The benefits to CIOs of working with a Managed Services Provider

By Terry Storrar, Director of Managed Services at MCSAStrategyPublished: 4 April 2018

Today’s CIOs face a number of conflicting pressures: tighter budgets, end user demands, high quality of service, a shortage of relevant skills in place and of course keeping IT services secure, compliant and up to industry standards in order to support their business.

Managed services Providers (MSPs) are having to constantly evolve to respond to these challenges and provide a real value-added solution. Outsourcing parts or all of their services to trusted providers, can help ensure that they have access to the very best IT provision to complement their organisation, without needing to finance or resource it all internally.

What are the major benefits of managed service providers?

Access and use of a team of skilled IT expertsUser experience is increasingly becoming the benchmark and standard that CIOs are being measured against and this becomes an issue when the skills gap isn’t going away any time soon. Finding, training and retaining the level of IT expertise you need can be a challenge. What’s more, with increasingly diverse technologies now in place, you will need a vast breadth and depth of IT expertise to ensure all your IT needs are met. Outsourcing parts of your services can be a big boost to an internal IT team, allowing them to focus on their day to day job, with the support of IT experts, who act as an extension to the team. If you were to train an internal IT team constantly on all the required technology tracks to optimise your systems, there would be no time left for them to actually optimise your systems. MSPs have the advantage of scale.

Increased safety and securityCyber security is high up on every CIO’s agenda, and managed services can go a considerable way to helping ensure IT systems are safe and secure. Working in different verticals and varied industries gives an MSP the advantage having to deal with multiple breach attempts which makes them that bit more battle hardened and wise. While managed services can’t and shouldn’t promise to stop all attacks, they can stop them being successful and impacting the day to day business. Working with a trusted managed service provider can help businesses ensure they have appropriate back-up and recovery plans in place, with pre-defined and agreed RTO and RPO’s. Managed service providers will offer round the clock management of services to ensure any potential issues are averted to keep your business up and running as normal.

Tailored technology solutionsEvery organisation is different and managed service providers will work with you to ensure you have the best technology mix in place. There is no such thing as one size fits all and again the experience of working with various clients gives the advantage of knowledge that can be consumed by clients. It may be that you need specific support, or that you have the resource to keep certain services in house. Managed services can help your team become more efficient by giving them access to new technologies, methodologies and centralised ways of working. You should be able to easily scale your requirements, and implement new technology quickly and easily, to ensure your business is always operating at it’s optimum level.

Cost controlManaged services allow you to keep tighter control of your IT budget. While implementing a whole spectrum of IT infrastructure may be unaffordable (and unnecessary) managed service providers will give you access to the technology and support you need, with a cost model to suit your requirements. This value in numbers approach is very appealing to many businesses, especially SMEs. A managed service provider can work with you on a consumption model that allows you to consume your IT on an ‘as you-use’ model, meaning you get, and pay for, what you actually need at that precise moment and not paying the future proofing ‘tax’. This can be reviewed frequently as you scale up or down, to ensure value for money is always delivered.

MSPs can be as remote or visual as you require to keep everything running smoothly so that organisations can concentrate on the productivity of their own team. With reduced downtime, robust back-up systems, day-to-day support from technical experts and advice on making the best use of the technology available, businesses will become more resilient – and better equipped for the future.

MCSA is one of the UK’s leading IT support service companies offering end-to-end, bespoke solutions for a wide variety of commercial and public sector organisations.