High Value Chicago IT Services
The world of IT services and IT consulting is changing at a rapid pace. Many SMBs and Mid-Markets can access enterprise resources with the advent of the cloud services model.
This is partly because of the ability of IT consulting firms in Chicago and elsewhere to take advantage of economies of scale and provide consistent services for multiple companies. Learn how a Chicago IT Services and Consulting firm can make a real difference in your company's ability to grow, innovate and remain technologically current.
The Big Picture
First let's lay a groundwork of understanding. An IT consulting firm should be able to conform to your strategic vision, understanding your business' core values and leverage your technology in order to achieve long term goals.
If you approach an IT services firm that only wants to work on certain aspects of your technology, you should move on. In order to provide technological services that make a difference to your firm, not only saving you dollars on daily operations, but ensuring you are poised to take advantage of technology for growth, your IT consultant should be engaged with an understanding of your business.
From understanding your current IT environment to suggesting quality, budget-friendly alternatives to providing technological insights on how to grow, innovate or streamline your processes. It is this big picture mentality that a quality IT services firm in Chicago can make the largest difference in your business.
Daily Operational Improvements
One of the most common ways for SMBs to use IT consulting firms in the Chicago area is for daily operational IT services and IT managed services. These services are varied and help the business essentially run smoothly on a consistent basis.
This should include help desk support for internal and external clients. Whether your office staff need help configuring Microsoft Outlook or Exchange a Google Drive or even troubleshooting a hardware issue, a remote help desk service provides an on demand service that keeps your business on task.
Server, Cloud and Device Management
Whether you are fully operational in the cloud with BYOD device management systems or have an in-house data center with servers or a hybrid system of the two, a quality IT firm can ensure they run smoothly. This should include a process for on-site emergency response, remote updating of software patches and a full security review and plan for continuous protection.
Technological infrastructure management is essential in today's business reality. Many businesses are ill-equipped to deal with the entire procurement, upkeep and retirement process that should be done and lose money by doing it themselves. An IT firm can often provide cost savings not only on original purchase but by guiding companies in technological directions of the future in order to stay ahead of trends.
There are many more IT services that help you maintain your competitive edge on a daily basis, all of which you should employ through an IT services firm in Chicago.
One area that many SMBs are just starting to take advantage of is leveraging technology in order to compete beyond their typical reach. For decades large enterprises had a lock on high value technology as only their budgets could support the high price demanded of investment in these technologies.
However with the advent of cloud computing, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) solutions, leveraging the same technology that large enterprises use has become available and affordable for SMBs. It is expected that within as little as 5 years the majority SMBs will be integrated into Cloud solutions to some degree.
If you have not done so yet, transform your business with a migration to on-demand cloud computing. A quality IT consultant firm can guide you through the process and ensure you have a solution that fits your business. The cloud provides a way for businesses to take advantage of cost efficiencies in computing power, and the elasticity and flexibility of scaling within the cloud. Being able to pay for only what you use as you scale services up or down means expense control is at your fingertips.
SaaS, PaaS & IaaS
Being smarter about your business processes can be as easy as instituting one of these three solutions, or all of them. Provide all employees continuous cloud access to the important aspects they need in your business from CRM, accounting, reporting and many more services with a cloud-based SaaS service like Windows Azure, Zoho Apps or any host of others. When you have real-time services for every employee no matter where they are or what time it is, operational efficiencies are instant.
A great IT services firm can help you through the process and help set in motion a plan to develop and integrate these services within a long term vision.
Project Management or Support
You may not need a full IT support team, but sometimes you need these services just in order to fulfill a mission critical project. Whether you need an on the ground IT project manager or just simple support staff, a quality IT services firm in Chicago can provide the as-needed support.
These services could include audit and assessment services, IT health checks and optimizations for business critical revenue streams, IT strategy advisory services including strategic planning and use of your IT technology and many more. Have you decided to overhaul your online presence, develop a business app or shore up your endpoint security? All these can be strenuous on in-house IT staff. Ensure you are not stretching IT staff to thin by providing as needed support.
Hiring a quality IT services firm in Chicago should be an essential service for many SMBs and Mid-Markets. However, ensuring the firm can meet your current, ongoing and future needs requires research and understanding of your needs. Develop a process of vetting these companies to ensure you can treat them like a partner and not a vendor.