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Why Should Businesses Choose Managed Services vs. Break-Fix?

To better understand why businesses should choose managed services vs. break-fix, here is a pros and cons comparison between the two options:

Pros of Break-Fix Support

No Monthly Services Fees or Annual Contracts
Break-fix models eliminate monthly services costs and commitments to long-term contracts of a year or more. If you choose this model, you’re betting that mission-critical systems won’t break and, if they do, you’ll pay at the time rather than upfront to ensure nothing breaks to begin with.

Business Control Break
Fix gives you 100 percent control over your IT department with no third parties involved. Choose this model if you value internal IT control over unforeseen costs to fix problems or fixed costs to guarantee permanent resolutions to problems that do arise.

Cons of Break-Fix Support

Short-Term & Prone to Abuse
Since services are billed hourly to fix an issue, short-term, quick patches may be implemented instead of in-depth longer-term solutions that put issues to rest. There’s no true incentive for the provider to completely fix an issue since total resolution could mean no repeat visits and no future revenue.

Misaligned Incentives & Goals
The IT service provider only generates revenue when there are problems. This creates a “chicken and egg” issue wherein client issues need to exist and persist for the service provider to be of use.

Unpredictable Costs
Break-fix work is reactive, with one-off projects that spring upon clients randomly.

You Have to Identify Issues
Without the IT service provider monitoring your network environment and applications, it’s up to you and your internal team to be the decision-maker in highly specialized, high-tech areas in which you’re unlikely to be an expert.

More Expensive
Remediating problems is more expensive than preventing them, especially in the cybersecurity realm.

Pros of Managed Services Support

Goal Alignment
Since the managed service model isn’t dependent on issue resolution, MSPs are incented to focus on preventing problems, to begin with.

More Affordable
Expenses fit neatly into monthly payments, eliminating the need for large capital outlays to deploy services. Likewise, you never get an unforeseen bill for something that breaks.

Infrastructure Modernization
MSPs go beyond just fixing your existing systems. They provide recommendations and create migration plans for upgrades to new and modernized versions of your underlying network infrastructure components, all the while keeping them up to date and in alignment with your technical and business objectives.

Solution Stability
MSPs provide 24/7/365 monitoring and proactive maintenance, which means they can respond to issues quickly and head off system failure and downtime in advance.

Predictable Costs
Expenses fit neatly into monthly payments, eliminating the need for large capital outlays to deploy services. Likewise, you never get an unforeseen bill for something that breaks.

Problem-Resolution Ownership
The onus is on the MSP to properly upkeep your solutions and deploy true fixes. Since they have an ongoing relationship with your business, issues are fully resolved, not just temporarily patched until the next billable opportunity.

Cons of Managed Services Support

Contracts & Commitment
MSPs contracts typically span one year, two-year or three-year terms, and potentially longer depending on the situation. While these contracts ensure your needs are covered over the contract period, you may not want to be locked in.

Trust & Control of Systems
Your business is placing a great deal of trust in an outsourced provider to handle your IT needs. The MSP will have complete access to critical systems and maintain responsibility for their upkeep. (That said, when your system breaks, you have to give your vendor access to your systems anyway.

Are you looking to work with a managed services provider for your business?

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