As a business owner, you must know that Information Technology (IT) plays a vital role in your overall operations. However, taking advantage of it is often tricky if you’re not an expert or tech-savvy. Because of that, most North American entrepreneurs like yourself would delegate the technology part of their business to managed IT services or an IT consulting firm.
The problem is if you don’t know the differences between the two. You’re not alone in this, as many business owners face the same dilemma. So, if you’re wondering which option is better for your business, you may want to read this feature thoroughly.
But first, know what managed IT and IT consulting are.
What Are Managed IT Services?
With a managed IT service provider, you can outsource most of the IT work needed for your business to operate. Some of the work they can do for you are network monitoring, cloud solutions, data backup and recovery, and cybersecurity management.
Hiring a managed IT service provider is often a go-to solution to reduce downtime in your IT infrastructure and ensure maximum efficiency in your company’s technology. With a vendor, you can have peace of mind that your IT infrastructure and operations are in the hands of experienced professionals.
If you’re in Alberta in Canada and you think you need managed IT services, you may want to try getting your managed IT services in Edmonton.
What Is IT Consulting?
IT consulting involves working with an external IT expert to evaluate your company’s IT infrastructure and provide recommendations for improving efficiency, performance, and security. An IT consultant often provides technology assessments, network design, software development, project management, and cybersecurity audits.
An external IT consultant will be there to help your IT team or your business when it comes to advanced and complex tech problems. They can help identify areas for improvement in your IT infrastructure or provide specific technical expertise for a particular project too.
Moreover, working with an IT consultant can give you a fresh perspective, which your in-house team may need to improve, on your company’s IT systems and help you achieve your business goals more effectively. To get more familiar with IT consultation when you’re in Boston in the United States (U.S.), you may want to find IT consultants at Nens or other companies to get more information.
Now that you know the definitions of managed IT services and consulting are, it’s time to know what benefits each can give you.
Benefits Of Managed IT Services Over IT Consulting
Managed IT services can provide greater flexibility, scalability, and cost-effectiveness than IT consulting services. After all, the provider often becomes an outsourced IT team for you, and most of the time, they have a large talent pool of professionals ready to manage your tech-related concerns.
Of course, you can still have an in-house IT team and a managed IT services provider working simultaneously. With your own people, they can efficiently and quickly identify and resolve IT issues before they become major problems. This can effectively reduce tech-related downtime, improve cybersecurity, and benefit your business.
Meanwhile, IT consultants are often project-based. For example, if you want to upgrade your IT infrastructure, you can get the help of a consultant to guide your team on what they need to do. Once the project’s done, the consultant’s contract or work for you is over.
Benefits Of IT Consulting
IT consulting services can give businesses access to an expert—basically, the main reason companies rely on consultants. Primarily, organizations hire IT consultants to provide an unbiased view of their IT infrastructure and specialized guidance, like giving help on website optimization.
In addition, a consultant is great at finding areas for improvement and providing recommendations for optimizing their IT systems. And since you won’t pay for a team and various online services, a consultant is often more cost-effective than managed IT services, especially if you only need to get a few things done.
Which One Should You Get: Managed IT Services Or IT Consulting?
One of the main drawbacks of managed IT services is the cost. And this is especially true if you already have an IT team in your company. Aside from that, a service provider is often more expensive than getting an IT consultant. After all, a vendor’s contract is often longer than a consultant’s.
Moreover, managed IT services often come in packages. A vendor’s package may include services you don’t need, resulting in unnecessary costs. Basically, this translates to a lower level of customization and a waste of specialized expertise you don’t need.
Because of that, it’s essential only to get managed IT services if only you can fully utilize all the services vendors can offer—even if IT spending is expected to rise in the following years. If you have a few unique IT needs or problems that require specialized technical expertise, you may want to settle for a consultant and your team instead.
Choosing between managed IT services and IT consulting can be confusing, yet understanding the differences can help you make an informed decision. Whether you hire a service vendor for comprehensive support or a consultant for specialized expertise, choose the service that fits your business’s unique needs.