What are co-managed IT services, and does your business need it?
Many businesses rely on contractors and service providers to accomplish tasks they can’t or won’t do themselves. To illustrate, a restaurant in Salt Lake City can bake their own bread. However, the process takes up too much time, effort, and space in their small kitchen, so they source their bread from a nearby baker instead.
In the same manner, small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) like yours may have in-house IT staff. However, your team may be too busy with time-consuming tasks or too small to take on big projects that are critical to business growth. Fortunately, this is where co-managed services come in.
What are co-managed IT services?
Co-managed IT is a service model wherein a managed IT services provider (MSP) augments the capabilities of an existing internal IT team. If you have not yet established your own IT team or department, you can outsource all your IT to an MSP, which is a different arrangement altogether.
In a co-managed setup, both the MSP and your internal staff align themselves toward accomplishing the company’s goals. This means that the in-house team can dedicate itself to tasks that it can accomplish effectively and efficiently, while the MSP can fulfill any and all remaining business requirements.
When would your business need co-managed IT?
This service model is ideal for your business if:
Your IT department is short-staffed and/or lacks other resources
Your staff may already be swamped with tasks like addressing hardware and software issues, tweaking cloud configurations, and applying app updates and patches. If they don’t have the bandwidth for other tasks like designing and implementing a cybersecurity strategy, then turning to an MSP is more efficient and cost-effective than seeking, hiring, and training new staff. This is especially true if the need for additional personnel is only temporary.
Moreover, a top-notch MSP updates its tech resources to remain competitive. This means that you as a client can enjoy effective tech without having to completely invest in it yourself. For example, let’s say you need your network to be monitored. MSPs like NetWize can offer the latest and best monitoring tools for watching over your entire infrastructure.
In a co-managed setup, both the MSP and your internal staff align themselves toward accomplishing the company’s goals.
Your IT staff lacks the required expertise
Even if you’re not short on IT staff, their combined experience and expertise may still fall short of what your organization needs. For instance, they might not know how to create and implement backup solutions, business continuity strategies, and disaster recovery plans. Thankfully, reputable managed services providers have full rosters of IT specialists whose collective capabilities are both broad and deep. This means that they can cover any skills gaps your team may have.
You have a new project
Let’s say that you want your IT team to develop bespoke business applications for your company. To have bandwidth for app development projects, your team needs to let go of day-to-day responsibilities that your company relies on to operate smoothly. In scenarios like this, an MSP can take on those duties so that business operations can continue without a hitch.
What are the pros and cons of co-managed IT?
Here are the things you need to consider about co-managed IT services:
- Quick implementation
You get to fulfill business requirements faster than if you were to look for, hire, and onboard in-house IT staff. Furthermore, short-term projects are more feasible since you can procure IT services on an as-needed basis.
- Fewer items to manage
All you need to do is focus on your own deliverables and rely on your IT partner to deliver results. You don’t need to inspect their processes, manage their day-to-day productivity, or watch out for cyberthreats as you would on your own network.
- Availability of new tech
MSPs stay on top of the latest tech trends, which means that you, as their client, could benefit from their tech investments.
- Round-the-clock support
Unless your IT staff works in shifts, your IT department is only operational during office hours. This means that urgent problems that occur during off-hours will have to wait till shift starts. It’s also possible that some of your staff are on holiday or sick leave, so there are fewer people available to resolve your IT issues. Thankfully, you can avoid such scenarios by leveraging the 24/7/365 support provided by MSPs.
- Improved morale of IT staff
Bogging IT personnel down with rote and mundane IT tasks may bore them and provide no opportunities for learning new skills or progressing in their careers. By having an MSP handle those necessary but tedious tasks for you, you increase your IT team’s bandwidth to take on more challenging and rewarding tasks.
- Upfront fees
Availing of co-managed IT services does involve having to pay upfront fees. However, when you compare this to the costs you would incur if you were to hire your own IT professionals and purchase additional hardware and software, you’ll enjoy savings in the long-term. This is because you only have to pay for the IT resources and services you use.
- Compatibility issues
Differences in IT systems and methodologies may result in incompatibilities between your business and your MSP, though MSPs would normally identify and propose to rectify alignment issues prior to agreeing to a co-managed arrangement with your company.
Incompatibility may also take the form of a mismatch between what your business needs and what an MSP could offer in terms of tech tools, expertise, and bandwidth. To illustrate, an MSP startup with five technicians and only 10 years of experience between them might not be able to support the needs of a local eCommerce company that’s on the verge of going global.
If limited IT resources are keeping your business from growing, then you must turn to NetWize for co-managed IT services. Send our IT consultants a message or call 801-747-3200 today.