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Managed IT Support vs. In-House: Which Is Right for Your Business?

Published:

Advice, Guidance, Suppot

Executive Summary

  • When it comes to IT support, every business has a choice: build your own in-house team, or work with a managed IT support provider.
  • In this article, we’ll explain why outsourced IT support can often be a better choice for your business – and dispel a few misconceptions.

Introduction

There was a time, long ago, when computers were a luxury in a business.

And the internet? It was a thing of science fiction.

But today, you’d be hard-pressed to find any business which didn’t have at least a small part of its operations based in technology. From app-enabled appointment booking for electricians to full-blown workstation fleets for multi-national corporations, IT is everywhere – and it is essential.

But, as a small business – perhaps with a few workstations and a server – what’s the best way to manage your IT? And what about as your business grows? Should you focus on building an internal team of IT experts, or rely on an outsourced solution?

We’ll answer all of these questions – and a few more – in this guide.

The difference between in-house and outsourced IT support

We know there’s a lot of confusion out there about the specific definitions of in-house vs. outsourced services, so let’s begin with some crystal-clear definitions:

  • An in-house IT department is a situation whereby the company manages all of its IT itself. From hiring specific IT staff (or sometimes relying on just the one) to researching which hardware to invest in, this approach can be resource-intensive – in terms of time, money, and human resources too.
  • An outsourced IT department, also known as a Managed Service Provider, or MSP, is a company dedicated to providing the same IT services you’d get in-house – but remotely. Depending on the MSP, they can take care of your end-to-end IT solutions, from basic tech support to remote server monitoring, and all for a monthly or annual rate. Learn more about MSPs with our Plain English Guide.

What does this tell us? Well, in reality, the services aren’t all that different, but there’s no question that outsourced IT support offers some big benefits. Round-the-clock expert support, IT strategy assistance and long-term infrastructure planning, and no need to commit to an annual salary (or salaries) – to name a few.

Which IT support services can be outsourced?

At this point, you might be asking yourself, ‘What’s the catch?’

The truth is that having your IT support managed through an MSP is one of the most cost-effective ways to keep on top of your technology. In fact, thanks to the advances in web-based tech, an MSP might offer more services than you think.

Here are a few of the core services you should expect a good outsourced IT support provider to cover:

  • Multi-channel support for your IT problems. From crashing computers to potential cyberthreats, outsourced IT support solutions should offer urgent support via phone, web, and even in-person if required.
  • Software installation and configuration. The best example of this is probably Microsoft 365, one of the business world’s most popular software solutions. An in-house IT team may simply not have the experience to deploy complex, large-scale software solutions like these, whereas for MSPs this is standard practice.
  • IT strategy advice and consultancy. Making big decisions about your infrastructure requires expertise – something an in-house team might be limited on, especially if it’s just one person. An outsourced IT support company will often have many years of experience solving problems and advising on IT strategy via expert computer consultancy.
  • Cloud hosting and services. The perfect partner for software like Microsoft 365, a good MSP will be able to offer remote, cloud hosting solutions to help you take full advantage of the many modern cloud-based solutions and services.

3 common misconceptions about outsourced IT support services

As we’ve learned, there are plenty of misconceptions about how outsourced IT services work and how much they cost.

So, let’s dispel some of these myths by addressing the most common three that we hear:

#1: “Managed IT support means being locked into a long-term contract”

For some outsourced IT support providers, this might be true – but not here at Get Support. Our agreements are offered on a favourable short-term basis as standard, so you’ll never be locked into an auto-renewing contract with no escape.

#2: “Outsourced IT services is a less personal service delivered by faceless team outside of the UK”

Again, some IT companies are indeed based in other places and have decentralised teams with no real personality – but not Get Support. We’re a team of friendly folks based right here in the UK and we enjoy getting to know all of our clients personally. That’s the Get Support difference.

#3: “External IT services are always looking for a way to send you unexpected bills”

Yet again – never with Get Support. Once you choose us as your MSP, you’ll always know exactly where the next bill is coming from. No nasty surprises, guaranteed. This is all managed as part of our IT Director service, which helps you plan your IT requirements for the next five years.

Get Support IT Services – stress-free IT support services without the commitment

If this quick guide has convinced you of the benefits of an outsourced IT support department, why stop there?

You can dig into the detail a bit more with our Frequently Asked Questions About Our IT Support Agreements, or learn about our unique IT Director service, which is included with all of our agreements.

To get the ball rolling now, just fill in the quick form below, or simply drop us a line directly on 01865 59 4000.

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