Managed Services vs. Professional Services: The Ultimate Guide

Managed Services vs. Professional Services

Many small and medium-sized businesses are starting to see the benefits of outsourcing their information technology departments. Some of the most notable benefits are IT expertise, reduction in IT costs, and saving time. Additionally, they decrease risks and free up their employees to focus on the work they were hired to do.

Before outsourcing, businesses should look at the differences between professional services and managed services.

Professional Services vs. Managed Services

Professional IT services offer short-term technology project help for a single cost. These projects help businesses handle specific challenges, such as cloud migration or installing new hardware. A project-based focus for IT challenges will follow a step by step process that is comprehensive, but short-term. First, the planning and strategy steps will help to set the stage for the project. Second, the team will move forward to design and then build the solution. Third, adoption and training may take place, which can involve future or ongoing support.

Professional services are often the best solution for an organization with an IT problem. If you are managing new hardware or software, launching a new application, or expanding your business into different areas, a professional services provider could offer help.

Managed IT services offer ongoing support that’s created to fit your organization’s needs, for a monthly fee. Managed services help with the day-to-day running of software maintenance, network monitoring and support of your IT. You need technology you can rely on 24/7/365. Managed services ensure your IT is helping you achieve your business goals at all times.

Many companies find it both efficient and cost effective to work with a managed services provider to offload some, or all, of their IT management. Working with a managed services provider gives you a hands-on team that’s ready to tackle any sudden problem or respond to issues quickly.

Let’s explore a little bit more about the benefits of managed services vs. professional services.

Managed Services vs. Professional Services
John Adams, NetGain Director of Professional Services.

NetGain’s Director of Professional Services, John Adams, takes a closer look at Managed Services vs. Professional Services

Comparing Managed Services vs. Professional Services

One of the defining features of Managed Services is ongoing support. This means anything from troubleshooting to maintenance of your systems and networks. Additionally, looking at your network, updating servers and computer stations, or even verifying your data backup. They work with individual users and their IT specific challenges on a daily, 24/7 basis. Manage Services can support your IT needs by handling all kinds of technical issues.

Professional Services support can entail IT consulting, technology deployments, and advanced troubleshooting. Professional Services teams have highly skilled engineers with knowledge, certifications, and the experience to deliver the best results for their clients. Therefore, fixing a small issue, such as Outlook not getting new email, would not normally be handled by Professional Services. 

Email migration could be work Professional Service engineers handle as a single project. For example, they begin by working with a client to understand their needs, create a plan, and then make the transition or changes. When moving hundreds of email accounts to a new cloud email provider, Professional Services can lend a focused hand to make the transition easy.

A simple comparison to make sense of these two types of services, would be to compare them to the military. One can think of Professional Services engineers as special units in the military. This team of highly skilled professionals has a clear goal. Once their objective is complete, they train the other military teams on the changes, and move on to the next objective. 

On the other hand, a traditional Army troop (Managed Services) may have longer deployments and can carry on the fight for a greater period of time. 

Simply put, Professional Services serve on a per project basis. Managed Services offer longer term support throughout the length of your partnership.

Your Trusted Source for Managed IT Services and More

Finding a provider that has both Managed Services and Professional Services teams is a great situation for a client. A Managed Services team has in-depth processes, knowledge and history of your systems that can be used by Professional Services teams. Managed Services can use Professional Services to speed up projects and provide more details about the client’s technical environment. Furthermore, this group can support the Professional Services team’s abilities to provide better services and support. 

We all wish there was one special person who could handle every IT need. However, this often is not the case. Not all IT providers have dedicated Professional Services teams; and not all Professional Services teams can handle every single issue that your technology may have in store. Some Professional Services teams focus on a single type of technology. Other teams have several talented individuals to handle multiple systems and technologies. No matter if you have a small business or a larger enterprise, it may make sense to use multiple Professional Services teams. These teams would have a single focus on specific technologies or IT projects. Finding an IT provider who can handle both your Managed Services and Professional Services needs can be a challenge. But, partnering with an agency who has both can give you more confidence your technology needs are being met, well into the future. 

For more information about how your business can benefit from Managed Services and Professional services, contact us today.

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