Aspects of Managed Services Support

Aspects of Managed Services Support

Managed services and break-fix services play essential roles in supporting your business in IT-related matters. Small and medium entities face tough choices in deciding between the two aspects and complementing IT resources as well as personnel in place. 

Managed Services vs. The Break-Fix Mentality

Just as the name suggests, the Break-fix mentality interacts with your business only when you experience IT problems. 

The vendors of break-fix services send IT professionals to your location to provide remedies at your business location. 

After finding a solution to your IT problem, you are charged for the services rendered. The break-fix services have no ongoing fees and do not tie you to any contracts.

On the contrary, managed services entails outsourcing service providers that share the responsibility for your IT system. 

It creates an extensive and continuous relationship between your business and your service provider. 

Such services work off your business premise and use their systems to supervise and deal with identified IT problems. Mostly, the problems are identified before you experience any system outages. 

Why Break-fix is No Longer Good Enough for Your Business

Below are the main reasons why the break-fix mentality is not any good for your business. 

Subdues Productivity

When you use this model, you are forced to assign your IT needs to your employees. Since this might be a good idea in the short term, it reduces the level of productivity and leads to wastage of resources. 

Cost

In this IT model, you pay for labor, repairs, and consultation. It is impossible to budget for the issues, and there is no reasonable way of establishing whether you are paying a fair price. 

Besides, there are no preventive measures that you can put in place to avoid any problems in the future. This leaves you susceptible to surprise system breakdowns and costs. 

Extended Downtime

In this model, when you experience an IT problem, every minute costs you money. The sporadic nature of this model leads to extended repair time. The extended downtime and the additional repair time increases the cost making it undesirable.  

Do Managed Services Cost More Than Traditional Break-Fix Services?

Managed services cost more than break-fix services. Managed services involve the provision of a recurrent service, which translates to recurrent expenses. 

The services differ based on your business’s needs though it is vital to be proactive in using IT services to achieve business objectives. 

When you use this IT model, you accrue higher upfront fees, monthly subscription fees, and monitoring fees. 

Engaging a managed service provider increases the level of visibility and your capability to establish robust IT strategies. In as much as it is effective and creates accountability, the services cost more than the services rendered in the break-fix model. 

How Are Managed Services Priced?

All businesses want to minimize costs, but that is just one factor you need to think about. Therefore, you need to understand all the pricing aspects of IT services models before you make a decision. 

Managed IT services pricing is based on the following.

  • The number of users
  • Risks Involved
  • Your needs

The price of managed services depends on the monthly cost per user, the coverage, the number of specialists, and the extent of coverage. 

The level of support included and your levels of business that the support is designed for affects the pricing of managed services provided to you.  

The Real Benefits of Managed Services

The benefits of managed services are clear. The model provides IT services to every aspect of your business. As a result, your entity achieves higher standards of IT services. 

Implementing managed services in your business offers several benefits, including:

Enhanced Productivity

Outsourcing IT functions dedicate in-house IT experts to projects that promote innovation and enhance achievement of set objectives. 

Promotes Scalability

Most entities find it more useful to start small and expand according to the growing needs. Managed services make it easy for you to scale either up or down and increase capacity depending on the scope of changes in your business needs. 

Keeps Pace with Your IT Demands

When you outsource IT services or partner with skilled IT professionals, you alleviate the pressures associated with keeping pace with the dynamism of technology. 

Contact us for professional advice on the best IT model for your business.

What is Included in a Managed Services Agreement?

What is Included in a Managed Services Agreement?

A managed services agreement is a contract between a provider of managed services and a client. It creates ties of the service level between the parties and records the primary understanding regarding different aspects of the deal. 

The agreement represents different aspects of your engagement, including:

  • Response times
  • Service-level agreement
  • Limitation of liability
  • Termination clause
  • Clarity of outline of support tiers
  • Service escalation process
  • Phases of setting priorities
  • Labor rates

Below are the things that need to be clearly outlined in your managed services agreement (MSA). 

Services

You need to identify the elements of the services covered, including supported IT services  and those not supported by your managed services provider (MSP). 

You need to ensure that there is clarity on your responsibilities and those of the service provider. 

By clearly outlining the services not covered in the agreement, it prevents any likelihood of holding your service provider liable for any incidents not outlined. A clear outline of the services allows your service provider to work for issues outside the agreement. 

Terms and Conditions

Identify the provider of managed services and their contact information during and after working hours. The agreement needs to stipulate the pricing, terms of payment, and the duration of the contract. Also, it clearly outlines the date when the contract starts, ends, and when it auto-renews. 

Termination of Agreement

The contract between you and your managed services provider outlines the rules of termination, the need for adhering to regulatory requirements, and the owner of the data once the contract ends. 

Length of Warranties

The agreement includes the specifications of the hardware used and the information regarding different types of hardware used in implementing a managed services model. 

Authorization of the Managed Services Provider

The MSA provides extensive information on the licensing of your provider and SaaS.  

Backups

The contract specifies the terms and the length of incremental copies and the total number of copies. 

Limit of Liability

The MSA outlines your confines on instituting legal proceedings for negligence against your provider. Also, it includes information on risk allocation by your provider. 

Insurance

Aspects of cybersecurity insurance are included in the MSA. It covers the level of coverage for your managed services provider. Also, it outlines aspects covered and not covered in the insurance policy. Your MSP needs to give extensive information on any potential liabilities. 

Definitions of Terms

The contract explores the meaning of different terms for all parties. It includes terms that are specific to the entity, providing managed services to your business. 

Discretion

The managed services agreement includes other agreements including the:

  • Licensing agreement
  • Confidentiality agreement
  • Non-disclosure document
  • Non-complete document for your provider’s employees 

Assignment Clauses

The document considers the contractual obligations of both parties and specifies the responsibilities and rights that can be transferred. 

