- What Are Managed IT Services?
- Pros and Cons of Managed IT Services
- Benefits of Managed IT Services
- Disadvantages of Managed IT Services
- What Are Co-Managed IT Services?
- Advantages and Disadvantages of Co-Managed IT Services
- Benefits of Co-Managed IT Services
- Disadvantages of Co-Managed IT Services
- Co-Managed vs. Managed IT Services: Similarities
- Security Software and Solutions
- Software Patching
- Data Backups
- Remote Access
- Co-Managed vs. Managed IT Services: Differences
- Handling IT Management
- Management and Adaptability
- In-House IT Staff Integration
- Choosing the Right IT Solution for Your Business: Managed vs. Co-Managed IT Services
- Choosing a Fully-Managed Solution
- Considering a Co-Managed Solution
- Rely on Appinventiv for the Right IT Solution for Your Business
The fast-paced world of tech continues to propel businesses towards utilizing IT services for improved operations and better output. Consequently, the expenditure on IT services is escalating, with forecasts suggesting a remarkable global figure of $1.585 billion by 2024. This substantial increase highlights the importance of IT services in assisting enterprises to accomplish their goals.
However, finding the best IT services to meet your business requirements is not an easy feat. When organizations look for IT services, they have two choices: Co-managed and managed IT services. Both alternatives present unique benefits and limitations, making the decision-making process crucial. Therefore, when businesses need to choose one, it is important to know the differences between co-managed and managed IT services, making it easier to walk on the best route to save money and work better.
This article will explore the nitty-gritty of managed vs. co-managed IT services to help organizations make an informed choice that suits their distinct needs and goals.
What Are Managed IT Services?
Managed IT services mean that a business outsources its information technology (IT) management and upkeep to an external party or a Managed Services Provider (MSP). This smart move allows companies to hand over the accountability of looking after and handling their IT framework, apps, and routines to outside specialists.
The worldwide market for managed IT services, estimated at $255.86 billion in 2022, is on track for major expansion, expected to rise to $671.14 billion by 2030. These stats highlight the crucial part managed services contribute to backing up groups in different industries.
Pros and Cons of Managed IT Services
Embracing managed IT services can be a strategic move for organizations seeking to optimize their technology infrastructure and streamline operations. These services provide a host of benefits but also have some challenges associated with outsourcing IT functions to third-party providers. Let’s discover the pros and cons of managed IT services.
Benefits of Managed IT Services
Managed IT services offer a range of benefits to businesses seeking efficient and reliable technology support. Some key benefits of managed IT services include:
- Fewer Worries and Responsibilities: Complete Managed IT Services take away all the worries of managing IT framework and infrastructure from businesses so that they can concentrate on their key organizational activities.
- No Need to Maintain IT Expertise: This provides organizations with the freedom of not having to update and retain their internal IT expertise continually. MSP plays a role in ensuring the organization is up to date with the latest technology trends and updates.
- More and Higher Expertise to Call On: MSPs offer complete managed IT services with a pool of diverse and highly qualified professionals. This enables the company to source expertise from a diverse talent pool with regard to IT requirements.
- No Internal Costs: Organizations do not need an internal IT team. Hence, such organizations can save on the cost of hiring, training, and maintaining an in-house IT staff.
- Network and Infrastructure Always Up to Date: As part of the fully managed arrangements, MSPs will make sure that the network and IT infrastructure are up-to-date with relevant technologies, patches, and updates needed for optimal performance and security.
Disadvantages of Managed IT Services
While Managed IT Services offer numerous benefits, there are also potential limitations that organizations should consider. Here are some of the common disadvantages of Managed IT Services:
- Less Control: An MSP becomes integral in managing the IT infrastructure of an organization, leaving them with less direct control of their IT strategy and decision-making.
- No In-House Expertise: Organizations are likely to experience difficulties in handling instant IT needs or making prompt decisions, as there is no internal expertise.
- No At-Hand Expertise to Call On: When an organization focuses on external expertise alone, it can lead to delays in a situation that requires urgent consideration or special internal information.
