Managed IT Services vs. Break/Fix IT Services for businesses


When it comes to your IT needs, there are two different service philosophies. Which one is right for your business? Learn more about the difference between managed IT services and break/fix IT services, including the advantages and disadvantages of each.

What is break/fix IT?

A break fix model is a fee-for-service method of providing IT services and support to customers. When something breaks or a problem arises, an IT solution provider is hired to come in and fix it, and the client is only charged for those specific services rendered. Services might include repairs, installing or upgrading systems, peripheral equipment, among others.

Think of it as a reactive vs. proactive form of IT maintenance. A break fix technician comes in after a problem occurs, or after a problem has grown so large that it can’t be ignored anymore.

Advantages of break/fix IT

  • Break fix support can be less expensive on a month to month basis when no problems occur. If your business has little-to-no IT needs, saving money on managed IT services may help your bottom line.

Disadvantages of break/fix IT

  • Break fix support is more expensive once a problem arises. Small problems may go unnoticed since there’s no one monitoring your IT, or they may be easy enough to ignore in the short term. Of course, small problems rarely stay that way, and they can easily grow into much larger, more costly problems.
  • It’s impossible to budget for unforeseen tech and IT issues. A large IT problem that you didn’t see coming can make a big, unexpected dent in your finances.
  • When you bring in an IT service provider to solve a one-time problem, they need time to familiarize themselves with your infrastructure. It will take more time to solve the problem, and that’s time you’ll need to pay for.

What are managed IT services?

The managed services approach is just the opposite—it means hiring a third-party IT provider to manage all of your business’s IT services. Managed service providers (MSPs) offer a wide range of services that are ongoing and proactive. They don’t wait for a problem to occur before getting to work—they prevent problems to begin with.

Examples of managed services include round-the-clock monitoring and technical support, helpdesk support, managed hosting and networks, among others.

Advantages of managed services

  • It delivers peace of mind: Your IT systems are managed and monitored 24/7, so any problems that arise are dealt with immediately.
  • It’s cost-effective: The concentration of skills offered by an MSP eliminates the need to hire multiple in-house IT staff.
  • It’s easy to budget: Most MSPs offer fixed monthly pricing plans, so you don’t have to worry about any unforeseen expenses.
  • It’s efficient: You won’t ever have to wait for an issue to be addressed; all tech issues get handled the moment they occur, if they occur at all.
  • It’s secure: MSPs will ensure your data is backed up, which means if the worst happens and your system shuts down, they’ll have it recovered in no time with no loss of data.
  • It’s comprehensive: MSPs can manage hardware, software, networks, hosting, and security—so you never have to worry about any aspect of your IT.
  • It’s strategic: An experienced MSP will work with you to create a scalable technology plan specific and custom to your company, effectively replacing a CTO.

Disadvantages of managed services

  • If your business has little-to-no IT needs or your system IT is extremely stable, you may not need the added monthly cost of an MSP. Consider this carefully, as you may have tech needs you don’t know about that need addressing.
  • You may feel that bringing in a third-party to manage your IT means relinquishing too much control. However, it should be noted that you’ll still need to rely on an IT professional if you choose the break/fix method.

Choosing between break/fix vs. managed services

So, which is better for your IT ecosystem—break fix or managed services? The answer is really up to you. While it’s true that managed services work out to be more cost-effective, efficient, and reliable for most typical businesses, you may not feel that yours needs round-the-clock IT support.

If you’re unsure, contact us for a complimentary Technology Survey. This quick and concise examination of your IT ecosystem will reveal any gaps you may be overlooking. For example, do you know if your data backup and recovery plan is solid enough to make your business resilient? Is there a business continuity plan in place to make use of that backed up data? Do you know who is responsible for keeping your network protected from cyberattacks? Do your staff know how to be vigilant against scams and hacking attacks? These are all the kinds of questions an MSP can answer.

In the end, managed IT services give you security and peace of mind when it comes to your essential business tech. It’s a proactive way to take care of every aspect of your IT on an ongoing basis before an unexpected crisis lands on your doorstep.

Managed IT services with a COUPLE of GURUS

A COUPLE of GURUS offers managed IT services that will proactively care for your technology needs. We have over 18 years of experience helping businesses like yours with IT projects, cybersecurity and compliance, cloud services, and managed IT services.

Our ConstantCare service will transform your organization’s IT from a frustrating drain on resources to an indispensable tool for growth. We’ll work around the clock to keep your systems optimized and secure.

Contact a COUPLE of GURUS to learn more about our services and any IT needs you may be overlooking. Get started today with a Technology Survey.