Many experts are predicting an upcoming recession. Slow to develop and even slower to leave, economic downturns pose some interesting challenges for small businesses. How do you reduce expenses while still maintaining valued staff, IT operations, and security? How do you sustain and grow profitability? Mitigating issues related to IT and cybersecurity can be particularly difficult when money is tight, and vulnerabilities can be very costly to the business.
The new normal
As economic conditions deteriorate, there are disruptions that will inevitably affect your business. In a reactive mode, you might make as many cuts as you can and try to ride out the storm. In a proactive mode, you could adopt a different strategy, one that reengineers your business, strengthens its recession defenses, and raises it to a new level in terms of future competitiveness and growth. In short, economic downturns can be a negative or a positive, depending on how you steer your company through them.
Digital transformation with a hybrid IT service delivery model
Ask any small business owner and they’ll tell you that IT services and infrastructure are at the heart of their operation. Not every small business can afford to hire and maintain top-flight IT staff, but managed service providers (MSPs) can do that and more.
Shifting to a digital delivery or co-managed model lets you reimagine your IT ecosystem. It typically includes a thorough assessment of your security vulnerabilities and how to fix them. And it allows you to leverage new, updated digital tools and a reimagined tech stack chosen for maximum reliability, interoperability, and low cost.
A winning strategy
With a co-managed IT service model, you take advantage of the MSP’s robust services, infrastructure, and expertise. You can keep a small in-house team intact, while your MSP employs a staff of seasoned IT professionals who understand how to deploy the latest technology, enabling you to scale with changing times.
Your MSP can also help you figure out how best to combine remotely delivered cloud services. Under this model, most IT services will be delivered remotely, with some local services (onboarding, dealing with onsite backups, …) done by legacy or new lower-level employees hired for these limited tasks.
The goal is to survive and even thrive in a recession—implementing a plan that adjusts to your new reality, up-levels technical expertise wherever you can, lowers cybersecurity risk, and positions your business to take full advantage of the economic recovery that will inevitably arrive somewhere down the road.
“Research shows that organizations that continue to invest strategically in tough times are more likely to emerge as leaders.” Chris Ganly, VP Analyst at Gartner Research.
Click here to download our special report titled “A small business strategy for surviving in an economic downturn.”