Top 8 Benefits of On-site IT Support

The IT services market is gigantic and includes some of the most critical services for organizations of all sizes. This explains why this sector is valued so highly, with the global IT services outsourcing market projected to surpass 1.00 trillion by 2030.  One of the major types of IT services for small businesses especially is IT support, and there are many IT support companies doing a great job out here. 

A key trend in outsourced IT support is the move to the remote model, where technicians don't have to be physically present in order to offer assistance. The model makes perfect sense for many of the common support needs among organizations. However, as your business grows and its IT needs become more complex, on-site IT support may be necessary and more effective for certain tasks.

In this post, we explore the top benefits of on-site IT support, providing insights to demonstrate why you need to give it a thought as a business owner, manager or key player in your organization.

What is on-site IT support?

On-site IT support is when a technician works from the customer's premises to provide technical assistance for select IT needs for the organization. Depending on your requirements and agreement with your provider, these are some of the ways you can structure the on-site support function:

  • Technicians come to your premises following a regular scheduled plan, such as weekly or monthly
  • The provider assigns dedicated technicians who work from your premises each day
  • The provider sends technicians out when specific problems arise.

Also Read: The main tiers of IT support 

The top 8 benefits of on-site IT support

There's no denying that off-site IT support is gaining popularity due to its cost-effectiveness for modern businesses where remote technology is being embraced by many organizations. However, on-site IT support has a multitude of invaluable perks that you definitely should not overlook. In fact, we advise that the smartest approach is finding a balance between the two. 

Here are the top benefits that any organization stands to gain from on-site IT support. Be sure to discuss at length with your MSP to determine how they can best deliver the collective value of these advantages as part of their agreement with your organization. 

1. Better management of emergencies

On-site IT support offers a distinct advantage in critical situations when time is of the essence; diagnostics conducted in person rather than via screen-sharing can often save significant amounts of time during crisis thus allowing for faster issue resolution. 

That is especially true for mission critical roles like healthcare and industrial provisioning. Imagine what would happen if a critical piece of IT equipment breaks down in a hospital?

2. Enhanced familiarity

Having an on-site technician that is constantly or regularly engaging with your company's IT infrastructure can make a tremendous difference in troubleshooting, diagnosing, and deploying changes. The knowledge they build over time from interacting with your IT environment across multiple shifts gives them an advantage. This familiarity allows them to understand the specific needs of the network in a deeper way,  and develop solutions that best meet those needs. They also respond better to issues, because they are in constant touch with your infrastructure — in a physical sense. 

For example: a savvy technician who has extensive experience in a business' environment can quickly identify when hardware or software changes affect performance, allowing them to react more quickly than if unfamiliar with the setup. With this increased understanding of a company's systems at hand, an on-site support technician is able to provide the kind of support and advice that better fits the unique business infrastructure, ultimately delivering long-term value.

3. Better diagnosis & preparation for future

The presence of an experienced IT expert on site can help identify potential sources of future difficulties that could be missed by remote support.

For example, if an older computer system is utilized, a remote IT support team may not recognize the constraints and limitations of such a machine as easily as an IT professional who can physically inspect the system. Additionally, members of an on site IT Support Team are more likely to recognize any new hardware devices that have been added to the system, regulations and software changes that affect hardware compatibility, and any potentially conflicting software applications which may be in use.

As regards preparing for the future, onsite IT support teams are able to more accurately anticipate what the organization’s IT needs will be in the future and proactively determine the best hardware and software solutions that will give them an edge. With onsite IT support, your organization is better equipped not only for today's needs but also tomorrow's.

4. Increased efficiency & productivity

On-site IT support enables businesses to resolve problems without having to delay productivity by waiting for a response to a help desk ticket or for someone to travel to site to solve the issue. For example, if an employee needs a new computer or software, on-site IT support can help to get them set up quickly. This saves employees a lot of time and allows them to focus on their work.

Furthermore, on-site technicians are able to provide personalized advice on how to improve productivity with new technology. They can also provide suggestions regarding system improvements that could further boost efficiency in the organization.

