What's the Difference Between IT Outsourcing and an IT Business Partnership?

Harry Truman quote about working as a team.

Did you ever watch Flipping Out, a house flipping and design series, led by Jeff Lewis? His designs were outstanding and his personality memorable for all the wrong reasons.

Fast forward to 2022. The new Jeff Lewis is back.

Jeff has discovered the fine art of empathy and listening. In a recent episode, he commented that every client has a different need for participation in the design process. He carefully considers that in each client conversation.

This is hardly a revelation to most of you, but for a high control person like Jeff it was a big turning point.

We All Need to Feel in Control of Our Technology Decisions

Whether we want to admit it or not, we all have our control hot buttons. As a business leader, you are ultimately accountable for results. It’s only human to feel like the way to keep the trains running on time is to have your hands firmly on the controls.

The problem with the we’ve-got-it thinking is that you limit your possibilities. You do what you know how to do because the outcomes are predictable. You don’t do what you don’t know how to do because uncertainty is uncomfortable.

Partnering Feels Like You're Giving Up Control

It’s hard for most of us to accept the fact that we don’t know everything. When we invite an outside partner in, we feel like the outcome, even when it’s a stunning success, isn’t as meaningful because someone else helped us get there.

No one achieves great things alone. Leadership is about bringing out the best in others. Business partnerships bring out the best in you.

There’s a Difference Between IT Outsourcing and an IT Partnership

Most business leaders are more than willing to hand off specialized services to a third party provider. Think about all of the day-to-day services another company provides for you. Internet access, website hosting, email, business tools, the list goes on. The service provider promises to deliver the service you ask for, you accept their offer, and you hope for the best.

This is outsourcing.

Outsourced providers are--

  • Task-focused

  • Hired based on lowest cost

  • Provide specific technical skills

  • Deliver day-to-day narrow scope of services

  • Unconcerned with your business strategy

  • Continue to deliver the same services regardless of changes in your business needs

  • Outsourced providers keep the same trains running on the same tracks at the same time.

  • In contrast, a partnership works with you to discover and lay new tracks for more trains running faster.

    Business partners are--

  • Strategy-focused

  • Hired based on long-term value, not short term cost

  • Equipped with broad technical and business expertise

  • Collaborative business leader peer

  • Invested in your mutual success

  • Scalable thinkers continually aligning services with your company's growth

  • Able to consolidate and manage all of the disconnected service providers

  • Wrapping It Up With Jeff Lewis

    Watching the creative design thinking at work always triggers fresh ideas. Like Jeff, we know that every client has their own need for involvement and control. That’s one of the things we enjoy the most about working with clients.

    We understand that making commitments about business technology can feel expensive, complicated, tedious, unnecessary, the list is long. But we also believe that not acting means missed opportunities. It doesn’t have to be this way.

    We took a step back and asked ourselves how our current and future clients feel about business technology action-taking. This led us to design 3 distinct business technology plans tailored to each company’s level of hands-on interest.

    Business Technology Services Designed the Way Your Company Needs Them

    DIY (Do It Yourself) IT Services

    : You're a hands-on business leader. You like doing the work yourself. We provide the tools and resources you need to make the most of your time and stay up-to-date on the latest business technology trends and changes.

    DWY (Done With You) IT Services

    : We'll work together as a collaborative partnership. Each of us will contribute what we do best.

    DFY (Done For You) IT Services

    : Your plate is full; your focus is on growing your business. We become your partner, your business technology seat at the table. We work closely together so you're never surprised, and your business priorities are our common strategic roadmap.

    You pick the services that make sense for you right now. As your company grows and changes, your services adapt along with you.

    It’s that simple.

    You’re still in control.

    5 Strategic Business Technology Services You Might Find Helpful

    When you’re ready, here are just 5 of the ways we work together:

  • Create your step-by-step infrastructure roadmap (How?)

  • Implement peace of mind cybersecurity protection (How?)

  • Evaluate new technologies before you buy (How?)

  • Discover new financial wins for both you and your customers. (How?)

  • Expand your technology team your way ~New ~ (How?)

  • Don't forget to add these actionable ideas to your OneNote or other favorite note taking app.

    Thanks for the Wednesday Visit

    You're in business to grow and deliver what your customers and clients want most from you.

    We're here to help you make that happen.

    We're a community of curious learners and business leaders. We talk information, knowledge, tools, and resources to help you and your business thrive.

    A business technology leader is a valuable addition to your team.

    This free eBook: Every Company Leader's Essential Guide to Business Meets Technolgy helps you get started.

    Grab Your Copy Now

    Building a business technology partnership means you can implement more of the big important things.

    This free Guide: How to Build the Business Technology Partnership You Really Want will help you get started.

    Grab Your Free Copy

    Tags: Technology Strategy

    . . .

    Linda Rolf 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.

    Linda believes that lasting value and trust are created through continuously listening, sharing knowledge freely, and delivering more than their clients even know they need. As the CIO of their first startup client said, "The value that Quest brings to Cotton States is far greater than the software they develop."

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