Managed IT Services, Managed Service Provider, Cloud Service Provider, MITS, MSP, CSP – these are terms you’ve likely heard tossed around trade shows or dropped at networking events. It seems every business worth their salt has an MSP provider, wishes their MSP was better or is actively looking for an MSP provider but what exactly does it mean to be a Managed Services Provider and why does your business need these services?
e Managed IT Services?
Webster might define an MSP as “(Managed Service Provider) An organization that monitors and manages a customer’s computer systems and networks such as internet network routing equipment and infrastructure and the computers and devices hooked to that network. MSPs offer a variety of service levels from just monitoring and notifying the customer if a problem occurs to making all necessary repairs itself and handling every aspect of a customer’s IT infrastructure. MSPs may also be a source for hardware and training for its customers. These services offer a strategic method of improving operations that is commonplace among large corporations as well as small and medium-size businesses, non-profit organizations and governments”
But what does this all mean for you? Let’s try to break this down a bit shall we.
“Monitors and manages a customers computer systems and networks…” – Monitoring the many systems your company uses can be a full time job. This may include modems, routers, switches, firewalls, servers, desktops, laptops, tablets, printers and a whole plethora of other things your employees rely on to do their job. You may have a handle on a few of these items but it takes serious skills to manage all these complicated pieces of networking equipment and keep them all running at their best. Do you know how to fix everything when it breaks or what to look for to prevent issues? What if you’re out sick or away from the office on vacation? This is the primary role an MSP provides to you and your organization. MSP’s monitor, manage and maintain your IT infrastructure proactively looking for issues and resolving them before they become a problem.
“MSPs offer a variety of service levels…” – An SLA or Service Level Agreement is an agreement between your company and your Managed IT Services provider determining what level of service your company will receive. This can be a basic level agreement where only monitoring and notification is provided or an all-emcompasing agreement where the entirety of your organization’s equipment is managed by your MSP. Your SLA should not control you, you have the power to control your SLA based on what your needs and budget dictate, not the other way around.
“These services offer a strategic method of improving operations…” – Strategy is about making choices, trade-offs; it’s about deliberately choosing to do something different to meet a specific goal or have
Why does my company need Managed IT Services?
To improve the
Enhanced security and compliance – There are so many variations of technology that store and transmit data nowadays, including tablets, desktops, servers, smartphones, laptops and more. Because data is stored and transmitted on these devices it means the security of these devices is absolutely critical. Many business owners live in fear that they will fall victim to a security breach. As a managed service provider, it is our job to make you well aware of the risks to your business and work together to find solutions that bring you into compliance, especially if your business works in industries such as health care, legal or other areas where security and compliance are a major concern.
A proactive approach to maintenance – This is a major and important benefit to managed IT services. Your time is precious and you don’t have the time to spend thinking about your IT infrastructure, worrying about things such as the dependability and speed of your network connections or if that backup job finished successfully. Security solutions and monitoring services such as RMM (Remote Machine Monitoring) are always working behind the scene to detect potential issues, neutralize threats and patch against vulnerabilities so issues can be troubleshot and remediated before they are ever a concern to you and your business.
Cost effectiveness and a good return on investment – The cost savings associated with managed IT services is suprisingly very considerable, making it another reason that partnering with an MSP has become so desirable for businesses of all sizes. This fact has an incredible amount of business value, but many business owners are unaware of just how significant this cost savings can be. An average IT budget consists of many items, including:
- hardware costs
- software and network infrastructure expenditures
- maintenance costs
- IT labor
- software costs
- the inevitable costs of downtime to your business
We are here to help you understand how utilizing managed services can actually save you money in the long run. Using outdated software and hardware can have a detrimental effect on your ROI be it from downtime due to hardware failure, or the costs associated with cleanup when your outdated and unpatched software has been compromised and your data held ransom. In addition to avoiding these potential pitfalls, using an MSP provides your business the flexibility and scalability you need to grow or scale back in a way not possible with internal IT teams. Our managed service model allows you to easily predict your IT expenses on a monthly basis making you better able to plan your IT budget for larger projects and improvements.
Have greater access to new technologies – Technology advancements today feel like they’re accelerating – because they actually are! “Technology goes beyond mere tool making; it is the process of creating ever more powerful technology using the tools from the previous round of innovation.” – Ray Kurzweil
Consider this: a decade ago, smartphones (as we know them by today’s standards) and WiFi didn’t exist. Two decades ago, the few who had a personal computer had no access to the internet. Three decades earlier, few people even owned a personal computer. Think about that – the first personal computers arrived about 40 years ago. Today, it seems nearly everyone is gazing at a glowing, handheld, always on, always connected personal pocket computer but who has time to keep up with the rapid pace of advancement or has the know-how to adopt these innovations into their business strategy. This is a key area where having a partnership with an MSP can actually benefit your company. As technology and its use in business is the force that drives our business, we keep a keen eye on new technological advancements and often know of them long before the average user. We’re constantly looking for ways to help our clients adopt emerging technological breakthroughs to speed your processes or improve your workflow, it is literally part of our job!
Now that you know what an MSP is and why you should be partnering with an MSP provider, contact us today to find out how we can help your business now and into the future – send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.