When it comes to handling your IT infrastructure, figuring out who is responsible for it can be a daunting task.
One of your options is outsourcing your IT needs to a managed IT services provider (MSP).
One of the more common questions we hear at The KR Group about our managed service is “Am I a good candidate?”
An MSP is a good option for several types of companies. However, there are some general categories we can sort candidates for managed IT services into.
Businesses that are right for managed IT services
- Businesses looking for a better return on their IT budget with their technology should consider managed IT services.
- Small- and medium-sized businesses can benefit from managed services.
- Larger organizations with only a fraction of employees who rely on computers daily can take advantage of managed services.
- Businesses who must comply with industry regulations can trust MSP’s knowledge and experience.
- Start-up or related businesses anticipating fast growth and a need for more technical IT solutions.
This list is by no means exhaustive, and if you don’t find yourself represented by one of these scenarios, it doesn’t mean managed services aren’t for you. However, these categories are a good indication you could benefit from managed services.
Cost savings and redundancy
One of the advantages MSPs have over augmented IT and in-house IT is their cost and redundancy.
For less than the salary of a knowledgeable, qualified engineer, MSPs provide remote IT service round the clock and have the ability to make scheduled visits on-site
Managed services are an appealing option for many businesses that are willing to compromise frequent hands-on support for continual remote support at a lower price.
At The KR Group, we specialize in serving companies in the 10 to 100 user range. While other MSPs have different user ranges, typically, they provide managed services for organizations in the small- or medium-sized business category.
Managed services are a great option for these size businesses because it allows them to tap into the high-knowledge base of an experienced engineer for a fraction of the cost.
Executives in small businesses often wear multiple hats, and sometimes that includes the IT hat. If you want to pass the hat to a professional, managed services provide a cost-effective option for small and medium businesses
Example – Lori’s Law Firm
Lori opened a small law firm in 2015. Originally, it was just her and a paralegal working out of an office, but now, she has grown her law firm to include 10 other employees.
Lori still boasts about her 310 on the bar exam, however, she nor her partners have much to brag about when it comes to their knowledge of IT networks. They’ve been getting by with the bare minimum, but Lori knows they could and should do better.
To hire an experienced in-house engineer, Lori would need to find a minimum of $75,000 in her budget, and she needs a less expensive option.
Lori’s Law Firm makes a good candidate for managed services because of her small business size and need for an affordable IT solution.
Larger organizations with some users
Notice we limit our services to 10 to 100 users, not employees. This means that if you have more than 100 employees but only some of your employees use computers, you can still contract our managed IT services.
While other MSPs may have different numbers for their user or device limits, the idea is the same. You can be a larger organization and still benefit from managed services if only a portion of your staff has computer access.
Transportation companies and manufacturing plants are two examples we see that fall into this category
Example – Mark’s Shipping Company
Mark has 150 employees, but only 20 of those work in the office on a daily basis.
Since only a fraction of his staff utilizes computers he qualifies for many MSP’s user range managed services and he only pays for those users.
With a relatively small office staff, Mark’s Shipping doesn’t have the need for a dedicated in-house engineer, and the money he saves by contracting with an MSP allows him to spend more on capital equipment.
Mark’s Shipping Company doesn’t have enough office staff to warrant an in-house engineer but has enough staff to make him a good match for managed services.
Example – Rich’s Manufacturing Plant
Rich has more than 200 employees at his manufacturing plant. However, more than half of them are operating machines on the production floor and don’t require computer access.
Like Mark, since Rich is within the user range for managed services, he decides to outsource his IT needs to an MSP and save some money to invest in capital equipment.
By choosing an MSP, Rich is supported by engineers who have experience with manufacturing software since they have other manufacturing clients.
Rich’s Manufacturing Plant is a good match for an MSP because of his user count and desire to have engineers with back-tested knowledge of his shop software.
As mentioned with Rich’s manufacturing, MSPs offer knowledge of industry-specific programs and/or regulations because they serve multiple clients in the same industry.
This back-tested knowledge makes MSPs an attractive option for companies who must adhere to strict industry standards and want to know whoever is handling their IT will help them adhere to those standards.
Highly-skilled and knowledgeable IT personnel are already difficult to recruit. When you tack on more requirements, like experience with education, finance, or healthcare regulations, you’re only making the right match more difficult to find.
Example – Techville School District
Superintendent Smith is looking for new ways to solve his school district’s IT needs after the technology director left for a new job.
It’s a long list of requirements for the position, though, including:
- Implement filters and blockers to prevent students from accessing inappropriate websites and meet CIPA and COPPA compliance
- Install monitoring software to prevent bullying while using school-issued Chromebooks.
- Maintain HIPAA compliance with immunization records and school nurse’s records.
- Ensure their web content is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act
- Meet E911 compliance for accurate emergency locations.
- Maintain a strong security posture to prevent student records from being breached.
Daunted by the task and cost of finding someone who can fulfill all those requirements. When he looks into MSPs, Superintendent Smith realizes Techville School District could benefit by partnering with an MSP who already has experience fulfilling his list of requirements.
Example – Dr. Jill’s Pediatric Office
Dr. Jill is preparing to open a private pediatric office, and she knows whoever handles her IT network will have to meet strict regulations for patient privacy.
At the forefront of her mind is HIPAA, which regulates the use and release of personal health records and outlines safeguards to protect patients’ information.
Along with HIPAA, Dr. Jill’s Pediatric Office also has to comply with the HITECH Act, which requires healthcare providers to undergo audits to ensure they are HIPAA compliant with electronic health records.
Dr. Jill decides the best way to address her IT needs and ensure her patients’ information is protected is to contract with an MSP.
Example – Stafford Credit Union
Mr. Stafford relies on an MSP to handle his IT needs because it means he doesn’t have to worry (as much) about his IT team struggling to meet industry regulations.
His MSP works with other financial institutions and has experience with FDIC regulations relating to cybersecurity and customer confidentiality. This includes setting up reliable networks and servicers and providing backup systems for customer data, security, and peace of mind.
By using an MSP, financial institutions like Stafford Credit Union can rely on the experience and depth of knowledge that come with managed IT services.
Another scenario when managed IT services make sense is if your business is expecting growth.
Choosing an MSP in this situation allows you to scale your IT services without bringing on more staff (and paying more money).
Managed IT services have the option to add or subtract users during your contract term. For growing companies, this benefit ultimately saves money and ensures your growing IT problems are addressed alongside the growth of your company.
Are managed IT services right for me?
If you find yourself relating to any of these scenarios – specific industries, future growth, or size – there’s a good chance you’re a great match for managed IT services.
However, even if you don’t identify with any of these situations, you might still benefit from managed services if you’re a small or medium business.
You can learn more about managed services and how they compare by downloading our free flowchart.