As the resources available to small businesses are often limited, the teams behind these businesses often wear many hats to make the most of the available resources. This may lead to stunted productivity and sluggish business growth.
In addition to talent gaps and limited resources, small businesses face numerous challenges that pose a threat to their success today. Managed service providers (MSPs) equip small businesses with the tools to address these business needs:
- 24/7 monitoring
- Data compliance
- Controlling costs
- In-house expertise
- Efficient service delivery
- Digital transformation
Regardless of the resource disparity, SMBs face the same cybersecurity challenges as large enterprises. In fact, a recent report from BlackBerry found that small businesses are facing an increased threat of cybercrime. Unlike large organizations, though, many SMBs lack adequate security infrastructure to safeguard sensitive information like customer and employee data. As such, cybercriminals get the upper hand by exploiting the gaping vulnerabilities.
Furthermore, many small businesses struggle to stay current with the ever-evolving cyber threats of today. Keeping up with exploits, vulnerabilities, and hacking techniques is a full-time responsibility. Inadequate understanding of cyber threats often leads to ineffective security assessments, as the main risks may be missed entirely.
Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs) offer solutions to these challenges and more. They are capable of not only keeping up with the evolution of cyber threats but also focusing on your small business’s specific vulnerabilities. Cybersecurity MSPs also alleviate the burden of keeping up with the security requirements of increasingly complex IT infrastructure. You don’t need to have an in-house cybersecurity team when you can bring in an MSSP to fill that role.
Cyberduo is an example of an IT and cybersecurity MSP that offers SMBs managed endpoint protection, managed detection and response (MDR), email security among other security services.
Keep reading: Best MDR Services for Small Businesses
Regardless of the time of day, there is always a risk of a cyber attack. In addition to having access to skills and measures to combat threats, small businesses need to ensure their infrastructure is robust round the clock to proactively handle anomalies, suspicious activity, and potential threats. This is particularly valuable outside of business hours as threat actors may try to carry out attacks when they know you’re not paying close attention.
Cipher’s MDR offering is powered by the company’s security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR) platform that provides 24/7 monitoring and response services.
Small businesses may find compliance to be challenging since data compliance requirements keep changing. These needs depend on your business’s industry vertical, customer type, business model, location, and other variables, thus complicating your compliance efforts. With the ever-so-frequent changes, it becomes difficult to know which regulations pertain to your business. The right MSP will keep your business up-to-date on relevant legislation and help you understand your compliance requirements.
Once more, Cyberduo empowers you to build the correct policies around your business by simplifying the complexity and cost of compliance. Cipher also has experience and expertise in governance, information security risk, and compliance.
In many cases, small businesses struggle to stay within their IT budget as operational and investment costs can easily exceed budget allocations. The costs associated with staffing, training, repairs, and upgrades further complicate the ability to stay afloat. Most MSPs offer a flexible pricing model that gives you the ability to grow your business without paying for more infrastructure and support than you actually need.
An example of such an MSP is AWS Managed Services, which promises operational and infrastructure savings with a flexible consumption-based pricing model.
Maintaining highly skilled IT staff is another challenge facing many small business owners. In the midst of a hiring crisis, it can be difficult to attract top talent to an open role and retain employees with specialized, in-demand skills. With MSPs, though, you get access to entire teams of experts without the responsibility of maintaining more in-house staff. This means you’ll always have the support and expertise needed to deal with any challenge that may arise.
Rackspace Managed Services provides IT-as-a-Service that allows businesses to partner with experts who can fulfill their business goals. Another full-service MSP to consider is CoastalCloud, which extensively covers marketing, sales, customer service, data and integration, finance, accounting, and ERP, customer experience.
Efficient service delivery
Small business teams often have to wear multiple hats to keep operations moving smoothly. However, being pulled in too many directions can take the priority and focus away from the initiatives that drive the business forward. This may also affect service delivery and customer experience. The right MSPs take control of tasks like 24/7 monitoring so your team can prioritize strategic initiatives.
MSPs like AWS Managed Services free up your resources so you can focus on big-picture priorities, operate more efficiently, and deliver results for your customers. They complement your existing team to improve your efficiency and overall service delivery.
Technology is a massive enabler of business today. However, the rapid evolution of the technology landscape means that businesses need to stay at par to remain competitive. Periodic investments in software and hardware needed to stay abreast of technological trends are unsustainable for most small businesses. The solution lies in having access to digital transformation services without overwhelming in-house teams and exhausting your resources.
Many MSPs highlight digital transformation as a strategic value proposition. The right provider can overhaul your business by overseeing your cloud migration, introducing technologies like machine learning and artificial intelligence, and developing new products and services.
Mastersolve is an MSP that plays a role in digital and business transformation initiatives through providing business analysis, planning, governance, accountability oversight services.
The value of working with an MSP
Hundreds of managed service providers exist to help small businesses like yours with a wide range of IT functions. These could be as broad as digital transformation or as narrow as data backup and recovery. The real value of working with an MSP, however, is the peace of mind you get from having a reliable team of experts on standby to tackle any issues you may encounter. When you don’t have to worry about putting out fires, you can turn your attention to propelling your business forward.