The Benefits of Managed Services
What is a Managed Service Provider?
One of the primary advantages of managed services models is the ability for a business to turn its maintenance, operations, and administration functions over to a managed services provider (MSP). Managed services providers have the staff, expertise, and focus on handling day-to-day operational IT needs on their behalf, enabling their customers to focus on their core business. Also referred to as outsourcing, there are many benefits of managed IT services.
A few of the services available from a managed service provider include:
- Infrastructure management
- Network security, anti-virus, and ransomware protection
- Server and systems administration
- Cloud solutions and support
- Network administration
- Data protection, backups, and recovery
To manage all the aspects of IT operations that a business relies on requires a team of highly skilled resources. The demands of IT operations typically exceed that of internal IT staff as they have to balance the handling or support and all aspects of the IT infrastructure. For example, with the increase in security threats and ransomware, it is a priority to ensure all potential vulnerabilities are fixed as soon as they are identified. In contrast, using an MSP to provide a managed IT services security service, they are focused on monitoring the end-to-end solution, from data center protection and vulnerability management through data privacy and protection 24×7.
Why you Should Partner with a Managed Service ProviderBusiness and technology move at the speed of light, and internal IT organizations no longer have the time and resources to manage their IT infrastructure while fully implementing innovative business solutions. This is the primary reason why you need managed IT services to handle the time-consuming day-to-day work of IT operations management. Other benefits of managed IT services include:
- Ability to outsource routine administration tasks
- Staff expertise and scalability
- Immediate availability of new skill sets
- Faster adoption of new technologies
- Access to new architectures
- Strong disaster recovery
- 24×7 support
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Benefits of Managed Service Providers
While many benefits of managed service providers seem tactical, the advantages of a managed services model come from a decision to focus on innovation rather than operations.
At a tactical level, there are many advantages of a managed services model:
Provide access to expertise: When a new product is introduced that leverages new cutting-edge technology, using a managed service provider means the organization doesn’t need to add personnel and retrain existing personnel to support the new technology. They can leverage the experience and expertise of their managed service provider and ensure their ability to keep the new technology operational and even to provide help desk services to users.
Operate 24×7: Staff is available around the clock and every day of the year, enabling monitoring and maintenance activities to be fully staffed without the burden of managing a night-time operation.
Maintain at non-peak times: While systems are now fully available 24×7, there’s no question that they need less capacity during certain times of the day/month. Having a 24×7 operational staff means OS updates and vulnerability management can be completed at off-peak times without arranging for staff to work during their off-times. The ability to maintain operations without a negative impact on the business is one of the key benefits of managed IT services.
Key advantages of managed services models are that using a managed service provider in the ways described enables an organization to achieve their strategy in the most cost-effective manner.
Choosing the Right Managed Service Provider:
Choosing the right managed service provider enables an organization to leverage these key advantages of managed services models, but only when the provider is able to deliver. The primary areas to address are their time in business, track record with their customers (references & case studies), the skill sets they make available, and their ability to provide the services your business requires.
To begin the process, first determine what areas of your IT operations could be improved with the benefits of managed IT services. Document your needs based on the services provided by the industry, then look for a provider with expertise in areas that align with your needs.
Be sure to review data center and security audits to ensure that they can provide the advantages of managed services models you need and that they can deliver data privacy and security and operational excellence to ensure high availability of your systems.