What to Expect from an Effective Outsourced Help Desk

Does your small business need help with IT help desk support? You can give your staff better service and make them more productive by outsourcing help desk services. But there are a lot more benefits to outsourcing your tech support

In this article, we’re going to share with you everything you need to know to help you decide whether your small organization should outsource IT support and what you can expect from a reputable service provider.

Table of Contents

What is an Outsourced IT Help Desk?

Essentially, an outsourced help desk is a service where an organization hires a third-party provider to manage its IT support functions.

This partnership allows your company to benefit from the expertise and resources of a specialized IT company – rather than maintaining these capabilities in-house.

For instance, Teal is a managed IT service provider that helps small businesses reduce costly downtime and productivity losses with unlimited, 24/7 help desk access. By gaining the advanced IT support they need, clients: 

Effective tech support helps your staff focus on their primary business activities while enjoying a reliable, hassle-free technological experience.

When you break it all down, outsourcing your help desk offers a practical solution for managing your IT support needs without the overhead of managing it internally.

Why a Business Might Outsource Their IT Support

There are a lot of benefits to outsourcing all or part of your IT to a managed service provider (MSP). We find that a lot of small businesses are looking for enhanced efficiency, expertise, cost-reduction, and improved security – all of which are things managed IT providers excel at delivering.

Organizations also often seek out external IT support to reduce downtime, improve focus, and decrease IT staff burnout (which can help with their stress management).

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An outsourced help desk can also enhance the operations of companies that work outside of regular business hours if they partner with an MSP that offers 24×7 technical support.

By outsourcing your IT department to an MSP, you can benefit from the same level of support as a large company would.

MSPs, like Teal, help small and medium-sized businesses overcome the cost challenge of hiring specialized staff by providing an entire team of experts at a reduced cost spread across multiple clients.

By outsourcing your IT department to an MSP, you can benefit from the same level of support as a large company would.

“When you break it all down, you need a Help Desk person, you need a systems engineer, you need a project engineer, you need a CIO, and many other things,” said Gar Whaley, Teal Chief Revenue Officer 

“But certainly, you can’t afford to. It doesn’t make business sense to hire all those people, and one person doesn’t have all those skill sets. So, what we do is we provide the right slice of all those skill sets to our clients, and that slice depends on the client’s need.”

4 Disadvantages of Help Desk Services

So, there’s good and bad news about an outsourced help desk. The bad news is that, yes, there can be disadvantages.

But the good news is that they can be avoided by hiring the right provider for your organization. We’ll show you how to find a reputable managed IT service provider later in the article.

First, let’s look at some of the disadvantages you face when outsourcing your IT.

1. Poor Service Delivery

Unfortunately, the quality of service can vary between providers. This uncertainty may cause your team to be concerned about whether the outsourced team will understand your organization’s business goals (and deliver the responsive support you need) as well as an in-house team would. These are valid concerns.

Solution: Avoid the stress of a poor investment by partnering with the right managed service provider.

Example 

We have heard many small business leaders express their frustration with MSPs that barely acknowledged when a support ticket came in – leaving them to wonder if their issues would ever be resolved. That’s frustrating. You don’t have time in your day to be tracking down someone you hired to take care of IT issues….

Teal provides the exact opposite of that. The heart of our services is our commitment to being ultra-responsive. In fact, just moments after we receive a support request from a client, they receive an initial email and a reference case number to use when speaking with our team.

Your organization should never feel like your issues don’t matter. If you aren’t getting responsive support, then it’s time to find a new service provider who actually meets your needs.

2. Security & Privacy

When you decide to outsource, you need to consider the risk of data security and privacy – especially if you operate in a regulated industry.

It’s crucial that you choose a secure managed service provider.

Solution: Partner with a managed IT service provider that is qualified, experienced in your industry, certified in your organization’s compliance regulations, and prioritizes robust security.

3. Communication Errors

Another thing you need to look out for when outsourcing your help desk or other IT support is the service provider’s ability to communicate well. Poor communication and responsiveness before you even become a client is a good indicator that the services you receive will also be subpar.

Solution: Pay close attention to how well your interactions with a vendor go during the initial vetting stages. If a provider fails to meet their promises, lacks clarity in their services/terms, or doesn’t initiate communication, remove them from your list of potential providers.

4. Less Control

One of the most apparent drawbacks when considering outsourcing your tech support is that your organization loses control over the operations. This means that choosing the right provider is crucial to your organization’s success.

Solution: Find a value-aligned provider that can act as a seamless extension of your internal team, offering specialized expertise.

Example 

If excellence, unrelenting service delivery, and resilience are key values for your company, find a provider that exudes them.

When you partner with an MSP that not only meets your operational needs but also aligns strategically with your company’s core values and long-term goals, your business can successfully grow (and you can continue operations confidently).

5 Advantages of Outsourced Help Desk Services

All right, now that we got the disadvantages out of the way, let’s dive into the advantages you get from outsourced help desk services. 

1. You can reduce your expenses.

During our free initial assessments, potential clients often express concerns about the cost of outsourcing their IT, including help desk support.

But when we sit down and compare the costs of hiring the internal IT staff (plus benefits, insurance, training, etc.) versus the cost of outsourcing their IT…well, they are usually blown away.

“Is it really going to be that much cheaper to outsource our IT with you,” one small business owner asked in disbelief once.

Yeah, it is!

Managed service providers can provide services at a much lower cost than hiring internally because we can spread out the cost over multiple clients. But it gets better.

You also get budget predictability. This is especially helpful to small businesses where every dollar counts.

By outsourcing IT support, you can sleep better at night knowing that you have the technology you need to stay ahead in a competitive market (and feel great that you made a forward-thinking move that’s also helping you save money).

