Managed Service Providers (MSPs) and IT consultants offer different services and service packages but can overlap in the tasks or initiatives they provide to companies. After all, they are both businesses of IT experts which outsource IT work to a variety of companies. Depending on what your business needs, either one might have an effective and affordable solution.
Here are five of the common distinctions between MSPs and IT consultants:
- Degree of hands-on assistance
Although both MSPs and IT consultants take on tasks and projects, it is more common to see an MSP physically managing operational tasks for a business. IT consultants may do some of the IT leg work for a special project but they are more commonly brought in to provide insight and advice for guiding the IT tasks and projects at hand.
- Level of infrastructure support
Depending on the level of service they are providing, MSPs more commonly provide physical infrastructure to businesses — whether that’s cloud services or administration and management of a server on the business’ premises.
- Focused IT expertise
While MSPs can specialize in certain IT areas, IT consultants typically have niche areas of expertise or are brought into businesses to advise or manage specific IT needs.
- Project management
While MSPs can handle specific projects if these are within the scope of the business agreement (often referred to as the service level agreement or SLA), businesses will often utilize IT consultants to take on or guide IT projects because of their unique expertise.
- Holistic IT management vs. specific help
Typical SLAs with MSPs entail a host of IT assistance, such as systems administration, patch management, or security audits. MSPs might even take on a business’ entire set of IT needs in lieu of an IT department, or work in tandem with a smaller IT department to manage the day-to-day network operations. IT consultants are more likely to be engaged in more specific projects or tasks. For example, if there is a disaster or security breach with the company’s data or the business needs assistance with transitioning to an innovative technology, an IT consultant may be hired.
While this is not an exhaustive list, overlaps will be found in the offerings of these two types of service providers. In addition, individual MSPs and IT consultants may vary in their unique offerings.
Our professionals at Royal Network IT Solutions, Inc. have over 50 years of experience providing technical support to businesses in the Tustin and Eastvale areas of California. As technology has evolved and challenged a company’s need for technology support, we have expanded our ability to provide a range of services to our clients.
Call or email us today for a consultation at (949) 236-7700 or email@example.com.