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Why Do I Need a vCIO?

 

Using technology in any business is critical in today’s world.  So in the majority of large businesses CIO’s are employed to oversee the technical aspects of business, ranging from purchasing and procurement to implementation and maintenance.

While this may work for large corporations, many small to medium sized businesses find themselves without a single, full-time IT professional on staff.  Let alone an entire technology team with a CIO.  However, that’s not to say that companies of this size wouldn’t benefit from this type of support.

So, exactly what is a vCIO and how would my company benefit from one?

What is a vCIO?

A term that has become common in the small business world is vCIO or virtual Chief Information Officer.  No, this isn’t some sort of hologram that shows up to company meetings.  It is certainly possible for an individual to fill this role remotely, but it’s best to hire a Managed Services company to perform the tasks the CIO would.

There are a series of reasons why a Managed Services provider (MSP) would be beneficial.  First, there is a cost savings.  Typically, hiring an MSP will cost you less than hiring a full-time dedicated IT professional with the necessary skills and qualifications.

In addition, individual humans tend overlook things or occasionally make mistakes.  But a team of people from an MSP doing the work has more checks and balances in place to make sure that the job is being done well.  Beyond these generalities, what exactly are the benefits of a vCIO?

Seeing the Big Picture

Two of the major jobs of a CIO is to create the entire technology system as well as plan for the future.  Are you planning on expanding the number of computer terminals?  Perhaps you will eventually move your server storage to the cloud?  What sort of backup system is in place currently and how are you budgeting for upgrades and maintenance?

A vCIO would create a technology roadmap tailored for your business.  Naturally, you make the final call, but they put forth an expert recommendation with a plan for follow-through.  This allows you to budget for your projected IT needs as you grow instead of being caught off-guard with unexpected expenses.

Taking Care of the Little Things

The more technology infrastructure you have in your business, the greater the likelihood of something going wrong.   Most small businesses don’t have the time or expertise to handle the day to day maintenance of their systems without diverting attention from other areas.

Even if an employee has the time and does well with their home network, business equipment should be in a category far above consumer-grade.  For instance, maintaining a server with a Windows Server OS utilizes a completely different skillset than using Windows on a desktop PC.

One of the other big benefits of having a vCIO is that your business will run more efficiently.  Let’s say that someone in your company is technologically inclined.  If an issue arises, they would need to stop doing their regular duties (that you’re paying them for) and work on the issue.

In addition, the amount of time and effort you need to fix the problem may be much more than someone who deals with similar issues regularly.  In the end, you’ll probably still need to bring in outside help.  Which will take even more time to fix what would be a routine task to a dedicated managed services team.

A vCIO is “Always On”

The only thing that is more of a burden than hiring a dedicated IT professional is hiring an entire team.  Many businesses have some sort of operation running 24/7.  Even if you have someone on staff, how many hours can they work in a day or week?  What happens if they called in sick or take a vacation?

vCIO services will have people on call around the clock, day and night.  If it breaks at four in the morning on a Saturday, a vCIO will address it well before someone shows up Monday morning, unable to work.

An Insurance Plan

Once the systems are up and running, support issues tend to drop.  Does that mean that all your needs are met?  Well, even the most skilled backyard mechanic needs to bring their car into the shop occasionally.

There will be times when a system needs a major overhaul, such as hardware or software upgrades.  This requires a large amount of time and expertise.  If your company finds itself the victim of a cyber attack, with a virus spreading through your network, you need intense intervention.

A vCIO can help you weather such a storm until you’re able to get back on your feet.  For many companies, these are the sort of situations that convince them that they need a vCIO moving forward.

To sum it all up, if you currently find yourself without a dedicated, technical professional on staff, you may want to research your options.  A vCIO could be just the solution you are looking for.  For a relatively small investment in this sort of service, your business will run more efficiently, more smoothly and with a solid plan that sets you up for growth.

Innergi can provide vCIO services for your company.  Call us today at 321-275-5580 and start focusing more on growing your business.