For most businesses, IT is not looked at as a commodity, but as a necessity. Companies struggle to fill IT positions, which reduces their budget for other, more business essential positions. With ITaaS, the technology department of a company is viewed as a separate business entity, which provides just the right amount of IT for the company’s needs.
A complete ITaaS package takes this one step further, and actually puts the IT department in the hands of a vendor, allowing small businesses to purchase exactly those IT services that they truly need. The ITaaS vendor works hand-in-hand with the businesses to determine what is needed and what is just “fluff,” and weeds out the fluff.
Many larger businesses are already taking advantage of cloud computing, because of the knowledge that cloud computing reduces the complexity and cost associated with maintaining the business’s information technology needs. Smaller businesses are slow to adopt ITaaS for the same reason they are slow to adopt any cloud model, because they believe that ITaaS is only for larger, enterprise-level businesses.
ITaaS takes the cloud one step further: not only does the company only use the physical space required for its computing needs, but it only uses the amount of hardware, software, and support needed to run the business. This results in a reduction of IT costs, which will help a small business compete with the larger corporations.
When a small- to medium-sized business rolls out IT-as-a-Service, they no longer have to maintain their own IT department or help desk to manage the tech needs of the business. Instead, the vendor takes over that responsibility, providing just the right level of hardware, software, and network availability for that company. Rather than having large IT investments, the business now pays a monthly fee, and pays only for what is actually used by the company.
In other words, no more wasted server CPU cycles; you only pay for the CPU usage you need. No more wasted hours of support personnel waiting for the phone to ring; you only pay for technical support your business really needs. This saved money can be used to invest in what really makes your business: human capital, manufacturing equipment, more diverse inventory, or marketing.
This saved money, when translated into resources that actually push the business forward rather than resources that keep the business afloat, will result in a business that can thrive. When a business can spend its money marketing its products and services to potential customers rather than maintaining a fleet of servers that sit idle most of the time (because there aren’t enough customers to take full advantage of the server time), the business begins to focus on its purpose and vision rather than being tech-savvy.
While it’s important for businesses to be knowledgeable about the technology that can further their business goals, the old tendency to just buy the latest and greatest computing devices available is wasteful and can result in a failed business. Instead of making IT investments, small and medium businesses should make business investments, and let ITaaS make the IT investments.
Stefan Loewer is an IT, business and cloud computing consultant. He enjoys spreading his expertise on a wide range of business-related IT topics, including the benefits of cloud computing with http://www.zooce.com/benefitsEnterprise.html.
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