Every business which relies on I.T. needs to have a plan for maintenance, security, trouble-shooting, disaster recovery and upgrades.
Simply put, there are three ways to take care of those crucial I.T. needs:
- In-house model: An in-house expert or team takes care of all aspects of I.T. They’re paid via salary.
- Break/Fix model: An outside vendor is called in when I.T. needs present themselves. The vendor bills for its services, usually at an hourly rate.
- Managed Services: An outside vendor takes full responsibility for all I.T. needs. The vendor is retained for a contracted monthly or annual fee.
Managed Services are increasingly the strategy of choice, for a number of simple reasons.
- I.T. is increasingly sophisticated, complicated and ever-changing. It’s challenging to stay abreast of state-of-the-art technology.
- Businesses are increasingly reliant on their I.T. infrastructure. Interruptions are more costly than ever.
- With the increasing prevalence of S.A.S. (software as a service) and cloud computing, businesses are accustomed to paying predictable monthly fees instead of operating under an ownership model.
Managed Services Are On the Rise
Let’s delve a little deeper into the reasons.
Managed Services offer a valuable economy of scale. Especially for small businesses with limited resources, it’s challenging to maintain adequate security. Crafting, maintaining and testing a disaster recovery plan alone can be a huge burden on a small I.T. division. By outsourcing responsibilities for maintenance, security, updates, problem solving and disaster recovery to a company which specializes in the art of I.T., a company can ensure that any problems will be dealt with by qualified experts. Keeping an in-house I.T. team trained on the latest technology can be prohibitive. Having an in-house team that’s bogged down in yesterday’s standards can be disastrous.
MSP’s (Managed Services Providers) are on the job around the clock. Unlike in in-house team which typically punches out for evenings and weekends, an MSP’s sole function is ensuring the security of multiple I.T. systems, so they monitor and respond 24-7.
MSPs provide a uniform and expert interface with outside vendors on your behalf. As experienced insiders staying up to date on the latest technology, they talk the same language as your vendors, and they know current best practices and risks.
Predicting and Preventing Data Disasters
MSP’s have the resources to respond to subtle indicators predicting system failure, and thus to prevent issues before they happen. In today’s fast-paced and high-tech climate, waiting for systems to fail before taking action is no longer a viable option – the cost is simply too high. Businesses, their clients and their vendors depend on automated systems and digital databases to do business. Outages which prevent production or exchange can cripple a company. According to Boston Computing Network, 60% of businesses that lose their data will shut down within six months of their data loss crisis.
MSPs Are Motivated to Keep Your System Humming
An MSP is 100% motivated to keep your system in top performing condition. A client suffering a data breach or outage will jeopardize its bottom line significantly. In contrast, a consultant working on the break/fix model has little incentive to ensure that your system works seamlessly.
Cyber Security Failures Expose Legal Liability
Maintaining cyber security is a legal responsibility that must be taken seriously. Data loss and security breaches can result in the bankruptcy or financial collapse of a business, and may even lead to criminal liability. Evaluate your options to learn whether you can afford to take full responsibility for your I.T. security and performance, or whether enlisting a dedicated team of experts will provide your business with greater cyber protection.