- Higher External/Outsource Costs: Although it is possible to save some costs by not maintaining an internal IT team, organizations may find that the external/outsource costs of fully managed services are higher, particularly when they need more support.
Here is a concise table to help you gain a better understanding of managed IT services:
|Advantages of Managed IT Services
|Disadvantages of Managed IT Services
|Streamlined operations with reduced responsibilities
|Less direct control over customization and changes
|Access to external expertise and specialized skills
|Absence of in-house technical expertise
|Cost savings with no internal overheads
|Limited immediate response for critical issues
|Continuous access to cutting-edge technology
|Potential reliance on external service providers
|Scalability and flexibility for changing needs
|Dependence on third-party security measures
|Proactive monitoring and maintenance
|Reduced control over network and system upgrades
Still unsure about the roles and responsibilities of managed IT service providers? This blog will help you gain an in-depth understanding: Why should you hire managed IT services for your business?
What Are Co-Managed IT Services?
Co-managed IT Services combine internal and external resources. Under this model, businesses uphold an internal IT team while simultaneously collaborating with an external Managed Services Provider to distribute duties and access supplementary expertise and resources. Both these teams work together to balance in-house control of certain IT tasks with the extra knowledge and backup from external experts.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Co-Managed IT Services
While co-managed service seems like a middle way, organizations face several limitations along with benefits when it comes to co-managed services. Here are some of the key points to consider:
Benefits of Co-Managed IT Services
Co-Managed IT Services offer a strategic partnership that combines the strengths of internal and external teams, providing organizations with a flexible and cost-effective approach to managing their IT environment. Here are some of the benefits of co-managed IT services:
- Business Has More Control: Co-managed services empower businesses, enabling proactive involvement in IT strategy and alignment with overall business goals.
- More Flexibility: Co-managed solutions provide adaptable IT support, catering to businesses’ unique needs. This flexibility ensures tailored IT solutions.
- Business Keeps Internal IT Staff: To maintain internal IT knowledge and expertise, organizations benefit from retaining their IT staff, supplemented by co-managed IT services for added support and resources. This collaborative approach helps ensure ongoing competence and flexibility.
- Costs Less Than Fully Managed IT Solution: Co-managed services typically cost less than fully managed ones. Businesses can save by choosing tailored services while retaining internal capabilities.
- Have Highly Qualified External Expertise to Call On: In a co-managed model, businesses can benefit from the specialized skills and knowledge of external MSPs. This allows them to profit from the experts’ proficiency in addressing specific projects or challenges, ensuring top-notch IT solutions.
- Qualified Ongoing Mentorship/Training Process: Co-managed services commonly offer mentorship and training, ensuring regular skill enhancement for internal IT staff. This continuous learning keeps the team informed about modern technologies and best practices.
Disadvantages of Co-Managed IT Services
While co-managed IT services offer a hybrid approach that combines in-house and outsourced IT management, there are potential disadvantages of co-managed IT services. Here are some of them:
- Business Has More Responsibility: In the co-managed IT services model, businesses assume added responsibilities alongside increased control, necessitating seamless coordination between internal and external teams to ensure productive collaboration.
- There Can Be Less Structure and Controls: Co-managed services’ flexibility might reduce structure and controls, posing challenges in maintaining consistent IT processes and organizational standards.
- Shared Responsibility for Expertise: Collaboration among experts brings advantages but may also complicate defining roles and responsibilities, causing overlaps or gaps.
- Higher Internal IT Costs: The collaboration between internal IT staff and external MSP services can lead to increased internal IT costs. Businesses should meticulously assess these expenses to verify their alignment with projected benefits.
