Do SMBs Really Need A MSP?
The bigger IT players like IBM, Accenture, CISCO act as MSPs to larger organizations, while the typical managed service provider is often hired by SMBs. However, there’s a question that crops up time and again-Do SMBs really need an MSP? SMBs are sometimes in two minds when it comes to bringing an MSP on board and typically use one of the following justifications.
It is agreed that SMBs may not have the kind of revenue inflow available in large organizations, but that’s no reason to skimp on your IT requirements. Skimping on IT needs and diverting the funds elsewhere may sound tempting, especially when your IT infrastructure is running great, but this can cost you a lot more in the event something goes wrong. Let’s take a look at a malware attack scenario, for example. If you don’t have an SLA in place, you are most likely to reach out to an IT expert or MSP on a transactional basis. It will not only result in a sky-high bill that you will have to foot, but also, there’s no guarantee that you will be immediately attended to, as customers with SLAs obviously get preference over transactional ones in the event of an emergency. Plus, every minute your IT infrastructure is down, you are losing potential revenue-through online or even offline sales. In the event of a data leak or a compromise in customer/vendor data due to the malware attack, you are legally liable to pay penalties and may be even sued by your clients. So, saving a few bucks here and there by cutting back on IT expenses can prove much more expensive later.
Our IT requirements are limited
A lot of businesses in the small to mid-size range believe that their IT needs don’t warrant a full-time service level agreement with an MSP. They believe the only times they need to invest in IT is at the start of their business or when rolling out new technology. As a result, they don’t see much value in signing a service level agreement with an MSP. This could prove to be a problem further down the line.......
We are tight on budget
SMBs also have a tendency to reduce their IT budgets and invest the savings elsewhere—usually in areas where they can see immediate returns, such as employing additional customer-facing employees or launching a new marketing campaign. As a result, when a small business's budget is tight, the IT department suffers.
We have our in-house IT person/team
Businesses with an in-house IT expert or even a small in-house IT team feel they are enough to handle their IT needs and an SLA is just an added expenditure.
Requirements for IT Infrastructure
IT is not a one-time task that can be completed and then forgotten about. Regular maintenance is required for your IT infrastructure to work without interruption, and you can ensure this with a service level agreement with an MSP. Regular data backups, timely security patch applications, software upgrades, and other vital tasks will not be completed unless a dedicated resource is assigned to them. There's also the problem of network latency to consider. MSPs provide services such as frequent network monitoring to ensure that any latency issues are recognized and addressed before they become a significant system disaster.
Co-Managed IT Model / Attainability to In-House Team
So, you have in-house IT personnel? Great! But there are ways in which an SLA with a managed service provider can still add value. This kind of setup is called the co-managed IT model. By bringing an MSP onboard when you have an in-house IT team, you
- Get to benefit from their expertise and enrich your in-house IT team’s knowledge
- Enjoy flexibility in terms of meeting your IT needs as you scale your IT up or down based on your business needs
- Reduce payroll expenses incurred as result of hiring new IT staff in-house
- Help your in-house IT team focus on more important tasks by outsourcing the mundane IT processes to the MSP
- Get an extra hand to assist your in-house IT personnel in the event of a major IT issue
- Have 24/7 IT support, something that may not be viable with a small in-house IT team
Having a service level agreement with a managed service provider adds value to businesses under all circumstances, and should be considered an essential, not an option. We hope that you consider Rowe Group as an essential part of your business. Rowe Group is here to help SMBs grow.
Contact Rowe Group today to find out how we can help you grow and keep your business safe.