Technology Solutions Provider vs. Managed Service Provider: What's Better for Your Business?

By Special Guest
Stuart R. Crawford

Many businesses are choosing to invest in high-tech solutions for their companies. There are two main choices for information technology in the workplace: a technology solutions provider (TSP) and a managed service provider (MSP). But what’s better for your business? Many companies find that a technology solutions provider is a better choice with more comprehensive and innovative options than a managed service provider, which can handle only specific tasks outlined in the contract.

It's important to compare the two options and decide what makes the most sense for your IT needs. New Jersey IT support professional Krystal Triumph shares her insights into the world of TSPs and MSPs.

What Does a TSP and MSP Do?

When evaluating IT services, it's ideal to start at the top by understanding the differences in what a technology solutions provider and a managed service provider bring to the table. MSPs have an agreement or contract in place based around a defined list of services they complete. They help businesses improve and enhance their current IT system, and they establish a contract based on the services required, such as antivirus, networking, and server maintenance. Essentially, MSPs offer general technology services to keep businesses connected, and communicating, setting the foundation for technical requirements. MSPs have been used since the beginning of the modern office workspace, and while the right ones are reliable, they don't necessarily have the resources or capacity to completely overhaul business IT.

That's where TSPs come into the picture. As the name suggests, these providers bring more to the table in terms of technology solutions, doing everything MSPs do, and more. TSPs go to the next level, not only covering the basic IT requirements like software, security, and maintenance but also implementing new solutions and services that set your business up for greater success down the road. TSPs are usually far more adaptive and accommodating, offering to build new systems and setups from the ground up, rather than just maintain systems that were already in place. Many TSPs modernize existing software and build websites and mobile apps that connect with the rest of the business IT background.

Playing it Safe vs. Exploring New Options

No two businesses are exactly alike, and every organization has specific IT needs. Some small businesses may prefer to save a bit of money and stay on the same path with MSPs. Their software and network will be maintained, but not significantly upgraded. While this can work, sometimes MSPs cannot completely protect a business from cyber threats and system shutdowns, because they don't do the same level of innovative improvements as TSPs.

A lot of startups and flourishing family businesses are taking the next step and securing TSPs for total technology solutions. This way, every device, and platform can be integrated and updated to meet today's needs. While MSPs help you maneuver the digital world and use the typical technology available to you, TSPs assist you in transforming your technology where and when you want to, with greater access to the latest and greatest developments.

Businesses that have dedicated apps, fresh new websites and high-tech equipment often rely on TSPs to keep them informed of the new additions to the IT landscape, allowing them to pull in front of their competitors who have fallen behind in the IT department. TSPs look at minimizing downtime, boosting productivity and strengthening connections, while MSPs focus more on monitoring current networks and keeping systems up and running in the meantime.

What Does Your Business Need?

If your organization is sick and tired of the same old IT problems, and your network is holding you back, then a technology solutions provider can help you explore new opportunities. If you're satisfied with your IT and just looking for routine maintenance and support, a managed service provider may suffice.

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