Top Pros and Cons of Co-managed IT for Businesses
Co-managed IT can sometimes sound too good to be true. How do you know you're not just being sold a sales pitch?
Avoiding getting a service you don't need all boils down to thorough research.
So in this article, we'll take a look at the following advantages and disadvantages of Co-managed IT. As a Co-managed IT provider, we'll use our experience to help you understand exactly what you can expect in getting Co-managed IT.
And by the end of this article, you'll be able to decide for yourself if the risks of getting Co-managed IT are worth it.
Pros of Co-managed IT
There are five important advantages of Co-managed IT you should be aware of. They are:
1. It keeps your business' technology up-to-date and secure.
According to Rob Schenk, ITS San Francisco Partner, this is the most significant benefit of Co-managed IT.
"They [Businesses] will be on newer technology faster than they would be if they're doing it themselves," Schenk explained. "They'll be in a more secure position, and they can move forward with their initiatives. [...] They're able to leverage technology to keep everything updated in an automated day."
Co-managed IT ensures that you don't fall into tech debt and focuses on improving your day-to-day operations without falling behind on the latest technology.
2. It costs less than Managed IT.
Managed IT Services means another company ultimately manages your IT department for you. Co-managed IT costs less than that and is a good idea for businesses that want to dip their toes into helping their IT department but don't want to offload their IT department fully.
You also save money on all the hardware and software your Co-managed IT provider supplies. You don't need to buy things like servers or firewalls individually, which will cost more.
3. It provides an escalation point for your IT needs.
When your IT department is stuck, or if there are not enough people to help your end-users with their concerns, your Co-managed IT Service Provider will step in. It releases your IT department from the burden of dealing with everything.
4. You get multiple team members with varying specializations.
Getting Co-managed IT ensures you get more than one technician with various specializations. Unlike an in-house IT department, you can get the skills for multiple fields for a single price.
Getting Co-managed IT also ensures your business isn't left weak if crucial people in your IT department go. Your Co-managed IT department can fill in for the staff while you're hiring replacements.
5. You get to keep your in-house IT guys.
You may not want to lose the company knowledge of your IT department. They might've been around for a long time. For whatever reason, you can keep your in-house IT department. This way, they can work together to create value for your business.
Related article: Co-Managed IT: A Complete Guide for Businesses
Cons of Co-managed IT
There are also downsides to getting Co-managed IT. These are:
1. It needs investment.
Co-managed IT requires an investment in both money and time. It's not something you pay for and forget; good Co-managed IT services are tightly integrated into company goals.
"You meet with leadership," Schenk explained. "And you agree at a high level that these are the changes you need to make to move the company forward. We really need to get buy-in from the highest levels."
He said, "Once we have buy-in, we can plan out the implementation of these projects and upgrades."
2. It may affect your end-users work process.
A good Co-managed IT service will ensure no downtime while they're making their upgrades or integrating your IT department into their system. However, changing the IT department structure usually affects your end-users work process.
Your team members will have to adjust to the new tech process. An example, Schenk said, is implementing 2FA (Two-factor Authentication).
"Users don't typically like having extra steps that they have to do to get logged into a system," he explained, "because they get frustrated, but they also need to do it securely, and that's why they need 2FA."
3. Training for new tech processes is most often required.
Training is tied in with the new workflow. You need to invest in training your staff in the latest IT infrastructure.
Schenk said, "Users sometimes tend to push back on that stuff, especially if leadership hasn't set the stage or laid out the why these things occur."
"You have to train them," he said. "The users who are doing the everyday work need to know what's changed. Having a kind of training mechanism helps reduce the amount of end-user complaining."
4. Possible friction between in-house IT and managed IT.
Adjusting to new people can be a challenge for departments. Schenk pointed out that often, IT people are reluctant or completely resistant to working with an outside team.
"They're afraid we're going to take their jobs," he said. "But it [co-managed IT] is more of a partnership. We're working together to help fill the gaps they currently have. We have the expertise, and we can do projects [...] that make them look good."
"By helping the IT department," he said, "we can get their technology to where it needs to be. We get them to a point where they can leverage [our services] to help them know and secure what they have."
Need more information about Co-managed IT?
Co-managed IT takes a lot of time and money to invest in, and you deserve to know about possible challenges ahead of time.
And as mentioned, these are the following pros and cons of Co-managed IT:
|PROS OF CO-MANAGED IT||CONS OF CO-MANAGED IT|
|1. It keeps your business' technology up-to-date and secure.||1. It needs investment.|
|2. It’s cheaper than Managed IT.||2. End-user related impact.|
|3. It provides an escalation point for your IT needs.||3. Pushback from end-users.|
|4. There are multiple specialized team members.||4. Possible friction between in-house IT and managed IT|
|5. You can keep your IT staff.|
If you’d like to continue your research about Co-managed IT, Intelligent Technical Solutions has helped companies decide if Co-managed IT is for them. Learn more about the cost of Co-managed IT in the article “How Much Does Co-managed IT Cost? [Important Price Factors]”.