12 Ways a Managed Service Provider (MSP) Can Help Your Business
Managed services providers (MSPs) offer 24/7 support for your entire IT infrastructure: software, hardware, and configurations. These services are remotely monitored and managed in order to keep a pulse on your IT environment at all times.
By constantly tracking the status of your hardware, software, and network, MSPs can provide predictive reporting and analysis to identify issues and resolve them before they create serious problems for your business. This gives you a faster, more reliable, more secure IT environment—at a fraction of the expense of hiring your own employees.
In particular, managed services companies are helpful for organizations that don't want the responsibility of handling IT themselves. These fall into two categories: those that are too small to maintain an in-house IT team, and those with data so valuable that it makes sense to outsource the liability of managing it.
Whatever your reasons for joining forces with an MSP, doing so has a variety of advantages. This article will explore 12 of the ways that managed services companies can benefit your organization.
How Can Managed Services Companies Help You?
1. Service Delivery Manager
When you work with a managed services company, you'll have a dedicated service delivery manager who acts as a liaison between you and the MSP. This person serves as your voice and an advocate for your interests when interacting with the MSP.
2. Anti-Malware Licensing
With new malware appearing every 10 seconds, you need a robust anti-malware solution to keep your computers protected. The right MSP will have licenses with established players in the anti-malware space that you can take advantage of.
3. Automated Monitoring
Many organizations can't afford to have IT technicians on the clock 24/7, but still need to keep their systems running outside of business hours. Automated software tools provided by your MSP can oversee your IT environment remotely, ensuring that your systems are always being monitored.
4. Incident Notification
If something goes wrong in your environment, you should know about it as soon as possible. The right MSP will deploy management and monitoring software to detect potential issues (often before they even occur). You should be able to customize these notifications based on severity level, so that you aren't overwhelmed with information.
5. Managed Anti-Malware
Keyloggers, spyware, adware, ransomware, Trojan horses, rootkits, and other nasty programs are all waiting to take hold in your IT environment. Your MSP should offer a variety of advanced security solutions to protect your endpoints from malware.
6. Quarterly Service Reviews
To make sure that you're satisfied with their services and keep you up to date, your MSP should conduct a business review every quarter. This meeting should include the key metrics and KPIs over the past 3 months, as well as a comparison of the SLA (service-level agreement) with the actual services rendered.
7. Automated Patching (OS + 3rd Party)
57 percent of data breaches are caused by poor patch management. Your IT environment must be updated at regular intervals in order to patch any security vulnerabilities. Putting this responsibility in the hands of your MSP will take yet another IT obligation off your hands.
8. Automated Maintenance
Automating routine maintenance and system checks has benefits for both you and your MSP. You no longer need to worry about performing these actions yourself, while your MSP's technicians are freed up to focus on higher-level activities.
9. Incident Remediation
When you suffer an IT security incident, it's not enough just to respond—you need to take steps to prevent it from happening again. Your MSP must offer incident remediation services to address the root cause of the problem.
10. Strategic IT Planning
Creating a strategic plan is crucial in order to optimize the future potential of your IT environment. The right MSP can help you understand how changes in technology and the business landscape will impact your company, as well as the best way for you to respond.
11. Unlimited Technical Support
An "all-you-can-eat" technical support model ensures that you'll always have someone who can answer your questions and fix your issues. What's more, the MSP will be more likely to fix your issue the right way instead of the quick way.
12. Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity
Disaster recovery and business continuity are crucial to the survival of your company in the event of a catastrophe. Natural disasters, cyber attacks, and employee shortages can all bring your operations to a standstill if you aren't prepared to deal with them.
The RPO and RTO are limits on the maximum age of your files when they are restored, and the maximum time that it will take for your system to be back up and running, respectively.
During the discovery process, the MSP should uncover your organization's biggest needs and goals. This will impact how quickly the MSP can restore your most important assets after disaster strikes.
From tech support to automated maintenance and monitoring, there are a variety of services that MSPs can provide.
While not every client needs all of the benefits listed above, it's a good idea to partner with an MSP with many different offerings.
This will give you the peace of mind that your needs will always be met, no matter how you evolve as a company.