Cost cutting is nothing new to the industry. It’s been the basic underlying principle of every industry. ‘Maximum profit at the lowest operational costs’. However, today, cost cutting is more prominent than ever. With many banks tumbling and taking other industries with them, most companies are reacting in a knee-jerk manner. While this is sometimes quite necessary as companies have no other go, this isn’t the only option. There are many cases of industries like Car Manufacturing, where the plant now runs 4 days a week and not all 7 days. Wages go down, but at least the worker at a factory level is assured that he is taken care off until things start to get better. This is just one example of the many ways to cut costs without cutting jobs.
One of the easier ways for companies that have IT infrastructure, but not as a core business, is to outsource and invest in RIMS – Remote Infrastructure Management. The first question is, ‘What is IT infrastructure?’. Answer – Anything that uses a computer is your IT infrastructure. To the lay man, your computer is not a stand alone device. You have servers, routers, communication lines and other paraphernalia that come together to ensure that you can use your computer effectively. And since most of the leading businesses make use of this one way or another, maintaining and ensuring that all this is running becomes important. Think of it like any other infrastructure. If you don’t hire a person to come clean up your office after hours, you’d probably end up working in a terribly unclean environment. But you know that someone is there to clean up the mess you make, hence you worry only about getting those profit margins up and nothing else. Similarly, all your IT infrastructure needs someone to take care of it, while you work and don’t have to worry about taking care of it yourself.
Let me introduce Jeff. Jeff owns a travel agency that specializes in holidays to India, with 4 main offices spread over the world. One in Chicago, one in Washington DC, one in Los Angeles and the last one in Mumbai. Jeff obviously knows he needs to get all his computers in the various offices talking to one another. He knows that he needs all the computers up and running at all times, all mails go through, all the transactions made are recorded in his server and that all his Voip phone lines are working fine. But does Jeff invest in hiring people at every location to take care of this? The odds that he would find someone who was proficient in all technologies is not in his favor. He would instead have to look at building a team that took care of everything for him. Jeff needs to invest in physical infrastructure like tables, chairs, electricity, air-conditioning and extra coffee for these teams. But Jeff does not have that kind of money.
Times are bad financially, but Jeff still needs to make sure that his computers are working fine if he expects to maintain a profit. What does Jeff do?
Simple! Jeff invests in Remote infrastructure Management. He allows a team of professionals, an external vendor, who specialize in maintaining and ensuring operations continue without and stoppages, to look after his network. Ever since the advent of high speed internet connections, the team can monitor and repair the network from anywhere in the globe. This team will have their own office and this saves Jeff the need of creating space. Jeff invests in one team that work out of their premises. This way, he saves costs on office infrastructure and individual salaries for his team. He does not have to bother about constantly upgrading their skills or investing by investing in training. He has fewer people to worry about and can get his core group of Travel agents working at their best. All the issues of training, HR, upgrades, office space are being taken care of by the vendor Jeff hires. And this happens at a fraction of the cost. And for a small business like Jeff’s, this is the best solution in times of a recession. He ensures that his network is safe and is being taken care off, for a nominal fee and can focus on developing business.