Managed IT Services Deliver Benefits in an Era of 'Doing More With Less'
In today's difficult economic environment, organizations are turning to managed IT services to help them achieve lower and more predictable IT support costs, while also improving IT resiliency and operational efficiencies. Organizations are realizing the advantages of leveraging the investments of managed IT services providers rather than building and managing their own IT infrastructures.
SunGard Availability Services, a provider of information availability, has outlined the top five reasons to use a managed IT services provider in today's down economy:
- Gain support for mixed IT environments and leverage investments in technology and tools. Most data centers consist of both legacy and newer technologies, and it often becomes difficult for organizations to manage and maintain these mixed IT environments internally.
Managed IT services providers take away the burden by providing specialized services to monitor, maintain and optimize every aspect of the IT environment, from Microsoft Windows servers to legacy systems to virtualized environments. Additionally, by leveraging a managed IT services provider's IT infrastructure, organizations can gain access to advanced tools and technologies helping them to have higher levels of visibility into the growth and performance of their applications.
- It's too expensive to build and maintain a data center on your own. For many organizations, building or upgrading their own data centers is becoming increasingly difficult to justify. In an era of budget cuts and curbed IT spending, many organizations are finding managed IT services as an attractive alternative. By leveraging a managed IT services provider, organizations have access to time-tested processes, skills and infrastructure, along with higher levels of security and reliability, at a lower cost. This also allows organizations to better manage internal resources.
- IT services available as you need them, when you need them. Organizations can use a third party to manage their entire IT environment, or just a small portion. When selecting a service provider, it is important to identify providers that offer scalable capabilities available on demand such as hosting services, application services, e-mail and collaboration services, network services, managed security services, storage services and replication services. This helps organizations to purchase what they need, when they need it and to expand as they grow.
- Focus on your business priorities and operational excellence, not IT requirements. The core competency of a managed IT services provider is high availability and uninterrupted access to mission-critical data and systems. Organizations do not need to devote scarce internal time and resources to deal with supporting databases or operating systems, responding to hardware crashes, power outages or other day-to-day headaches.
Managed services providers invest significant resources into building a cost-effective operational support model that organizations can leverage so that they can stay close to what really matters: their customers, productivity and profitability. Using a managed IT services provider also allows organizations to accelerate their time to market and help improve overall availability, all within a predictable cost model.
- Regulatory requirements do not decrease, even when IT budgets do. Security, e-discovery and compliance requirements mandate data must still be retained, managed and accessible, even with a cap on spending. SAS 70 Type II audited providers have internally audited procedures in place and offer the latest security technologies, as well as 24x7 support and expertise. This helps organizations stay compliant while protecting systems, applications and data from the ever-growing number of threats that come from outside and within.
Today's leading managed services providers are augmenting their compliance support to extend beyond SAS 70 Type II audits in order to truly meet customer requirements, such as PCI-DSS.
"Given limited prospects for growth and the high cost of capital, many businesses will turn to managed services to limit capital investments while increasing the flexibility of IT infrastructure," wrote Henry Dewing, principal analyst at Forrester Research, in a 2008 report.
"Managing every aspect of your organization's IT infrastructure presents a long list of challenges and may get in the way of running your business," said Rahul Bakshi, vice president of managed services strategy and solution design at SunGard Availability Services. "Leveraging a managed services provider helps organizations achieve lower data-center costs and improve system and application uptime."
"SunGard Availability Services delivers a full range of managed services that can be tailored to meet each organization's individual requirements. Our entire offering is backed by our robust IT infrastructure, experienced professionals and more than 30 years of collective experience," said Bakshi.