Why IT as-a-Service is the key for SMEs’ long-term growth

Jeff Lee, Co-Owner & Managing Director, HKBN JOS Singapore

After the disruption that the pandemic caused for businesses globally, traditional business models have begun to gradually recover and adapt to the pressure of a rapid shift in the environment where everything is digital. As businesses are starting to re-emerge this past year, digital transformation is the way forward by incorporating technology and offering quicker services, to gain a competitive edge and succeed in a post-pandemic world.

Worldwide IT spending is projected to total $4.1 trillion in 2021, an increase of 8.4% from 2020, according to the latest forecast by Gartner. Particularly in Singapore, SMEs spent 324% more on information technology and computer software in the past year.

As a result, SMEs are starting to adopt ITaaS approach to effectively manage their IT spending. Outsourcing IT enters a new paradigm with IT-as-a-Service (ITaaS) which is currently in demand. According to ISG Index, Asia Pacific’s IT market was at record high for 2021, where IT outsourcing saw 26% growth to US $2.3 billion, the highest since 2014.

This market is expected to grow at a steady rate in the years ahead due to a surge in cloud adoption, rising bring-your-own-device trend, growing security and compliance risks, development of the services and more. Some of the commonly used managed services options include Software-as-a-Service, Workspace-as-a-Service and Platform-as-a-Service.

ITaaS is a transformative operational model that allows businesses to consume IT as a managed service as they digitalise their operations, it can be deployed through a partnership of external and internal IT teams to deliver the right services, at the right time across businesses.

For many SMEs with finite resources, the path to reinvention is through managed services. It’s a much faster and effective journey towards digital transformation, as businesses are equipped with the right tools that will enable them to be more resilient and agile.

Benefits of IT-as-a-Service: an SME perspective

Scale as you go for ultimate flexibility and agility

SMEs embarking on a journey towards digital transformation may opt for ITaaS to complement their internal capacity and reduce costs, especially when it can be expensive to manage a large in-house team and to purchase IT hardware. However, when businesses outsource IT services, they can mitigate upfront expenses and have the option of flexible entitlement and billing periods to best manage their IT usage and cash flow needs.

For example, when you’re committing to a new business project, with ITaaS there is no need for major capital investment. Businesses can have clear cost projections which can save them from exorbitant expenditures.

Centralised portal with simplified overview

ITaaS facilitates the shift to a more business-centric IT organisation, allowing businesses to monitor IT workload through a centralised portal in which they can submit, track and view service requests, usage balance and invoices.

Top-tier support without high IT expenditure

Outsourcing IT services relieve businesses of the infrastructure complexity, from purchasing the hardware to quality checks and deploying an operating system, management tools and monitoring, along with simplifying processes and resources. That way, SMEs can focus their time and efforts on growing and innovating their business while improving customer experience and increasing employee engagement and retention rates.

ITaaS enables a simpler digital transformation for growing enterprises and helps them to speed their development and streamline operations.

For SMEs that have finite resources and can’t completely revamp their IT assets, they don’t have to completely abandon their older systems. Outsourcing IT provides the benefit of using core legacy business functions in parallel to accessing or deploying new IT functions, without abandoning their ways of managing IT that work best in the long run.

End-to-end service for total protection

Many businesses are increasingly integrating their IT infrastructure into the cloud, drawn by the promise of agility, scalability and efficiency. With the hybrid cloud being adopted extensively across various businesses, it can be very difficult to manage IT environments due to their complexity and the growing cyber threats.

But with ITaaS, businesses can better manage their IT environments by customising their hybrid cloud and IT functions, and benefit from a high level of cybersecurity monitoring for potential threats or security breaches to any business operations.

As technology is turning out to be a lot more integral to the functioning and success of businesses than ever before, the advancements may often seem overwhelming for smaller businesses or enterprises with limited resources.

In today’s rapidly transforming technology environment, businesses need IT experts to help them make sense of it all. For small businesses to fully reap the benefits of IT-as-a-Service, they need to make sure they’re working with the right provider that best fits their needs. That way, these SMEs can stay ahead of the growing business requirements by enhancing the agility and scalability of your IT infrastructure.

IT outsourcing model is becoming more widely adopted and is a game changer for businesses as it helps them simplify IT and provides a better experience at a low cost, while also providing them with the flexibility to choose the services with modular options. Partner with the right IT outsourcing industry experts that are equipped with the right resources, and cutting-edge delivery tools, all your IT needs are taken care of with an all-encompassing ecosystem covering software, manpower and workspace needs.