Illegal Behavior

The MSA includes a plan of action of prompt reporting to the authorities in case either party notices prohibited behavior. Also, it emphasizes that you are expected to follow a certain course in notifying the authorities. The list includes the major aspects included in a managed services agreement.

Contact us to help you develop an agreement that is satisfactory to both the parties and facilitates the growth of your business.  

Common Considerations For Outsourcing To A Managed Service Provider

Common Considerations For Outsourcing To A Managed Service Provider

Network infrastructures are changing at a rapid pace. It makes it difficult to run and maintain the various applications and hardware needed to operate your business.

Many small businesses are meeting the challenges of reduced IT budgets, resources, and staff. Due to these decreases, outsourcing network management to a professional managed service provider is becoming a necessity in order to function efficiently.

Here are some common considerations when deciding to outsource your IT management needs to a managed service provider.

The Cost

Outsourcing network monitoring and management is an often cost-effective solution for many businesses. There is no need for expensive hardware and software. Pricing varies based on service levels. However, you can expect a predictable and affordable monthly price that includes 24/7 proactive maintenance. Most managed service solutions are scalable which allows you to add or remove devices as needed.

Monitored Devices

When choosing to outsource your IT management, it is important to understand which devices your managed service provider includes under the monitoring service. Accepted devices vary from company to company. However, the most typical allowable devices include servers, IP routers, firewall appliances, printer servers, wireless access points, and more.

Additional Features

While a managed service provider already offers a wide range of features at a fixed monthly cost, there are additional features you can ask about. These features can include any moves, additions, changes, report access, status updates, and more. On-site help from an IT technician is also something that your business may need from time to time. Find out if you can buy on-site support on an as needed basis or if it is part of your service plan.

Outsourcing your IT management and monitoring is a great way to help ensure your organization is operating as efficiently as possible. You will have reliable and professional support to handle technical issues before they become major problems. This creates an overall improved user experience for your employees.

Contact us today and learn how we can develop a proactive IT support and management solution for your business.

Top 3 Features a Managed Service Provider Should Provide to Your Business

Top 3 Features a Managed Service Provider Should Provide to Your Business

managed service provider manages all or part of your IT infrastructure. It is becoming quite popular among businesses in all types of industries to outsource technology management to a managed service provider.

Managed services can provide your business with access to enterprise-level technology, expert IT knowledge and support at a huge cost savings. Did you know that outsourcing converts fixed IT costs into variable costs and allows you budget effectively? In other words, only pay for what you use when you need it.

With the variety of managed service providers to choose from, it is difficult to decide who will be the best fit for your business. The biggest question being what will you get for your money?

There are a few key elements every managed service provider should offer. Keep the following in mind to help ensure your business receives the best of what managed IT services has to offer.

24/7 Monitoring

You can expect all managed server providers to offer some form of network monitoring. However, your service provider should monitor more than your servers and workstations. They should also monitor networked devices like firewalls, routers, and other important infrastructure.

Data Backup and Recovery Plan

When disaster strikes, your business could suffer significant data loss. Without a proper data backup and recovery plan, it is difficult and sometimes impossible to recover from major data loss. Your managed services provider should offer a solution that is best suited to your business.

They should backup your data on a regular basis and test your recovery plan often in order to make any necessary adjustments.

On-site Support

Although many managed service providers can handle most IT support issues remotely, there are some instances when an on-site IT technician can offer the best support. Having a managed service provider that is local is ideal for providing on-site support.

A technician can provide training on new software or troubleshoot issues on workstations. Your managed services provider should have enough staff to ensure you have on-site support when you need it.

When it comes to protecting your network, you want the best features at an affordable price. Our managed service provider agreement includes IT support and management for businesses of all sizes. 

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.

Simplify Your Small Business With Managed IT Support

Simplify Your Small Business With Managed IT Support
As a business owner, you understand how much your business relies on your network in order to operate efficiently. Technology is always changing and your network needs to keep up with these changes.

According to a recent article, in today’s fast-paced business environments, MSPs play an important role in helping companies leverage new technologies without straining their budgets or losing focus on their core business.

Keeping your network secure requires more than anti-virus software and strong passwords. There are dozens of cyber security threats that threaten your business on any given day. These threats can lead to major downtime which means a loss in productivity and revenue. Outsourcing your Florida IT support can help simplify your business and keep your operation running smoothly.

One of the biggest benefits to outsourcing IT support is that your business is no longer burdened with managing your IT network infrastructure. You place this responsibility in the hands of highly skilled technicians who monitor and manage your network 24 hours a day. You are left to running your business and IT support will take care of all IT administrative tasks.

How IT Support Can Simplify Your Business

Lowered Costs

Managed IT services can significantly reduce costs because there is no need to pay for salaries, benefits, training, continued education, and other expenses. Your business benefits from the latest in technology and expert support without breaking the budget.

Enterprise Level Support

Many small to mid-sized businesses do not have the financial means to operate an in-house IT department. With managed IT services, your business can receive the same support, if not better, from IT experts with various skills and experience.

Improved Network Performance

A slow network that cannot keep up with the demand of your business makes working a frustrating process. System crashes and hours of downtime leads to an unproductive work environment and a major loss in revenue. Managed IT services place their focus on your network’s overall performance and security. They help ensure your network is working efficiently which minimizes downtime and supports the growth of your business.

Outsourcing your IT support is one of the easiest and ways to simplify your business. Managed IT services removes the hassle and worry of managing an ever-changing network.

We are a managed services provider offering proactive IT maintenance and support. Contact us today for a free consultation.