Managed Services Provider vs. In-House IT: How to Choose?
When it comes to IT services — from end-user support and cybersecurity to new installations and cloud services — which is better: Hiring an outside managed services provider (MSP) or employing an in-house IT specialist or team? Especially as the systems needed to run day-to-day operations get more complex, an MSP can be just what your business needs to provide solutions to meet your specific IT needs.
Leverage an entire team of experts.
With a managed service provider you get an entire team with expertise in all areas of IT, with diverse skill sets—often for less than what a mid-level tech would cost. Creating this with in-house support would require multiple technicians specialized in different areas, many of which will just not be fully utilized. Partnering with a trusted MSP can also lower costs, since you only pay for services provided, rather than paying a yearly salary for a highly qualified IT professional.
Broader knowledge base
MSPs have collective knowledge from their teams of engineers and experiences with other client’s systems that create a vast knowledge base that benefits all clients. And MSPs are constantly learning, training, and expanding their knowledge—businesses will be assured they’re getting experts who are up-to-date on the latest, most advanced IT practices.
Tried and true systems
MSPs use state-of-the-art systems that are usually not cost-effective for internal IT departments. Managed service providers also take on the task of testing and validating new systems so when we present an IT solution to a client, we know it works. By the time we make a system recommendation, most of the challenges and issues have been resolved, and this greatly reduces the risks that normally come with a new deployment. This eliminates the need—and expense—of purchasing and installing different backup or monitoring systems. Also, with an MSP partner, you can try a system for a month or two, and if it’s not exactly what you need, we can provide you with something more suitable for your business needs.
MSPs keep their eyes on your business first, IT second.
MSP leaders think business before they think IT. It’s difficult for internal IT departments to do this, especially with limited resources, often dedicated to resolving IT issues. Most internal IT staff are focused on the help desk or break/fix operations, not on business development strategies. Managed service providers propose solutions that have a direct positive impact on the business.
Keep it simple
A good MSP will have the ability to understand your unique business processes and help identify the correct technology solution and be able to “translate” IT terms in an easy-to-understand manner. And because managed service providers often have clients across broad industries, it’s likely they have direct experience working on a business just like yours.
A partner that can help grow your business
Often time companies don’t fully understand which IT solutions can streamline their business, increase productivity or efficiency. The best MSP is not the one who can present a set of solutions in the first meeting but the one who comes back three months into the relationship and proposes changes and systems tailored to specific business needs and processes. And an MSP offers scalability—as your business grows, you can scale up to higher levels of service, without having to add more in-house IT staff.
You can have the best of both worlds.
Having an in-house IT department doesn’t mean it’s not smart to also partner with a managed service provider. An MSP can supplement your in-house staff—filling in the gaps to give your IT team time to focus on handling day-to-day responsibilities. Or an MSP can take on a major technology initiative, such as network redesigns, security assessments and validation, and major data center work. I
If you’re interested in finding out how an MSP can work with you to help grow your business, get in touch with Kenny Rabouin, Client Relationship Manager for SYMBITS, which provides innovative, flexible IT solutions for businesses, retailers, and manufacturers. You can reach Kenny at [email protected].