In-House vs. Managed IT Services: Deciding with Your Managed Service Provider

Zach Beckel

Chief Technology Officer

February 26, 2024

In the dynamic realm of information technology, businesses confront a pivotal choice: Establishing an in-house IT department or embracing the services of a Managed Service Provider (MSP)? This decision, laden with implications for efficiency and productivity, underscores the critical nature of opting for in-house support or employing an in-house IT team.

While building an internal IT department may incur additional costs, businesses may find that the better alternative lies in outsourcing services to a managed provider equipped with specialized management software.

In-house IT: Building and nurturing your team

Having an in-house IT team offers a level of control and familiarity that some businesses find appealing. With an internal team, you have the advantage of immediate response times, a deep understanding of your internal infrastructure, and a personalized service model tailored to your specific needs.

Understanding How Services May Impact Your Business

Pros of in-house support

Having an in-house IT team provides a sense of control over your internal infrastructure and systems. This control is invaluable, especially for businesses that require a high level of customization in their IT solutions. With an internal team, you can ensure that every aspect of your IT strategy aligns seamlessly with your business goals.

Moreover, in-house IT teams offer swift response times. When an issue arises, your dedicated team is on-site, ready to troubleshoot and resolve problems promptly. This level of immediacy can be critical for maintaining smooth operations and minimizing downtime.

Cons of in-house integration

However, building and maintaining an in-house IT department comes with its own set of challenges. The costs associated with hiring, training, and retaining skilled IT professionals can be substantial. Personnel costs, sick leave, and vacation time must all be considered when weighing the pros and cons of this approach.

Additionally, businesses opting for in-house IT support may not have access to the specialized skills required for specific tasks. This limitation could result in the need for additional outsourcing or compromise on the quality of certain services.

Navigating Service Level Agreements with IT Solutions

Managed IT services: Outsourcing for efficiency

Managed IT services, on the other hand, involve outsourcing IT responsibilities to a specialized service provider. This approach offers businesses access to a broad array of services, often at a fraction of the cost of maintaining an in-house team.

Benefits of managed service providers (MSPs)

Managed IT services offer a compelling alternative to the challenges of in-house support. MSPs operate as external service providers, delivering a wide range of IT services tailored to meet your business needs. One of the most significant advantages is the potential for cost savings. Research indicates that managed services can lead to cost reductions ranging from 6 to 10 times compared to in-house models.

Partnering with an MSP provides access to a diverse pool of experts, ensuring that your business benefits from the latest technologies and best practices without the hassle of personnel management. Moreover, MSPs typically operate on a subscription model, allowing for better predictability of IT expenses.

Achieve Optimal Service Levels with Managed IT Services

Drawbacks of managed IT services

While the benefits of managed IT services are substantial, it's crucial to consider potential drawbacks. Businesses may face challenges in maintaining control over their IT infrastructure when outsourcing to an external provider. Decision-making processes may become more complex, and customization options could be limited compared to an in-house model.

Another consideration is the reliance on external entities for critical IT functions. Businesses must carefully evaluate service level agreements (SLAs) to ensure that the MSP can deliver the required level of performance and support.

Use Managed Services for the Right Business Fit

In-house vs. managed IT services: Factors to consider

Weighing the hardware and software equation in the internal versus managed IT services dilemma, unravel the complexity, and make informed decisions for your business.

Personnel costs and expertise

When deciding between in-house and managed IT services, evaluating personnel costs is crucial. In-house teams come with fixed personnel costs, including salaries, benefits, sick leave, and vacation pay. On the other hand, MSPs provide a flexible and scalable model, allowing businesses to pay for the services they use without the burden of fixed personnel costs.

Consider the expertise required for your IT needs. While an in-house team may excel in managing internal processes, an MSP brings a broader range of skills and specialized services to the table.

Ensuring Compliance with a Robust Service Level Agreement

Control over infrastructure

If maintaining control over your internal infrastructure and systems is a top priority, an in-house team may be the preferred choice. In-house IT services allow for direct oversight and customization, ensuring that every aspect aligns with the company's specific requirements.

Conversely, if you are willing to relinquish some control for the sake of scalability and cost-effectiveness, partnering with an MSP may be the right choice. MSPs can efficiently manage a wide array of services, from data security to mobile device management, freeing your internal resources for strategic business activities.

Flexibility and scalability

Consider the flexibility and scalability your business demands. An in-house team may struggle to adapt to fluctuations in workload, whereas an MSP can seamlessly scale its services up or down based on your business's evolving needs.

Empowering In-House IT Employees for Seamless Operations

Choosing the right fit

Deciding between in-house and managed IT services requires a careful consideration of your business's unique needs, resources, and future growth plans. It's not a one-size-fits-all decision, and both options have their merits.

Business size and scale

  • In-house: Larger enterprises with extensive IT needs may find in-house teams more suitable.
  • Managed services: Small to medium-sized businesses can benefit from the cost-effectiveness and expertise offered by managed service providers.

Budgetary considerations

  • In-house: Consider the long-term costs, including salaries and training, associated with building and maintaining an internal team.
  • Managed services: Evaluate subscription fees and compare them to potential cost savings in personnel expenses.

