How To Make Sure You’re Paying A Fair Price For Managed IT Services

Managed IT services offer businesses in Utah many great options for their network and IT management and support requirements. You can get all of your technology managed for a fixed monthly fee. Also Managed IT Services can be customized according to your unique requirements. You’ll have an experienced team of professionals who can handle everything from your cybersecurity to migrating your data to new software platforms.

With a customized Managed IT Plan, you won’t have to worry about large surprise invoices. Plus, you’ll benefit from proactive IT services for things like maintenance, monitoring, and help desk services. If your needs change along the way, you can simply update your plan.

But how much should you pay for Managed IT Services? This is one of the first questions we are asked.

How Much Should Managed IT Services Cost?

It’s important to understand that the cost of Managed IT Services varies a great deal based on your geographic location, the size of your business, and the types of services included in your agreement. If you call around for pricing, you’ll quickly learn that pricing for IT services isn’t uniform. They can vary a great deal from one provider to the next.

There are some valid reasons for this. For example, if your IT provider has highly skilled engineers on board who are certified to work on specific software programs and technology equipment, they may charge more.

Some businesses only need Help Desk support for their computers. This is a popular service that all companies require. If you want a fully managed plan where you never have to worry about your IT infrastructure again, this will cost more than simple Help Desk services. Managed IT Services are priced according to the services you choose.

How Do You Buy IT Managed Services?

One way to do this is to purchase managed services on a monthly subscription plan. What’s in that plan will determine what services and support you receive. IT Managed Services are tailored to fit your specific needs.

How Are Managed Services Priced?

Popular pricing models include monitoring only, per-device, per-user, all you can eat, a la carte, and the tiered pricing models.

The contracted subscription terms can vary. The provider may bill using either a flat-monthly or pay-per-use billing model depending on the nature of the service. The subscription price typically is determined by one or more of the following variables:

  • The number of users and devices
  • The number and type of managed services
  • The types of functions and features delivered

What Are The Six IT Managed Service Pricing Models?

In spite of the ways that pricing can differ from one market to another, there are six standard pricing models generally used by MSPs (Managed Service Providers). These also have some variations, but each represents a set of services provided in the selected plan. They include the following:

1. The Monitoring Only Model

This pricing model provides network monitoring and alerting services. The IT service company offers this model to companies of all sizes. It can include various services, including patch management, backup services, anti-virus, and anti-spam updates, among others. You can ask your IT company to assist in-house IT staff with things like basic incident resolution. Or they can provide more advanced support if needed.

2. The Price Per-Device Model

The price per-device model charges a flat fee for each device that requires support. This pricing is straightforward, and the monthly service fee will be adjusted if you add more devices. Your contract can include flat fees per device (such as?) servers, printers, computers, or managed network devices.

3. The Per-User Model

The per-user model is self-explanatory. You pay a flat fee for each user. If you have 12 employees who work on computers every day, then you’ll pay a set amount for each user. If the number of users changes over time, your IT service provider will adjust the amount accordingly. This pricing model can also include different types of devices your employees use? such as:

  • PCs
  • Laptops
  • Tablets
  • Smartphones

4. The Tiered Model

The tiered model is designed to provide bundled packages. With each package, “X” amount of services is included. MSPs typically offer three or more bundled package levels with respective pricing structures. Some providers use names for them like “Gold, Silver, and Bronze” or “Basic, Standard, and Premium.” With this model, you can pay for whatever services you need if you want to add more services to your bundle, the price increases, respectively.

5. The All-You-Can-Eat Model

The all-you-can-eat model includes ALL your IT needs. This model is for organizations that want to leave all of their IT service worries to their provider. You’ll have a team of professionals who will take care of everything. Typically you’ll have access to:

  • Remote support /onsite support
  • Lab or bench time / 24/7 year-round support
  • Service during regular business hours/ and emergency support on a 24/7 basis.
  • Additional solutions such as AntiVirus/AntiMalware, Backup and Disaster Recovery, device patching, maintenance, IT asset management, etc.

The all-you-can-eat model gives you the ability to budget your IT support costs over a year’s time without any hidden or surprise fees.

6. The A La Carte Model

The a la carte model is unique. With this model, you’re getting individual services. Maybe there’s a specific problem that came up and needed to be addressed. This is when you pay for the specific services you need. You can also create a customized IT managed services bundled package tailored to your company’s specific needs.

What Are The Average Pricing Ranges For Managed IT Services?

Actual pricing ranges fluctuate from one location to another. Below we’ve estimated what price ranges could look like. Just remember, these are not actual prices, only price ranges.

1. Flat Fee Range: $100-$250 per month depending on the scale of service you require.

2. Per-User Range: $75–$300 per month

3. Per Device Range: $100-$400 per server, $50-$150 per workstation, $30-$75 per firewall, $15-$40 per network device.

How Does This Compare To Hiring A Full-Time Technical Engineer?

Some businesses hire one or more in-house IT engineers on a full-time basis to handle their technology infrastructure. The average salary for a tech engineer is $72,022. Also, you’ll have to provide insurance, paid vacations, and a range of benefits. A fully loaded qualified engineer cost is generally around $100K – $150K per year.

The biggest problem for most companies comes when your IT tech gets a year or so of experience under their belt. They often begin to look around to see if they can find a better-paying job, and they could eventually leave you for a larger company that offers better benefits.

This is practically inevitable, and it happens frequently. You put a lot of time into training employees, and then they leave you for another firm. Then you must start all over again.

What Should You Know Before You Purchase Managed IT Services?

