Kharmela Mindanao

By: Kharmela Mindanao on September 3rd, 2021

Print/Save as PDF

Buying Your Own Equipment vs. Buying from an MSP (Pros & Cons)

managed it services

Are you unsure if you should buy a workstation yourself or from your MSP? That’s alright, as there are pros and cons with either decision. Read this article for the pros and cons of buying your own workstation or from your MSP. 

You might be unsure about purchasing a workstation yourself versus buying your workstation from your MSP. There are pros and cons to each choice, and this article will help you look at all these pros and cons.

Despite being a Managed-IT Service Provider (MSP), at Intelligent Technical Solutions (ITS), we acknowledge that hiring an MSP is not worth it for some businesses, as some prefer a break-fix approach instead of a managed approach for their tech. So, here’s an article about the pros and cons of buying from an MSP or building your workstation yourself.

By the end of the article, you’ll be able to decide if buying a workstation from your MSP is worth it for your business or if you’d be better off being in charge of your workstations.

DIY-ing Your Workstations

shopping_laptop

Some people want to build their organization’s workstations. If you are in this group, make sure you know the following pros and cons of doing everything yourself.

Pros:

  • Complete control
  • Possibility of spending less
  • Obtain knowledge and experience
  • Sense of pride due to building everything from scratch
  • Customized to your business needs

Complete control

This is one of the most important reasons companies choose to build their workstations themselves: control. You can adjust everything to your liking and sleep peacefully at night knowing exactly where your money went.

Possibility of spending less.

Saving_money

By choosing to take over the procurement of your workstations, you can shop around for deals that would help you spend less money.

Unlike going through an MSP (who usually has set amounts for clients to choose from), being involved in the buying process of your workstations allows you the freedom to cut corners. Less money spent on tech means more money to spend elsewhere.

Obtain knowledge and experience

Another valuable benefit of building your workstations yourself is learning how technology works. Even if your system breaks down, you still have the knowledge with you and will be able to make it again. You become more self-sufficient and are not reliant on other people for your tech needs.

Sense of pride in building everything from scratch

Who doesn’t like making cool stuff and going, “I built that!”? Making your workstations is like building complex and expensive Lego castles. There’s a sense of satisfaction and ownership when you put all the time, effort, and money into something.

Customized to your business needs

No one knows your business better than you. If you’re also in charge of setting up the workstations in your company, you’ll be able to customize each part according to precisely your employees’ needs. Most MSPs prefer to standardize equipment as standardization, as standardization comes with its own pros.

Cons:

  • Time-consuming
  • Dealing with customer service
  • A large amount of knowledge needed
  • Possibility of making costly mistakes

Time-consuming

Running a business is tough, and allotting time to set up your equipment may be out of your reach. If you want to set up your workstations, you need to worry about hardware and software installation, plus running your business on the side.

Getting customer service

You lose out on centralized customer support by not going through an MSP and getting your parts from different manufacturers. You’d have to troubleshoot your workstation on your own, figure out what the problem is, then approach whoever you bought that particular part from. It’s a lengthy process that no one wants to go through.

A large amount of knowledge needed

When building your workstations, you need to do a lot of research. You need to know all the different kinds of hardware and software you need, which equipment is the best for you, how to install it, and even how to protect workstations from cyber attacks.

A lot of time is needed to obtain this knowledge - time you could have put into other ventures.

Possibility of making costly mistakes

No matter how much research you do, sometimes you can still make mistakes that you don’t intend to make. After all, we’re all only human. You might overlook something unless you’ve had years of experience in the tech field (and even then, you can still make mistakes).

These mistakes can cost your business money in the form of repairs, replacements, or even security attacks. You need to have the foresight to prevent all these problems or prepare contingency plans for when they pop up.

Buying from an MSP

MSP_shopping

Managed-IT Service Providers (or MSPs) popped up as a response to the world’s growing need for excellently managed technology. They take care of the IT infrastructure and make sure everything works for the company they’re helping. But at the same time, come with the following pros and cons:

Pros:

  • Saves time
  • Convenient customer service
  • Access to business-grade equipment
  • Customized bundles for your business
  • Security

Saves time

Time is a non-renewable resource, and an MSP helps save yours. An MSP leverages their expertise to set up everything you need; they’ll know where to source materials and software and have people on-hand to install the workstations. They may even install company-specific scripts and improve software settings you may not be aware of.

