Small Business IT Support in Raleigh Durham area: computer consultant or sysadmin?

Whether big or small, businesses around Raleigh, NC need reliable IT support in order to make sure that commercial operations are conducted smoothly from day to day. In this era of technology, all different manners of operations in a business are somehow dependent on Information Technology, or IT. Hence, businesses are tasked with making sure the IT components within their organization are consistently up and running. Without required IT support, a business will struggle to function properly, which may result in facing financial losses. 

Consider a small business in the area of, for example, Morrisville and Cary, NC with employee strength between 40 and 50, which is in need of IT support. There are two different methods through which small businesses in this region can get the required IT support they need. The business can either:

a) Hire a system administrator,
b) outsource IT work through a computer consultant.

Before making a choice, you will need to consider and weigh out the many pros and cons associated with them. Your organization should always attempt to select the best available option when it comes to receiving the best IT support.

"Hiring a dedicated system administrator" versus "Outsourcing IT work through an IT consultant" 

Many large businesses opt to hire a dedicated system administrator, who provides them with constant business class IT support by filling the role of all of IT related problems. An employee such as this is entitled to receive all benefits just like any other worker. The big advantage of hiring a "sysadmin" is that the admin gives dedicated support, since they are almost always expected to be present at the business location. In this case, the response time for troubleshooting problems is significantly low, compared to the potentially higher response time when troubleshooting assistance is provided by an outside computer consultant. At the minimum, an IT consultant firm would need a couple hours before an available technician could arrive onsite. The option of remote business IT support is a lot faster when available, but still there might be delays.

A major consideration to take into account when hiring a system administrator is that it can be very cost-ineffective solution. The average annual salary for a system administrator in the Cary - Morrisville region is $78,000. Additionally, a person on staff will also need to be provided with other industry standard benefits like health insurance, and there's also an expected overhead of unemployment tax at 7%, etc. It's quickly easy to see that for a company to hire a proficient system administrator, they would have to spend approximately $7500 on a monthly basis. This amount is almost assuredly too high for most small businesses in the region.

As an alternative, if you outsource IT work through an IT consultant, you can get the required IT support at a much better rate. Computer consultants, who offer small business IT support in this region, are highly efficient and they charge an hourly rate of usually between $90-180. Maintenance of IT network for any small business generally requires 4-8 hours of work each week. This means the total amount of money that your organization would spend on a monthly basis for outsourcing IT work would typically be less than $3000-less than half what would go to a system administrator.

Furthermore, the demand for IT Support in a Small Business is not always extensive, which can result in an admin often out of work. A manager has to make sure that the system admin always has a task in order to increase organizational productivity. This can quickly become a headache for the manager as finding and inventing tasks for the system admin on a regular basis is not always easy. This problem simply doesn't exist if a business opts for the services of a computer consultant.

Another disadvantage of hiring a system administrator comes from trivial life circumstances: when an IT employee is sick or on vacation, the business might have a very difficult time if they run into technical problems. On the contrary, an IT consulting firm would have technicians with different skill sets who could substitute for and complement each other on tasks requiring specialty skills. They can then provide continuous support over an extended period of time.

If we consider the rates typical for Morrisivlle - Cary, NC region, IT outsourcing through an IT consultant is the ideal solution for receiving IT support in an organization with fewer than 70 employees.