It goes without saying that choosing the best IT solution to meet your business needs is complex. The short- and long-term strategy around a business solution involves measuring the time and ability end users will take to thrive with their new tools and the transformational effect these tools will have on their workflows, among other variables.

If it weren’t already hard enough, companies must also decide on the best set-up to run their new or existing solution. How much time do we want to spend on daily tasks? How much money will be spent on maintenance and development? And which and how many internal stakeholders should be responsible for implementing the company’s IT strategy?

There are three options for this challenge:

  1. The first is to do everything yourself. Here, you maintain complete control over the overall system landscape, but in return, you also have responsibility for the security, operation, maintenance, training and education of employees, for instance.
  2. The second is to hire a permanent in-house consultant. It is a technical, external resource that you can contract as needed. This model gives you access to knowledge that does not exist internally, but in turn you make it personnel dependent.
  3. The last option is to engage in a support agreement with a supplier where your solution(s) are operated and developed by a team of experts.

It is my claim that today’s IT workflows are such that there are significant risks if you or an in-house consultant alone are in charge of IT operations at a modern enterprise.

Read more: Use a partner to manage your external IT resources

There are, of course, companies in the market that have the size, expertise and interest to carry out these tasks themselves. But for many companies, IT workflows have become too complex for them to viably manage into the future. It’s not that I want to be the boy who cried wolf, but take a quick look at the facts – security threats from both private and state-sponsored actors from all over the world are on the increase.

Compliance requirements arising from legislation in Denmark and the EU are growing. Customers constantly ask for new functionalities, self-service solutions, chatbots, artificial intelligence, mobile solutions. At the same time, there is a struggle to lure the best employees in the market to ensure full optimization of your technology solutions. It’s simply not a job for ordinary IT experts or an in-house consultant regardless of how skilled the person is.

The complexities of IT and digitization today are outrunning the capabilities of businesses which should outsource their IT responsibility to a professional vendor if they want to be absolutely certain they can remain competitive.

The benefits of an external support and maintenance service abound. With a support agreement you can:

  • Adapt quicker to a changing workload
  • Quickly acquire a broader field of competencies for your business
  • Reduce the cost of development
  • Reduce the cost of continuously training the technical staff
  • Improve, in all likelihood, the response time for incoming tasks
  • Increase, in all likelihood, the maturity of maintenance processes (e.g. documentation, approvals and repetitive operations)
  • Outsource tasks to address major security issues
  • Access combined business and technical advice
  • Focus more acutely on the training and education of employees
  • Respond quickly to new trends in the market

Today, companies are burying their internal IT resources in demanding business operations, which rightly do not create business value. At the heart of it, internal resources are primarily working to maintain the status quo. It’s not a particularly offensive approach to IT support for a business.

With an Application Maintenance Support agreement, you are sure to keep your ship afloat and supply your entire organization with the tools needed for successful day-to-day operations. But you can also benefit from a setup where external experts help keep their eyes on the horizon, so that incoming business opportunities surrounding future technology can be properly explored, proactively rather than reactively.

Focus your time, money and energy on other aspects of your company’s daily operations – the ones that fuel value into the business!

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You can read more about how to ensure continuous support, maintenance and upgrades for your Microsoft Dynamics platform in our whitepaper Why Invest in Support and Maintenance.

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Sourcing and Service Director at AlfaPeople

Working with AlfaPeople since 2014 inspiring global organizations to discover opportunities and embrace today's technology.