Their expertise allows you to entrust your workstations to them. Knowing your IT is handled by professionals can give you the peace of mind to focus on your business.

Convenient & continuous customer service

By having an MSP, they can act as the liaison between you and the equipment manufacturer. If equipment breaks down, they save you from the responsibility of calling for replacements.

MSPs also serve as technical support for your IT issues. If you have difficulties using the software, for example, you can call them directly. They can use their hardware and software maintenance knowledge to keep your workstations useful for a longer period.

Their manpower dedicated to solving issues as quickly and efficiently as possible removes the responsibility of taking care of everything from your hands.

Access to business-grade equipment

You can have business-grade equipment by going through your MSP, as consumer-grade equipment from your nearest Walmart isn’t as durable. There are vast differences between consumer-grade vs. business-grade material, and your MSP knows where to get them.

Customized bundles for your business

business_grade_equipment

Like building your own workstations, a good MSP will customize your equipment for your needs. They’ll ask about your business goals and what you want for your equipment and work with you to make the best choice among what they’re offering. Although MSPs bring up fewer choices, these choices were pulled from their extensive experience in the field.

Security

By having an MSP that monitors your workstations, you’ll have the added benefit of making sure all security features and industry best practices for security are there. MSPs will take care of security patches and are tech-savvy enough to keep your workstations safe from cybercriminals.

Cons:

  • Lack of control
  • May cost more upfront
  • Limited customization

Lack of control

Entrusting an MSP with your workstations means you’re going to give up a certain level of control with what exactly goes into each one. You won’t have complete control over where you buy things, how things are set up, or the materials you want.

You also won’t be managing the workstations, and that might cause you to feel a certain amount of dread, especially if you’re not yet sure about the company you’ve hired.

You may bring up your concerns about this with your chosen MSP, and they may choose to come up with more options for you. But there’s no getting around the fact that MSPs will limit your options.

May cost more upfront

There is definitely a price to be paid for convenience. You may find it cheaper upfront to do everything yourself as you can hunt for bargain deals and cut corners. MSPs will offer you prices that take their expertise and the convenience they bring you into consideration, but sometimes bargain hunting outside of MSPs is the way to go.

Limited customization

If you’re someone who cares a lot about customizing your materials, an MSP may not be for you. They’re usually big on standardization of equipment, as this allows for a more streamlined process in making your IT infrastructure work smoothly. You’re usually limited to what your MSP provides, and sometimes they’re not the right fit for your business.

Build Your Workstation Yourself or Get an MSP? You decide.

build_computer

To sum everything up, building your own workstation and buying your workstation from an MSP have their own pros and cons.

Buying your own workstation  Buying from your MSP 
Pros Cons Pros Cons
Complete control  Time-consuming Saves time  Lack of control
Possibility of spending less Dealing with customer service Convenient & continuous customer service   May cost more upfront  
Sense of pride due to building everything from scratch Possibility of making costly mistakes   Access to business-grade technology  Limited customization
    Customized bundles for your business  
    Security  

The main point: buy your own workstation if you are more comfortable with the responsibility associated with building everything yourself, but go with an MSP if you are more comfortable handing the control of your workstations to third-party experts. 

At Intelligent Technical Solutions, we’ve noticed that not all businesses are comfortable buying their workstations from their MSP due to trust issues. They just don’t know if the company they’re talking to is worth the investment. And that’s a good thing! You don’t want to be one of those businesses that get burned because you trusted too easily.  

If you’re one of those cautious businesses, then you must know the top seven qualities an MSP should have. The previous article was written based on the qualities clients of ITS have pointed out that bring up their trust in our company.  

About Kharmela Mindanao

Kharmela Mindanao is a content writer for Intelligent Technical Solutions. She’s called Ella by her friends and likes yoga, literature, and mountain climbing. Her favorite book is Anxious People by Fredrik Backman. She creates art and poetry and is on a quest to find the best cheesecake.