This is one of the most common questions your Lakeland IT services company is asked and one that needs to be addressed in an objective way. Full disclosure here… Alltek Services is a Managed Service Provider and not a Break-Fix IT shop. However, we will never try and convince someone that they need a full Managed Service Plan if they don’t. Let’s get right into The Battle of Break Fix IT versus Managed Services.
Break Fix IT is a term that basically means an IT service company charges hourly for the support they provide. These shops make money on hardware sales, licensing, and of course, hourly support. A business will call them when they need a project completed or assistance with their network, computer, security, etc. They charge an hourly rate between $75 to $150. A Break Fix tech will complete the task, bill the client, and they may not hear from them again for many weeks.
There are still many IT groups in each market that specialize in break fix work. Most are quasi break-fix businesses where they charge monthly for certain services that they pay monthly for, such as data backups, anti-virus, or Microsoft Office 365.
It’s important to keep in mind that computer networks have grown increasingly complex over time, so many of the mid-sized to larger IT companies have transitioned away from this model.
Managed Services is a broad term that describes a business that charges a per-user or per-device management fee. This fee typically covers support (remote and/or onsite), data backups, security, proactive services, etc. This is a more comprehensive relationship because the MSP has thorough documentation of the network, the techs are trained about the client’s business and their key users, and they are on a “retainer” so the client is prioritized if something were to go wrong.
This model may seem like the ideal route, but it does come at a cost. To have all of your IT services included in a single agreement, and to have a team on call to assist requires an investment that ranges from $50-250 per-user or per-device per month.
Some business owners get sticker shock because they may have spent as much on IT service in the past year as a Managed Service Provider would expect for a quarter.
Break Fix IT Benefits:
Break Fix IT Drawbacks:
Managed Services Benefits:
Managed Services Drawbacks:
That’s a good question, and we wish there was an easy answer. We’re going to have to answer like an economist; it all depends.
Are you a small business with 8 employees? Honestly, a break-fix shop is probably your best bet. Being locked into a monthly agreement when your network is very simple may be hard to justify.
Are you a healthcare entity with 20+ users? If you’re using a break-fix shop, you’re in trouble. Each industry has unique requirements and regulations for its technology. A break-fix shop will most likely not have the competency it takes to adhere to everything that applies to your computer network.
Are you an enterprise business with 1,000 employees? If so, you most likely have a budget that can support an internal IT team that could manage every aspect of your network. You may still want to work with an MSP for infrastructure support or help desk overflow, but to solely rely on an MSP in this space would not be recommended.
It all depends on what you think is best for your business. If you’re okay with not having a dedicated IT team and would rather have your buddy help when you need him/her, then go for it. If you only have 4 employees but have a relatively complex network because of your industry or applications, it might be best to work with an MSP that specializes in your industry.
There are pros and cons to both. It’s up to you to decide what you need. Reach out if you need any assistance, and we’ll be happy to provide objective advice on what route would be best for your business.
Did you find this article helpful? If so, there are many other on our Blog that you should check out. Here are a few to get you started: