Whether it is BYOD or an increase in cloud-based applications – the ever-changing threat landscape is a challenge to businesses. It is harder to manage it all in-house and keep up with cybersecurity best practices while encouraging digital transformation. This is where managed IT services can lend you a helping hand or even take the reigns for you and empower you with security and productivity.
Read on to learn all about managed IT services and how they can help your organization.
What are managed IT services?
Managed IT services are the IT tasks outsourced to Managed Service Providers (MSPs). These services include security, data backups, 24/7 monitoring, and on-demand support. They act as your extended IT team, helping you proactively deal with everyday IT responsibilities and problems while allowing you to focus on business objectives.
MSPs lighten the workload of in-house teams or replace them entirely in some cases. They also offer specialist knowledge or expertise and ensure 24/7 coverage of IT duties. Additionally, managed IT services encompass proactive monitoring, maintenance, and management of IT systems beyond traditional break-fix models.
Why do you need managed IT services?
Your IT team is equipped with the best professionals who are doing their best to empower your organization with optimized processes and security – however, sometimes, everyone could use some help. Especially in today’s threat environment where the landscape of mishaps is increasing, and the room for error is decreasing, you cannot afford to make mistakes.
Since COVID-19, there has been rapid adoption of cloud-based solutions. Managing security aspects with cloud opens up the need for an elevated level of expertise in cybersecurity.
Additionally, remote and hybrid working models encourage BYOD (Bring Your Own Devices). While this allows employees to manage their data through any personal device, it brings security vulnerabilities when handled poorly. The cost of intelligent devices that bring productivity to the fingertips compromises data integrity.
Furthermore, in 2022, 72% of businesses worldwide fell for ransomware attacks, and it took 49 days just to detect the breach. Meanwhile, a lot of your business data could be compromised, resulting in more prominent issues you aren’t prepared for.
Therefore, it may not be possible for your in-house IT team to help you with everything. Managed IT services are like an extended team that provides you with skills, technologies, and expertise that your team might lack.
Managed IT services offerings
The managed services market is projected to grow globally to $557.10 billion in 2028. The difference managed IT services can make in organizational processes is significant, which drives these numbers. Managed service providers go beyond providing basic IT support. They offer strategic planning and implement IT infrastructure services customized to meet each client’s specific needs. To understand more, let’s dive into the offerings.
1. Remote monitoring
It is essential to keep track of network and system performances, but as businesses grow, it can also become challenging. This is why Managed Service Providers (MSPs) can take on the responsibility of providing proactive monitoring and maintenance services.
Managed IT services providers can help create an IT infrastructure that can detect and resolve problems before they cause any disruption to your organization. They can also optimize the systems through regular maintenance and patch management, ensuring peak performance. They enable companies to optimize performance and minimize losses, allowing them to cater to the other critical aspects of the business.
2. Threat detection
Managed Services Providers (MSPs) can be an integral part of your company’s cybersecurity and protect you from cyber threats. These providers offer proactive monitoring, use advanced IT governance tools. These tools help identify potential security breaches before they occur. They tackle security issues with a more proactive mindset rather than being reactive after a breach.
MSPs utilize Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) solutions to gather and examine security event logs, Intrusion Detection and Prevention Systems (IDPS) to prevent unauthorized access attempts, and endpoint security solutions to safeguard individual devices. This is especially important with the BYOD culture of remote and hybrid workspaces.
Additionally, MSPs perform vulnerability assessments and penetration testing and utilize threat intelligence to stay ahead of evolving threats and identify weak spots. Therefore by using managed IT services, you can concentrate on your core operations with the assurance that your business is safe against any potential threats.
3. Incident response and disaster recovery
Managed IT service offers regular onsite and offsite data backups. This protects you from potential data loss incidents. They also provide reliable backup solutions and ensure easy data recovery in unexpected situations. They can securely restore critical information, ensuring business continuity.
They also have comprehensive disaster recovery strategies in place to minimize downtime whenever there is a data breach attempt and restore critical data quickly in case of a disaster or system failure.
This incident response is critical whenever there is a cybersecurity incident. Instead of panicking when you are facing the situation, MSPs are experienced in handling such instances. They will have the plan to recover from them with ease and menial damage to your reputation, data, and finances.
4. Auditing and Compliance
Compliance is crucial for acquiring customers across industries and for security purposes. However, for organizations without expertise in compliance, it can be a challenge.
Fortunately, MSPs are well-versed in compliance standards and can guide your company in acquiring the right certifications and meeting global standards. They can also help in reduce risks associated with sensitive information, such as client data, payment information, and documentation.
Managed Compliance Service comprehensively reviews management practices, policies, operations, and technical security controls against regulatory requirements. This means conducting a thorough compliance audit of all operations, IT infrastructure, and related networks.
5. Analytics and Reporting
To learn from incidents and stay on top of organizational activities, it is important to have analytical reports to make decisions and take appropriate steps. This can become a cumbersome task for organizations, but not if MSPs can do it for them.
