Joel Nimar is the President of Pyramid Technology Services.
The 21st century has brought about a boom in IT infrastructure, allowing companies to do business with greater speed and profit than ever before. Yet this massive growth has created challenges as well, in the form of legacy equipment that is typically maintained by costly OEM support structures. In fact, Forrester Research reports that the average business spends 72 percent of its total IT budget on sustainment, and only 28 percent on new technological investments. This pattern harms companies’ profitability.
A solution, however, lies in employing an Independent Service Organization (ISO), dedicated to managing companies’ IT infrastructure needs, streamlining their services, and increasing their profits.
The typical company uses many different technologies from multiple vendors, meaning that each unit has different maintenance needs and different warranty expiration dates; in fact, some may be past their warranty expiration dates entirely. To make matters more difficult, the quality of service differs widely depending on the unit, the geographic location of the company, and that organization’s specific needs.
An oil pipeline company, for instance, that operates 24/7 in a remote area cannot wait days for a customer service call to make its way through a slow, decentralized bureaucracy. A government organization, meanwhile, can only turn to employees who are able to pass strict security requirements. Outsourcing your IT service to an ISO improves the service quality of the entire infrastructure. Companies with a global presence will face more administrative and financial burdens as they deal with multiple international vendors in a variety of currencies. In short, companies with a large IT infrastructure will save a great deal of money and manpower having an ISO deal with the logistical and administrative issues of managing multiple contracts both domestically and internationally.
ISOs, the 21st Century Solution
ISOs provide a simple and elegant solution: a single point of contact for all of a 21st century company’s IT infrastructure requirements. These organizations operate globally, which means that companies that partner with ISOs will experience a consistent quality of service no matter where they are operating, or what kind of technology they are employing. In fact, by consolidating service contracts and streamlining IT maintenance processes, ISOs not only provide companies with reliable IT infrastructure sustainment, but also help their partners to enhance their own efficiency. Any global organization that requires hardware maintenance across a broad range of equipment makes and models will benefit from working with an ISO.
Tools to Evaluate an ISO
Of course, it is important to evaluate potential ISOs before partnering with them, and there are certain questions that any company should ask. These include:
- Does your ISO have experience with the manufacturers whose technologies you own?
- Is your ISO willing to customize their service plans to meet your company’s needs?
- Will your support engineer be trained to maintain both hardware and software?
- Does your ISO have experience maintaining legacy systems past their warranties?
- Can your ISO support you in a variety of geographic locations?
- Will it provide call service in an hour, and onsite service when and where you need it?
- Will the ISO designate one individual to be responsible for your maintenance needs?
- Is the system to contact your ISO convenient and navigable?
- Does the ISO offer services from start to finish in order to ensure that your needs have been met?
Simplify and Streamline with an ISO
An ISO that meets these requirements will allow your company to take an aggressive approach to technology management, empowering you to customize your IT maintenance to fit your specific needs. As IT infrastructures become increasingly elaborate and complex, savvy CFOs and IT managers employ ISOs to maintain their technology, to cut costs, to streamline their businesses, and to remain cutting edge in the modern world.
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