IT Staff Augmentation vs Outsourcing – Which Is Appropriate?

The Difference Between Outsourcing and Staff Augmentation for IT July blog 1

There are three (really, two, but we’ll get to that) ways for a business leader to manage their technology. The managed services strategy delegates most or all of a firm’s tech support, cybersecurity, and system maintenance to an outside firm. Outsourcing, or staff augmentation, is when a company diverts some, but not all technical support to an outside firm, often for projects or temporary support. The third option is simply hiring an in-house IT team. The problem, of course, is that eventually it will be more cost effective to outsource at least a portion instead of hiring new experts.

Managed Services vs Outsourcing

The difference between managed services and outsourcing your IT may seem insignificant until you break down what these setups actually look like. Sure, both refer to services provided from an outside firm, but the scale is completely different.

When a firm hires a managed service provider (MSP), they are essentially delegating the entirety of their technology management to an outside provider. The advantage here, especially with an experienced team like ours at The Millennium Group handling things, is that your staff can focus on what they do best. Fears about technology downtime can hamper productivity, but a proven MSP can keep things flowing.

Outsourcing, often referred to as staff augmentation, refers to a company utilizing an outside, specialized team to accomplish limited tasks or projects. This could apply to a company looking for overflow tech support during busier seasons or a firm looking to implement an entirely new system.

What is Staff Augmentation?

Particularly for small businesses, everything may be going fine day-to-day. However, when technology problems inevitably rear their heads, an internal IT staff (if one even exists) may or may not be able to handle it. This technology uncertainty fuels a lack of productivity. When managers and staff are worried that their systems could go down at any moment without a pre-planned remediation strategy, less work is going to get done.

The staff augmentation model basically acts as a hybrid between your staff and outside expertise. Your staff will continue to handle the normal operational support that they normally do while the outsourced provider takes on any additional tasks and support.

Business Project Outsourcing

Imagine a scenario where a large-scale IT project needs to be completed, but all a business has at its disposal is an internal IT support team. While they may be skilled in setting up workstations and networks and solving issues when they arise, the chances are that they are missing expertise in DevOps, application development, web design, or some other specialized task.

Splitting resources in this way is often the most efficient way to tackle technology challenges. Now, you may be wondering how an outsourced provider can integrate well into your internal operations. This is a fair concern, and many outsourced providers actually struggle in this respect. The Millennium Group, though, takes a consultative approach. Before we even begin working, we make sure our team is totally familiar with your business, how you use technology, and what your needs will be in the future.

Staff augmentation can be a good strategy when you have a one-off project or simply need a bit of extra support. However, using a full suite of MSP services is likely the most cost-effective option.

A Single, Integrated Solution

When you are working with a single, consistent team for something as complex as IT, the benefits become apparent almost immediately.

First, there is the cybersecurity element. Working with an MSP like The Millennium Group means putting your systems under one umbrella of protection. This allows us to keep track of your entire system in real time without having to worry about vulnerabilities due to non-integrated components of your IT.

Then there is agility. Business strategy can change rapidly and having fully integrated technology support means that your IT can scale and change based on your needs. From developing new processes to integrating new technology, employing a single-source solution is the best way forward.

When you hire an MSP like The Millennium Group, you’ll have a single source to call for issues as simple as a downed workstation or as complex as disaster recovery. Give us a call today to give yourself some peace of mind.