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Is Hourly IT Support Better Than A Monthly Contract?

You may want to save money and rely on hourly IT support – but is it really more cost-effective? Get the facts before you decide.

There’s no decision more crucial than who you’re going to work with to get the best computer services. No matter what industry you’re in, you rely on technology in some way to power your operations.

That’s why it’s essential that you find the right IT services company. The best technology support minimizes downtime, increases productivity, and ensures that you can always function at your absolute best.

Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. Finding the right computer services company means sifting through all the providers that currently offer it. To find the best option for you, you first need to know what to look for.

Hourly Or Monthly? The Great Divide

One of the key differentiators to consider when finding a potential IT support provider is whether they offer hourly support or a flat-rate monthly contract. The former often appears more cost-effective than the latter – depending on the month, you may only need a few hours of support, right?

As compelling as this line of thinking may be, it’s not really founded in reality. Just consider how monthly, managed services have grown in popularity over the past decade when compared to conventional hourly support.

What Is Hourly Support, Really?

Call it whatever you like, but hourly support is identical in all but name to “Break/Fix services”. This is the traditional style of outsourced IT services, which works by fixing your computers once they’re broken.

In a nutshell, when something goes wrong — data loss, hardware failure, virus, etc. — you then get in touch with your Break/Fix support provider, and have them fix it. The break-fix strategy no longer works for businesses today. If you still use this method of IT service, you risk downtime that can slow you down.

On the other hand, services arranged via a monthly contract are also known as “Managed Services”. This is the modern model for IT support, offering a range of vital solutions to your business all for one monthly rate. With fully managed support, you know that you are supported and protected 24/7.

From active monitoring and patch management to responsive on-site and Help Desk support services, fully managed support takes care of everything you need.

5 Clear Disadvantages To Hourly IT Support

  1. Impermanent Solutions
    When they’re charging by the hour, they’re encouraged to focus on billable hours. It doesn’t benefit them if your tech is working the way it should. You could find yourself repeatedly calling them to help with a problem that never quite gets resolved.
  2. Rapid Escalation
    A minor computer problem can quickly turn into a disaster. This is especially true today with the increase in cybercrime like ransomware. What starts out with just one malicious email can spread throughout your entire network, locking down your data, and your operations.
  3. Further Delays
    It could take days to fix your problem – in the meantime, your employees won’t have access to the data they need to continue working. You’re simply “bleeding money” by the minute.
  4. Cost Of Downtime
    Your support provider starts charging you after you’ve already lost work time – time spent on repairs or updates can add up fast.
  5. Inaccurate Budgeting
    It’s impossible to predict how much to budget for IT services. You can’t know what will happen or how expensive it might be.

4 More Reasons To Choose Managed, Monthly IT Services

  1. Freedom Of Focus
    You can finally focus on running your business and not on IT worries. Your third-party support provider will minimize or eliminate downtime that could hit your bottom line.
  2. Simple Support
    Your tech support can be provided remotely without a technician visiting your office. There will be instances that require in-person care, such as hardware replacement. However, most of what affects your day-to-day operations can be worked on remotely.
  3. Easy Budgeting
    You’ll benefit from a flat-rate payment model, allowing you to budget your tech more effectively. You’ll be able to plan for growth far more easily and with greater peace of mind.
  4. Cost-Effect
    Tech maintenance from a third party is more cost-effective than relying on break/fix solutions, especially when you consider the lost revenue from downtime.

You know you’ve found the right IT services when you stop worrying about your technology altogether. It should work as easily as snapping your fingers; when you need it, it just works, with no delays or complications.

Like this article? Check out Is LinkedIn Feeling The Pressure From Competitors? How IT Issues Can Hinder Your Team’s Productivity or Tips to Keep IT Managers on Top of Their Work to learn more.