How Managed IT Services Works
A managed IT services provider (MSP) is an IT company to which other businesses can outsource IT projects and services. MSPs operate as specialists within the IT world and are experts at managing, supporting, and improving IT systems. Most MSPs offer 24-hour critical system monitoring, minimizing any potential downtime that might happen. Managed IT Services provides many advantages including cost savings, process improvements, and more to businesses. In fact, according to a whitepaper published by IDC, managed IT services can reduce in-house IT costs by 36%.
That is good news as dependence on IT infrastructure has reached new heights. Even organizations with in-house IT departments are becoming overwhelmed due to the increase in IT needs and complexity. Many IT teams are forced to make sacrifices due to having minimal time to explore improvements and efficiencies. This delays the implementation of new systems and software that are needed, and makes it difficult to scale.
MSPs can allow businesses to scale IT support and offload tedious work. With the help of an MSP, businesses don’t have to only rely solely on growing their IT department to meet their IT needs. In fact, many MSPs are hired to completely manage all IT operations in companies without an IT department.
In this article we’ll discuss how the managed IT services model works and how businesses can benefit from it.
The Managed IT Service Model
Managed IT service providers operate similarly to an in-house IT department, but they can typically offer more specialized services without having to hire and expand the team. This makes MSPs an excellent resource for companies looking to scale and grow without having to hire additional IT support staff.
MSPs can be used as a complete solution for all a business’s IT needs. Essentially, they can be thought of as a fully remote IT department with all the skills and services needed to manage IT infrastructure. This includes cybersecurity, maintenance and monitoring, upgrades, and much more.
Companies can choose to outsource the entirety of their IT needs, or specific jobs and responsibilities to complement their existing IT team.
Managed IT services provide several unique advantages.
- Forecastable monthly costs – MSPs provide a fixed monthly payment structure that includes things such as maintenance and upkeep.
- Reduced downtime – Consistent maintenance and monitoring helps to prevent any unexpected downtime, ensuring systems remain online and available.
- Forward momentum – Outsourcing the management of IT systems can allow companies to focus on business aspects that encourage growth and forward movement.
- Cybersecurity and compliance – MSPs are experts in their field, so they’re apprised of potential threats and new governmental regulations. This ensures companies always have up-to-date protection and adhere to the latest guidelines, reducing the potential for liability.
How the Managed IT Services Model Works
The first step in working with a managed IT service provider is establishing the services they are to provide. There are several standard services that most MSPs provide.
Leading MSPs provide business cybersecurity services and best practices in order to protect and secure company networks. This includes providing a comprehensive plan outlining implemented security protocols. Additionally, an MSP should ensure security adheres to governmental and industry regulations around data storage, retention and protection. Cybersecurity services typically include perimeter firewall configuration, monitoring, and intrusion detection.
Another service MSPs offer is helpdesk support. This can be on-premises as well as remote and serves as a go-to resource for any IT issues a business might face. A helpdesk can provide immediate support to ensure IT services are running optimally and to minimize downtime.
However, businesses should be aware of the hours of support offered. Maintaining support during business hours should be the bare minimum required. Many leading providers offer 24/7 live answer for critical issues that may impact the business or a single user but not necessarily trigger NOC alerting. This 24/7 aspect is essential for our new way of working when remote staff often catch up in evenings or over weekends.
IT Infrastructure administration encompasses the maintenance and monitoring of servers, networks, and data storage. This service provides all the basics to ensure integral IT systems stay online and up to date. This can include anything from computer software updates to regular checkups on key servers and systems.
Disaster recovery is an integral part of ensuring a business survives a significant setback. Whether it be a natural disaster or a surprise ransomware attack, a disaster recovery plan can get a business back on its feet quickly. An MSP can provide a complete disaster recovery plan to minimize any potential downtime a disaster might cause.
The Outsource IT Difference
Not all managed IT service providers are the same, however. While many can offer similar services and solutions, there are several limitations that set their offerings apart. Like any IT department, an MSP can be limited to the expertise they employ. This is especially relevant when it comes to smaller MSPs that employ fewer people.
This can limit the type of services they provide, as well as their capability to scale with a business. Additionally, a smaller staff may mean they may not have adequate staff available 24/7 for critical situations.
Fortunately, Outsource IT doesn’t suffer from these types of limitations. Outsource IT is a well-established MSP that provides a robust selection of services and solutions. This includes an assigned account manager dedicated to specific clients, a detailed infrastructure audit, 24/7 monitoring and support capabilities, and much more.
Outsource IT works with companies ranging in size from large corporations to SMBs and startups, across Canada. With a wide range of IT experts on staff, the expertise Outsource IT can offer is unmatched. This makes Outsource IT the perfect solution for any company looking for managed IT services. Contact an Outsource IT account manager for more information about our managed IT services and support for businesses.