Yes, your SME business can perform better with managed IT services
As a rushed-off-your-feet business person with a lot on your mind, you may not fully realise the benefits of having a managed service provider taking care of your IT needs.
By placing at least some of a company’s IT in the care of external specialists, businesses can free up crucial staff for other roles, and be secure in the knowledge that their IT infrastructure enjoys maximum uptime and timeous maintenance.
A managed service provider (MSP) manages a customer’s IT infrastructure and end-user systems off-premises, using sophisticated remote monitoring and management (RMM) software to keep a client’s IT functions running as expected.
How is my infrastructure taken care of?
When you have an MSP watching your back (and your back-end), you should start seeing cost-savings almost immediately; to keep labour costs in check and ensure efficiency, remote management allows MSPs to troubleshoot and fix issues with servers and endpoint devices without ever having to visit the client’s premises.
The immediate cost saving for the client is obvious; call-out fees for on-site break/fix or ad-hoc assistance are eliminated. What will soon become apparent, are the spin-off benefits for your business, and ultimately for your own clients.
Benefits of MSP
- You benefit from improved service, with a guaranteed Service Level Agreement
- You can properly budget for your IT services because the cost is predictable, as stipulated in the SLA
- You get access to highly resilient, highly secure IT Infrastructure
- Reduced downtime and problems
- Keeps your business technologically updated
Is a Managed Service Provider suitable for my business?
Almost certainly, and most definitely if you rely on IT to run some or all of your business functions.
Small and medium sized businesses are typical MSP customers, as many of them have limited or no in-house IT capabilities. Smaller businesses often realise that the break/fix or ad-hoc model is not sufficiently efficient and that it does become costly to call in the IT experts every time something goes wrong.
And it’s not only the smaller guys who benefit from managed solutions; larger enterprises may also contract with MSPs. For example companies facing budget pressure and hiring limitations do well by using MSPs to supplement in-house IT staff.
What you can expect from an SLA
A Service Level Agreement is a contract between the MSP and its customer. It stipulates which services the MSP will furnish, and defines the performance standards the provider is obligated to meet. The SLA helps the MSP to manage customer’s expectations.
This agreement may specify metrics such as
- availability and uptime
- specific performance benchmarks which will be reviewed
- application response time (remote assistance)
- helpdesk response time, and
- the usage statistics that will be provided
Depending on your needs, the above services may vary. Your agreement may cover other parameters based on your company’s infrastructure setup, such as your existing internal network, any on-site servers and infrastructure components, including uninterruptable power supplies (UPS), for instance.
Why it makes business sense to have managed IT services
Businesses still running without managed IT services typically find that ad-hoc support response times are longer, compared to those offered under a SLA by an MSP. (That’s because the conventional service provider is not obliged by contractual agreement stipulating response times.)
Such erratic, unpredictable service, plus the associated costs of call-outs, upgrades necessitated by an ever-evolving IT landscape, and costly maintenance clearly point to the fact that managed services could be the best way to handle your IT requirements.
To find out for sure, feel free to discuss your IT needs with a G Solutions consultant, who will be happy to provide advice and a costing for owning the peace of mind that comes with managed IT services.