Managed Service Provider vs. In-House IT: How to Know Which is Right for Your Business

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When it comes to your organization’s IT infrastructure and network security, you need to make sure you know your needs are being met, rather than just hoping that they are. Technology is constantly evolving, so it’s important to have a well-developed plan for how your business’s IT systems are being managed.  

However, being responsible for all company technology requires a specific skillset and level of expertise, so we want to stress the importance of carefully considering the right solution for the management of your IT. Whether you’re looking to establish an IT team within your organization, or you’re wanting to elevate your capabilities by partnering with an external IT provider, there are options available for ensuring the optimization of the technology used at your organization.    

What are my options for IT management? 

Organizations typically have three options for the management of their IT: In-house, managed, or co-managed. 

In-house IT: In-house IT refers to an internal IT professional or team responsible for the management and support of an organization’s IT infrastructure, systems, and services. In-house IT teams typically work on-site and are intimately familiar with the company’s policies, culture, and technology needs.  

Managed IT: Managed IT refers to the partnership with an external managed services provider (MSP), who handles all components of your organization’s IT. Managed service providers are responsible for monitoring your network, providing cybersecurity support, managing your data in the cloud, and supporting your end-users. MSPs alleviate the need to focus on day-to-day IT operations, allowing businesses to instead focus more on their core objectives, resulting in increased productivity and efficiency.   

Co-managed IT: Co-managed IT combines both in-house IT and managed IT to form a collaborative partnership between an organization and an MSP. With co-managed IT, an organization retains its internal IT department while also working with an MSP to enhance their capabilities or supplement them as needed. This collaboration allows businesses to leverage the expertise and resources of an external partner for specific tasks or projects. 

How do I decide which option is right for my business? 

Knowing your options is just the first step. The next is to determine which is the right one for your organization by considering the following factors, keeping in mind that perhaps a blend of the two might work best for your needs, in which case you’d want to pursue the co-managed option: 

Level of Expertise 

In-house IT: An internal IT team possesses intimate knowledge of the organization’s operations and systems. But while having IT in-house means your team has a deeper understanding of internal processes, they don’t necessarily have access to the breadth of expertise available through an MSP.  

Managed IT: MSPs boast a team of skilled professionals with diverse expertise covering a wide range of technologies and IT domains. By partnering with an MSP, you gain access to a collective pool of knowledge and experience that would be challenging to replicate with an in-house team. 

Cybersecurity & Compliance 

In-house IT: An internal IT team is responsible for maintaining cybersecurity measures and is likely intimately familiar with the compliance requirements of their organization, but they may lack the specialized expertise and resources available through managed IT services for one reason or another. Keeping up with evolving cyber threats and compliance requirements can be challenging without external support. 

Managed IT: Evolving cyber threats are constantly a concern for businesses of all sizes. To counteract this concern, MSPs consistently invest in new cybersecurity tools, practices, and certifications to protect organizations from emerging threats. Additionally, MSPs ensure your organization meets necessary compliance standards by knowing the requirements for businesses across all verticals.


In-house IT: While in-house IT offers greater control over expenses in the long run, it also means making significant upfront investments in salaries, benefits, training, and infrastructure. These costs can add up quickly and may not be feasible for businesses with limited resources. 

Managed IT: MSPs allow organizations to budget more effectively, as costs are often incurred either at a predictable flat monthly rate or on a per user/per device basis. This cost-effective approach can lead to significant savings over time. 

Strategic IT Planning 

In-house IT: Tailoring IT solutions to specific requirements is made easier with an internal IT team, as they are more familiar with the organization’s needs and priorities. However, they may lack the perspective and strategic expertise offered by a managed service provider.  

Managed IT: Managed IT providers offer strategic IT planning and consulting services, helping businesses align their technology initiatives with their long-term goals and objectives. They bring a wealth of experience and industry insights to the table, enabling businesses to make informed decisions. 

Constantly Evolving Technologies 

In-house IT: Internal IT may struggle to keep pace with rapid technological advancements, especially if resources are limited and teams are small. Without access to external expertise and resources, they may face challenges in implementing cutting-edge solutions as they emerge.  

Managed IT: Managed IT providers prioritize staying ahead of evolving technologies, offering proactive solutions and recommendations to keep businesses competitive. They ensure their team is equipped to handle emerging trends by investing in ongoing training and certifications. 

Partner with the Pros 

Don’t take the decision of how to manage your organization’s IT lightly. Consider how each option aligns with your business goals and objectives and make a plan that best suits your business. If you’re ready to partner with an MSP for comprehensive managed it services, contact us today here and discover how we can elevate your organization’s IT operations.