Technology requirements

  • In-house: If your business requires specialized services or has unique IT demands, an in-house team may be the better choice.
  • Managed services: For businesses seeking a wide range of services without the hassle of infrastructure management, MSPs offer a convenient solution.
Contrasting Managed Services with In-House IT Staff

Why should you choose an MSP over in-house IT teams?

The availability of 24/7 support from Managed Service Providers (MSPs) can have significant financial and operational implications for businesses, particularly when compared to the limitations of internal IT teams during off-hours or personnel unavailability.

Financial implications

Downtime costs: Businesses can incur substantial financial losses during periods of IT system downtime. MSPs' round-the-clock support helps minimize downtime, ensuring that critical issues are addressed promptly, reducing potential revenue losses and maintaining productivity.

Overtime costs for internal teams: If internal IT teams are required to work outside regular hours or be on call during holidays or weekends, it can lead to increased labor costs. Overtime pay, benefits, and other associated expenses can accumulate, potentially exceeding the predictable costs associated with engaging an MSP.

Operational implications

Customer satisfaction: Continuous availability is crucial for maintaining customer satisfaction. MSPs, with their 24/7 support, can quickly respond to and resolve issues, preventing disruptions to services. This contributes to positive customer experiences and helps retain clients.

Business continuity: Unforeseen IT issues can arise at any time, and immediate resolution is often necessary to ensure business continuity. MSPs' ability to address problems promptly helps minimize disruptions and ensures that the business remains operational, even during non-standard hours.

Resource optimization

Utilization of internal resources: If internal IT teams are expected to cover off-hours or holidays, it may lead to burnout and reduced efficiency during regular working hours. This can impact the overall performance of the IT team and hinder their ability to focus on strategic initiatives.

Focus on core competencies: Engaging MSPs for 24/7 support allows internal IT teams to concentrate on core business objectives and long-term projects, rather than constantly firefighting immediate issues. This strategic focus can contribute to overall business growth and innovation.

Risk mitigation

Reduced risk of extended downtime: MSPs, by providing continuous support, reduce the risk of extended downtime, which can have cascading effects on various business functions. The faster resolution of issues contributes to overall risk mitigation and resilience against unexpected challenges.

While MSPs can provide a valuable solution to ensure continuous IT support, it's essential for businesses to carefully assess their specific needs, budget constraints, and the criticality of 24/7 support. The decision between relying on an MSP or internal teams should align with the strategic goals of the business and its commitment to maintaining operational excellence.

Keep Everything In-House – right for your business

Making the right choice with UDNI – Your trusted MSP partner

Ready to revolutionize your IT strategy? Explore the diverse service model options available at UDNI. Discover the unparalleled benefits of managed IT services, ensuring your business stays ahead in the digital landscape.

Contact UDNI today and see how partnering with a managed services provider can transform your IT infrastructure. Don't settle for a single in-house approach – the success of your services depends on making the right choices.

Reach out to UDNI now at (814) 631-1700 or via email at and embark on a journey towards optimized and efficient IT solutions.

Choosing Between In-House or Managed Services – Finding the Right Balance


Managed IT services vs in-house teams: What are the key differences?

Managed IT services refer to outsourcing your IT needs to a third-party provider, known as a managed service provider (MSP). On the other hand, in-house IT services involve building and maintaining an internal IT team within your organization.

The decision between managed IT services vs in-house integration depends on various factors, such as the scale of your operations and the need for specialized expertise.

How do managed services vs in-house teams impact your business's efficiency?

The efficiency of your IT operations depends on whether you hire in-house or opt for managed IT services. In-house IT support ensures immediate availability and a quick response to issues.

On the contrary, working with a managed services provider can enhance efficiency by providing a wide range of specialized services and expertise.

What factors should be considered when deciding between in-house or managed IT services?

When deciding between in-house IT vs hiring an external managed IT service provider, businesses need to consider various factors. Evaluate the control over your internal infrastructure, the flexibility required, and the scalability of services.

Additionally, keep in mind that MSPs and in-house integration may have different impacts on your overall IT strategy.

How can businesses ensure the right choice between in-house and managed IT services?

Making the correct choice between in-house IT and managed services involves understanding your business's specific needs. Consider whether in-house IT support aligns with your organization's culture or if working with a managed services provider is more suitable.

The decision should be based on a thorough assessment of your budget, customization requirements, and the level of control desired.

Are there specific advantages to having an in-house IT team?

Hiring an in-house IT team provides certain advantages, such as having control over your IT infrastructure and tailored solutions. However, it comes with high personnel costs and may not offer the same level of expertise and scalability as managed IT services.

Understanding the pros and cons of in-house vs managed IT services is crucial for making an informed decision.

How do managed IT services contribute to cost savings for businesses?

While hiring an in-house team may incur fixed personnel costs, choosing to have an in-house IT department may not always be the most cost-effective solution. Managed IT services provide a scalable model, allowing businesses to pay for the services they use.

This approach can lead to substantial cost savings, making it an attractive option for businesses looking to optimize their IT budget.