Have you thought about hiring an IT professional internally? For companies that reach a certain size, it is common to want to hire a full-time IT professional. You recognize that there are productivity gains that could be made with less downtime and that your security could improve. The problem is that hiring a full-time IT resource may not solve those problems.
Why? The three main challenges with hiring a full-time IT resource:
1) Meeting Business Goals
Business executives typically hire an IT professional to take IT issues off their plate. What is missing is that IT professionals are not trained or skilled in aligning IT priorities with business priorities. This can lead to them spending most of their time on projects that may be interesting or challenging, but do not help achieve business goals.
2) Assessing Applicant’s Skills
Different levels of IT experience can sound very similar on paper. It can be hard for an experienced IT professional to tell the difference when just talking about it. We use a formal system for testing skills to really tell the difference. If you do not have the experience to really test an IT professional’s skills, you risk hiring someone with inadequate skills, and that sets up a bad situation from the start.
3) Too Many Skills Needed
While business people think of “IT” as one area of expertise, there are a broad set of skills needed to be effective across all areas. Most IT professionals are strong in some areas and weak in others. When you hire a full-time IT professional, it makes sense to find someone who is great at end-user support. The downside is that they are unlikely to be strong on security or designing networks, which can lead to a lack of improvements or unnecessary downtime.
If you are considering hiring an in-house IT person, you may want to reconsider. Even if you are large enough to hire someone internally, it can still make sense to outsource your IT to a firm that can meet all of your IT needs.