Technology plays an instrumental role in all businesses today, from infrastructure to networks, software, and cybersecurity. Most small- to medium-sized businesses opt against creating an internal IT department, as it can be very expensive. Instead, they use service providers who offer a range of services. Managed service providers can monitor, maintain, and manage all aspects of your IT, but some businesses opt for break/fix IT services. Continue reading to learn the difference.
Break/Fix IT Services Explained
When you use break/fix IT services, the provider only does work for you when you have an issue with your IT. When you have a problem, they will send a technician to your location, and they will conduct an investigation and determine what is wrong. They will repair it while they are there, and you pay for these services as they occur.
Businesses use this type of service to save money. They only pay for IT services when they need them. There isn’t much in the way of ongoing support, although the technician may advise you on how to improve your IT once you have a problem. This can help you avoid future problems.
Most of the time, technicians for break/fix IT services charge an hourly fee. They may also have an initial fee or a consult fee, and they charge you for any special tools or parts that they need to fix your hardware, software, or networks.
Situations Where Businesses Use Break/Fix IT Services
Businesses use break/fix IT services whenever something goes wrong. This might include needing a hardware upgrade or installation, or adding new peripheral equipment. They come in for network repairs, or they can install antivirus software. They can upgrade your privacy and defense software, or they can conduct general IT training for your employees or staff. When you have a problem with technology, they come in to fix it for you.
Benefits of Break/Fix It Services
Using break/fix IT services has some benefits, including the following:
1. You Pay Only for What You Need
The price model for break/fix IT services is usually fee-for-service. You only pay for this service when you use it. You don’t have to keep a monthly contract or pay a monthly subscription fee, and there aren’t any other fees added to your bills.
Because the IT technician is only coming in when you need them, you don’t have to go through the same process of researching and hiring a company. If you are happy with their services, you can keep using them. However, you can call someone else next time if it isn’t working out.
2. Your IT Staff Can Try to Fix the Problem First
Another benefit is that you have autonomy when you contract for this service. If something goes wrong, your internal IT staff members can try to resolve the problem first. The important thing is to make sure that you have someone on staff who is capable of addressing whatever the problem is.
You can choose when you call for break/fix IT services, which means that you can save money as long as you have someone on staff who is able to repair the problem and conduct the upgrade.
2. You Can Protect Privacy and Have Network Security
Two of the biggest concerns to most businesses are data privacy and network security. There are more cybersecurity incidents each day, and they are expected to continue growing. It is important for all businesses to find solutions that help tighten up security and privacy in their IT departments.
You can use on-site or cloud based solutions, and you need to make sure that your employees are trained to avoid phishing schemes and other attempts to hack into your systems. If your security is compromised, you could lose productivity, reputation, and more.
Many companies want privacy, which is why they use some in-house IT technicians and stick with break/fix IT services. They believe that their privacy needs are more important to the company than the services that an MSP can provide.
3. It’s a Simple Service
Using break/fix IT services is simple. It allows you to handle most of the IT in-house, and you get to decide when outside parties can have access to your internal systems and your software. The service model is similar to that of fixing a car. You take it to the shop when something isn’t working, and you pay for that service. This is a simple exchange of services for money, and some businesses prefer this.
4. You Have Control of Your IT
Businesses that use break/fix IT services have complete control of their IT. They decide when to call for service, and they decide what to do. This makes businesses feel better knowing that they have control over who has access to their networks and infrastructure.
Are There Any Drawbacks?
As is true with any decision, there are some drawbacks to using break/fix IT services, including the following:
1. Less Predictable IT Costs
One of the disadvantages of using break/fix IT services is that you can’t predict all of your costs. It will depend on what problems occur and when they happen. This is a less predictable cost model, and you may have swings between months where your IT costs are high and others where they are low. In addition, you don’t have a lot of options when a technician comes and quotes you a price, as getting your IT up and running is important to success.
2. You May Not Know the Technicians
When a company comes on an as-needed basis, you won’t have a chance to develop the same type of relationship with the technicians. You may get a different person each time, so there is less continuity. In addition, they may not be as familiar with your system, so it can take longer to fix your issues, which is also more expensive.
Some businesses opt for break/fix IT services to limit outside access to their technology and network. This can help save money as long as they have some IT people on staff and few problems. The price model is less predictable, but it is an option for companies that don’t want a complete managed services IT program.