Any major decision involves weighing costs and benefits, and changes to your I.T. systems are no
exception. You want to have all the information you need before making a change that could potentially impact your bottom line. However, there is one faulty decision-making process that can lead you down the wrong path: cognitive bias.A cognitive bias is a thought pattern that seems logical, but that fails to account for all information. Confirmation bias, the tendency to look for information that supports a foregone conclusion, is a familiar example. Another commonly held bias that has the potential to impact your I.T.-related decisions is ambiguity aversion.
What Is Ambiguity Aversion?
Ambiguity aversion refers to the tendency to avoid uncertainty in favor of what is already known.
Generally, people are more comfortable if they understand the outcome of a certain decision, even if it is not necessarily favorable. Avoiding the unknown is human nature, and this hardwired cognitive bias can be extremely difficult to overcome.
How Does It Affect Your Decisions?
This bias has the potential to keep you away from risks, as well as the rewards associated with them.
Behavioral Economics cites a well-known example called the Ellsberg Paradox. In this experiment, a group of people was given two bags containing a mixture of red and black balls and told that they would win a prize of $100 if a red ball were to be drawn. They were told that the first bag contained a 50-50 distribution, while the number of each in the second bag was unknown. When asked to decide between them, most people chose the first bag, even though the second could have had a greater number of red balls. Because of ambiguity aversion, the participants made what they assumed was a “safe” choice, even though the other option could have offered a greater chance of success.
Ambiguity aversion makes a lot of sense in a business context. It’s easy to justify avoiding risks in favor of what is known, but sometimes change is beneficial. This cognitive bias blinds people to the potential rewards of a new way of doing things by making them focus only on their fear of the unknown.
How a Managed Service Provider Can Eliminate Ambiguity for You
Uncertainty is an unavoidable part of doing business, but you can still eliminate common I.T. problems that are costing you money with little to no risk to your business. Here are several ways an MSP can remove “unknown unknowns” and allow you to move forward with confidence.
Predictable Monthly Costs
One of the greatest sources of uncertainty in the realm of I.T. is a sudden equipment failure. Repairing broken network devices and other hardware can cost thousands of dollars and result in many hours of lost productivity.
Contacting a technician every time you need to replace equipment or perform maintenance causes unpredictable, fluctuating costs. Conversely, letting an MSP handle your routine I.T. maintenance results in predictable, affordable expenses you can easily factor into your budget.
Network downtime has costs that reverberate across all aspects of a business, from lost online sales to countless hours of productivity down the drain. Many MSPs offer their clients a guaranteed uptime of over 99%, meaning you no longer have to roll the dice when it comes to keeping your vital processes up and running.
Eliminating the risk of your network going out removes a major headache for CIOs, especially if you live in a region where network outages are a regular occurrence.
When your business depends on a robust network connection, it’s vital to maintain awareness of how it is functioning. With 24-hour network monitoring services, a managed service provider can track network usage in order to optimize performance and efficiency, as well as identifying threats before they can damage your business.
Because small to medium-sized businesses are often vulnerable to cyberattacks due to limited I.T. resources, network monitoring is also a proactive measure that protects both your data and your customers.
Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery
One of the greatest threats to any company is falling victim to a data breach. Small Business Trends recently reported that 43% of hackers still target small businesses in 2019, meaning that you must put a plan of action in place that will keep you in business in the event of a data breach.
For many small businesses, a hack is a nightmare scenario, but it doesn’t have to spell the end of your company. An MSP can help you maintain core operations processes while also recovering lost data that has been backed up on secure cloud servers.
Secure Cloud Storage
If you are still using in-house servers to store valuable data, you’re only one power outage, natural disaster, or data breach away from catastrophic losses. So many variables can affect your company’s data, but with remote cloud hosting, you can rest assured that it will always be protected.
With help from an MSP, you can migrate your data to secure cloud storage for a monthly fee that is drastically lower than the cost of maintaining your own hardware.
Running a successful business means managing risk, even if you’d much rather avoid it entirely. If you are comfortable with your I.T. solutions, you might be hesitant to make changes—but those improvements could save you money or give you better protection in the long run.