What is the difference between managed services and support?

What is the difference between managed services and support?
5 min read
10 December 2022


The IT industry is constantly changing, and so is the way businesses manage their technology. While managed services and support both provide similar services for IT, there are some key differences between them that you should be aware of before deciding which option to choose for your business.

Managed service providers typically offer proactive services.

They'll monitor your network for issues and help you solve them before they become big problems. Managed service providers also have the resources to maintain your systems, eliminating downtime and improving efficiency in the process.

Managed services can address all of these needs by providing a single point of contact for all IT support, from maintenance to installation; any kind of technological issue will be addressed in a timely manner through this relationship. As such, managed service providers are able to provide a wide range of services that allow companies to focus on their core business—rather than worrying about technical problems—and still get the benefit from their investment in technology.

Support is often seen as a reactive service.

This can be an issue for businesses, as they want their customers to be able to resolve issues on their own without having to rely on IT support. However, due to the complexity of today's technology and software, it's not always possible for customers or employees alike to troubleshoot issues themselves. When you're looking at how your business handles support requests from its users (and potential ones), think about how your organization will handle this process:

  • Are there multiple ways users can contact the company? If so, which ones are most effective?
  • Do you have a help desk where members of your team answer questions about products/services or navigate technical challenges by phone or online chat interface?
  • Who does what in terms of software installations and updates—and who takes charge if something goes wrong during installation/update processes?

Managed services typically include proactive monitoring and maintenance.

Proactive monitoring and maintenance can prevent problems from occurring. When you use a managed service provider to monitor your servers, for example, they will be able to identify issues before they become critical so that you do not have to spend money on repairs or downtime.

Support is often a temporary remedy to an immediate problem.

Support is typically not an ongoing service, but rather a one-off solution that solves one specific problem. For example, if you've lost your power at home and need help getting it back on line, your ISP may send someone out who will turn off the switch in your house (to keep other customers from losing power as well). This is called "managing" or "remediating" problems—it takes care of only one thing at a time instead of being proactive about fixing all issues across the board.

Many businesses use both managed services and support.

Managed services can be a good way to get help with your IT needs, but they can also be expensive. Support is usually cheaper than managed services and often more reactive than proactive.

Managed services are typically an ongoing service with a monthly subscription fee.

The monthly subscription fee is usually based on the size of your business and the type of services you need.

Managed services can include:

  • Technical support (such as phone support, email support, and webinar training)
  • Remote access to your system(s)

Support is usually billed on an ad-hoc basis, at an hourly rate.

This is the most common type of support and it's what you're likely to find when you contact your provider for help with a particular issue. Support can also be provided by a third party or in-house, but it's important to know that this method doesn't allow for remote diagnostics or other diagnostic tools that may provide more insight into the problem than simply talking through each step with someone who has technical expertise.

Support offers immediate relief for issues like crashes or slowdowns; however, they aren't generally long-term solutions to improve performance over time—which means they're not considered as much as managed services because they're only temporary fixes (and therefore don't require ongoing maintenance).

It's important to understand the difference between managed services and support for the best IT management for your business.

When you’re looking for the best IT management such as Cisco Meraki Cape Girardeau for your business, it's important to understand the difference between managed services and support.

Managed services are proactive in nature. They include proactive monitoring and maintenance of your network infrastructure, servers, applications and other critical systems that enable your business to function efficiently. This proactive approach ensures that issues are identified quickly so they can be fixed before they become large problems with potential negative consequences.


We hope you've learned a lot about managed services and support. We think it's important for businesses to understand the difference between these two types of IT management, as well as what each type offers. With that in mind, now it’s time to start your own journey into the world of IT management!

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