What’s the difference between IT Support and Managed Services

A question we at Starling Reese MS are commonly asked is, “What is the difference between IT Support / Infrastructure Management, and Managed Services?”

For starters the differences are vast. Below is a breakdown of common differences.

IT Support / Infrastructure Support / Infrastructure Management

  • IT Support is a reactive service – a reaction to a cause or failure.
    When something breaks or fails, there is a reaction in the form of fixing the problem – this is referred to as break fix.
  • IT Support is typically offered on an hourly basis.
    In the form of a monthly hours retainer, either on contract or a month to month basis.
    Support hours do not carry over to the following month, and once your support hours for the month exceed your retainer, you are typically billed for the overage – sometime at a higher hourly rate, than the hourly rate included in your retainer.
  • IT Support / Infrastructure Management or Support typically does not include much in the form of preventative or proactive maintenance or administration.

 

Managed Services / Managed IT Services

  • Managed Services is a proactive and preventative form of IT Management
  • Managed Services include the use of IT Management agents / applications that are installed on all devices on your corporate network – Desktop PC’s, Notebooks, Servers – these agents then feed information back to our IT Management Platform that resides in our Network Operations Centre.
  • Services are offered in a modular, scalable form, enabling you to add and remove services as your requirements change, and as your business grows.
  • This live and realtime performance monitoring reports diagnostic information back to our Managed Services Platform, and this information includes:
    • The state of all hardware
    • Hard Drive availability / storage available / bad sectors
    • CPU Processor performance / utilization / over utilization
    • Memory (RAM) usage / over-utilization etc.
    • The state of the Operating System
    • Missing updates / patches / security vulnerabilities
    • The state of all software
  • With Managed Services, the majority of the service provided is done so in a proactive and preventative fashion. With much information fed back to our systems, we are able to act proactively and remedy issues before they lead to devise failure, hardware or system failure or system downtime.
  • Managed Services enable us to offer our clients 70% to 100% reduction in unplanned downtime.
  • The Managed Services offering is holistic, and encompasses all aspects of your IT Network, IT Environment and Business Process requirements, namely:
    • Monitoring, Management & Maintenance, and Support of the following:
      • Devices (Server, workstation, mobile, router, firewall, switch)
      • Security (Antivirus, Anti-spam, firewall, patching, updates)
      • Data & Backups (Backup, restore, replication)
      • Networks (LAN’s, WiFi Networks)
      • Email Management (Archiving, ¬†Security, Compliance, Continuity)
      • Continuity (Servers, Systems, Networks, Connectivity)
  • CIO services – reporting on availability, utilization, security and threats, data backups, assets, licensing, software inventory, capacity planning etc.
  • Unlimited support is typically included in the form of Helpdesk, Remote, On-site support.
  • Managed Services offer predictable and most often fixed monthly costs, enabling you to budget effectively.
  • Managed Services also offer substantial cost saving in the region of 30% and above, when looking at the Total Cost of Ownership of your Corporate Network.