Tools of the Trade (TotT) Series – Bridge your team’s IT gap with Hybridge
By: Zach Detweiler, Ph. D.Top of Form
Date: February 11, 2021
Tags: Information technology, IT, cloud, support, outsource
When your laptop is down in today’s business world you may as well go to lunch. If your office internet is out, everyone’s productivity grinds to a halt. If your servers go down, you can permanently lose information and/or customers as a result. In 2021 small businesses cannot forego IT support.
Less dire, but equally valuable IT issues exist as well. New software apps and features are in constant development and their integration into existing business structures is the major IT related issue experienced today.1 This is followed by concerns relating to backup and recovery challenges, and security risks.
Those organizations that are ahead of the curve on information communication and technology (ICT) are positioned for better outcomes than those who are not employing modern business technology. Employing methods such as video conference services, smartphone apps, big data, cloud computing, and CRM systems, businesses expect to see revenue increase, maintain business health, and secure comfortable cash flow at rates of 10-15% greater than those who do not utilize these tools.2
Dealing with these issues and deploying and maintaining new software and cloud tools is the purview of information technology expertise. Although 6.9% of small business revenue goes towards IT,3 as much as 27% of businesses have no IT support whatsoever.4
Often times IT expertise is garnered from full-time employees, which provide a point source for dealing with issues within the organization. It also provides the expertise on staff necessary to address the specific needs of certain businesses. However, expecting a single person or even a team of a few employees to manage the entire modern IT/ICT landscape is a tall order. Fortunately, these broad expertise are now available in the form of managed service providers.
One such service provider that I have experience with is Hybridge. Hybridge provides IT support through the cloud, allowing remote services and troubleshooting. They were instrumental to establishing our internal software infrastructure, both consulting on software programs, and seamlessly integrating these for daily use. I personally enjoyed the ability to reach out to Hybridge with issues and find that they were addressed with minimal input and zero follow up necessary. Whether that problem was a calendar sync issue, setting up a VPN, or dealing with outdated hardware, the team always provided timely and expert solutions.
I particularly appreciated their aid in onboarding new employees. Integrating new employees to the team was effortless: Hybridge prompts you with the necessary items they need (computer details, contact information, etc.), establishes email and other business account information for the new employee, and sets up a workstation such that the new employee can hit the ground running on day one. All remotely.
At a cost of $100/month/employee, this equates to $24,000 per year for twenty employees. While not a trivial expenditure, it is well below the cost a full-time employee runs ($44k to $110k per year)!
If your business needs dedicated IT/ICT individuals to support your core business, I would not suggest waiving this requirement for a managed service provider. Conversely, even with staffed IT support, it does not seem cost efficient to go without complimentary services more efficiently provided by an organization such as Hybridge.
Perhaps the only drawback of an organization such as Hybridge is the remote aspect of their services for those organizations outside of the San Francisco Bay Area. I found this to be a minimal drawback, but if you are looking for a more personal touch, or the ability for your provider to come onsite with little activation energy, I would certainly recommend finding similar local providers where they may exist.
At the end of the day, the expertise and experience available from Hybridge was not only exceptional, but it was also comforting. It filled an important gap in our organizational expertise and allowed our team to focus on the core of the business.
(1) Casey, C. 7 Most Common Technology Problems for Small Businesses https://blog.accentonit.com/7-most-common-technology-problems-for-small-businesses (accessed Feb 10, 2021).
(2) Sun, M. H.-N., Kwadwo Frimpong, and Hao. Trends in the Information Technology Sector. Brookings, 2019.
(3) 6 Managed Services Stats Every Business Owner Should Know. Hill Country Tech Guys, 2017.
(4) 10 I.T Statistics on Small Businesses and Their Technology https://fusetg.com/10-i-t-statistics-small-business-technology/ (accessed Feb 11, 2021).