When Outsourcing morphs into Managed Services

Outsourcing has existed since companies determined it better to run their business and let experts manage their systems. It seems intuitive that one company cannot be the best at everything. Instead two, three or five companies can take advantage of focused skillsets, better resource allocation and increased funding to create a better process, product and performance. This thought process is confirmed by so many popular sayings, “two heads are better than one” and “divide and conquer.”

Outsourcing has become a catch all term for pretty much anything you can throw over the fence to a third party provider to the extent that its meaning is diluted to the point of being meaningless. With the rise of Cloud products or technologies, such as, Oracle Fusion and NetSuite ERP, we have seen the morphing of Outsourcing into Managed Services. Most Managed Services are a form of Outsourcing, but not all Outsourcing engagements are Managed Services. The difference is usually attributable to scope and breadth. Here are some of the key distinctions when considering whether your partner is offering an Outsourcing or Management Services relationship.

  • Accountability – Managed Services Providers (MSPs) work hand-in-hand with your teams, enhancing capabilities while taking your lead – some will even work within your organization long-term, embracing your culture and identifying trends or commo issues to help prevent them from occurring again.
  • Visibility – Most MSPs working in the cloud provide visibility with customizable user dashboards when you purchase their technology and services. Many customers say that this visibility is one of the most valuable tools provided by Managed Service Providers because you know exactly what you’re spending your money on and how effectively the vendor is performing.
  • Reporting – With MSPs, you receive regular updates on how your organization is performing across all functions. Most MSPs have extensive ticketing systems that provide current and historical information relating to issue resolution. This is in contrast to outsourcers which only have visibility into specific functions.
  • Vision – Because MSPs take a broader vision of their clients’ operations and are much better placed to look further ahead, helping clients chart a course for development in the short, medium, and long-term across all of their operations. Outsourcers will only focus on the single function and agreed approach. In most cases the MSP relationship is really a partnership rather than client/supplier.

In our years of experience as an MSP, we have changed our service offering to keep in step with what our partners need. For ease of review we have broken the standard services that we offer into three categories as shown below. Taken as a whole they meet the requirements to provide Accountability, Visibility, Reporting and Vision.

With managed services, both parties have the opportunity to find the right balance according the specific needs and challenges facing the business, develop a regimen for periodic improvement and update, and develop a strong and mutual partnership that betters both organizations. If you are considering a move to managed services or are looking to change your current provider, let us know how we can help! Contact sales@ctrworld.com