The Stressful Choice Between Managed IT And Break/Fix IT Services, Made Easy

Posted On 23 Feb, 2022

Regardless of the industry you work in, or the size of your company, you need some level of IT Services today in your medium-sized business.

The fact is that you need IT support, even if you have dedicated IT personnel, to deal with routine maintenance and unforeseen situations.

If you are searching for information technology (IT) support, there are two models to consider.

  1. Break/Fix IT Services
  2. Managed Information Technology (IT) Services

Many businesses are at the crossroads when it comes to making the switch from an older model that served them well until now, and a newer one that’s available to them.

This article helps you make an educated decision, between these models, based on hard facts.


Break/Fix IT Services: What are the benefits?

Break/Fix IT services are mostly concerned with resolving issues that have already occurred.

Here, you react to something which is broken and you attempt to fix the problem.

The break/fix process flow is pretty straightforward.

  1. When a corporation requires any type of information technology services, they call an information technology firm or professional.
  2. When the break/fix specialist is assigned to the task, he or she will inspect the problem and resolve it.

The benefits of Break/Fix IT services are

  1. These services are affordable. You can get them for a limited budget. It’s great for small firms, start-ups, and even freelancers who work alone.
  2. Services can be hired to provide help to the onsite team as and when required.
  3. If your firm does not face IT issues very often, it does not make sense to have an in-house team. This is where Break/Fix IT services come in handy.


Break/Fix IT Services: What are the disadvantages?

Break/Fix IT Services are based on an old-school model that does not align with the business motives of a lot of companies.

The disadvantages of Break/Fix IT services are:

  1. As this is an outsourced and unplanned service requirement, the company cannot plan for its IT expenditure at the beginning of the financial year.
  2. Since the team is not on site, you will need to wait for the technician to be assigned and this could be seriously damaging in some situations.
  3. A break/fix technician’s job description only talks about fixing problems.

They will not look into how future issues can be avoided. Also, they will not advise you to invest in better network related tools – this will actually affect their chances of getting hired in the future.


Managed IT Services: What are they?

A Managed Services approach allows you to delegate all or some of your IT responsibilities to a Managed Service Provider (MSP) and adopt a proactive approach to IT system maintenance and management.

Management of your information technology systems enables continuous monitoring and upgrading of your systems, rather than having to wait for something to go wrong before fixing it.

In this way, you can ensure that all of your facilities operate well by taking precautionary, proactive actions.


Managed IT Services: Advantages

Managed IT Services have become the more popular choice now.

A lot of providers have monthly service arrangements that are both beneficial and cost-effective.

The advantages of Managed IT Services are:

  1. The most important advantage of this approach is proactive thinking. The technicians look at issues before they happen, predict them, and take precautionary measures.
  2. When issues are predicted in advance and so are the requirements, it becomes easier to plan the expenditure.
  3. Most providers ensure 24/7 support, 365 days a year. This means that issues are attended to almost in real time.


Managed IT Services: Disadvantages

The beauty is that Managed IT Services providers cater to companies all over the world.

The service can be provided remotely, from lower labor cost countries.

This makes it possible for a lot of businesses to hire professional IT services at affordable rates.

The downside to this however, is that because these companies are not present locally, they cannot solve physical IT issues that happen in an office.

For example, a hardware issue with a printer.

Some other disadvantages of Managed IT Services are:

  1. Since these service providers are not always based in the same country as the company that is hiring them, there can sometimes be cultural incompatibilities between them.
  2. Managed IT Services providers often deal with many different businesses from different industries. That also means they might not have an in-depth understanding of the nature of your business. It is not an easy task to find a provider who works exclusively with companies in your industry of choice.
  3. As the service providers are external to the organization, they may not be able to comprehend all of the client organization’s challenges, pain points, and concerns.

They may also find it difficult to comprehend the complexity of the project, which could result in substantial delays and failures down the road.


IT Managed Services and Break/Fix Services: The Difference

A lot of companies, especially smaller firms, prefer outsourcing their IT requirements to qualified IT service providers.

There are various providers in the industry that work on different kinds of financial arrangements.

Some bill their clients on hourly basis, some bill them on per job basis, while some have monthly or yearly contracts that they draw up with their clients.

But all these companies basically function on either of the two models that we have discussed in detail in this article.

So, which of these is the better choice for your company?

Let’s deep dive into the comparison of Break/Fix vs IT Managed Services, so that you can decide.

Break/Fix Services

Are ideal for firms that

  • Do not face IT issues very often. So you deal with exceptions when you encounter them.
  • Have an extremely limited budget and are looking to cut costs
  • Do not mind some downtime when faced with IT issues.
  • Have an onsite IT team could hire Break/Fix services as and when required. For example, when their IT team is overwhelmed or when they are unable to solve a certain issue.

Managed IT Services

These are ideal for

  • Firms that require constant IT services
  • Organizations that have some IT budgets
  • Companies that cannot afford long downtimes as it directly affects their services and in turn their customers
  • Companies that are looking for constant IT support, along with continuous monitoring and proactive and preventative management of their network could choose IT Managed Services.



When you are deciding between the managed IT services and break-fix models, you need to think about how important your IT system is to your business.

You need to evaluate how much downtime will affect your productivity and the services that you offer.

You must also consider how this will make you look in front of your clients/customers. Another important aspect to consider is money.

Does your budget allow you to opt for the proactive maintenance of your IT system? Once you answer all these questions truthfully, you will know for sure which model works best for your business.


    Article by:

    Rajesh Haridas

    Rajesh Haridas is the founder and CEO of Consltek. He brings in 20+ years of experience working in the technology industry.

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