If you’re in the world of business, then it is likely that you have come across the term “Managed Service Provider” (MSP). Depending on your area of expertise, although you may have heard the term, it may mean nothing to you. Unless you’re in the field, it’s unlikely that you’ll know what an MSP does. This article will aim to give you a brief understanding of what an MSP does and how we can help your business.
A Managed Service Provider essentially is a company that uses remote technology to manage a company’s IT infrastructure. This means that a lot of time is saved for other important business activities by leaving the management of your IT systems to the experts. MSPs have been used by a variety of different businesses in many different sectors since the early 1990s. MSPs were initially used to manage simpler tasks, such as the management of servers and networks. Since then, many MSPs have expanded the services that they offer, resulting in them providing more complex IT management solutions. Some MSPs focus on specific sectors including manufacturing, legal, and healthcare. Others offer a more comprehensive service focusing on providing all-encompassing solutions. A good example of a specialist sector of MSP would be an MSSP or “Managed Security Services Provider”. An MSSP focuses solely on providing clients with managed security systems. This includes focusing on issues such as firewall security. Another example of a specialist MSP is an MPS or “Managed Print Service”, these focus on managing printing solutions and supplies.
Contracts and service level agreements explained
Companies commit to MSPs by forming a contract known as a service level agreement. This agreement outlines the responsibilities of the MSP and expectations of the client. The service level agreement also details pricing which may be on a tiered pricing plan, with customers paying more for a higher level of service.
Benefits of MSPs
There are several benefits to creating a service level agreement with an MSP, regardless of the sector that you are in. Some benefits apply to all businesses. For example, an MSP will free up time to spend on other business operations. This means you can focus on tasks relating to the specific nature of the business, as opposed to the systems used to allow it to operate. Contracting the management of IT infrastructure out to a specialist also means that the people in charge of the management of the systems know what they’re doing. If your company relies on IT systems, an issue that may result in an entire system being unavailable for a certain amount of time due to negligence can be very detrimental. It can impact all areas of your business, this includes company profits and loss of business.
The cost of outsourcing the management of the IT infrastructure of your company is also likely to be considerably less when you factor in all of the hidden costs of having in-house employees. For example, having a team in-house requires salary payments, holiday payments, lunch breaks, training, office space, and employee benefits. Having a team that is already specialising in this work remotely managing your systems is a good business decision and simplifies the job considerably.
How common are MSPs?
MSPs are used in several different sectors by a large number of businesses. It is estimated that a third of all businesses are using managed IT services. This indicates how worthwhile having an MSP is. There are many reasons why having an MSP manage your IT infrastructure is a better decision than choosing to do it in-house. For more information about the services we can provide to your business, contact us with any questions.