What Are Managed IT Services & How Do They Work?

 

“In managed IT, we handle your tech troubles so you can completely focus on growing your business.” – Brian Lynch, Chief Executive Officer, Bakersfield Networks

 

Research shows that an increasing number of American businesses are opting for managed IT services. In 2022, one study found that out of 451 businesses that did not yet have a managed IT partner, 45% were planning to find one. So, what are managed IT services, and what’s all the buzz about?

IT costs are rising and business executives are under more pressure than ever before. Outsourcing a managed IT partner is a simple, yet effective way to get IT spend under control and save executives more time.

That may be the why of it all, but there’s still the what that we need to answer. The rest of this article will focus on that what. We’ll discuss the managed IT definition, how it works, and what it has to offer.
 

 

What Are Managed IT Services?

Managed IT services refer to the practice of outsourcing your company’s IT tasks to a third-party provider. This practice helps you ensure that your IT network runs smoothly without the overhead costs of an internal IT department or extra new hires.

Based on this service model, it’s easy to assume that managed IT is just for companies that are too small to afford their own IT department. While this is one way to use managed services, many organizations supplement their in-house team with a managed service provider.

In this case, the provider is not a replacement for the company’s IT department. Instead, they help the department become more efficient and effective at what they do. Many IT professionals appreciate the help as it lets them spend more time on exciting new projects and helps prevent burnout.

 

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What is an IT Managed Services Provider?

An IT managed services provider (MSP) is a company that provides managed services. Typically, these companies proactively manage their clients’ IT infrastructure and user endpoints to keep them up and running. This approach intends to prevent IT issues before they become disruptive.

Different MSPs offer different services. Most provide a wide-range of IT services, but some zero-in on one aspect of technology. A good example of this would be an MSSP (managed security service provider) that focuses solely on cybersecurity.

You need to strike a balance between breadth and depth when choosing an MSP. For example, if you need hyper-specific cybersecurity services (and only cybersecurity services), you might opt for an MSSP over an MSP.

However, most companies find it more beneficial to use managed IT services, meaning they can sufficiently cover all their bases with just one vendor. This approach is much easier to manage and can save you from a lot of budget and communication headaches.

 

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How Managed Services Work

The basic concept behind managed services hinges on that proactive approach to IT. Essentially, instead of waiting for something to break (the break-fix model), MSPs ensure everything runs smoothly from the get-go.

When you sign a contract with an MSP, they’ll share their Service Level Agreement (SLA) with you. The SLA highlights what you can expect from your MSP and holds everyone accountable. If a team member from the MSP doesn’t meet the expectations in the SLA, they can face consequences for underperforming.

After everything is signed and agreed upon, the service model typically goes like this:

  1. Assessment: The MSP first evaluates your current IT setup to identify strengths and weaknesses.
  2. Implementation: Based on the assessment, they’ll implement necessary tools and systems to monitor and manage your IT infrastructure.
  3. Monitoring: Using advanced software, they’ll continuously monitor your systems for potential issues, often catching problems before they become major headaches.
  4. Support: Whenever you face IT challenges, your MSP is there to help, be it through remote assistance or on-site visits.

 

What Managed Services Offer

As mentioned, MSP services usually encompass a broad spectrum of tasks. Generally, these tasks are related to day-to-day IT management, but many MSPs also offer project management services.

Here are a few examples of what a managed services provider can offer. Please note that this list is not exhaustive and many MSPs offer other services in addition to these examples.

 

Service How an MSP Provides It
Cloud Services MSPs help their clients migrate to the cloud, manage cloud computing, and keep their cloud-based data secure.
Disaster Recovery Through regular data backups and advanced recovery solutions, MSPs ensure business continuity in case of data loss or system failures.
Patch Management MSPs regularly update and patch their clients’ software and applications. This is to ensure IT systems stay secure and free from exploitable vulnerabilities.
Remote Monitoring & Management Using specialized software, MSPs continuously monitor and manage their clients’ IT infrastructure. This way, they can proactively detect and resolve issues.
Technical Support MSPs usually provide a dedicated help desk to address technical queries, troubleshoot issues, and offer guidance on any IT-related matters.
Cybersecurity Services MSPs protect their clients from potential threats by implementing security protocols, firewalls, and regular vulnerability assessments.
Infrastructure Management MSPs continuously monitor and maintain networks, servers, and devices to ensure optimal performance and uptime.
Network Design & Configuration MSPs can design, set up, and configure networks tailored to their clients’ specific business needs to ensure efficient data flow and connectivity.

 

Experience All The Benefits of Managed Services With a Trusted IT Partner

Recognizing your need for an MSP is one thing, the next is finding the right one for your needs. Considering that the MSP market was valued at $278.9 billion in 2022, you’ve got a few choices. Be aware that MSPs are still businesses. Like any business, some are more interested in sales than they are in being helpful.

If you choose Bakersfield Networks as your MSP, you won’t have to worry about that. Our team takes the time to truly get to know your unique business needs and processes. We have no interest in selling overpriced IT solutions with subpar results. We see our success as your success.

Contact the team at Bakersfield Networks today for your free demo and to get started.