Also Read: What is the difference between help desk and service desk? 

5. Improved customer satisfaction

The immediacy nature of on-site IT support means that any issues your customers are facing are handled in a timely manner. Any delays that would have been experienced are significantly reduced, which helps customers feel valued and supported.  It increases the speed and quality of customer service delivery, since employees have access to the technical knowledge and resources right away.

On-site IT support can also offer personalized advice and guidance regarding customer facing system setup and use, helping customers to quickly become familiar with them. Thirdly, they can also identify opportunities for automation or process improvements in order to ensure that customer queries are answered as quickly and accurately as possible.

6. First hand comprehension of challenges

On-site IT support offers the invaluable benefit of allowing technicians to really understand the challenges of their clients first-hand. This is in contrast to the off-site model, where the  experts are forced to work from a distance and find it very difficult to grasp the complexity of the challenge and its overall impact. Onsite support closes that gap completely and allows technicians to observe first-hand what's happening, as well as have face-to-face conversations with individuals who are affected by the issue at hand. This close interaction between techs and employees leads to holistic assistance, since they can make guided decisions.

Through this, your organization can also enjoy the advantages of customization. An on-site technician can build a solution to fit the exact needs of a customer rather than having them take whatever generic product is available. The customer gets exactly what they need without having to sacrifice quality.

For example, if an organization has several pieces of technology they need to connect with each other and have an efficient workflow, an on-site technician would have a better grasp of what it would take to assemble the components and create something that works seamlessly for the organization’s individual needs. Similarly, a business’ internal team can coordinate with the on-site technicians, if the MSP contract allows, to construct custom software solutions tailored to processes and operations specific only to the organization. 

7. Motivates employees to seek help

The simple act of technicians working daily from within the client’s premises or constantly visiting to provide IT assistance builds trust between them and the employees, thus removing or reducing any hesitation when it comes to employees asking for assistance. As a result, businesses are able to harness greater value from their investment in outsourced IT services as employees become more confident about engaging with the IT provider’s staff on-site. 

The presence of technical experts at the workplace allows employees to communicate their problems comfortably compared to when they have to speak on phone or send emails to experts they have never met or those they rarely meet.

Employees also get the opportunity to physically witness the progress being made towards resolving an issue that affects them. There's a certain sense of satisfaction that comes from watching an expert work through an issue, as opposed to having issues solved without any tangible physical observation. 

As humans, we tend to feel more connected with things when we can see them happen right in front of us and this same principle holds true with IT related issues. Remote IT support might be able to address some needs just as efficiently as on-site technicians, but there's something special about following and seeing a problem get solved right in front of your eyes; an experience you simply don't get when it comes to merely waiting until communication confirms the resolution of your issue.

8. Enhanced security

On site IT support can create a strong foundation for valuable defense for any company in the digital age. As they go about their work, an onsite IT professional can easily identify vulnerabilities which can lead to cyber attacks. They can then liaise with the company’s security teams or providers to set up preventive measures that stop attackers from accessing confidential information or making changes to infrastructure, therefore reducing the risk of a successful attack. Think of it as having a trusted expert constantly keeping tabs for potential weaknesses.

The benefit of improved security can also be viewed from the angle of keeping all sensitive information on-site. The organization can decide that all sensitive data related to the functions assigned to the on-site support team remains on-site. It’s better this way rather than the data being vulnerable to external hosting or storage plans, and this is a great security boost. 

Conclusion

Well, it could be the case that your business may not necessarily need full time on-site IT assistance, or any at all. In this case you’ll just be fine with remote support. Typically, small and medium-sized companies with minimal usage of IT for their operations would be more likely to find that this applies to them. But, we are seeing a trend where even some seemingly smaller businesses are managing complex IT systems that would need some IT support duties to be managed on-site. 

So don't assume your organization does not require on-site IT help just because it is small or medium-sized. Start by having a discussion with your MSP to see if there are particular aspects of your IT that will necessitate an on-site technician (s).

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