Computer networks are more powerful, efficient, but more complicated than ever. Every small business has multiple computers, mobile devices, and critical business applications running on cloud services. While computers provide a platform for intelligent business operations, it also creates access points for hackers to try and to get into your network. Your Information security should be a primary concern. A business computing network requires full-time attention, but can your organization really afford an IT manager, let alone an IT team?

Fortunately, there’s a more cost-effective approach. A managed service provider can handle all aspects of your network maintenance for a fixed monthly rate. With an MSP, you get the reliability and security which a full-time IT staff provides at a fraction of the cost. Here are five of the benefits:

Regular maintenance

Operating systems and applications need to stay up to date. It’s not so much a matter of having all the latest features, but of having all available patches and bug fixes installed. When you have fully updated software, it runs more reliably from both an operational and security standpoint. You get prompt fixes for security holes, avoiding expensive data breaches.

Maintenance also includes configuration and data management. A well-configured system uses resources efficiently and gives access to the appropriate people. It provides better response times and has few problems.

Fixing systems after they break is expensive and disruptive. Managed services keep them from breaking.

Access to ITLine IT Support

A primary benefit to an MSP is the Service Desk. A service desk provides the ability to call, email or chat a problem within your organization and allow a resource with a specific technical competency to address that issue. By teaming up with an MSP that has multiple resources on a service desk, your IT issues get resolved faster and with less frustration to users by not having to search and test the solutions on their own or with a member of the company that functions in a different role as the part time fix-it person. Having a access to a service desk also allows you to vet new hardware, software and cloud solutions that will give you input based on a wide variety of experience and use cases.

Information security

Every system on the Internet is a target for data theft, ransomware, cryptocurrency mining or data deletion. Keeping a network safe is a difficult job because of all the potential access points. Managed services can provide spam protection, software patches, security software, and monitoring to protect your system investment. The threat landscape constantly changes, and it takes full-time experts to protect systems against the latest attacks.

Protection from data loss

Losing information because of a system failure, physical damage, or ransomware can have devastating costs. An MSP performs regular backups on your systems, so that you can quickly restore any files that are accidentally or maliciously wiped out. For the highest level of protection, you can set up a disaster recovery service that will keep downtime to a minimum.

Lower costs

IT people command good salaries, and having just a full-time IT manager can be a significant expense. There’s more to know than any one person can, so hiring just one person may not be enough. A large enterprise can afford a full-time staff, but it’s a burden for a business that doesn’t have many employees. Managed services let you share the cost with other customers while getting the expertise needed to keep your systems running.

With managed services, your costs are predictable. “Break-fix” service may seem cheaper, but recovering from a service disruption can be very expensive when it happens. You have to factor in not just the cost of correcting the problem but the time lost and the effect of downtime and stolen data on your business’s reputation.