Managed IT Unpacked: 11 Key Terms to Know
December 03, 2020
As you’ve navigated the latest shifts in the business world, the term “managed IT services” has likely come up. While it is often used in reference to the broad swath of hosted technology solutions available to support business success, there are many sub-categories of managed IT to be aware of. Understanding the managed IT terminology below – and the benefits of each service – will help you make more intelligent choices about your business IT.
1. Managed IT Services
The overarching term – managed IT – describes the services a provider offers to help a business handle anything from day-to-day IT tasks to more complicated undertakings like conducting a risk assessment. Managed IT services aren’t just for organizations without an IT department. You might have one, but if your staff is overwhelmed with daily minutiae and needs support implementing new technology initiatives, a managed IT provider can help.
2. IT Security Services
Many businesses use managed IT security services to bridge a time or expertise gap – even when they already have an internal IT department. Whether your company needs to supplement existing staff or has no real security strategy, a managed security provider will help you stay ahead of today’s advanced threats.
Unified communications as a service (UCaaS) is an essential tool for the modern workforce. UCaaS systems don’t come with the high upfront costs of legacy phone systems and ensure your employees – even those who work remotely – are able to access all the functionality of the office phone system from any mobile device.
4. Managed Help Desk
When you outsource your help desk, your provider bears the costs of hiring, managing servers, processing data, and taking care of the tickets that would have normally overtaken your internal staff’s time. The service is typically scalable – so if your business is seasonal or experiences peaks and valleys, you know you’ll only pay for service you actually use.
5. Virtual CIO
The shift to remote work rocked many organizations from an IT standpoint. Businesses that lacked the expertise or technology to execute a smooth transition found themselves playing catch-up for weeks, months – or they’re still trying to keep up to this day. A vCIO is an outsourced technology executive who can focus on the areas where your business struggles the most, whether that’s security, IT management, or anything in between.
6. Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery
One thing in the business world has become clear: you need to be prepared for the unexpected. A managed IT provider can work with your company to create an effective business continuity and disaster recovery plan – so that in the event of a disruption of any kind, your network, data, and reputation remain intact.
Data center colocation refers to the renting of space for servers and other hardware at a managed data center facility. Your provider gives you physical space for your equipment, while you retain control of your hardware. Colocation mitigates the time and costs associated with handling in-house server stacks and gives you the ability to manage your data on demand.
8. Managed Servers
Many businesses lack the time or resources to monitor, maintain, or even patch servers on a consistent basis. A managed IT provider can provide proactive, 24/7 server management so that your servers – which house critical data and host your applications – stay secure and don’t fail.
9. Managed Firewall
A firewall is the barrier between your internal network and the rest of the internet. It reduces risks by preventing unwanted, potentially harmful traffic from penetrating your network. Unfortunately, perimeter-based firewalls aren’t always effective at keeping out today’s advanced threats. A managed firewall solution goes beyond the perimeter, giving you the fully-managed application-level oversight and visibility you need to keep your network secure.
10. Managed Wireless Access Points (WAP)
Access points send and receive wireless signals that allow wireless mobile devices, such as laptops, tablets, and smartphones, to connect to your wired network. A good managed WAP provider can effectively manage and secure your wireless environment by identifying the optimal placement of wireless equipment to ensure full-coverage, reliable access.
11. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
Cloud solutions are the clear answer for businesses looking to meet the needs of the modern workforce – in many cases rendering physical infrastructure obsolete. IaaS allows you to quickly scale your online infrastructure in the cloud, allowing you to downsize or eliminate your on-site data center, reduce capital expenditures, and decrease in-house IT management requirements.
Access the benefits of managed IT
Managed IT services are an important part of a technology strategy designed to meet the needs of the modern workforce. If any of the benefits above would fill a gap at your business, Access One can help. Get in touch with us today to get started with the solutions your company has been missing.