Running IT at a business is more complicated than ever. Today’s IT professional has so much more on their plate than ever before. Between constantly changing or emerging technologies, finding and hiring experienced talent, training on new systems, keeping up with patching and updates, the day-to-day service tickets, and the added burden of cybersecurity, it’s hard to find enough time during the day to do some of the higher-level things that need to be done to ensure your company is keeping up.
In the past, there were two ways to do IT – either an in-house IT department or hire out, whether through an MSP (managed service provider) or a vendor for certain projects. Size was often the determinant here – too small and you couldn’t afford someone internally (MSP), too large and you wanted someone dedicated specifically to you (in-house). But a shift from this either/or mentality to an and/and one has created a new option. It’s called Co-managed IT services.
Co-managed IT services is really a “best of both worlds” scenario. Organizations keep their current in-house IT, but it augments them with outside resources that can take care of the things that they don’t have the time, training, or sometimes the desire to do. It also gives access to technical expertise without adding headcount. Co-managed IT doesn’t replace the existing team within the organization, it simply adds more people and capabilities to what is there. And it’s customized to the needs of the organization: the IT services company can do as little or as much as needed, at the discretion of the IT manager.
Many companies are moving to this model because of the benefits of it. Some of the companies we’ve talked to that have begun using co-managed IT services say they’ve benefited for a few different reasons:
- Not just putting out fires anymore
- Able to work on strategic, high-level projects that had been put off
- More time to research and consider new technologies
- Able to get to some of the important tasks that weren’t done: documentation, inventory, warranty tracking, etc.
- They can relax on vacation because they’re not afraid of what might happen while they’re away
- IT is being seen as the hero and rewarded because of finding this solution
As more companies see the benefits of co-managed IT services, we anticipate more businesses moving to this hybrid models as IT managers and Service Providers work together to create efficiencies and find the right balance that works for their organization.
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