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For four years IT industry trade association, CompTIA has been producing an annual Trends in Managed Services Study. Of the findings contained in its latest edition, published in June, it said: “Organisations are growing more knowledgeable and comfortable with the concept of managed services and are making more use of the option for their information technology (IT) needs,.”
More than two-thirds of the companies surveyed for CompTIA’s fourth edition said they had used the services of an outside IT firm within the past 12 months.
Slightly more than half of respondents claimed to be ‘very familiar’ with the concept of managed services, while another 40 percent say they were somewhat familiar. Six in 10 customers described their managed services engagement as a collaborative arrangement with their internal IT department.
“While one-time projects account for some of these engagements, a significant portion is ongoing management of one or more IT functions by a managed services provider,” said Carolyn April, senior director, industry analysis, CompTIA. “There is a much higher degree of familiarity with the term ‘managed services’ and greater adoption.”
“Managed services customers are moving beyond simply seeking costs savings to even bigger benefits – becoming more competitive or efficient, for example,” the report said. “This is an opening for MSPs to expose potential customers to the benefits of managed services or deepen relationships with existing customers.”
The study identified the key benefits of managed services as being improved operational efficiency and IT reliability, enhanced security and compliance; and the fostering of a more proactive approach to IT maintenance and upgrades.
Another very significant advantage is that passing responsibility for the day to day management of IT to a service provider lets internal staff focus on those aspects of IT that differentiate a company from its competition, that are strategic.
Managed service providers can also provide expertise that is too specialised for an end user to justify having in house, because the cost, and the application of that expertise is spread across multiple clients.
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