What is a management services company?

A managed service provider (MSP) delivers services, such as networks, applications, infrastructure, and security, through ongoing regular support and active management at customers' premises, in their MSP's data center (hosting), or in a third-party data center. Under this subscription model, the customer is the entity that owns or has direct supervision of the organization or system being managed, while the managed service provider (MSP) is the service provider that provides the managed services. Customer and MSP are subject to a contractual service-level agreement that establishes performance and quality metrics for their relationship. Adoption of managed services is intended to be an efficient way to stay up to date on technology, access skills, and address issues related to cost, quality of service, and risk.

As the components of the IT infrastructure of many SMEs and large corporations are migrating to the cloud, and MSPs (managed service providers) increasingly face the challenge of cloud computing, several MSPs provide internal cloud services or act as intermediaries with cloud services. A recent survey states that the lack of knowledge and experience in cloud computing, rather than the reluctance of providers, seems to be the main obstacle to this transition. For example, in transportation, many companies face significant increases in fuel and transportation costs, driver shortages, customer service requests, and complexities of the global supply chain. Managing day-to-day transportation processes and reducing related costs are presented as significant burdens requiring the expertise of providers of managed transportation services (or managed transportation services).

A managed service provider (MSP) is a third-party company that remotely manages a customer's information technology (IT) infrastructure and end-user systems. Many times, your current staff may not have experience with a new technology or may not be able to maintain new services or applications. MSPs that offer a subscription service model work on the quality of service of an organization's network and typically bill customers monthly. A managed service provider often offers its service offering under an SLA, a contractual agreement between the MSP and its customer.

Outsourcing managed services also allows business owners to reduce the cost of dedicated staff working internally, as well as the technology, tools, and other resources needed to handle tasks. The first activity is to benefit financially on a continuous basis from the provision of the services of the person providing those services through an MSC. However, given the maturity of managed services models and the shift to virtualization and cloud, the need for on-premises IT staff may be limited to exceptions where operational sensitivity warrants. A managed service provider will act as an extension of your team, provide great value, and help your organization succeed.

Second, the managed service provider will also have the experience and knowledge in the services provided that will allow greater accuracy and reduced risks and responsibilities, especially as compliance with government regulations and standards of the industry. In addition, you can choose exactly which services you want to be managed externally and which ones you will continue to work on internally. When hiring a managed service provider, you do not give up general managerial control or responsibility for the operations that are outsourced and therefore remain responsible. The evolution of MSPs began in the 1990's with the emergence of application service providers (ASPs), which offered a level of service for hosting remote applications.

A managed service provider is also useful for creating disaster recovery plans similar to those of a corporation. A managed service is an excellent strategy to help your IT organization be highly resilient and predictable from fiscal year to fiscal year. 

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