Now is a time when small and medium sized companies are taking a serious look at their IT organizations and weighing out costs and survival mechanisms as the world continues to slowly transition between phases of the coronavirus pandemic. As individuals and companies alike analyze their spending and study forecasts for 2021, we see a shift in the meaning of “managed” services. TechTmsp, it, MSPs, information technology, outsourcing , it management consulting, managed service provider, managed servicesarget’s Margaret Rouse defines the term like this: “A managed service provider (MSP) is a company that remotely manages a customer’s IT infrastructure and/or end-user systems, typically on a proactive basis and under a subscription model. Today, the terms “cloud service provider” and “managed service provider” are sometimes used as synonyms when the provider’s service is supported by a service level agreement (SLA) and is delivered over the internet.” While this definition of an MSP is accurate, lately we’ve seen a shift in its meaning.
How Managed Services Have Expanded
MSP was traditionally coined to refer specifically to information technology (IT). The fact is managed services have evolved to include more than information technology alone. Consider that workers and consumers alike have come to count on managed internet services for nearly every need: business communication, remote meetings, training, webinars, meal and grocery delivery, online shopping, news, mobile pet care, social sharing and communication, and so much more. In a more general sense, MSP is defined as third-party outsourcing for maintenance, processes and functions that will in turn improve overall operations and save costs. In a Forbes article entitled, What Is A ‘Managed Service’ Anyway?, Michael Trachtenberg states, “…I’ve found that the definition of a “managed service” is widely different depending on who you ask…” Today, managed services are integral for most industries including finance, healthcare, government, legal, high-tech, manufacturing, and more.
The Popularity of MSPs for Business
MSPs for business are today more popular than ever before. The question is why? If your company has invested in MSPs to support your IT infrastructure, you may already see the benefits during this transitionary period as businesses deal with the dire results of the pandemic. Whether or not your staff is able to work onsite or remotely, there is no doubt your technology must continue to function seamlessly with zero downtime. If you have not yet made an investment in cloud computing using a reputable MSP, you may be going through an incredibly difficult time securing IT staff to come onsite and maintain your operations. The unexpected coronavirus pandemic has moved MSPs at the forefront of the critical services industry. It is because of the systematic approach in outsourcing to an experienced MSP, companies across the globe are able to keep their systems and servers from going down, halting production.
How MSPs Benefit Businesses in Times of Crisis
In this time of crisis, consider the many benefits to an automated environment in which your provider is managing your systems and infrastructure remotely, much like online service deliveries.
- Ability for organizations to remotely deliver uninterrupted remote management and monitoring (RMM) of networks, servers, firewalls, routers / switches, etc.
- Continued cybersecurity, VoIP communications, 24/7 support, and mobile device management
- Peace of mind in a subscription model that secures IT services, to counter any natural or man-made disasters that may be taking place
- Confidence in a service-level agreement for performance and metrics
- Predictable cost structure with no unexpected fees
- Continued backup and disaster recovery plans in case of an emergency
- Ability for third-party outsourced staff to work remotely to manage your infrastructure
While customer service calls are likely to be higher for third-party managed service providers during this time, staff is readily available and not as impacted by layoffs. Companies investing in MSPs are more likely to continue to have continued service and uptime throughout the phases of the pandemic.
The MSP Approach
As the nation transitions through the waves associated with a global pandemic, businesses are faced with searching for new ways to meet customer needs and maintain IT infrastructures with limited resources. As MSPs continue to prove out as cost-effective, dependable, and scalable IT solutions for companies across the globe, it’s a great time to rethink the benefits.
In order for organizations to adapt, company technology strategies must meet productivity needs as well as the needs of customers. As a small or enterprise level business, it is critical to reevaluate your IT infrastructure, determine what facets of your IT can run in the cloud, and locate credible managed service providers (MSPs) that can offer cost-effective, uninterrupted IT services that are dependable in times of disaster. Let RackCo offer IT management consulting to help you evaluate the appropriate level of managed IT services for your business. Also see RackCo blog article: What’s New From Managed Service Providers (MSPs)?