What does IT Support cost?

James Fowler

This is a very open question. When it comes to any professional service such as Accountants, Solicitors, Estate Agency, or Skilled services such as Engineering or Manufacturing we all know we get what we pay for.

This is exactly the same for IT Support. The better the IT support, and the greater the knowledge, the more it costs because the value to the client is higher.

This does not mean that you have to pay a fortune to get good IT support, and we have written a guide (Download it here) that can help you chose the right IT support for your business, and actually explains that you should be wary of all IT Support companies, including us.

You have different styles of IT support in the main. One is your traditional “Break/Fix” IT Support. This works on the client calling the IT support when something doesn’t work or is not working, needs changing, etc, and The IT company charges an Hourly rate for fixing/changing it. It is a reactive way of doing things. It can be cheaper because if you don’t make a phone call for 3 months, you are not paying for any support. However, if something needs fixing you can be paying anything from £50 - £100 per hour to get it fixed. Most of these style IT companies do not have any SLAs or response times in place. This means it can take hours to fix the problem, or that it takes them days to actually ring you back.

The second one, and the one being adopted around the world more and more, is Managed IT Services. These are services that come with a recurring Monthly payment. That monthly payment will get you a level of support, leasing of technology, cybersecurity tools, Monitoring. The IT support company will be PROACTIVELY looking after your IT.

As IT and technology has become more important to business, IT Support has changed and so are the costs and the way we look at those costs.

When looking at the Reactive nature of the ‘Break/fix’ IT Support, there are multiple factors to look at which makes looking for a cost a challenge. As we said earlier, you may not pay anything for 3 months, however, if there is an issue you can suddenly be paying £800 per day for support. But what is the cost of downtime? There is no reason for the IT Company in this scenario to fix an issue quickly, as you are paying for their time when they are working for you. You are unlikely to have been given any advice on business tools such as Backups, Endpoint protection, cloud storage, etc. SO if there was a problem, and your server was down for a day what would that look like? Based on a business with a turnover of £1million pounds, 10 employees, working 40 hours per week you could be looking at a cost of lost revenue of £3846.40 if your server was down for a day. Add to that the It support working on that problem for 8 hours and it costing you £680. You then have the cost of those 10 employees not being able to work, which is £1153.85 if they all earn £30k per year. Then add to that the cost of them doing the Data Entry and catching up, which will take twice as long so that’s another £2307.70. So the total amount of cost on one day's downtime is £7987.95, not allowing for any hardware required. This does not allow for the damage to your reputation or lost orders which again can be £000’s. So your IT support for 3 months has cost you a grand total of £226.66 per month, or £20.61 per device, but the real cost per month is £2662.65.

That’s a lot of money and a lot of information, so if you want to go and get a cuppa and have a lie-down, please do before reading on.

When looking at the cost of a Managed IT Support, they will have a cost per device, per user. This cost will vary between each company depending on location, their specialist area (if they are aligned with Cyber Essentials, or Cyber Security Experts etc), and if they are running different levels of cover.

For the purpose of being fair, we will say that the same end-user business has opted to take our fully managed service. That’s a total cost for support and security tools of £790 per month. Plus they will have recommended a backup solution for £300 per month. That’s a total cost of £1090 per month. Because they are being proactive and monitoring the devices, they see that there is some unwanted activity on the server and contact you. They say they need some time on the server to look into the issue. The issue is looked into and a plan put together with you to rectify the issue. There is some hardware involved and sometimes installing new hardware (normally seen as a project which carries an extra cost, but again depends on the IT Support Company) so there is an extra 2 hours work on top. Adding another £170. So that three months Support has cost £3440, or £1146.66 per month. More than half of the ‘break/fix’ IT Support company, and without the loss of reputation or larger Hardware costs.

This is the same if there was a cyberattack, as it is likely the Managed IT Service company is monitoring all devices and has good Endpoint protection in place, as well as a backup solution if your data was not accessible.

Managed IT Service Companies, work with their clients to make their IT work at all times and to provide solutions, and a platform for the business to grow. This is because it is not a cost, it is an investment into the business.

For information on how Uptech can work with you, contact us to arrange a 15-minute consultation. 

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