Not everyone signs up for a fully managed plan. Some companies already have an in-house IT department. They’re just looking for occasional help with big projects.

On the other hand, it can be beneficial to use fully managed IT services. With this service model, your provider will take care of everything, including security. Some business owners and managers don’t want to worry about any of their technology needs so they can focus on growing their business.

Of course, you can choose to get a very low tier of managed IT services where the provider only comes out if you have a problem. This type of service is often referred to as “Reactive” because the managed service provider is only contacted if there’s a problem with a server, computer, router, network, etc.

With the Proactive service model, you can get a team of pros to manage, monitor, and maintain your entire IT infrastructure so that it always runs at peak performance. This can extend the life of your equipment and increase the productivity of your workforce due to fewer IT interruptions.

What Can You Expect In Terms Of ROI For Managed IT Services?

With managed services, you can shift your spending strategy, free up resources, and potentially cut costs. When calculating your return on investment, consider the following:

  • You’ll Free Up Your Cash Flow: Traditionally, IT expenses are categorized as capital expenses or CapEx. With managed services, you can move away from a CapEx model to operational expenses or an OpEx model. Your costs for these services are considered monthly operating expenses, like your electric bill, that you can write off on your taxes.
  • You’ll Have IT Expertise Without Hiring a Full-Time Employee: Keeping an IT environment running smoothly requires constant attention and the availability of highly-skilled staff. By taking advantage of managed services, you can eliminate the burden of finding, training, and retaining talent with all of the necessary skills.
  • It Decreases Downtime: Businesses now heavily depend on their technology. This increased reliance on mission-critical applications, and 24/7 access to data, make high availability a top priority for IT. Managed IT Service helps to ensure that uptime, security, and redundancy requirements are met.
  • You’ll Save Money: CIOs and CFOs are not only tasked with the management of IT, but also with supporting business growth by reducing costs. Organizations are being asked to do more with fewer resources. Managed service providers are a vital component to ease the burden and free up IT staff to focus on in-house projects.
  • You’ll Benefit From Enhanced Levels of Service: Many IT services companies offer a comprehensive suite of services such as cloud infrastructure, application management, network, and security management solutions. When you work with IT pros, you get the benefit of their years of experience, their certifications, and much more.

What Types Of Services Are Available With Managed IT Services?

Although your business could benefit from all types of IT services, some companies have certain aspects of this already covered. There’s no reason to pay for services that you don’t need. Below are some of the most popular services:

Infrastructure Management, Monitoring & Maintenance

This includes server monitoring and workstation protection. Your IT support company will manage your security and firewall and provide backup and disaster recovery services. Business continuity with cloud-based backups is an essential component these days with so many ransomware attacks locking up and stealing the organization’s data.

Cloud Services

Most companies can benefit from moving to the Cloud. You need onsite and offsite file backups to protect your important data. Cloud services can save you money on hardware and software solutions, increase your IT security, and provide scalability. Hosted email or fully-hosted infrastructure solutions are options you should consider.

User Support

Your employees will eventually need help with a line-of-business application or a malfunctioning computer. Depending on how many employees and computers you have, it can be more cost-effective to go with an unlimited user support package.

Technical engineers can often solve your issues remotely. This is a quick, convenient option when employees need help. The tech can remotely login to a computer and fix the problem so your employees can go right back to work. In some cases, it’s necessary to send an engineer out to your company to fix the problem. With unlimited user support, everything is included, so there are no surprise IT bills to pay.

Strategic Consulting/vCIO

Strategic consulting will help you align your IT solutions with your business plan. It can prevent you from making significant investments in technology that might be outdated within a few years. The goal here is to give you the benefit of years of experience dealing with different IT solutions, systems, products, and services.

How Do You Know Which Managed IT Service Company To Choose?

Be sure to do your homework when looking for the right managed IT provider. Are they reliable and proactive? Do they have a rock-solid industry reputation, positive client testimonials, and awards? Do they provide both onsite and remote support? What about server and workstation backups? You may also need patch management to ensure that your software is current and secure.

Don’t skimp on security for your IT infrastructure. Make sure firewalls are managed and configured and that all anti-virus software is updated regularly. You should also ask if they provide employee security awareness training regarding phishing and malware.

Additionally, you should have access to certified IT technicians and engineers to work on your IT equipment. A reliable provider will give you fast response times, plus they’ll work hard to make sure you are satisfied with their services. A great managed IT provider will become a strategic partner who helps you reach your business goals.

How Much Should You Pay For Managed IT Services?

You should pay for what your company needs to thrive. As your business evolves, your IT services have to evolve as well, so this should also be a consideration as you plan your budget.

We don’t require that you engage in our full spectrum of services. Instead, we can put together a tailor-made package that gives your company exactly what you need and nothing that you don’t. If your needs change, just let us know. We are all about flexibility as we understand that businesses must be flexible to survive these days.

According to recent studies, organizations that are effectively leveraging technology to drive business efficiency, success, and growth are spending 8% – 15% of their annual budget on IT expenses. Organizations who take cybersecurity more seriously, or must be compliant with government data regulations, spend 12% – 20% of their annual budget on IT.

Looking For A Managed IT Service Provider?

Before you think about going through the stress of trying to find a computer tech or even a computer engineer to support your business network and technology infrastructure, speak with a local managed IT services company in Provo, Park City, or Salt Lake. Ask questions about the services offered, prices, and help desk support. When you find the right provider, a strategic IT partner who will work with you, Managed IT Services will greatly benefit your company.

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Thanks to our colleagues at Orion Networks for their assistance with this article. Discover more about Orion Networks IT services in Columbia, MD here.