5 Advantages of Moving to a Managed IT Services Model
Managed IT Services Dallas
When the economy collapsed in late 2008, many companies—enterprise and small to mid-size businesses (SMBs) across all verticals cut their information technology (IT) budgets to save money. During the economic downturn, CIOs postponed the development of new applications, adjusted hardware replacement cycles and otherwise redirected capital away from this core function.
Since the recession ended in June 2009, the economy has not performed up to expectation but organizations have steadily revved up their IT capabilities.
Entering the 2013 budget year, 43% of the respondents participating in a Computerworld survey indicated they planned to increase IT spending compared to 36% in the 2012. The increased IT spending is part of fresh strategic initiatives designed to give them more flexibility, accomplish goals, create greater efficiency, and save money.
In search of “high impact” IT outlays, firms are reconsidering the wisdom of allocating funds to Managed IT Services in favor of a traditional infrastructure. They not only want greater computing capabilities, but to also take advantage of greater expertise, lower costs and higher technological competency offered by third-party IT service providers.
Managed IT Services
Under the managed IT support model, many companies choose to continue owning their hardware and software but secure a managed IT services agreement with a third-party vendor to handle management and operations of the infrastructure over an Internet connection.
Moving IT tasks to a managed IT services partner ensures companies avail themselves of the industry best practices, standardization, and application support.
Here are some of the types of services typically outsourced:
- Monitor infrastructure and take a proactive approach to prevent problems
- Manage software patch and upgrades
- Installation of software upgrades
- Installation of new or replacement hardware
- Data backup
- Disaster Recovery
- Periodic testing to ensure proper operation and maximum performance
- Maintain system documentation
Companies now realize that outsourcing some or all IT functions to a managed IT services company does not lead to a loss of control over vital business functions.
Full-service IT management
Many businesses find that they can better focus on core business strategies and market growth by transitioning to a managed IT service provider 100% responsibility for their IT infrastructure. This includes all of the day-to-day operations like business applications, maintenance, IT desk services, email services and contract management. Some other responsibilities of a third-party vendor manage may include:
- Evaluate and recruit expertise requirements
- Assess and procure hardware and applications
- Deploy processes to improve efficiencies
The managed IT service provider can also help plan and balance information technology expenditures with strategic objectives and end user requirements. Companies can leverage the capabilities of an experienced and trusted IT service provider to deliver an open, flexible solution customized to its unique needs.
Choosing a Managed IT Service Provider
Whether you outsource specific tasks or the entire IT department, find a managed IT service provider that offers you a variety of service options including consulting, design and implementation assistance.
When conducting your due diligence for a managed IT service provider, make sure the partner offers a range of outsourcing options:
- Is there a need to enhance or update your existing system?
- Should it be moved to a colocation or kept in-house?
- Do you want internal IT staff to do primary management or want a managed services partner?
- Do you want to have your system monitored for performance or do you want to outsource management and operations to a service provider?
- Should you eliminate your IT Department and outsource the entire operations?
Solutions must be scalable, secure and seamlessly integrate with your infrastructure and business needs. A managed IT service provider can also function as a management consultant with a unique set of resources, skills and knowledge in software, hardware and all phases of IT operations.
The provider should possess the expertise to assist with the evaluation and review of the network, consider upgrades and additions to the system and help align your technology and business requirements.
Depending on the degree of outsourcing, enterprise customers and SMBs benefit from a cost effective way to outsource the enormous challenge of building, maintaining and supporting an information technology infrastructure environment. Managed IT service providers can provide immediate value and customers can begin to reap the advantages.
- Efficiencies at a lower cost
- Reduction in risk by sharing various costs
- Staff management
- Easy scalability
- Leading-edge technologies and processes
In a time of greater demands and shrinking budgets, CIOs must embrace new concepts and approaches for delivering IT services. Establishing a partnership with a managed IT service provider offers instantaneous flexibility and cost-efficiency. This managed IT support solution allows management to focus on core competencies, grow the business, improve profitability and secure a reasonable ROI on technology investment.