Just more than half (55%) of organizations outsourced at least some of their desktop support work in 2021, according to a report from Avasant. That is a significant jump from the 19% reported in 2020. However, it should be noted that our most recent sample has a larger percentage of large companies, which tend to practice outsourcing at higher levels than their small counterparts. This explains some of the jump, but certainly not all of it.
One influential factor in the analysis of this recent spike is the COVID-19 pandemic. Amidst global quarantine protocols, many organizations were forced to adopt remote and hybrid work models. With these new types of worker models, employee work devices were no longer centralized at one location but spread across their homes and shared spaces, increasing the complexities associated with desktop support outsourcing. Organizations faced the challenge of users receiving the same level of in-office support while working remotely.
Working against outsourcing is the fact that keeping desktop support in-house encourages contact between the business and the IT organization. Handing over that function denies a significant opportunity where IT can get closer to business users and better understand their needs and processes.
Despite this and other reasons, the solid cost ratings make it worth looking into this practice. “Organizations enjoy the cost savings that come with outsourcing desktop support,” said Reneece Sterling, a research analyst for Computer Economics, a service of Avasant Research based in Los Angeles. “Whatever issues they may find with service levels, ultimately those cost savings are hard to pass up.”