Flat-rate, proactive service has made managed IT services the de facto model for accessing technology expertise.
In recent blog posts, we’ve explored when to outsource IT support and the different outsourced IT support models available. Throughout both those articles, we’ve mentioned the term “managed IT support” several times. We think it’s worthwhile to help our audience better understand that concept and explain why we’re so confident that outsourcing to a managed IT service provider (MSP) is the best option for most businesses.
What Exactly Are Managed IT Services?
The managed IT service model provides comprehensive and proactive management of a business’s technology. Unlike older IT support approaches (like the break-fix model that involves only disruptive onsite work), a managed IT services provider (MSP) can perform most of their work remotely from a specialized network operations center (NOC). The unobtrusive support of an MSP allows your staff to work uninterrupted by their maintenance.
Why is the managed IT model so different from other outsourced IT solutions?
Proactive maintenance to maximize IT reliability
By routinely maintaining your IT and network technology, issues can be addressed in an organized way before they become chronic IT pain points or lead to downtime. This proactive support allows for a more stable network infrastructure, a deeper sense of certainty, and more reliable operations.
Established MSPs will have a documented system for keeping your IT in optimal condition.
- Full system audit during on-boarding to identify underlying IT issues
- Network updating and patching to keep all systems and devices secure
- Vigilant 24/7 network health monitoring to detect problems early
- Regular cybersecurity scans to detect new security vulnerabilities
Market intelligence firm IDC has found that a small or midsized business can expect to spend between $82,000 or $256,000 recovering from serious network downtime.
Strategic IT planning and support
Most established MSPs will also include what’s known as virtual chief information officer (vCIO) support in their IT service packages. A vCIO is a senior IT engineer who will meet regularly with your executives to learn about your challenges and objectives, then help you better align your business and technology. The result is infrastructure that is reliable, efficient, and always serving your goals.
MSPs Provide Instant Access to a Team of Seasoned IT Experts
As opposed to hiring a consultant or a competent in-house IT support personnel, working with a managed IT service provider gives you ongoing, on-demand access to an entire team of seasoned experts, guaranteeing that you have the resources to deal with any technology issue.
Qualified MSPs are staffed with experts to help guide you through any technology challenge
- Ensure smooth cloud computing migrations and security
- Deploy secure work-from-home solutions to facilitate remote productivity
- Build and maintain disaster recovery solutions to safeguard your business from downtime
- Access compliance expertise to help regulated industries align technology systems with the latest requirements
CompTIA has found that 67% of small and midsized businesses feel technology is now central to success.
Achieve Streamlined, Predictable IT Support Budgeting
Another attractive aspect of the managed IT support model is that it offers a flat-rate pricing structure. There are several major benefits to having the same IT support bill every month no matter how much maintenance or work is needed.
Strong alignment between you and your vendors
When you call an hourly IT service firm to come fix technology, you face a fundamental contradiction: the provider you’re calling wants as much billable time as possible; they benefit the most when you’re in IT pain. How can you be confident that the outsourced support is going to fix the problem as quickly as possible?
The managed IT services model eliminates this tension by aligning your interests with the interests of the service provider. They have a direct financial interest in maintaining the uptime and availability of your technology, because it lowers their own workloads and increases their profitability.
Budget with greater confidence
Under a reactive IT support approach, you never know when your next support bill is going to come or what it will cost. That unpredictability is particularly frightening with regards to IT disaster, like catastrophic data loss or severe network downtime.
Working with an MSP gives you the same IT support bill every month — no matter how much IT support you need — enabling you to budget months in advance without fear of overruns or hidden charges.
The Benefits of a High-Quality IT Help Desk
Another prominent feature of the managed IT support model is the IT help desk. An outsourced IT help desk gives your staff access to a reliable team of skilled IT technicians who are available to help diagnose and resolve routine IT issues, no matter whether they’re working onsite, from home, or the road.
What makes an outsourced IT help desk better than an internal one?
Fast response times
Leading MSPs expend great effort to optimize their IT help desk processes, making sure that tickets are escalated to the right engineering staff and resolved according to the agreed-upon service level agreements (SLAs). By making continuous, qualitative improvements in service quality, they provide a help desk that’s fine-tuned to provide efficient service.
Greater cost efficiency
Running an in-house IT help desk requires not only hiring and training staff, but also arming them with the software tools they need to track and remediate issues, each of which adds significant cost to your IT budget.
Reliable support that’s available 24/7/365
An outsourced IT help desk from a reputable MSP provides around-the-clock technology assistance to your staff, so IT issues are dealt with swiftly no matter when they occur, and your staff always feels supported.
Complete Network – 20 Years of Award-Winning Managed IT Services
Complete Network has been providing businesses in Albany, New York and Charlotte, North Carolina with high-value, high-touch managed IT services solutions for over twenty years. If you’re a business in either city that wants to discover new levels of IT confidence and reliability, we encourage you to reach out and learn more about how our solutions can help.
Our friendly, knowledgeable team would love to answer your question! Call us any time at 877-877-1840.