The Co-managed Option

If you have IT staff employed at your SMB, outsourcing your basic IT needs is a great way to free up their free time to work on critical business tasks.

Partnering with a service provider to augment your in-house team is a great way to supplement their capabilities and boost your strategies.

2. You gain access to a greater level of expertise.

A massive advantage an outsourced help desk is that your small organization gains access to more resources than you could ever afford internally. You benefit from more expertise and enterprise-level security.

Plus, because technology changes so often, you don’t need to worry about your internal team trying to keep up with the latest products and versions your business uses. Your managed IT service provider will take care of everything.

3. You benefit from advanced technology.

An MSP has access to advanced technology and tools for ticketing systems, customer relationship management (CRM), and troubleshooting, which might be too costly for your small organization to implement on its own.

4. You gain flexibility.

Outsourcing your IT help desk services to a provider can provide you with flexibility – which is crucial for businesses in industries that experience seasonal volume fluctuations.

During these peak periods, demand for IT support can surge. So, you need more resources to maintain your team’s efficiency. An outsourced help desk can scale up services quickly to meet your increased demand.

Then, when off-peak seasons come, they can quickly scale down, optimizing costs. This ability to be adaptable ensures efficient IT support that is tailored to your business’s changing needs – without you having to bear the financial strain of maintaining a large in-house team every year.

Additionally, many managed IT providers offer 24/7 support. That will help your organization resolve issues that arise quickly whether you work in a finance firm or a construction company.

5. You can improve strategies with insightful reports and meetings.

When you partner with a reputable service provider, you will receive insightful reports and strategy meetings. These are in place to ensure that the services are up to your expectations and that the services align with your business goals. Whaley explains the importance of regular strategy meetings.

“We check in [with clients] on a monthly basis,” said Whaley. “We expect to have quarterly strategic review meetings, too. That’s what we call a light requirement. Because we’re dealing with small businesses where people wear a lot of hats, but we would expect that someone from the company would meet with us, at a minimum, on a quarterly basis.”

“What starts to happen is [technology] starts to go right, so nobody wants to talk about it anymore. So, the meeting could be skipped, but we don’t take that approach. We need to have that conversation to make sure we continually get it right for our clients.”

Strategically aligning technology with your organization’s goals is crucial to your success. Regular meetings to review and align tech strategies, complemented by in-depth reports, provide a solid foundation for you to make more informed decisions.

This practice ensures that your technology investments are consistently driving your business objectives forward – leading to enhanced operational efficiency and competitiveness in the marketplace.

How to Choose the Right Managed Service Provider

Earlier, we told you we’d share our expert insights into how to find a reputable MSP for your organization. Let’s take a look. 

When searching for a provider, one of the crucial aspects to check is their proficiency in long-term strategic planning. Because effective long-term planning is essential for achieving business goals and maintaining long-term success.

Here’s what you should look for to confirm a managed IT provider’s expertise:

1. Five-Year Hardware/Software Planning

Check if they plan a five-year cycle for hardware and software updates to protect you from too many unexpected capital expenses. 

2. Evolving Security Strategy

Ask about their approach to security. They should be continually improving their strategy and adapting to the ever-evolving cybercriminal tactics.

3. Technology Advancement Roadmap

See if they have a clear timeline for transitioning your business to cutting-edge technologies like cloud-based services.

By evaluating these factors, you can ensure that you choose a provider who is skilled in long-term strategic planning and can help you achieve your business goals.

Additionally, another key indicator of a great managed IT service provider is their commitment to partnering with the right clients. It’s essential for your success to work with an MSP that has expertise in your specific industry and aligns with your values.

Be very cautious of IT providers eager to take you on as a client despite a clear mismatch. This discernment ensures that your MSP can effectively address your unique challenges and contribute to your business goals.

“Teal looks for clients that fundamentally desire great customer service – what we call obsessive service. It’s one of our core values,” said Whaley.

“We also want partners that understand the importance of cybersecurity. What we like to say is we help companies leverage technology to grow and secure their business.”

“For us, the ‘secure’ aspect is paramount. It’s about more than just leveraging technology for business growth; it’s about ensuring the security of your business. This dual focus on growth and security is crucial for holistic business development.”

MSP Vetting Checklist Ebook

Use this checklist to make choosing the right managed service provider for your organization easy and stress-free.

How Small Businesses Benefit from Teal’s Managed IT Services

Teal offers responsive and secure managed IT services to SMBs nationally, with local business IT solutions provided in:


If you’re in need of
help desk support, or other
IT services, Teal has over 20 years of experience helping small businesses drive growth through empathetic communication and proven strategies.

Our clients, past and present, explain our service delivery best:

"All levels of both organizations communicate very effectively."

“They’re focused on making their customers happy.” IT Director, Consulting Client Since 2011

“Every person I have interacted with from Teal has been great at customer service.”President, Nonprofit Client Since 2011

"They’re a very dependable and reliable team that cares about their work."

We are continually measuring our client’s satisfaction through Net Promoter Score surveys, quality assurance processes, and Customer Satisfaction surveys on every interaction.

If you’re interested in learning about our premier IT consulting, contact a Teal business technology advisor today.

Investing in Outsourced Help Desk Services

Hiring a third-party provider for IT support is a smart move for small organizations when done properly. Take your time when evaluating service providers to ensure you’re making a well-informed decision and ask a lot of questions to get the most out of your investment.

Make sure potential help desk providers: 

  • Communicate well 
  • Are dedicated to delivering good service 
  • Operate securely 
  • Align with your company values 
  • Have the expertise you need 
  • Provide reports and strategy meetings

Do you still have questions about effective help desk services? Share them with us in the comment section below.

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