MSPs can generate reports through monitoring tools and analytics techniques on system performance, capacity planning, security incidents, threat intelligence, compliance adherence, financial and usage tracking, and customized insights.
These reports provide valuable insights to help you make data-driven decisions, optimize your IT resources, enhance security measures, and align your IT strategies with overall business objectives. They help transform raw data into meaningful information that enables you to drive efficiency, productivity, and growth.
6. Help desk support
Help desk support is crucial for customer service and internal functions. Managed help desk services can free up your top IT professionals to focus on strategic technology initiatives that drive your business objectives forward.
The 24/7 outsourced IT support can provide rapid and efficient technical assistance to end-users even if you can’t. This ensures that issues are resolved quickly and efficiently. This avoids easily avoidable problems and potential downtime and allows your employees to work without IT-related complications.
Benefits of Managed IT Services
With outsourced IT support and IT infrastructure services, IT management services can change your IT landscape. Here are some benefits you can experience from the right managed IT service provider.
1. Save costs
You can save a lot of money by outsourcing IT support to MSPs instead of building your internal team; this is especially helpful for small or medium businesses. IT management services offer subscription-based services that allow you to pay for the specific services you need and scale up as your business grows. This also simplifies your internal planning and spending management.
With predictable and regular expenses, you can easily forecast your IT expenditure for the month, quarter, and year ahead. Furthermore, you don’t need to invest in extensive in-house IT infrastructure, which can significantly reduce your capital expenditures.
2. Experience more expertise
Partnering with a managed IT service provider gives access to a team of experts who deeply understand IT tasks. These MSPs are always up-to-date with the latest information, technologies, and procedures, ensuring that your infrastructure operates smoothly and efficiently for an extended period.
Regulatory compliance is mandatory in several business sectors, and MSPs provide the knowledge and expertise needed to meet these stringent requirements. By collaborating with the right IT management services, businesses can focus on their core activities while leaving IT concerns to the experts.
3. Save time
Partnering with an MSP can help you offload day-to-day IT management and support tasks from your team. This includes system monitoring, software updates, security patching, and troubleshooting.
Additionally, they provide proactive maintenance and 24/7 support; this means your team doesn’t have to be available at all times and prevents downtime. When all this is taken care of, you can focus on your business and leverage the expertise of dedicated professionals.
MSPs hire contractual professionals for IT tasks; this includes Service Level Agreements (SLAs). This means you don’t have to hire or train IT personnel for the job – the MSPs do the hiring and save your time in the process.
How to choose the right Managed IT Services Provider?
The right managed IT service provider can become an integral part of your IT team. They can optimize IT infrastructure services, ensure reliable performance, and maximize uptime.
However, choosing the provider that meets your needs is crucial for a successful partnership.
Here are some factors for you to consider while choosing an MSP:
1. Check for alignment between your business needs and their service offerings
It’s essential to evaluate your current IT needs and future goals to find the right MSP for your business. To do this well, assess your infrastructure, workflows, resources, and budget. This will help you determine what specific services and solutions you require from an MSP to align with your objectives.
Revisit your business goals, and understand whether you need supplemental support or a self-contained team.
However, it’s also worth considering whether IT management services are a good long-term investment as your organization grows. While outsourcing IT management may be cheaper initially, investing in an in-house team may make more sense in the long run. Choose based on your plans for the team.
2. Ask for an audit to check fitment
Once you have a list of potential providers, ask them to audit your systems.
You can assess their capabilities in managing your assets through this step. Find out if they have experience with any specialized hardware or software you’re using or are planning to use. If they don’t, then it can cause a conflict. Additionally, you should verify if they are familiar with industry or compliance standards that apply to your industry, systems, and data.
If they struggle to conduct a thorough audit and provide a plan, they will not be the best fit to support your business effectively.
3. Assess for scalability
As a business, your goal is to grow and scale. Therefore, the managed IT service provider you choose must also be able to scale with you. Understand their capacity to scale up and provide more service hours, expertise, and bandwidth than you will require.
If the MSP is not equipped to scale, it can be challenging for them, especially if you will need significant infrastructure changes like cloud migration. Therefore, choose a vendor to support your organization’s growth without compromising performance or coverage.
4. Understand reliability and responsiveness
Responsiveness and reliability are both important attributes in selecting the right MSP. You deserve support that is timely and effective. Therefore, look for an MSP that guarantees quick response times, open communication channels, and proactive problem-solving.
By choosing a responsive MSP, you can trust their availability when you need them. This means less disruption and more productivity for you.
Building a strong and trusting partnership with your MSP is also important. Ensure they are open for regular evaluations and open feedback sessions to help you succeed together.
Experience effective IT solutions with the right MSP
When partnering with a managed service provider (MSP), making the right choice is critical. You must ensure the MSP’s services align with your business need. Choosing an MSP that truly understands your unique requirements and can adapt to your growth will ensure that you benefit from a trusted provider. With timely and effective support, this partnership will be a valuable asset to your business.