What Costs & Services Aren't Included In Managed IT Support?
Business and IT leaders who are exploring the possibility of working with an outside IT provider are often well versed on the costs and services included. But, what they don’t often consider fully is the extra costs they may incur.
You may be thinking, “I thought managed IT support was an all-inclusive option. What do they mean extra costs?”
While managed IT support is a comprehensive way to get all of the ongoing services your IT infrastructure needs, there are some services that fall outside the managed IT support contract and will mean extra cost.
I work at Kelser, a managed IT support provider. At Kelser, we provide honest information about what is and is not included in our managed IT support contracts so that everyone has a clear understanding and there are no surprises.
We know that managed IT isn’t the right solution for everyone. We also know that it’s important to provide the information that business leaders like you can use to make the IT decision that is right for your organization. That’s why we publish articles like this one that explain some of the lesser known aspects of external IT support.
After reading this article, you’ll have a full understanding of the services and costs that often aren't included in managed IT support contracts.
What Is Managed IT Support?
Managed IT support is a proactive, subscription-based approach to IT service. For a predictable monthly cost, you get the services you need to keep your business running smoothly and safely.
What Services Are Included In Managed IT Support?
Services that may be included in managed IT support are:
- technology experts (technical solutions architect, service delivery manager, cybersecurity oversight)
- strategic planning (virtual chief information officer, technical alignment manager)
- service (or help) desk
- managed servers & networks
- disaster recovery
- managed workstations with automated patching
- automated monitoring
- email support
- managed DNS-based protection
- managed spam filtering and protection
- automated maintenance
- license management
- managed anti-malware
- managed employee awareness training
Managed IT support is different from the traditional model of break/fix IT providers, which are a pay-as-you-go service in which a provider comes out to fix (or has you bring in) items that are broken.
Check out this article for a thorough and honest comparison of managed and break/fix IT support: Break/Fix Vs. Managed IT Support: Cost, Reliability, Security, Productivity.
The truth is that both IT solutions have their place.
What Isn’t Included In Managed IT Support?
While one of the greatest advantages of managed IT support contracts is that they are comprehensive, there are some costs and services that are not included in most managed IT contracts.
Some of the costs and services that aren’t included in managed IT are:
If your network, server, or devices are outdated and need to be updated, that cost will be determined and billed separately from your managed IT support contract
Some managed IT providers are equipped to also tackle special projects such as installing a new server to enhance processing speed and/or security, but these projects will be billed separately from your monthly support fee
Service (or Help) desk
Some providers offer unlimited calls to the service desk, others offer only a limited number of calls in a given period (and then charge extra for additional calls,) while still others charge for each call - know what to expect
There will likely be an upfront cost to prepare your network for managed IT services based on the current state and complexity of your IT infrastructure
Since most managed IT providers determine cost based on the number of employees, there will be a proportional fee added to your monthly cost for every employee you add to your contract
Effective managed IT support providers work with you to plan out these purchases well in advance, so you know what to expect and there are no surprises.
Is Managed IT Support The Right Solution For You?
Only you can decide if managed IT support is the right solution for you. The good news is that you now understand some of the costs that won’t be included in your managed IT support contract, so you can more accurately determine your total IT cost.
By reading this article, you understand what managed IT support usually includes: technology experts, strategic planning, service (or help) desk, managed servers & networks, managed backups, disaster recovery, managed workstations with automated patching, automated monitoring, email support, managed DNS-based protection, managed spam filtering and protection, automated maintenance, license management, managed anti-malware, and managed employee awareness training.
You also have a comprehensive understanding of the costs that will fall outside of your managed IT support contract: hardware upgrades, project work, service (or help) desk costs, onboarding (or set-up) costs, and additional employees.
Still wondering if your business needs IT support, read this article to find out: Does Your Growing Business Need External IT Support?
If you’ve already explored your options and are ready to learn more about managed IT, read this article: What is Managed IT? What’s Included? What Does It Cost?
Already in the process of comparing managed IT support providers? Check out this article: How Do I Choose The Right IT Provider? (Criteria You Can Use)