Getting the Most ROI out of Managed Services


Getting the Most ROI out of Managed Services

By Erin Harrison

Over the past decade, the term “managed services” has become one of the most frequently used in the IT space and is even more prevalent today based on the number of companies consuming IT services, especially organizations without the need or the budget for a full-time IT department. Managed services is essentially when an IT service company can remotely manage and support a client’s IT environment.

A managed service provider (MSP) delivers network, application, system and e-management services across a network to multiple enterprises, using a “pay as you go” pricing model, according to Gartner’s IT glossary.

This IT service delivery model offers distinct advantages to both the IT company as well as to the client, according to Zack Schuler, founder and CEO of Cal Net Technology Group.

“First, from the IT company’s perspective, they can automate most of the routine tasks that are associated with maintaining a computing environment. These remote management tools have many automated processes that can be turned on, thus saving the IT company time and money,” Schuler recently told Smart Business.

From a cost-savings perspective, businesses benefit from managed service because this service delivery model helps clients manage their IT budgets a bit more closely, as many of the services are delivered on a fixed fee.

Another major benefit managed services can provide to businesses is predictability: “If the IT company has perfected its own processes around these tools, the ‘human error’ factor of manual maintenance goes away,” Schuler added.

To ensure that managed services provide the most return on investment to businesses, organizations may want to use blended services, which are a strategic combination of managed services and professional services that are packaged together to deliver the most value to the customer.

“This consists of looking hard at those services that can take advantage of remote tool sets and automation, and subsequently injecting intellectual capital into every other facet of IT that cannot be automated,” Schuler explained.

For a company to shift to managed services usually requires buy-in from senior-level executives, which sometimes are considered “technophobes” and view IT strictly as overhead. Businesses can attain the most ROI from their managed services investment when they see the value of IT and its effectiveness as a bottom line tool.

Edited by Alisen Downey

Executive Editor, Cloud Computing

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