It’s important to realize that the cost of IT services vary a great deal based on your geographic location, the size of your business, and the types of services included in your agreement. If you call around for pricing, you’ll quickly see that pricing for IT services is not uniform. They can vary a great deal from one provider to the next. There are some valid reasons for this.
For instance, if a Managed Service Provider has highly skilled engineers on board who are certified to work on Microsoft, Oracle, IBM and other such equipment, they will charge more. Some businesses only need Help Desk support for their computers. This is a common service that is not too expensive. This is how all Managed IT services go. If you want a fully managed plan where you never have to worry about your IT infrastructure again, then this will cost more than simple help desk service.
Popular pricing models for Managed Service Providers include monitoring only, per device, per user, all you can eat, a la carte and the tiered pricing model.
What Are The Six Most Common IT Managed Service Pricing Models?
In spite of the various ways that pricing can change from one market to the other, there are six standard pricing models. These do have variations but they each represent a set of services provided in the desired plan. They are outlined below:
What is the Monitoring Only Model?
This pricing model gives you network monitoring and alerting services. The Managed Service Provider offers this model to companies of all sizes. It can include various services including patch management, backup monitoring, disk optimization, antivirus and antispam updates and a few others. The IT Service Provider may be there to assist in-house IT staff with things like basic incident resolution. Or they can provide more advanced support. All things are negotiable.
What is the Per Device Model?
The per-device model charges a flat fee for each device that requires support at your company. This pricing is straightforward to quote, and the monthly service fee will be adjusted if you add more devices. Your contract can include flat fees per device, server, printer or managed network.
What is the Per User Model?
The per-user model is self-explanatory. You pay a flat fee for each user at your company. If you have 12 employees who work at computers throughout the day, then you’ll pay a set amount for each user. If the number of users changes over time, your provider will adjust the bottom dollar amount. This pricing model can also include all types of devices that users might work from:
What is the Tiered Model?
The tiered model is designed to provide bundled packages. With each package, “X” amount of services are included. There are usually three or more bundled package levels, with three or more pricing structures. Some IT providers use tags like “Gold, Silver, and Bronze” or “Basic, Standard, and Premium.” With this model, you can pay for whatever services you need. If you want to add more services to your bundle, the prices goes up.
What is the All You Can Eat Model?
The all-you-can-eat model includes everything a business owner might need. This model is for business owners who do not want to have to do anything relating to their IT infrastructure. You have a team of professionals at the IT company who will take care of everything. Typically you’ll have access to:
Remote support / on-site support
Lab or bench time / 24/7 year-round support
Services available during regular business hours/you can add 24/7 support if you want to.
The all-you-can-eat model gives the customer the ability to genuinely budget their IT support costs over a year’s time and experience no hidden or surprise fees.
What is the A La Carte Model?
The a la carte model is unique. With this model, you’re getting individual services. Maybe there’s a specific problem which has come up and needs addressing. That’s when you pay for the services you need. You can also create a customized IT Managed Services bundled package for yourself, tailored to your company’s specific needs or requirements.
How Do You Know If The IT Service Provider Is Reliable?
With all IT services, you get some level of professional IT services tailored for your business. You can also gain access to certified IT technicians and engineers to work on your IT equipment. A reliable provider will give you fast response times, plus they’ll work hard to make sure you are satisfied with their services.
Be sure to do your homework when looking for a good Managed IT Provider. Are they reliable and proactive? Do they provide both onsite and remote support? What about server and workstation back-up? You may also need patch management to assure that your software is current and secure.
Lastly, don’t skimp on security for your IT infrastructure. Make sure firewalls are managed and configured and all anti-virus software is updated regularly. You should also look into employee awareness training in regards to phishing and malware. A great Managed IT Provider will become a strategic partner who helps you reach your business goals.