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The A to Z Guide to Centralized IT Management

As a data-driven organization, your company stands to gain from better analytical insights, easier collaboration, and higher sales. But you need the right systems working together to make everything function seamlessly — which is where centralized IT management comes in.

When your IT organizational structure is centralized, everything from problem-solving to innovation gets a boost. According to research conducted by McKinsey, data leaders gain a 2 to 5 percent jump in sales thanks to data-driven decision-making, and cross-functional coordination between teams can lead to a 5 to 10 percent increase in sales.

In this article, we’ll unpack centralized IT management — what it is, what the benefits are, and how to make it happen.

What Is Centralized IT Management?

With centralized IT, all technology resources are consolidated and user information and data are stored on a central server.

Here are some of the advantages:

  • Because IT is centralized, it’s easier for your company to manage data security, monitor the network, and simplify or automate administrative tasks.
  • Having unified data also enables more sophisticated and richer data analytics.
  • It makes scaling easier — which can be a must-have trait for growing companies.
  • In terms of costs, centralization generally leads to cost savings because of all the opportunities for creating efficiencies and streamlining processes.

Decentralized IT, on the other hand, involves the use of separate systems for different departments. There are more roadblocks to data management, but having decentralized systems can improve agility, especially for larger companies that might have more specific departmental needs.

Is Centralized IT Better Than Decentralized IT?

Centralized data is the foundation of a data-driven company. So, if you want to reap the benefits of data-driven decision-making and rich analytical insights, a more centralized structure is the way to go.

But there is value in decentralization, especially if different departments have unique IT needs. Decentralized IT gives departments more agency over what resources they adopt and what changes they make to their IT.

To make sure you have the most practical IT structure for your organization, look at the benefits of centralized IT management and decide if centralized data is important for your company. You can always take a centralized-first approach to gain the benefits and consider decentralization for a department with specific IT needs.

3 Benefits of Centralized IT

Centralized IT offers benefits that can be advantageous for both small and large companies.

1. Lower IT Costs

When you purchase the same IT solutions for your entire company, you’ll save on hardware and software costs. For example, you have one communications solution, one project management tool, one scheduling app, and so on. As a result, you aren’t paying for separate applications for each department.

With remote teams, centralizing a lot of your technology makes even more sense — it’s the technology that keeps everyone on the same page.

2. Enhanced CX

Data-driven organizations outperform their competitors by as much as 20 percent. With centralized data, customer information isn’t siloed in your sales software, content management system, and other applications. It’s all integrated, so you can draw upon accurate, real-time, and deep insights into customer wants and needs to make smarter decisions.

This unified customer data also helps companies operate more efficiently. When you have data coming from everything from social media activity to contact center software, you know how to target customers and can make your marketing and sales more effective.

3. Streamlined Collaboration

When teams are connected through technology, your organization benefits from cross-department collaboration. Whether it’s someone from sales working with the marketing team to create a series of blog posts that answer customers’ recent pain points or technicians collaborating with customer-facing teams to problem-solve a service shortfall, with a centralized IT structure, employees from different departments can easily reach out to one another with questions, helpful information, or to work together on projects.

This smooth flow of internal interactions can save time, support better CX, and lead to more effective internal processes.

Why Centralized IT Management Drives Success in the Digital Era

According to McKinsey, top-performing companies take an integrative approach to data. Their managers and decision-makers understand the value of unified data and use analytics to inform business strategies.

Basically, centralized IT makes it possible to set benchmarks, measure performance, and identify where and how to improve processes so your company can stay on track to reaching its goals.

But your teams need to leverage this centralized IT to get results. Technology sets you up for success. It’s the mindset and processes that will get you to where you want to go.

Empower Your Teams with More Unified Data

No matter where your company is on the spectrum of decentralized and centralized IT, it’s worth checking in and deciding whether integrating your systems and using technology that unifies data and delivers better analytics could help your company save money, boost CX, and increase sales.

Intermedia Unite is a unified communications platform that houses everything your teams need to communicate and collaborate in one place. Even better for data-driven companies, it integrates with popular business applications and syncs perfectly with Intermedia Contact Center, making it easy to keep your data — and your people — connected. Learn how Unite can help your teams work more effectively and build stronger customer relationships. Get a quote today to get started.

About Kirsten Barta

Kirsten Barta is Program Manager of Digital Content and Strategy at Intermedia