Managed IT services enable organizations to augment their team with third-party contractors. Generally, these contractors manage business functions to take some load off of the company’s in-house team.
IT service management often consumes time that in-house IT teams can spend better innovating and solving problems for their team. When a company outsources its managed services, this generally includes services like phones, IT maintenance (break/fix), data center management, and patch management.
Who Handles IT Service Management?
Managed service providers (MSPs) handle IT service management. MSPs manage technology remotely and provide service to the customer’s employees as an extension of the in-house IT team.
The demand for these services grows each year. Managed IT services are expected to grow by 11.7 percent from 2019 to 2025. A driving force behind this growth is the reliance on cloud-based technologies. This makes IT teams more agile and enables them to provide IT support from anywhere, including from a third party.
Another contributing factor for the growth in managed IT services is the ever-increasing rules and regulations around IT. Some industries are especially impacted by such laws, including banks, law firms, and health care organizations.
Benefits of Managed IT Services
As you evaluate whether managed IT services are right for your business or not, take a look at the benefits of these services.
Greater operational efficiency
Reduction in operating costs, including the cost of hardware
Free up time for the organization to focus on core competencies
Ability to use specialized technology without hiring an internal team to support those technologies
Reduced need for recruiting, hiring, and training in-house staff, which is an expensive task for IT teams
So what are some of the drawbacks that companies complain about when it comes to managed services?
Some companies find MSPs to be inflexible. Plans and programs are one-size-fits-all when really each company has unique needs. This standard plan and pricing formula often prices out some smaller organizations or organizations looking to outsource a specific area of IT service management.
Another complaint companies have with MSPs is that they aren’t focused on customer service. They provide limited communication channels and are low-touch in their IT management. Some assume the position of “if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it.”
Common Managed IT Services
There are three main services that organizations often hire MSPs to do for them. These services include the following.
- Incident management: when normal service goes down, you need a 24/7 team available to fix it. Because on-call and overtime hours can be challenging for organizations to staff – especially with the expertise necessary to fix these problems – they often look to outside resources to help. The first goal in incident management is to get the service back online. Once they’ve accomplished that, your MSP might be able to assist with investigating the cause of the problem based on whether or not you want that included as part of your contract. This second step can be useful in preventing future incidents.
- System administration: an MSP can oversee designated technology infrastructure. This means completing system updates and upgrades to keep everything running smoothly. System administration requires ongoing effort and time. Freeing up this time can allow in-house IT staff to focus on strategy and improvements instead of day-to-day management.
- Testing, scheduling, and rolling out patches: software updates are crucial, but they can also present challenges because some are incompatible with other services, rendering the software unusable. Before doing a software update, the IT team must test and schedule it first. This ensures that nothing goes wrong in the process.
Organizations looking to take their managed IT services to the next level sometimes add a few more services to their MSP contract. These include proactive services that prevent problems from happening.
- Additional monitoring: before an incident takes place, there can be minor signs that something isn’t quite right. If you have enhanced monitoring services, your MSP might be able to eliminate threats before they become an incident or outage for your organization.
- Service management: get deeper insights into your tickets and incident reporting with service management. This provides reporting and notifications to keep you up to date on your managed IT service.
AOP Managed Network Services
By managing your network, we can create a plan that meets your needs and allows you more time to focus on innovating and improving your IT services.
Request a free consultation with one of our specialists to learn more about our Managed Network Services.