Before we get too in depth with this topic, we have not done a double-blind case study (way too much of a hassle), but we are explaining in detail theories that successful businesses swear by.
No matter what the purchase is, you get what you pay for (to an extent). Think about buying a house. If you have a good house in the middle of a good school district/neighborhood, it will be more expensive than the exact same house in a less quality school district/neighborhood.
Yes, there are some other factors that play a role (try to hold all things constant), but home value and quality of school district/neighborhood. Try to play along.
Think of your business as this house and think of your IT Dept. as your neighborhood. A quality IT department will increase the value of your business by the stability they can provide. The inner workings of what an IT Dept. does for your business is more than just “help desk” when things aren’t working on a desktop. There are several factors that an IT Dept. needs to be knowledgeable with in order to provide the best “neighborhood” for your business. Enterprise Security, VOIP, Private Cloud Services, Backup and Disaster Services and Managed Services just scratch the surface of what a good IT Dept. provides. On top of this, they should manage all of your vendors (IT related) and consult anything and everything that changes any technology within the company (CRM, ERP, software, especially hardware, etc.).
Just like within a quality neighborhood, a good IT Dept. provides checks and balances within your company. You have police, the school district, a HOA, among quality neighbors. This is why we suggest having a full team of IT professionals if possible. A general IT professional may not (most likely won’t) have the knowledge to cover everything needed to put this business in the best situation to succeed. But, if a business can employ a full staff, they can hire specialists in the various sectors of IT.
If a neighborhood only has some good neighbors (leaving others as bad neighbors) and no police department, is the neighborhood still good? Having one IT professional who can only do certain things? The question is the same and “No” is the answer to both.
Let’s get to the cost of the neighborhood. The obvious question is “can I get an equal or better value without spending a ton of money?” The answer is always yes. There are always better options, it comes down to what you are willing to spend. If a company wants to employ a full IT Dept., money definitely comes at a premium. If they look into their other options, a Managed IT Service Provider (MSP) can be an unbelievable value. Most MSP’s can come in at a tiny fraction of what it costs to employ a full team. Most of the time, they can be signed to a contract at a fraction of the cost to employ just one full time IT professional.
At the end of the day, I think everyone would enjoy living in a better neighborhood, with better schools, better neighbors, among other assets. Treat your business as your neighborhood, ask yourself “if this business was a house, do I live in a good neighborhood?” If the answer is no or you are unsure, make a change. A family can always move to a better neighborhood. If the answer is yes, then you should be happy with the stability of your company.