What is a Managed Service Provider?wphungerford
When most people think of IT services, they think of someone you call when your internet isn’t working or when your computer won’t connect to the printer. And while a managed service provider troubleshoots those kinds of problems, there is much more involved than simply fixing what isn’t working.
Managed service providers, or MSPs, are companies that provide outsourced IT services to small or medium-sized businesses. These businesses or nonprofits could have a few IT professionals on their staff who would benefit from the products and services an MSP can provide, or it could be a mom-and-pop shop that doesn’t have the time or knowledge to implement IT services.
What Do Managed Service Providers Do?
In addition to featuring a support staff to troubleshoot network issues, other things managed service providers do include managing a business’s network, budgeting and planning for future IT needs, offering risk management and business impact analysis solutions, conducting audits, training your business’s staff on best practices and implementing new projects to increase productivity, security and profitability.
While these services previously may have needed on-site visits from a technician, advancements like cloud computing have made it possible to provide more of these services remotely, saving everyone time and money.
Many MSPs also offer after-hours support for immediate emergencies for added peace of mind outside of normal business hours.
Why Hire a Managed Service Provider?
If you’re a small business owner or a chief financial officer of a medium-sized business, you might be thinking you don’t need to hire an MSP to manage your network. After all, it’s not like your company is a big corporation that requires constant attention and a team of dedicated IT professionals to make sure things run smoothly.
While you may not have to overcome the logistics of running a huge corporation, every company that relies on technology to do business is susceptible to problems and security threats.
A managed service provider can increase your business’s productivity by implementing a cloud-based network. If the power goes out in your company’s building and you rely on a local network to store and share files, you must wait for the power to be restored in order to access those files. Whereas if you implemented a cloud-based system, your employees could access those files from anywhere and finish the day at home.
Protecting sensitive data is another reason to invest in an MSP. Every business has some form of sensitive data, whether it is employee payroll information or customer credit card numbers. Other organizations, like a doctor’s office, will have patient records that need to be protected from hackers.
Just because you are a small or medium-sized business doesn’t mean you aren’t vulnerable to security threats. In fact, a 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report found 46% of data breach victims were small businesses.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Managed Service Provider?
MSPs typically charge a monthly rate for their services and can offer different coverage tiers that range from handling all IT services to only handling a few and letting you take care of the rest.
The cost to hire a managed service provider can range anywhere from a few hundred dollars per month to thousands per month, depending on where your business is located and how much you are willing to do yourself. It’s common for MSPs to charge for additional services, such as big-scale projects that aren’t covered under the standard coverage. These projects may include workstation refreshes (setting up new laptops and adding software to the new devices) and migrating from on-premises servers to cloud-based servers.
Managed IT Services in West Michigan
Are you looking to hire a managed service provider for your business or organization? Contact Hungerford Technologies to see how we can help keep your business running smoothly while increasing productivity, security and profitability. Call our tech support team today at (616) 949-4020.