Today, unpredictability seems to be the only constant in the modern business world. And it’s not a secret – Manufacturers are concerned with the threat of a recession in 2023.
With economic uncertainty, inflation, employment shortages, an increasing volatile cybersecurity landscape and supply chain issues, business leaders in the manufacturing industry need to be prepared and look beyond 2023 when they build out their technology strategy.
As a manufacturing business that increasingly relies on technology, there are many business considerations you need to think about for the next year. Especially in a time of uncertainty, you need to constantly evaluate the best use of your technology and whether your processes are the most efficient, effective, and secure.
You also need to make sure you have skilled people in the right seats, focusing on the jobs they excel in. Workforce shortages ranked as the Manufacturing industries top concern in recent data released by the National Association of Manufactures.
There’s also the financial aspect to consider – technology investment costs can be high. Skilled technology staff are not only difficult to find but they also usually have high salary requirements and don’t want to use outdated technology to complete their jobs – meaning an impact to your bottom line.
So, what’s the first step? Consider a Managed IT Service Provider.
Partnering with a Managed IT Service Provider, or MSP, can be an invaluable asset to any manufacturing company. A well established and operationally mature MSP can meet you where you’re at – whether you face a tight labor market and high workforce churn, or you are looking to either contract or expand your operations, they can help to provide financial predictability and stability.
A strategic MSP partner will help manufactures remain competitive, and often profitable in challenging economic conditions. By building a partnership with a third-party IT provider you can rely on them to provide you with a wide range of services, that ultimately allow your business to cut on costs and reinvest the savings elsewhere.
Curious how a partnership like this works? Here are 5 ways partnering with an MSP will provide value to your business:
1. Help to reduce operating costs
There are a multitude of ways working with an MSP can help to reduce your expenses. A Managed Service Provider will help you to ensure you have the right technology and that it is compatible with your company’s existing systems, processes, and infrastructure. Additionally, an MSP should provide you with a dedicated strategic consultant, usually a Virtual Chief Information Officer, who will provide you and your executive team with industry knowledge and expertise to be able to recommend which products your company needs vs. nice to haves, helping to create a predictable roadmap and controlled IT budget.
2. Improved efficiencies
By working with an MSP your business can take advantage of economies of scale and expertise to reduce overall spending. Through an MSP you will gain access to the latest tools and technology and get expert advice to help you build a well-managed IT system to help improve efficiency and productivity. By proactively monitoring your systems and ensuring they are running properly your team will reduce time spent on troubleshooting, system maintenance, and ultimately downtime down the road. This can help a business remain agile and responsive to changing market conditions.
3. Access to Qualified IT Talent and Expertise
With a growing hiring shortage, it can be increasingly difficult for companies to meet their current IT needs and cybersecurity responsibilities. Hiring talent and retaining qualified staff are top of mind for nearly all manufacturing business leaders in Michigan. Finding IT and security professionals with in-depth and current knowledge is both difficult, and expensive. MSPs provide a team of experienced professional working with you – focusing on your business’ complex technology and security requirements.
Even if you already have a very strong in-house IT team, an MSP can work as an extension to your team, providing valuable additional resources to your business. By partnering with a third-party, you enable your staff to do what they do best using technology as a driving force for your business and offset the burden of large projects and advanced IT support needs while still putting cybersecurity first.
4. Increased security
As manufacturing companies evolve and becoming increasingly digital, your data and systems generally become more vulnerable to cyberattacks. A security first MSP will work with you to ensure your team has the necessary security measures put into place to protect your data and prevent an attack.
Additionally, the manufacturing industry has many cybersecurity and compliance requirements that businesses must adhere to. An MSPs is a valuable resource to help you stay compliant with industry regulations and addressing your industry needs.
Whether your business is growing or scaling back your business will need to continuously invest in technology to stay current and relevant. An MSP can help by providing the necessary network maintenance including regular software updates, patching systems, and monitoring your systems for issues before helping to keep your IT infrastructure both current and secure.
As a business leader you want to know your investment in technology has positive long-term impacts. MSPs are continuously looking at new technologies that can be deployed to fill the gaps between standard operating procedures and emerging technologies. They have the required visibility to give advice and help you make informed technology business decisions.
Establish a Proactive and Long-Term IT Strategy for Your Manufacturing Business
The right MSP partner will work with you to map out where you are today and what next steps might look like within your technology landscape to achieve your business goals. By understanding your long-term goals your dedicated expert will ensure you have the right technology, policies, and processes in place to move forward, providing your executive team confidence in the strategic direction.
Allow Your Business to Succeed
Manufacturing business leaders face more competitive markets, economic uncertainty, higher technology expectations from customers and employees, more robust security risks, and hiring constraints. By working with an MSP that understands your technology landscape it frees up time and money for your team to focus on other areas such as new equipment, upskilling and training your workforce, hiring, investing in research and development, and ultimately allows your business to remain competitive and cost-efficient.
An IT partner can be an asset for any business facing pressures from economic downturn by providing cost-effective and reliable IT solutions, staying up to date with technology, providing strategic guidance while keeping your company secure. By partnering with a Managed Service Provider (MSP) can help your business leverage your resources and continue to drive your company down a path of success.
If you are interested in learning more about how an MSP can partner with your business contact us. We would be happy to schedule a discovery call and walk through how Convergence can help your business achieve success.