Managed Services Versus Break/Fix
MSP contracts generally fall into two broad categories:
A customer “rents” the MSP’s service on a monthly basis to maintain various systems and provide consultative services. Often, any “fixes” applied under this contract (hardware, software, security incidents, etc.), will be covered under this contract, at least up to a certain level, as specified in the SLA. Pause/Repair
The customer continues her MSP’s service even if something goes wrong, hardware related, misconfigurations, other issues that cause operational disruption, security incidents or breaches. Under this retainer agreement, MSPs will be available when a break/repair event is triggered and will receive additional compensation for working hours and hardware replacement.
Why do businesses rely on MSPs?
As demand for IT skills continues to grow and supply becomes increasingly scarce, MSPs help clients scale to meet new initiatives (such as software deployments) without adding staff or requiring training. We can provide valuable support to help you. MSPs can also provide specific skills in required technology areas. Additionally, MSPs typically have experience across diverse environments so can provide valuable expertise when it comes to tackling a challenge, or in vetting possible solutions.
An MSP can help at any stage of a customer’s IT lifecycle, including:
- IT policy and program creation
- Scoping / evaluation potential IT solutions
- Solution implementation
- IT operations, network, and security performance monitoring
Some common services MSPs may implement and/or manage for a customer include:
- Helpdesk support
- Network and application monitoring/management
- Business Continuity and disaster recovery
- Hardware repair
- Software installation, updating, and patching
- Configuration management and optimization
MSPs may provide a broad or focused service offering. While MSPs increasingly offer more than basic cybersecurity services, organizations that require highly specialized security services (identity and access management, privilege management, etc.), frequently turn to an MSSP (managed security services provider).