We talked in an earlier blog about how not benefiting from economies of scale can hurt a small school’s abilities to take full advantage of technology. In addition to the cloud, another resource to get around these problems is the the outsourcing of certain tasks, including strategic technology planning to optimize the use of new technology.
As background, the term economies of scale refers to the increase in costs advantages as the size of a firm’s production increases. For example, your institution relies on a technology infrastructure that functions 24/7 and you have $200,000 of annual funds. Ideally, you would like to have someone in-house monitoring that infrastructure, ready to identify and resolve problems as soon as they develop. However, the fixed costs created by at least 3 full time employees would exceed your annual revenues. Once you grow to say, $1,000,000 annual funds, these fixed costs will represent a much smaller fraction for each unit of production and become financially tolerable. The issue is, what’s a small school to do?
The answer is to find a way to share those monitoring resources with others so you create economies of scale right now. Outsourcing your monitoring would be the solution. Many managed service providers offer 24/7 monitoring services so you can benefit from the efficiencies created by their staff being able to monitor dozens of clients simultaneously. Talk to a managed service provider offering monitoring services.