There’s More Than One Way to Acquire Third-Party IT Support
The demand for skilled IT professionals continues to exceed the supply. The IT trade group CompTIA estimates there are currently more than 2 million unfilled IT jobs in the U.S., and the shortage is likely to worsen in coming years due to an aging workforce and a dearth of IT education programs. In one Gartner survey, nearly two-thirds of IT executives said the tech talent shortage keeps them from adopting emerging technologies.
To bridge the skills gap, more organizations are working with third-party providers to access the expertise, manpower and services they need. Depending on their unique requirements, they can choose between three distinct models for support — managed services, co-managed services and professional services. In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the important characteristics of each.
Managed services providers (MSPs) offer fully outsourced support on an ongoing basis, taking responsibility for managing and maintaining the organization’s IT infrastructure and systems. Network monitoring, remote technical support, data backup and security are among the essential services provided.
Managed Services, Co-Managed Services, and Professional Services — help organizations navigate the IT talent shortage successfully.
Proactive support is a hallmark of managed service engagements. MSPs deploy advanced tools and technologies to monitor the IT environment, identifying and addressing issues before they escalate. This proactive approach minimizes downtime, improves system reliability, and ensures that technology aligns with the organization’s goals.
Managed services are typically offered on a subscription or fixed-fee basis, which contributes to budget flexibility by converting IT support into a predictable operating expense (OpEx). This allows organizations to budget effectively without worrying about unexpected expenses related to IT management.
Co-managed services are a more collaborative approach between an organization’s in-house IT team and an external service provider. In this model, the internal IT team retains control over certain aspects of IT management while leveraging the expertise and resources of the external provider for specific tasks. This approach combines the strengths of both to enhance overall IT capabilities. It also allows for more customization — organizations can tailor services to address their unique challenges and goals.
Knowledge transfer is one of the unique benefits of these arrangements. By working closely with external experts, the internal team gains exposure to new tools, best practices and industry insights that contribute to ongoing skill development. This collaborative learning environment enhances the internal team’s skills and ensures a smooth transition of responsibilities between internal and external resources.
Professional services typically involve more project-oriented engagements in which third-party IT experts provide expertise beyond the capabilities of an in-house team. Unlike managed and co-managed services, professional services engagements are typically temporary and are narrowly focused on specific projects or initiatives such as system implementation and integration. This approach ensures that the service provider and the client have a shared understanding of the project’s scope and objectives.
Strategic IT planning and consulting are integral components of professional IT services. IT professionals collaborate with businesses to develop comprehensive strategies that align technology with organizational goals. This involves assessing current IT infrastructure, identifying areas for improvement, and formulating plans to enhance efficiency, scalability and security. The strategic guidance provided by IT professionals helps organizations make informed decisions about technology investments and long-term IT roadmaps.
GDS Can Help You Transform IT Challenges into Strategic Opportunities
IT talent shortages are making it nearly impossible for many organizations to keep pace with rapidly evolving technology advances. Consequently, most require help from third-party providers to bridge the skills gap. All three service models we’ve discussed offer access to advanced IT services and expertise, but the choice depends on your unique technology requirements, staff capabilities and operational goals. We’d welcome the opportunity to help you evaluate all the options.
Benefits of Managed IT Services from Global Data Systems
- Strategic Managed IT: We help you solve your technology related business problems.
- Connectivity: We get you reliable, secure connectivity anywhere in the western hemisphere in 48 hours.
- Support: When you need help simply call our 24x7x365 support number.
- Billing: Instead of managing hundreds of vendors - get one, easy to read bill from GDS.