With technology now an essential part of any company, business owners allocate more of their budgets to maintain information systems.  As a result, many businesses will explore hiring managed IT services providers (MSPs), as opposed to keeping an in-house specialist on staff.

Like with anything, there are pros and cons either way you go. In this article, we’ll explore the differences between the two.  We will also look at how to decide whether managed services are right for your business.

Managed IT Services Providers  (MSPs)

One significant advantage that comes with outsourcing your IT services is that you get the expertise of an entire team, rather than just one individual. No matter how talented your IT person is, situations will inevitably arise that require skills outside of his or her knowledge base.

With an entire IT team at your disposal, you’ll have a wide range of technicians with different specialties. It’s like the difference that exists between having a fully-stocked toolbox and a single multi-tool.

Beyond that, another perk to outsourcing is the fast response time with around-the-clock coverage. If your email goes down at 2:30 a.m., you can get someone from your MSP on the phone in minutes.  Meanwhile, good luck waking up your IT guy.

Many smaller businesses also prefer outsourcing because their needs do not remain constant. They might be slammed during a specific time of the year, but have little need for IT help the rest of the time. In that case, it’s preferable to pay for an as-needed provider than for a technician that might get underutilized most of the time.

On the other hand, selecting the right outside provider is essential.  That’s why we recommend that you rely on a service provider with enough staff to meet your specific needs.

In-House Technicians

An in-house technician can solve the majority of technical issues that you’re likely to encounter in your business. While not as diversified as an IT service provider, an in-house technician can still be a crucial addition to your team.

The primary advantage you get from in-house support is total familiarity with your business applications and needs. Depending on the outside vendor that you use, they may need to get assistance from your application manufacturer.  Meanwhile, your in-house tech knows your precise problem areas.  That’s why it is imperative to pick a managed IT service provider that can provide you with the individualized service that you need for your business.

However, keeping a full-time technician can be overkill for companies with limited IT needs.  Therefore, you may struggle to find enough work to keep him or her busy. Also, if you have a multitude of specialized technical needs, you might be better off going with a large staff well-versed in each different expertise.

As for the cost, this can vary based on your technician’s expertise and workload. For smaller companies, you might scarcely be able to afford the drain of a full-time salary for an underutilized worker, making managed IT services providers the more desirable option.

By picking the right managed IT services provider, you’ll be able to save money in the short- and long-term.  Meanwhile, you will ensure that all of your technical issues not only get resolved but also get prevented from ever occurring.

Choosing What’s Right for You

Ultimately, the “right” option will depend on your specific company and needs.  Ask yourself about your exact tech needs, and see if they justify hiring full-time help.

Of course, if you can afford it and your needs justify it, you can always choose a hybrid option.  In this scenario, you would keep a full-time tech worker on staff while supporting him with an outside vendor.

Nowadays, having your technology fail you is the one thing you truly can’t afford. That is why you must rely on a high-quality managed IT service provider like Capital Network Solutions (CNS).  At CNS, we can ensure optimal uptime while proactively addressing any potential tech issues that could impact your business.