Business leaders believe there are only two options in regards to IT management: having an in-house IT team or outsourcing the department to an IT managed service provider.
However, an increasing number of clients in the New Haven area have taken advantage of the best of both worlds and chosen co-managed IT. This is where IT is co-managed between the internal-IT expert and a company like ours. This new solution allows businesses to meet their technology needs without having to hire and train new employees.
The co-managed strategy is beneficial in all business climates, especially during the unpredictable economic climate we are currently going through. Small internal IT departments have been put extra pressure to reduce costs, improve security and support remote workers. Outsourcing some of these needs to an experienced IT provider can be a smart solution for many, because the job can get done more effectively and efficiently at a fraction of the cost of traditional hiring.
What is Co-Managed IT and who is it for?
Co-managed IT is for IT departments in need of help keeping up with certain demands. What kind of help? It all depends on the particular needs of the client and the specialty of Managed Service Providers (MSPs). In a co-managed situation, they can play any role ranging from leadership, to execution to troubleshooting.
In the current work from home reality many businesses are facing, en-users might be using cloud-based applications like Microsoft 365, or using a virtual desktop (VDI) solution to get work done. The result of this shift can cause a higher number of support tickets from users struggling to access applications or run certain software on their home devices. The IT manager is expected to resolve this and also do it in record time. Helpdesk can be one of those functions that you pass on to your co-managed IT provider to take care of, a quick solution that allows you to resolve other issues.
Another way you can engage a Co-Managed IT partner is to support a specific project your organization is going through. For instance, a server migration to a hybrid cloud environment. This is a critical project for the organization and although you know exactly what cloud service to use, and have a clear migration process that contemplates all the risks and contingency plans, running penetration testing and a cybersecurity assessment of the new cloud environment can be delegated to a trustworthy IT partner that has a cybersecurity practice.
Remember, the main job of a Co-Managed IT provider is to be an extension of your team in any way needed. So if it's to support your end-users and address helpdesk support tickets, or act as a cybersecurity consultant, a great Co-Managed Provider will adjust a package of services for your specific needs.
How does Co-Managed IT work?
A Co-Managed IT Service provider in New Haven will begin by meeting with your internal IT team to better understand your strategic technology needs. Then, they will provide a roadmap to support those needs and suggest areas of investment, like refreshing your access points or firewalls. The various areas in which they will support your business, as well as escalation points and performance metrics will be included in a Service Level Agreement (SLA).
With this information, an experienced Co-Managed IT partner will be able to create tailored dashboards and automated reports, providing insights into the state of your technology environment and the ways they are supporting it (no. of tickets resolved, no. of cybersecurity alerts resolved, etc).Additionally, a Co-Managed IT Partner will make available a dedicated Virtual IT consultant to cope with additional technology demands, who will be the main point of contact for your organization. Having quarterly performance meetings with your assigned Virtual IT consultant will be of help when planning for future technology projects.
In terms of the actual services, a Co-Managed IT Service will typically include:
- Virtual IT Manager
- Helpdesk 24/7
- Cybersecurity Monitoring
- Data Recovery & Backups
- Compliance Support
- Lifecycle Management of your tech assets
- Network performance testing
Another and sometimes overlooked benefit of Co-Managed IT, is the strategic advice they can provide to your specific needs. Combining the internal IT manager who understands the specifics of your business, long and short-term goals, with the technical expertise of an outside IT service, creates a synergy where technology is at the epicenter of many business processes working as an enabler and reducing friction.
The Bottom line of Co-Managed IT
You might be thinking, “How can I afford to have both an internal and external IT?” The reality is that IT is not that different from any other department of your company. Think of sales as an example, when you started your business one salesperson hitting the phones, sending emails, attending meetings to gain new customers was probably enough.
But as your business grows and you need to strengthen your revenue stream sales roles like account managers, business developers, and outbound sales professionals are needed, and each of them brings a set of different skills and experiences making them capable of the job.
The same goes for IT, as your organization grows the technology demands increase and different areas of IT knowledge are needed. A Co-Managed service will maximize your IT staff by providing the services built into your service level agreement (SLA), so they can focus on tasks best suited to their skillset and your business mission.