What is a managed service provider and will it benefit your business
IT is the cornerstone for any business these days. It can be difficult for startups or small businesses to have the most effective IT team so many choose to outsource. When outsourcing, business owners know that their IT is in the best hands and they can shift their focus to what is most important in their business. This is where a managed service provider becomes an essential tool in business. There are many businesses that offer IT services in London so you will find one that suits your needs. Let’s take a look at what exactly managed service providers are and how they can improve your business.
Understanding what a managed service provider is
Managed service providers are IT companies that will manage your IT systems remotely. They provide support to manage IT problems, manage your network and solve any technical issues you may have. Many of them offer packages on a monthly basis with services that suit your business and budget. There are service providers available for specific industries like healthcare, finances and marketing. Managed service providers offer a range of services including, cloud computing, data storage and management, security, software-as-a-service. And many more.
How does it work?
A managed service provider will have a contract that details exactly what services they are providing your business. This is especially useful for small business owners to know exactly what they are paying for and can be tailored to their budget. These contacts generally contain the period that the services are being provided, what it consists of and the total cost. Many managed service providers will allow you to choose the services you need, which could include security, data backup or even just remote IT assistance. If you are new to the IT world, there are many MSP’s that offer set service packages.
Why do businesses hire MSP’s?
Relieve your staff – A small IT budget can mean that the IT needs are spread among the staff. This includes the responsibility of managing network disruptions, implementing and learning how to use new software and adapt to any technological changes on their own. This is an extra responsibility that comes with not having a dedicated IT team or service.
Save on IT expenses – IT can be one of the most expensive departments in any business. It requires highly trained staff and expensive equipment and software. The difficult part for many businesses is that it is an essential expense. These days it is essential to have the latest software because it can be a major security risk for the business. Old hardware can slow down productivity and can leave businesses falling behind if any technical issues arise. Purchasing and maintaining hardware is a very expensive cost to business. This makes hiring an MSP at a fixed rate to manage all aspects of your IT a much more affordable option.
Types of managed service providers
There are different types of service providers available, which will depend on your needs and the size of your business. Here are the types of managed service providers that are available.
Pure-play MSP – The pure play MSPs mainly offer services for network monitoring and technical performance. This is especially beneficial for businesses that are looking to understand and improve their company IT since their services mainly focus on reporting.
Staffing legacy – Staffing legacy MSPs mainly target medium to large businesses. These MSPs offer a wider range of services and are more commonly used. Here they offer services such as software installation and monitoring, reporting and service management.
High-level – High-level MSPs service businesses from small to large. These MSPs are generally full service and take on the role of an in-house IT department. This allows businesses to leave their services entirely up to the MSP.
What are the pros and cons?
1. Experts on hand
An IT department may only be well versed in a few areas. A managed service provider will have a large team with expertise in a wide range of areas. This means that no matter what technical issue you face, they will be able to resolve it.
Many MSP’s will provide you with all the tech you need for your business. This ranges from servers, to workstations. This means that you will only pay the MSP for their services and will not have to pay the expensive cost of the hardware.
- Remote only
This is one of the main con’s to hiring an MSP. These MSP’s only offer remote support or in some cases will come in to do hardware maintenance. This means if there is an urgent technical issue that comes up, it will take some time to get assistance. It may even require you to assist with resolving the issues.
Many MSP’s will have a set list of services and applications that they offer support for. This includes applications like Microsoft or Google. If you choose to make use of different applications, it may come with some issues for the MSP.