We know that building the right partnerships is the way to deliver the best products and services to our clients. That’s hardly a surprise since we talk about it a lot in our weekly emails.
But we’re no different than you are when it comes to making these important technology decisions.
Will we see a return on our investment?
Are we sure we can’t just do it ourselves?
What if we hire another employee?
Regular technology reviews
are non-negotiable activities for us too. No matter how you frame it, investing in a technology product or service is an expense. It shrinks your gross profit.
A quick look at your company’s income statement will confirm this for you. Where do you find your monthly subscriptions, hardware, and IT services – under expenses, not income.
The good news is your technology investments – when put to work effectively – produce income. Your expense dollars are offset by revenue dollars. Simple math every accountant loves but not always easy to uncover.
A Real Example: We Turn Our Expenses Into Income
When you’re in the professional services space, technology investments often translate to time savings. But it can be difficult to put a real number on your time. It’s a challenge that we have so I thought sharing a real example might kickstart your possibility thinking too.
The IT Partnership Services
One of the services we deliver to our clients is their Essential Security Bundle.
This collection of tools includes such things as---
1) remote support for our clients,
2) advanced endpoint security (a fancy term for not your old-school anti-virus),
3) proactive cyberattack and security breach monitoring, and
4) pre-tested patch management.
The list goes on.
If it sounds like a lot of tech speak, it is. And yet, these are services that every responsible company, regardless of size, includes in their technology framework.
We use these tools on our own devices and network every day so we know our $500 monthly investment is a no-brainer. (Those of you who know me well know I don't part with our money easily.)
Our IT Partnership Team
While we actively manage the installation and day-to-day monitoring of these tools in-house, we don’t do it all ourselves. We have an active team of ~ 2,500 skilled IT professionals working right beside us.
What Our IT Team Does
The short summary: these folks are skilled in all aspects of IT from essential networking support to advanced cybersecurity expertise.
They are proactively monitoring and acting 24/7/365 to ensure our clients’ highest level of protection. They respond to potential problems and risk exposure before we and our clients are even aware they have happened.
Could any typical, small in-house IT team deliver that same depth and breadth of expertise? Absolutely not.
How We Use Our $500 Monthly Expense to Create Income
We've made a commitment to continuously listen, learn, and share the business technology information that influences our clients long-term success.
If we were spending our time every day diving through server logs, monitoring network traffic in real time, and responding to actual attacks, that's all we would be doing.
By delegating these tactical tasks to our skilled experts, we have recovered ~7 hours per person per day to invest in the strategic activities that increase our income.
Every day is different and the hours vary, but each day includes dedicated time for some of these activities --
delivering client projects: 7 hours
connecting with and responding to clients: 3 hours
connecting with future clients: 3 hours
product and service research: 2 hours
hands-on technology evaluation: 2 hours
uncovering client and internal opportunities: 2 hours
developing new tools: 4 hours
creating ebooks, templates, workbooks, checklists: 3 hours
creating infographics: 2 hours
creating weekly emails: 4 hours
creating LinkedIn posts: 2 hours
creating and updating website content: 2 hours
reading: 2 hours
learning: 2 hour
The Numbers Speak for Themselves
It would be impossible for us to build an internal team with the depth our partnership investment delivers. Putting aside the unlikely availability of these people, our salary costs alone to hire just 1% of the 2500 member team would be at least $167,000 per month.
The return on our $500 monthly investment: the right team of ~2,500 to support our clients, access to skilled experts we could not hire, and dedicated income-generating hours for every person every day.
Wrapping It Up: Your Free Technology Income Calculator
Grab your copy of the Technology Income Calculator
Worksheet #1: IT Responsibilities
We’ve included the essential IT responsibilities that your company needs to support your technology foundation.
For each activity, we’ve included the quick words for who does it.
You fill in the partner or internal columns.
Calculate your actual costs.
Worksheet #2: Employee vs. Outsourced Costs
Compare the costs of do it yourself hiring with partnering.
The How Many People column is a number we often don't think about. As you saw in our example above, partnerships deliver teams (sometimes large ones) for a single dollar amount.
is a lifelong curious learner who believes a knowledge-first approach builds valuable client relationships.
She is fueled by discovering the unexpected connections among technology, data, information, people and process. For more than four decades, Linda and Quest Technology Group have been their clients' trusted advisor and strategic partner.