Here is a concise table to help you gain a better understanding of co-managed IT services:
|Advantages of Co-Managed IT Services
|Disadvantages of Co-Managed IT Services
|Business retains control
|Increased business responsibility
|Flexible IT operations
|Potential for less structure
|Collaboration with internal IT staff
|Shared responsibility for expertise
|Higher internal IT costs
|Access to highly qualified experts
|Balancing structure and flexibility
|Ongoing mentorship and training process
|Finding optimal balance is crucial
Co-Managed vs. Managed IT Services: Similarities
Both co-managed and managed IT services may seem different, but they are a lot alike. Let’s discover some key components that are similar in both of these IT services:
Security Software and Solutions
A high priority is placed on security in both managed IT services and co-managed IT services. In a fully managed situation, the work of installing advanced security software is outsourced to managed services providers. Such an approach involves firewalls to regulate network traffic, antivirus software for protection against malware, and intrusion detection systems to react when a breach is identified quickly.
The co-managed approach involves collaboration with internal IT teams, as well as external MSPs. It provides a comprehensive and layered approach that strengthens an organization’s cybersecurity positioning.
Updating software regularly is key for all service models. Managed Service Providers, fully managing or co-managing, stick to a forward-thinking plan to keep software and systems up-to-date. This means methodically applying patterns and updates to fix weaknesses and improve security overall. Working together in a co-managed service model guarantees that software updates match perfectly with the company’s changing needs and digital safety rules.
One of the essential things in both managed and co-managed solutions is to have a strong data backup strategy. In a fully managed environment, MSPs design, organize, and manage complete data backup programs. Periodic backup of essential data helps ensure the security of crucial information in the event of system problems, cyber-attacks, or unpredictable natural disasters. Internal IT teams work closely with MSPs in a co-managed arrangement to make sure that data backup matches the data protection needs of the organization.
In both service models, remote access capabilities are an important feature, granting organizations the flexibility to oversee their IT systems. Within a fully managed setup, MSPs enable remote access to streamline issue resolution and support efficiency. Conversely, the co-managed approach integrates remote access seamlessly into the organization’s IT operations through mutual collaboration between internal IT teams and external MSPs. This integration plays an essential role in enhancing the overall agility and responsiveness of the IT infrastructure.
Co-Managed vs. Managed IT Services: Differences
Co-managed and managed IT services come with some specific differences that can influence the decision of choosing the right service model that suits your company better. Let’s discover the key differences between co-managed and managed IT solutions:
Handling IT Management
In managed IT services, the MSP provides all management solutions related to the client’s IT infrastructure like hardware, software, and network infrastructure. Co-managed services involve a partnership between a client and an MSP. Under a co-managed strategy, the client delegates specific IT tasks, responsibilities, or projects to the MSP.
Managed IT services may present higher costs to the client, as they fully bear the service expenses. Conversely, co-managed services entail cost sharing with the provider, rendering them relatively more cost-effective.
Management and Adaptability
Utilizing managed IT services may result in a decreased level of control over the IT infrastructure, as it is under the responsibility of the MSP to handle all IT resources of the organization. On the other hand, co-managed solutions offer a higher level of control to businesses, enabling them to select the IT services or tasks to be outsourced to the external IT provider.
In-House IT Staff Integration
In this case, co-managed solutions mean involving the in-house staff and offering additional expertise or covering after-hours support. However, managed IT solutions offer the role of an IT department, reducing the need to recruit, train, and oversee IT personnel.
Still unsure about the key differences and similarities between co-managed and managed IT services? Here is a concise table to help you gain a better understanding and make an informed decision:
|Managed IT Services
|Co-Managed IT Services
|Ownership of Operations
|The outsourced provider manages all IT operations.
|Shared responsibility between internal and external teams.
|Relies on external experts for comprehensive IT support.
|Combines internal team’s knowledge with external expertise.
|Easily scalable with the ability to adapt to changing business needs.
|Adaptable and scalable, leveraging both internal and external resources.
|Typically a fixed or subscription-based cost structure.
|Can offer a more dynamic cost structure based on collaboration and shared responsibilities.
|Gives less direct control as operations are managed externally.
|Provides greater control over IT operations and decision-making.
|May require seamless integration with internal processes.
|Requires effective coordination between internal and external teams for successful integration.
