A managed services provider (MSP) takes on the responsibility for a company’s technology and infrastructure by proactively providing a defined set of IT services for a fixed monthly fee. This approach is preferred by businesses over the traditional Break/Fix services delivered on an hourly rate when needed. By emphasizing high availability and reliability, Managed Services align the MSP’s business model with a company’s business objectives. In contrast, the break/fix model addresses problems when they occur. According to research firm MarketsandMarkets, the global managed‐services market will grow to $193B by 2019, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 12.5%.

Information Technology as a Service

According to the fifth annual Trends in Managed Service published by CompTIA, “The central tenet to the MSP model is a provider-customer relationship based on a contract backed by a service level agreement.” This approach provides IT services similar to other utility models.  Many Managed Service Providers (MSPs) rely on remote monitoring and management technologies to deliver a range of core IT services in a scalable and proactive manner. This approach streamlines the process for proactively identifying and resolving issues with IT infrastructure.  

What to Expect from an MSP

CompTIA research indicates it is common for a managed service provider to include desktop and network management, applications management, and remote help desk in their service level agreements (SLA). Security (including firewall management), server management, storage, network monitoring, Business Continuity/DR, Backup as a service (Cloud Backup), Email, and Virtual desktop are often available as managed services.

Benefits of Managed Services

The managed service approach is favored by business for a variety of reasons. Managed services are typically priced at a fixed cost to the business. This predictability in IT service, versus unexpected costs related to break/fix, give business owners more control of the cost of operations. In many cases, MSPs are able to use remote monitoring and remediation to identify and resolve problems before they impact the business. Many problems can be solved without an onsite visit, dramatically reducing the resolution time. This combination of benefits provides business owners peace of mind.

Today’s businesses rely heavily on their IT infrastructure for communications, collaboration, access to critical applications, and data on premise and in the Cloud. Companies with compliance requirements have greater needs to secure their information with reliable IT infrastructure. Managed Services is a way to increase the availability and reliability of IT systems in a cost-effective manner. If you are considering Managed Services, contact your Technology advisor to see how you will benefit from proactive IT and Network Support.

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