Don’t have time to manage and maintain your IT systems? Who does? Every month, it seems like there are hundreds of security updates to install and software errors that you need to resolve. Then there’s hardware you need to upgrade and all that data you have to back up. Imagine if someone did all that heavy lifting for you.

This is where a managed service provider (MSP) comes in. Think of an MSP as your personal IT guru — someone who saves you time, money, worry and resources. More and more businesses just like yours are using MSPs. In fact, 59 percent of IT services now fall under the managed service model instead of the older break/fix model, where business owners and users only contacted IT support whenever there was a problem.

Managed services provide you with a preventative solution, so you can minimize downtime and data loss. Here are three benefits of using an MSP to support your business tech.

1. Extend Tech Services

Think MSPs only install security updates? Think again. These professionals provide a wide range of network support and services:

  • 24-hour IT monitoring and management
  • Nurtured relationships with software vendors and distributors
  • Increased operational efficiency and reduced IT operating costs

MSPs are infrastructure experts, data protection specialists and network administrators all rolled into one.

“The MSP subscription model provides customers of all sizes the advantage of predictable IT support costs,” says TechTarget. “And because MSPs take a proactive approach, they may be able to prevent IT problems from occurring and, therefore, from disrupting business operations.”

2. Reduce Downtime

The average business in North America experiences five downtime events a month. These outages cost companies $700 billion a year due to lost employee productivity, lost revenue and the costs associated with fixing downtime-related issues.

MSPs reduce downtime by limiting business disruptions caused by unforeseen emergency or disaster. Using the latest tools, these professionals prepare, deliver and maintain IT solutions to common problems and ensure businesses are up and running again in no time.

You also get peace of mind that your data is safe and secure. MSPs actively manage your data in the cloud, so you can reliably access valuable information after an emergency event.

“Implementing a disaster recovery plan enables businesses to run as normal if systems were to go offline,” says Information Age. “When downtime strikes and data is lost or inaccessible, [disaster recovery] allows businesses to recover vital company information as it has been replicated to a secondary environment.”

3. Centralize Your Data

You probably use multiple software programs and servers. MSPs, however, simplify your IT services and centralize your operating systems and applications within a managed data center. This provides you with a number of benefits.

First, all your data is replicated in more than one place, away from your premises. Second, you don’t need to rely on multiple pieces of hardware and software for your business to run smoothly. Third, trained professionals look after your systems and networks, providing you with expertise and peace of mind.

“In a managed cloud network, it is the responsibility of the provider to manage all applications and servers in a central data center,” says IT Chronicles. “The increased availability of the network leads to more employee productivity.”

If you don’t have the time to manage and maintain your IT systems, an MSP could provide you with a much-needed lifeline. You can access a wide range of IT-related services, reduce downtime and centralize your data. The results in improved productivity in your workplace and better cost control gives you the best kind of payoff for your business.