With global IT spending set to reach $4.6 trillion in 2023, businesses are willing to make the investments necessary to ensure their technology assets run optimally. And one of the best ways to ensure they maximize that tech ROI is via managed IT services. But which model is better for your business – break/fix vs managed services?

In this piece, we’ll explore the pros and cons of both break/fix service models as well as managed services. By the end, you should be able to better determine the right answer for your business to the break/fix vs. managed services question.

Break/Fix vs Managed Services Defined

The basic break/fix vs managed services question comes down to this: do you need only a narrow set of technology services to maintain your current stack, or do you require a full, end-to-end set of services that can help your tech environment scale and improve in addition to tackling those day-to-day tasks.

Break/Fix Services

One useful way to frame these services is as reactive: this is all about maintaining your current technology assets and solving disruptions as they appear (and occasionally implementing long-term fixes that preempt new issues).

These are pay–per–use services that manage routine IT tasks like:

  • IT support
  • Network monitoring and support
  • Basic cybersecurity

And similar types of services.

Managed Services

Managed services are both proactive and reactive.

You get all the benefits of monitoring and threat remediation included in the break/fix model. But those services are supplemented by long-term IT solutions that help your business scale, improve its efficiency and productivity, and help make your technology investments go further.

With end-to-end managed services, you’ll get:

  • Cloud support
  • Cloud monitoring
  • Cloud maintenance
  • Disaster recovery planning and data backups
  • vCIO services
  • Long-term IT strategy
  • Data migration support
  • Staff cybersecurity training
  • Enhanced cybersecurity services
  • Network updating, patching, and upgrading
  • Technology procurement and lifecycle management

And more.

Simply put, the potential benefits of end-to-end managed IT services greatly outpace that of the break/fix model. For most businesses (provided they find a reliable managed services provider (MSP), their IT ROI will reach its zenith with end-to-end managed services.

That’s because when all these services work in concert, the synergistic output creates a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Augmenting your network, for instance, will not only speed up your work processes and reduce downtime, but also deny potentially devastating cybersecurity attacks from gaining a foothold into your stack.

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The managed services model is the long-run solution to your IT issues. In other words, break/fix is only likely to solve the issue you’re facing at present.

That said, there are instances where the break/fix model can work. Let’s examine that below.

Situations Where Break/Fix Makes Sense

Do you already have an efficient in-house IT team? Do you face only minor disruptions and don’t see the need to expand your technology stack in the near future?

In either case, a break/fix service model will likely fulfill all your technology needs.

In other words, if you already have the IT resources on-hand to address most of your IT issues, or you don’t plan on experiencing much growth in the near term, break/fix may be the more cost-effective option. And if you aren’t sure, most MSPs will perform a free assessment that identifies the biggest IT threats and opportunities for your business.

That said, an in-house team is almost always going to be more expensive than working with outsourced services.

Additionally, when you hire in-house IT workers (who can command as much as $100,000+ in annual salaries), they aren’t likely to have the wide variety of subject matter expertise you’ll need to efficiently run your IT stack.

Working with a single IT worker or a couple of in-house hires means that they’ll have to have experience with:

  • Data migration
  • Project management
  • IT procurement
  • Vendor management
  • Cloud implementation, monitoring, maintenance, and updating
  • Network support
  • Cybersecurity training for staff
  • Cybersecurity services
  • Backup and disaster recovery planning
  • Long-term IT roadmapping

And that’s just the start.

If you want to get the most out of your IT system, you’ll need to ensure that all the above elements are present. Otherwise, your stack won’t be optimally efficient.

Situations Where Managed Services Make Sense

If you plan on your business growing in the near future, then the best option is almost always managed services.

That’s because you’ll need support to scale up your operations to meet an increased number of employees, clients, etc.

With the right managed services provider on your side, you’ll gain:

  • Process automation
  • Threat identification and prevention
  • Rapid response times (on-site and off-site)
  • vCIO support
  • Long-term IT planning
  • Technology procurement and implementation

And all these solutions are backed by a guaranteed service level agreement (SLA) which ensures you’ll always receive top-tier support. 

If you’re ready to put an end to all the IT issues plaguing your business – both those in the present and ones that will crop up as you grow – then end-to-end managed IT services will provide the long-term solutions that will ensure your technology never gets in the way of your growth, and instead only supports it.

The Difference in Pricing – BreakFix vs. Managed Services

Of course, the bottom line, whatever you opt for has to make financial sense; it’s worth examining the difference in pricing schemes between the two models.

Break/fix is charged on a fee for the service basis. You’ll only ever pay for the services you make use of. Meaning that if you only face a few IT issues here and there, this can be rather cost-effective.

That said, since break/fix services work on an hourly basis, costs are naturally unpredictable. Any month you experience greater-than-normal IT issues.

Managed services are often fixed, usually on a per-user or a per-device basis or a combination of the two.

You can usually expect to pay anywhere between $100 to $500  per user per month, depending on the scale of services needed, the devices maintained, the size of the business, the scope of the work, etc.

That’s just a rough estimate, as each business’s needs are different.

Break/Fix vs. Managed Services: Finding the Right MSP for Your Business

Managed Services vs Break Fix

Credit: dotshock


If your business wants to solve all of its IT issues – on budget – then you’re prepared to work with Sunco Communication and Installation Ltd. As a leading managed services provider, our IT support company can handle every one of your IT demands, ensuring your business’s workflow is faster, more efficient, more productive, free from slowdowns and stoppages, and otherwise healthier in every respect.

Contact Sunco today and learn more about keeping your IT service costs under control.

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