Many businesses do not have an in-house IT team or the budget required to hire one. However, having access to qualified IT professionals is critical for modern businesses in a highly technical world. Many companies turn to managed IT services to keep their IT processes and functions in good working order and to improve operations while cutting expenses.
A managed service provider (MSP) is a third-party organization that remotely supports and manages customers’ IT infrastructure. Businesses may delegate their IT operations to MSPs who specialize in handling complex IT responsibilities and can provide the business with ongoing technical support. Managed IT services are usually charged as a flat fee, making them a more cost-effective option than an in-house team.
Types Of Managed IT Services
Managed service providers offer comprehensive managed IT services and support to businesses of all sizes. Managed IT services generally include:
- IT Help Desk – Whether an important password is lost or a virus suddenly appears, it is essential to resolve these issues right away to prevent an extended disruption to service. IT help desk services allow businesses to contact IT professionals for prompt service and problem resolution.
- Remote Monitoring & Management – Hiring an IT professional to travel to a business location each time a problem occurs can be costly. With remote monitoring and management services, MSPs can solve IT problems remotely. MSPs can install and update software, detect network issues, install patches and perform other services remotely.
- IT Cloud Services – Cloud services may include cloud configuration, migration, server management, monitoring, support and network security. The cloud allows employees to quickly and easily access programs and data anytime and anywhere.
- Data Backup & Disaster Recovery – Natural disasters can strike at any time and often unexpectedly. A managed service provider will help ensure that the business can recover quickly from a disaster with as little loss as possible.
- Communications – Unified communications services make it easier for employees to remain in contact and receive information. These services help deliver secure messages, support voice and video communication and can promote transparency among users.
Benefits Of Managed IT Services
Partnering with a managed service provider can result in a wide range of benefits for growing businesses. One of the most noticeable benefits is cost reduction. With managed IT services, all expenses are packaged and businesses pay a set amount on a monthly or annual basis. Compare this to an in-house IT team that must be paid a salary and benefits.
Managed IT services can help keep downtime to a minimum. At any time, a computer can malfunction or a server can fail. When these types of events occur, it is critical to have a backup prepared and a recovery plan in place. Managed service providers can reduce the risk of downtime and help businesses get back up and running when a problem does occur.
MSPs take a preventive approach to information systems. Instead of waiting until a problem occurs to address it, they constantly monitor and manage systems to prevent issues from developing in the first place. When IT issues are identified early on, an MSP can resolve them remotely, saving businesses time and money.
Hiring a third party to deliver managed IT services also puts businesses in constant contact with a team of proven experts. Experienced managed service providers have a deep understanding of modern IT topics and can quickly answer any questions that a business or employees’ may have. MSPs may also provide specialized services that can help fill any knowledge gaps in a team’s expertise.
Implementing Managed IT Services
When moving to a managed services IT contract, there are several important things that a business should consider. First, conduct an IT analysis to determine the total cost of IT support currently being paid for by the business. When calculating IT costs, be sure to include money lost due to downtime and lost productivity. Compare this to the cost of hiring a third-party MSP and see how much can be saved by switching.
When looking for a managed service provider, be sure to choose a company with a proven track record of success and a solid reputation. The MSP should be familiar with the industry and be willing to perform an IT audit of current systems upon request. The right managed service provider will have the business’s best interests in mind and will continually work hard to improve IT efficiency and cut costs.
Speak With An Experienced MSP
IT has come a long way in recent decades, but not all businesses have the time, money or resources to keep up with ever-evolving technologies. Instead of relying on a costly in-house IT team to maintain business systems, consider switching to managed IT services. For more information about managed IT services or to speak with an experienced managed service provider, reach out to the experts at SeaGlass Technology.