When you need IT support, but you don’t have an internal IT department, the best available option is to work with a managed services provider (MSP). Through their proactive solutions, you can optimize your infrastructure and keep it running smoothly. However, before you partner with an MSP, you’re going to want to determine if they can provide virtual CIO-level services. An MSP that can act as your virtual CIO (vCIO) provides a level of service you can’t get with the typical MSP.
What Is a Virtual CIO?
Technology works best when it’s designed to complement your business operations. To achieve such an IT environment, it requires strategic planning for the present, near future, and long-term. The position in charge of the direction of your infrastructure is known as the Chief Information Officer (CIO). This person is responsible for analyzing how various technologies benefit your company and integrating that technology into your IT.
However, not every company can find a qualified CIO or afford to bring on this type of executive-level employee. Like the evolution from break-fix to managed services, IT support has evolved further to offer virtual CIO services. Similar to a normal CIO, this service provides CIO consulting and CIO strategy to build an IT environment that solves your IT challenges. This solution acts as a reliable substitute for an in-house CIO and is offered at a fraction of the cost.
What’s the Difference Between Managed Services and Virtual CIO Services?
Since managed services and virtual CIO services can both be used to improve your IT, it may not be clear what the difference is between these two options. Let’s dive into what makes these services distinct from each other.
The purpose of general managed services is to optimize your IT environment. Your provider focuses mainly on keeping everything operational, minimizing downtime, and being available for troubleshooting. Ultimately, managed services should be seen as a support solution.
An MSP that can provide a vCIO-level partnership is capable of doing everything an average MSP can do, plus one more highly beneficial thing—strategy. If you want to maximize the potential of your infrastructure and improve the way your staff uses technology, then you need to create a plan. A virtual CIO works with you to develop a roadmap that considers your short- and long-term IT goals. With this strategy, they help you align your IT with your operations to make a positive impact on your business.
Who Is vCIO Service For?
Virtual CIO services are designed for any business that wants high operational performance and predictable budgeting. It’s also a good solution for reducing costs and downtime. This is why vCIOs tend to be a popular option for small- to medium-sized businesses. Whether you’re looking at one or multiple technology projects, vCIO services can help your organization shape its IT and achieve success.
What Are the Benefits of Using Virtual CIO Services?
Having a vCIO can provide a variety of benefits you may not have considered. A few examples of these benefits include:
- Reduced Costs: Virtualizing your CIO role negates the costs that come with finding, hiring, and onboarding an in-house CIO.
- Decreased Downtime: A vCIO addresses technical issues to keep your equipment running and to prevent issues down the road.
- Multi-Level Expertise: A vCIO has all the training and experience necessary for a qualified CIO, ranging from business leadership to technical skills. A vCIO can have an immediate impact on your company as soon as they familiarize themselves with your operations.
- Better Productivity: When your technology is aligned with your operations, your technology is no longer working against you, it’s working for you. This enables your team to be more efficient and allows them to get more done.
- Disaster Recovery: An important part of business continuity is disaster recovery. A vCIO can help you create a comprehensive disaster recovery plan to keep your organization operational, even in the event of a worst-case scenario.
- On-Demand Resources: Virtual CIO consulting services are available 24/7. So, when you need an expert, they come in and help where needed.
- Objectivity: Virtual CIOs can view your business with an outsider’s perspective and provide unbiased recommendations.
When Should a Virtual CIO Be Used?
Anyone can benefit from the help of vCIO services, but when is it necessary to have such a solution? If your company is experiencing these issues, it’s time to find a vCIO:
- Shallow Talent Pool: If you’re on the hunt for someone who can lead the direction of your infrastructure, you might have a hard time. IT workers are in high demand and in short supply. You can make life a little easier by working with an MSP that offers vCIO services.
- Overspending on IT: If your organization needs to spend less on IT staff, you can cut costs with a vCIO. The vCIO does all the duties of an in-house CIO, but at a fraction of the cost.
- Cybersecurity Issues: Cybersecurity is an ongoing issue that requires strategy to stay ahead. A vCIO can help you develop a cybersecurity plan to keep your systems safe.
Get the IT Support Your Company Deserves
If you’re interested in optimizing and aligning your IT with your business goals, you won’t find a better provider than Net3 IT. Our company was founded by highly experienced professionals who were formerly CIOs. Since 2012, we have helped clients in the Knoxville, Tennessee, area overcome their IT challenges.
Contact us to learn more.
Since 2012, Net3 IT has offered enterprise-level IT experience and industry knowledge to help Knoxville businesses make the right decisions. We are committed to our customers’ success by providing cost-effective, high-value IT services, VOIP phone services, and strategic consulting.