IT Services & IT Support For Libraries In Chicago
Outsource IT Solutions Group (OSG) has been serving the Chicagoland area for some time now, and we’ve worked hard to build our reputation. One of the areas we specialize in is libraries. In spite of all the amazing technological advancements, people still love going to the library.
However, the problem for many libraries is that they simply don’t have the capacity to deploy and support high-tech solutions. They’re usually working with a single IT tech who keeps computers up and running, but that’s about all.
A Great Relationship
That has been the case for one local library in the Chicago area. OSG had been running their IT Operations for over a decade. They benefited from hassle-free IT with a dedicated Client Account Manager and a Technical Lead. This was a good relationship, and we enjoyed helping them provide great services for their patrons and members.
Has Your IT Guy Ever Just Quit On You?
A decade ago, after years of supporting this library on an ad-hoc basis, the Library Director called us saying that their IT guy just up and quit. Maybe the tech got a better job offer.
Their tech left them high and dry, and they asked us to take over. We gave them a bid for handling all their IT resources each month, and they seemed happy with the price. They also seemed pleased to have an entire team of skilled IT people to work on their network and computers.
We Provided An Entire Team For The Same Price As Their One IT Tech
When you hire OSG, you get the benefit of years of experience. We’ve been everywhere and have seen everything when it comes to technology. We’ve heard some crazy stories, and we’ve learned from those experiences.
This has made us better at our jobs. It’s one of those hidden benefits that I don’t think people consider when they think about hiring a managed IT services company.
We stay on top of any potential security threats, and we make sure the library computers all deliver the services necessary.
Below are just a few of services we provide each month:
- Better security to decrease stolen materials
- Faster check-out services for patrons
- A streamlined return process so people don’t have to wait long
Improved Security & Service
The solution we implemented was a real hit. We lead vendor selection, managed the project, and provided ongoing Tier 1 support. This helped to increase security and improve inventory audits.
We also installed self-checkout kiosks. Today, people like to check out their own groceries and such. Instead of waiting in line, they can now check out books on their own.
Of course, people don’t always know how the technology works, and they can be a bit rough on it, but with OSG maintaining the equipment, this isn’t a problem.
OSG has been involved in other projects for this library. When it came time for them to select new vendors in certain areas, they asked us to step in and help out.
This was a wise decision. Third-party vendors are one of the most common sources of data breaches today. It’s important to make sure that any company you work with has all the right security technology in place to avoid malware and ransomware attacks.
Imagine if a careless employee accidentally downloaded a ransomware virus, and all of the library’s computers and network were frozen until the ransom was paid. This is happening a lot more than people think.
Infrastructure Build Out
In addition, they wanted to talk to us about building out their IT infrastructure. Libraries today are struggling to stay in business. In order to be competitive, they need better, faster technology.
They also need meeting rooms where people can gather for a video conference. There are so many ways that libraries can stay relevant, even with today’s fast-evolving technological advances. We were happy to consult with them about these issues and provide recommendations.
Project Management During Deployment
As every business owner knows, there will be times when you have a big project to complete, and you need extra help. Libraries are no different.
As they were building out their IT infrastructure, they needed skilled IT people who could oversee the project and make sure things were performed correctly. This can save a lot of time and money whether you own a shoe store or a Fortune 500 company.
Projects can get sidetracked causing costs to skyrocket. But when you have experienced technology pros in charge, a project can get done on time and within budget.
The Future For Today’s Libraries
OSG hopes that all Chicagoland’s local libraries can stay in business regardless of the technology that comes down the pike. A library is a great place for people to hang out, have a cup of coffee and read a good book.
Social media is wonderful, and we love it! But meeting a group of friends at the library to discuss a favorite book is something you can’t replace with technology. We hope the libraries of the world thrive and never go the way of the dinosaur. In the meantime, the least we can do is help them keep their computers in fine working condition and their networks free of security threats.