I.T. Support and Managed I.T. Services – what’s the difference?

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The market is saturated with I.T. businesses who are there to support you if things go wrong, which is great, right? But which ones do you choose, how much does it cost and what does all the jargon mean?  Largely, I.T. Support and Managed I.T. Service Providers do the same thing, so the only thing differentiating them will be cost and the level of service included for that cost.


Less Pain = More Value

To assess the value/pain threshold you’ll need to build a picture of your I.T. and the pain associated with anything breaking or crashing. This picture will amount to the value associated with your I.T. Which means you should think about how important and vital your I.T. is to the smooth running of your business?  What is the cost of not being able to access what you need? What is the cost of being unable to take a customer payment?


What is I.T. Support, and how much will it cost me?

I.T. Support is usually centred round an ‘as you need it’ service. You’ll have an I.T. business that you can rely upon but only part time. We’re going to call it Pay Per Incident I.T. Support.  With a PPI IT support contract, you’ll be charged each time you request support.


Pay Per Incident (PPI) IT Support Costs & Charges.

PPI should be offered on a no-obligation, rolling agreement.  PPI is usually charged by the hour – expect to pay anything from £75 per hour. You may be able to buy a block of time in advance that you can draw on as and when you need it. This is likely to work out a cheaper arrangement than buying each hour individually.

Be cautious – expect to pay twice as much for an hour of onsite support as you would for an hour of remote support.  There probably won’t be a guaranteed response time for callouts either, so you may have to wait for help if you run into a fundamental problem.


What is a Managed I.T. Service?

A managed I.T. service will be given by a Managed Services Provider (MSP). They will support businesses with a need for an outsourced I.T. team and support.  They will offer a fixed monthly contract with a set service level agreement.

The fixed monthly contract should include unlimited telephone support and a service level agreement (where the support company promises to phone you back fast and be onsite for real emergencies in a specified time scale).

The monthly fee should cover everything including onsite visits.

I.T. support for a small business could range from £50 – £2000 depending on the number of staff, PC’s and other infrastructure.

Denplan Approach

We’ve all heard of ‘Denplan’ a dental insurance which allows you to pay for your dentistry in monthly instalments and then when you need dental work you can claim on the insurance with no extra costs involved. This is how we think about a managed I.T. services provision. The business owner pays for the monthly subscription to the service, has a monthly check up face to face and then if there are any emergencies – the issues will be resolved at no extra cost – including onsite visits.

The cost of such support means that you don’t have to worry about a thing. Your licenses are taken care of, your software is updated regularly without thinking about it, everything is backed up daily to the cloud/server with ease and no hassle.   Companies which offer a monthly support option may take a more flexible approach to their customers in general, and therefore often do a better job.

And yes, we may be bias but we do passionately believe that outsourcing your I.T. can be a dream come true.


Trusted Outsourced Partner

Here at Think Cirrus you don’t need to sign a contract, we believe if you’re happy, you’ll stay. We don’t charge for onsite visits and we don’t charge for consultations. We want to build relationships, so you can trust us to be your long term outsourced I.T. partner.

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