provider should take a proactive approach and prevent issues from happening in the first place. They need to closely monitor your IT infrastructure and network, collect and analyze the data, and recognize potential problems before they become a problem.

8. How flexible are their contracts?

With a flexible contract, you will be able to add or remove staff in your remote IT support team. That’s critical for businesses that plan to scale. However, you need to know that some outsourcing companies have small teams that won’t be able to provide additional staff when you need them. Focus on finding an MSP that’s not understaffed.

9. Ask for references and testimonials

The best way to find out if an MSP is as reliable as they present themselves is through testimonials and references from their former or current clients. Customer satisfaction has always been a benchmark of success, so be sure to check their website, social media pages, LinkedIn profile, and review sites for previous experiences. 

It’s the year 2020, and more and more businesses are relying on technology to deliver an enhanced user experience. Some use it to support certain processes, while others may have integrated it into the foundation of their business. When identifying your business objectives for the year, considering the right IT support needs to be at the top of your list. IT support solutions will help maximize your company efficiency, save money in the long run, protect your digital assets, and keep your employees and clients happy.

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Is My Network Speed Fast Enough?

Having an internet connection go down or slow to a crawl is not only a nuisance, but can grind business operations to a halt, or at best, put a severe damper on productivity. Even a seemingly minute delay can have exponentially adverse effects on your company's effectiveness.

Every extra second of loading time, multiplied by the total number of employees and the many daily operations can eat up several hours of collective work time every single week. We should, of course, exclude the frustrations generated as a result of slow network speed.

What Constitutes a Fast Network?

In perspective, the average broadband DSL service provides speeds anywhere in between 10 to 25 megabits per second (Mbps). Fiber-to-business services, on the other hand, can range from 25 to 300, while some providers can offer as much as 1,000 Mbps.

It's safe to say that with a 1,000 Mbps network speed, your application will run super fast, video streaming will be seamless, and you can use multiple resources at a time without seeing any drop in performance. But the question is whether you need that much speed, or you can achieve the same level of efficiency with less.

It's not all that difficult to determine the actual Mbps your workspace needs. One factor to keep in mind, however, is that the more internet connections you have and the more people are using separate devices at the same time, the higher the Mbps connection you will need.


The first step is to check your monthly statements from your Internet Service Provider (ISP). They should clearly state how many Mbps you are getting. Once you have this information, you should run a simple speed test to determine the actual performance of your connection. If the numbers don't add up, contact your ISP to see what the issue is.

Most commonly, however, a slow network speed may be caused by factors in your office. Two major factors determine the exact internet speed you need. How many people are using your network and what are they using it for.

Optimizing Your Network Infrastructure

Aside from increasing your internet connection, you can also work to streamline your network's architecture to improve functionality and overall productivity. Here are some examples:

iWAN - Intelligent wide area networks (iWANs) extend the capabilities of traditional WANs by integrating advanced services that benefit remote workers.

SD-WAN - Software-defined wide area networks (SD-WANs) will help boost the network performance, as well as the security and scalability of that network. They can incorporate regular broadband as well as other modes of transport and provide various failsafe protections in the event of a slow or downed system.

VPNs - Remote work is an ever more common occurrence across the United States. And while this improves flexibility, it can, however, harm productivity as well as security. To circumvent this problem, you should use virtual private networks (VPNs). These will extend a private connection over a public network, ensuring secure and easy access to essential company apps and resources.


Managing your network and improving its efficiency are investments that will surely increase company productivity. By partnering up with a managed service provider, you will keep your system in top working efficiency while allowing your employees to do the same.

And if you're working from home, check out this in-depth article on how you can boost your wifi signal.