Remember your initial, idealistic view of your future career in IT? With knowledge, you had power. You could conquer the business world with your ability to understand complex computing algorithms, artificial intelligence, and virtualization. You could sit in your quiet corner sipping coffee, listening to the rhythmic hum of servers running perfectly, smiling to yourself because you know that your work gives power to everyone else in your organization.
These were merely dreams though, because the reality of your job turned those dreams into nightmares of networking connectivity issues, disaster-caused data loss, downtime, server maintenance, and worst of all, user errors… all while malware and ransomware loom at every corner.
As you progressed through your career in IT, your job has become less about strategic implementation and more about fixing things that break while barely keeping your head above water! You wonder if your dreams of IT bliss will ever become a reality…
Enter Managed Services.
That’s right. Managed Services. The right kind of Managed Services is actually a strategic business partnership that can help take care of the day-to-day maintenance so you or your IT staff can focus on mission-critical IT projects to help your business grow.
Don’t believe me? Let’s take a look at some key ways Managed Services can grow your business, but first, a definition.
So what exactly is Managed Services?
Managed Services is “the practice of partnering with an outside organization on day-to-day IT management responsibilities and functions as a strategic method for improving operations and cutting expenses.”
The key words here are partnering and strategic. When it comes to outsourcing your IT maintenance to a third-party, trust is fundamental to a successful partnership. Equally important is the strategic approach to help your organization achieve its mission. Types of key services you will outsource to an MSP (Managed Service Provider) include network assessments, infrastructure, asset management, patch management, cloud management, security and compliance, backup and disaster recovery, website hosting, and helpdesk support.
How is this different from a break-fix mentality?
Well first of all, you probably wouldn’t want to pay monthly for just a break-fix service. What if months go by without anything breaking? That could be a risky investment. The key difference is that MSPs are not reactive, but proactive. They don’t wait for things to break, but prevent them from breaking. Their job is to keep everything up and running so you can actually experience the ever-elusive peace of mind.
It’s not just a service that fixes things when they break, but a service that proactively mitigates your environment from experiencing significant downtime or catastrophic loss and puts in place a plan of action should that occur.
Is Managed Services worth the investment?
To answer this question, let’s look at some numbers:
- Downtime costs your company an average of $12,500/hour.
- A malware infection costs you an average of $38,000.
- 82% of companies that partner with an MSP say it saves them money. (Continuum)
- For many companies, IT budgets have been reduced by more than 25% as a result of adopting Managed Services. (Channelinsider)
- 9 out of 10 small to medium-sized companies are outsourcing some of all of their technology requirements.
Obviously there are huge costs associated with downtime. We all can (and do) hope downtime and cyber attacks will never happen, but if (and when) they do, it will be costly. MSPs can help mitigate the risk of those disasters, as well as speed up your recovery time when they do occur so you don’t lose as much money. Let’s take a closer look at the benefits of partnering with an MSP.
Major benefits of Managed Services:
- Cost control
You may have noticed a trend in CFOs shifting their IT investments from capital expenditure (CAPEX) towards operational expenditure (OPEX), like Managed Services, because it’s overall more predictable and manageable.
- Security and compliance
What are your company policies? How are you implementing them? Do you encrypt your data? How old is your firewall? Are you compliant? A good MSP will begin with a network and security assessment to address any underlying issues before they become huge problems.
An automated ticket escalation process based on level of urgency can make your workflow easier.
- Enterprise-level support
Partnering with an MSP gives you access to the highest level of certifications for top IT brands like Cisco, VMware, Microsoft, etc. It takes A LOT of time and money to have this level of expertise. It makes sense to rely on a team of experts who already have the training and certifications needed to get the job done right.
- 24×7 support
9-5 work hours are becoming a thing of the past. With more and more organizations moving towards flexible work hours, how will you support your staff during all hours of the day? 24×7 support means you can avoid network monitoring gaps.
- Decreased down time
How quickly do you need to be up and running if a natural disaster hits your office? Probably as soon as possible, right? How do you restore your backup? Have you done a restore test to know how long it will take and that it works properly? These are all things an MSP will be able to do to help you prepare for a disaster. Trusting an MSP team to monitor your network and activity and look for potential issues will inherently reduce your risk of downtime.
- Focus on core business
How do you know your people are giving their time to business mission critical projects? One of our IT service engineers often says, “Put people in places where only they can do what they can do.” Your IT manager will know your environment better than anyone. So use them to focus on big projects and outsource the day-to-day maintenance to your MSP.
Your executive team wants to know how your money has been spent and your return on investment. MSPs can provide you with insight and reporting on your environment, as well as recommendations for new tools, upgrades, security measures, and needed upgrades.
The great thing about Managed Services is that there are many options for support that can be structured to fit your needs. Whether you just need an extra set of eyes to assess and monitor your environment, or you want all hands on deck to remediate issues, building a Managed Services partnership just makes sense.
Ready to live the dream?
Find out which managed services are the right fit for your organization and how a strategic partnership with CCB can give you the freedom to focus on what’s most important. Find IT bliss