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A guide to managed IT services pricing

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If you are considering outsourcing your IT, you may be wondering how much managed IT services cost. Unfortunately, there is no easy answer, because this is not a “one size fits all’ issue. This article covers the various factors that determine managed IT services pricing and how to figure out how much you should be paying. 

What are managed IT services?

Before we look at the cost of managed IT services, let’s clarify what the term “managed services” means. 

Managed IT services include a range of IT functions that are provided to a customer by a third party known as a managed services provider (MSP). MSPs provide consulting and customized IT services, including cloud network design and maintenance, IT asset procurement and repairs, data backup and recovery, staff training, and a range of other IT-related services.

Small to medium-sized businesses are increasingly turning to MSPs to manage parts or all of their IT. As these businesses usually aren’t able to afford an in-house IT team, but also don’t have the capacity to meet their own technology needs, outsourcing to an MSP is a cost-effective way of benefitting from a high-quality IT service.

How much do managed IT services cost?

Figuring out your cost of IT services can be tricky, as MSP rates vary significantly depending on the extent of support provided. Factors that can affect pricing include the number of employees, the level of sophistication of your IT systems, and whether you’re looking to outsource all of your IT functions or only some of them. The first step to understanding how much you’ll be paying is to determine whether you’ll need fully managed or co-managed services. 

Types of managed IT services: Co-managed vs. fully managed

  • Co-managed: Businesses that have an in-house IT team but need assistance with certain IT issues that they are unable to handle often make use of the co-managed option. These services take care of complex IT problems that require specific expertise, routine tasks that the in-house IT team cannot get to, or additional support during busy periods. With the IT needs of companies being so varied, opting for co-managed services gives you the flexibility to choose what types of IT issues you need help with and when. 

  • Fully managed: This option is favored by small to medium-sized businesses that may not have an in-house IT team and choose to outsource all their IT tasks to an MSP. With limited internal IT resources, these businesses find reassurance in the fact that their IT infrastructure will be taken care of by a dedicated team of experts.

MSP pricing models

Now that we’ve covered co-managed and fully managed services as the first factor involved in determining the cost of managed IT services, the next factor to consider is the pricing model. IT services providers usually offer per-device pricing, per-user pricing, or a combination of the two. 

Although the number of end users is an important factor that affects the total service plan cost, at Ubisec, we mainly focus on per-device pricing due to the benefits it offers in regard to security and agility. By focusing on devices through remote network monitoring, the emphasis is placed on combating any organization’s biggest threat: cybercrime. Additionally, with rapidly changing technology, devices are constantly being replaced; having a per-device focus is more efficient, as it’s much easier to monitor and manage devices compared to people. 

Apart from the per-user or per-device IT services pricing models above, there is the break/fix service model. This is when IT services providers are only used in the event of specific IT problems that need to be fixed, such as device failures, cyberattacks, and various others. Although this option allows you to pay for only the problems that require fixing, it remains a reactive solution as opposed to other more proactive approaches that prevent problems from occurring in the first place.

Questions you should be asking your managed services provider

When deciding on an MSP, make sure you get all the information you need to make the best possible decision that suits your unique IT situation. Here are some things you might want to ask:

  • Are there limited help desk hours per month?

  • What exactly is included in an “all-inclusive” service plan?

  • Are there any fees for on-site visits?

  • Can they provide testimonials?

  • Do they have a local presence?

Know how much to pay with our managed services pricing calculator

We believe that pricing for IT services should not be a mystery, so we have created an MSP Price Calculator to help provide clarity on how much our managed IT services will cost. Although there are many variables that can have an effect on the final price, we do believe that simply saying “It’s complicated” when asked what our managed services will cost simply does not cut it.

If you are in need of IT support, but unsure of what this will cost you, try out our MSP Price Calculator. By simply entering a few basic details about your organization and its IT needs, our calculator will provide you with an estimate of what you will be spending on managed IT services. 

Free MSP pricing calculator

Get an IT service pricing estimate for my business

Free MSP pricing calculator

Get an IT service pricing estimate for my business
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Ubisec

Over the last 15 years, Ubisec has become a leading IT solutions provider to SMB/SMEs in the Los Angeles and Orange County regions of California.
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Free MSP pricing calculator

Get an IT service pricing estimate for my business