When Do You Need To Call In An IT Pro?

Over the past decade, IT technical support has come a long way. Ten years ago, asking your IT consultant for help often meant waiting until they could check your system in person. Today, thanks to GoToMyPC and similar tools, it’s easier than ever for IT technicians to access and troubleshoot your system remotely. Even so, small business owners may want to save money by limiting how often they call on an IT consultant.

Deciding when to call in an IT professional or reseller depends on your knowledge level and the situation. Here are three situations when going it alone just isn’t worth it from a time and cost perspective.

  1. When your critical data can be affected: Whether you’re moving your information to a different server, upgrading software that affects it or recovering lost data, don’t put your critical business assets at risk by trying to wing it.
  2. When solving a technical problem takes longer than half an hour: Remember that your time is valuable. If you’re making no progress, it’s probably more cost-effective to call your IT consultant.
  3. When you’re setting up a new computer or security tools: Make sure these processes are handled correctly from the start. One option is to set up a quarterly maintenance day, during which an IT consultant can make sure your system is current on all updates and that you’re not developing bad habits, such as disorganized archives or using weak passwords.

If a small business is concerned about the cost of IT support, the key is to make each issue a learning experience. Instead of having an IT technician simply solve the problem, have them show you what’s going on, so the next time you see the same problem you can manage it yourself. Computer problems tend to recur rather than happen just once, so learning from the problems is a great way to reduce costs in the future.

We’d appreciate your feedback. What are some other situations in which you should call an IT professional instead of trying to solve the problem on your own? Add your tips in the comments section below!

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