How to Forecast Unexpected IT Costs — Managed IT vs. Break/Fix IT

Jeff Dotzler
Author: Jeff Dotzler Date: 05/11/2017

Companies are far better able to succeed when they accurately forecast outcomes, whether it be market trends or sales goals. Predictability is especially important when it comes to managing expenses. And when unexpected computer and IT issues arise, the financial toll can mark the difference between an “okay” month and a good one.

If a computer malfunctions, a server fails or a software becomes obsolete, a company might respond by calling on outside support. The problem is just that: the company is responding, not taking proactive steps to ensure ongoing performance of their system. Companies are taking a risky gamble when they take a “break, then fix” approach because the unpredictability and related expenses can create a cashflow crisis. 

A Managed IT model, on the other hand, takes action on a regular basis, minimizing the possibility of failures and helping ensure optimum system uptime. But there are even more benefits of Managed IT, and this comparison will help you understand them.

Break/Fix IT Model

When a problem arises, such as a computer virus, network error, or system shutdown, a company will report the issue to an IT service provider. In turn, a technician is dispatched to diagnose and resolve the problem, either remotely or at the company’s location. When the work is completed, the company is billed for the work performed by the technician.

The issue with this kind of model is that it’s reactive in nature and does nothing to prevent IT headaches and costly employee downtime from occurring in the first place, the true costs of which are often difficult to calculate. 

When security concerns are part of the mix, the costs can skyrocket. The average cost of a security breach can run $5 million, even for small corporations, and can result in financial disaster, threatening a company’s future and the livelihood of its employees. A Managed IT approach can help put measures in place to guard against these and other threats.

If nothing major goes wrong, a break/fix model may save costs in the short term. For strategic, long-term planning, however, relying on fixing IT problems on a case-by-case basis poses a financial risk.

Managed IT Model

Working with a Managed IT provider is a proactive approach that offers preventative measures and regular system maintenance. Software is installed to monitor your systems 24/7 and can send a notification to the provider the instant an issue occurs, sometimes even before a problem arises. An IT support professional will diagnose and resolve any issues, often remotely and, in many cases, before the company realizes there was ever a problem. For many, the reduction in downtime is often instantly felt and can make an immediate impact on efficiency, productivity and employee satisfaction.

Many companies have small in-house IT departments, and Managed IT services can remove some of the constraints and challenges they experience when maintaining systems and staying up to date on software upgrades, technology advances and the latest security threats and prevention measures. The expert technicians and researchers at a Managed IT provider stay on the cutting edge of emerging IT trends, threats, upgrades and innovations, and they put that knowledge to work for you.

IT problems inevitably occur at the most inopportune times. Contracting with a Managed IT provider can improve your operations and ultimately help your company accurately forecast technology expenses, eliminating surprises and smoothing out cashflow. Contact a Managed IT expert at Gordon Flesch Company for a free consultation, and take the steps necessary to control those erratic IT expenses.

In House IT vs. Managed IT Services Comparison Chart

Topics: Managed IT

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Written by Jeff Dotzler

Jeff has been with the Gordon Flesch Company for nearly 20 years, starting as a Sales Representative and working his way up to where he serves now as Director of our GFConsulting Group. He oversees a team that precisely aligns strategy and technology to help move customers’ businesses forward.

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