Choosing the Right IT Solution for Your Business: Managed vs. Co-Managed IT Services
Managed and co-managed IT services share the goal of enhancing organizational efficiency, but the key distinction lies in the level of control and collaboration between internal and external resources. While managed services offer complete outsourcing, co-managed services strike a balance, combining the strengths of both internal and external teams. In straight terms, it all depends on your specific budget and business requirements, which service model will best suit your needs. Let’s dig deeper:
Choosing a Fully-Managed Solution
A fully-managed solution will be a good strategic choice if your organization does not have internal IT staff. Hiring and maintaining an in-house qualified IT team comes with costs and challenges, which can be avoided by outsourcing an MSP. The MSP, with a fully managed approach, becomes your on-site IT department that takes care of all IT support issues.
With this model, an organization can save costs, avail themselves of a wide-spread range of specialists, and have no worries about sick leave or vacation coverage. The MSP will give regular reports for clarity and periodic engagements for detailed discussions. This model may limit direct control over IT decisions but offers a convenient way of building and managing a powerful IT infrastructure with no internal expertise.
Considering a Co-Managed Solution
A co-managed solution may be appropriate for organizations with an existing internal IT team. Consider working with a co-manager provider in MSP when you notice some gaps in your team’s knowledge or when you want to raise new skills. In a co-managed model, your in-house IT team works along with the MSP to ensure they plug the gaps and provide additional help. This approach utilizes your internal knowledge base and ensures you have external sources at hand.
In a co-managed solution, your internal team has access to IT tools necessary to enhance their efficiency, while MSP provides expertise and mentorship enhancement. Although this model necessitates cooperation among internal and external teams, it offers a manageable way to build your IT department and provide support, including times when internal teams take a vacation, leave town, or require assistance.
|When to Choose Managed IT Services
|When to Choose Co-Managed IT Services
|When your organization lacks internal IT staff
|When your organization has an existing internal IT team
|When you need an on-site IT department
|When you need a collaborative approach with internal and external teams
|When cost savings and avoiding in-house challenges are a priority
|When aiming to fill gaps in internal team knowledge
|When you seek access to a diverse range of specialists
|When you aim to combine internal knowledge with external support
|When you want to eliminate concerns about sick leave or vacation coverage
|When you need support during internal team absences
|When you value regular reports and periodic engagements for clarity
|When you are open to cooperation for enhanced skills and periodic engagements
|When you are willing to trade some direct control for efficient IT infrastructure management
|When you prefer collaborative decision-making involving both internal and external teams
|When you want a solution that efficiently manages IT infrastructure without relying on internal expertise
|When you are looking for a manageable way to build and support the IT department
Rely on Appinventiv for the Right IT Solution for Your Business
Choosing between managed and co-managed IT services holds utmost importance for businesses seeking to streamline their IT operations. With managed IT services, businesses benefit from a completely outsourced solution, guaranteeing convenience and specialized expertise. On the other hand, co-managed services present a collaborative approach, catering to those who have an internal IT team.
In deciding between complete outsourcing and a collaborative approach, businesses should carefully match their decision with their precise requirements, objectives, and current assets. Achieving a balance between management, proficiency, and cost-efficiency is essential when hiring the best IT consulting services.
Consider partnering with Appinventiv for personalized IT solutions and experience counsel. Our proficiency offers diverse service models, providing tailored approaches to meet your specific IT needs under both the models: managed vs. co-managed IT services.
Q. What is the difference between managed and co-managed services?
A. Managed IT Services means handing over all IT tasks to an outsourced company. Co-managed services are when both outside and inside teams work together to drive unique benefits. The key is to choose what suits your business best.
Q. How does the cost structure differ between fully managed and co-managed IT services?
A. Opting for fully managed IT services for business often involves higher costs as the client handles all the expenses. On the contrary, co-managed services entail cost-sharing with the provider, delivering them a more cost-effective option.
Q. In managed vs. co-managed IT services comparison: which one is best?
A. The decision between co-managed vs. managed IT services depends on the precise requirements and preferences of your organization. If your internal IT resources are insufficient and if you lean towards a completely outsourced solution, the optimal choice could be managed IT services. For organizations with an established IT team looking for collaboration and adaptability, co-managed IT services provide a well-balanced approach.