Everyone is familiar with the saying, “Time is money.” That phrase isn’t lost when it comes to running your business. I’m sure you’re all too aware that as time ticks away, money can be slipping out the door. Guess what? The technology services you select for your business can actually help you out in ways you might not have considered: by saving you time and money. Today, I want to talk to you about a new service from CenturyLink Business: Managed Office.
In a nutshell, Managed Office is an all-in-one data, voice and business applications solution, and provides the entire IT communication infrastructure most businesses need. In laymen’s terms, what that actually means is that one vendor manages your Internet, network, phone system, and business software programs. What you’re probably saying now is, “Yes, okay, Chris, I don’t really care about that—all I care about is why this is such a huge deal.” Let me tell you why.
Let’s talk about cost first. This pricing structure that CenturyLink offers is unique: your cost for Managed Office, if purchased with an Internet plan, will remain at one flat rate per month, per seat. With a product like this, you know what you’re getting and how much it’s going to cost every month. This can help bring a sense of stability to your business and help you budget accordingly. What this also means is you already know the cost implications of adding, or, if necessary, removing employees.
Your next thought is probably, “OK, sure, I can now budget for these employees, but I don’t have the time to set this all up.” And you’re right; this sounds like a lot of work, but it’s not—CenturyLink has you covered there. They come in and provide all the required equipment and install everything for you. They train your employees on all the advanced features so you get the most out of the service. And since they manage every aspect of the service, including the equipment and software, you don’t have to worry about maintenance or upgrading your technology ever again.
This one-vendor approach is what’s going to be your biggest advantage in terms of saving money and time. First and foremost, you’re not spending your time going through invoices from different vendors and paying for your servers, phones, software and Internet separately. It’s all in one place at one time. The added convenience is that you don’t actually own any of this, so you don’t have to worry about managing equipment. Managed Office takes all the minutia of technology and handles it for you. In terms of cost, you don’t need to purchase any expensive equipment—it’s all included, even new IP phone sets.
This also helps when you’re having a problem. You do not have to go and call five different vendors. You only have one number to call. You get to spend less time on the phone, less time worrying about the problem, and more time focusing on running your business. The dedicated 24/7 support makes CenturyLink Managed Office a true “White Glove service.”
Another big time drain is having to manually install software updates and security patches for your entire staff. If you have an IT consultant, manager or director, they can tell you a big part of their day is spent making sure everyone in your company is up to date so they can all work off of the same applications. Imagine if you could take away that burden. Managed Office proactively takes care of all updates as soon as they happen and pushes them out to all your computers proactively. Not only do you get the benefit of someone managing this activity for you, but you can now rest assured that your programs are up to date with the latest features—all without paying for new software licenses.
Speaking of software applications, CenturyLink offers a variety of business applications that you can take advantage of. Want Microsoft programs for all your employees? Managed Office comes with Office 365. Instead of individually buying a program license for each of your employees, Office 365 is included as a cloud-based service, so your staff can access information from virtually anywhere—from their laptops, phones or tablets.
If you’re looking for business tools like SharePoint collaboration and Hosted Exchange Email, or for enhanced PC and email security features and online data backup, look no further—it’s all included in your Managed Office service as well. It even includes 1TB of secure data storage on the Microsoft OneDrive cloud. That’s more data than most computer hard drives hold, allowing you to access everything, from any Internet connected device, including your tablet and phone. You’re essentially customizing your technology service to address your specific business needs.
You might be concerned that your business doesn’t have an IT staff, and while Managed Office doesn’t take the place of one, it does offer your small business a solution that is fully managed by CenturyLink. This is the same technology that is used by large companies—CenturyLink has adapted it for the needs of small and medium businesses like yours.
I mean, just think about it. The service includes design, all equipment, installation, updates and training, and manages everything necessary for your business’s IT communication infrastructure.
I hope you’ve seen the benefit of Managed Office and that I’ve at least piqued your curiosity. CenturyLink has a more in-depth explanation of their solution at www.centurylink.com/managedoffice.
Commissioned News Story (Source: CenturyLink)