In-House vs. Managed IT Services (MSP): How to Make the Right Choice for Your Business

Jarrod Koch

CEO and Partner of DivergeIT

August 21, 2023

In today's highly competitive marketplace, information technology (IT) plays a pivotal role in the growth and productivity of a business. Every business owner has to make a crucial decision - whether to have an in-house IT team or outsource to a managed service provider (MSP). Each option has pros and cons; the right choice largely depends on your company's needs and budget. This comprehensive guide will help you understand in-house vs. managed IT services, their benefits, and how to make an informed decision that aligns with your business goals.

What are in-house support IT services?

In-house IT services refer to the traditional approach where companies have an internal IT team to handle their technology needs. This team is employed directly by the company. It manages and maintains the IT infrastructure, resolves technical issues, and ensures the company's IT systems are secure and up-to-date.

Here are some advantages and disadvantages of in-house IT services:


Direct control: Having in-house IT employees gives you direct control over your IT operations and immediate access to your staff.

Custom solutions: Your internal IT team will understand your business needs in-depth and can provide customized solutions tailored to your unique requirements.

Quick response: With its on-site availability, you can expect quick response times to IT issues, as the staff is already present at your office.


High personnel costs: Hiring, training, and maintaining an in-house IT team can affect the cost savings of a company. Having an entire in-house team includes salaries, benefits, sick leave and vacation, and continuous training expenses.

Limited resources: Small to mid-sized businesses may not have access to the latest technology and resources needed to address the ever-evolving IT landscape.

Lack of expertise: Your internal team may not have the expertise required to handle specialized IT challenges.

 in-house support IT services

What are managed IT services?

Before we ask, “Why choose managed IT services over in-house?”, it’s crucial to know what outsourcing IT services really means. Managed IT services involve outsourcing your IT needs to an external provider or MSP. These providers have a team of experts who remotely monitor, manage, and maintain your IT infrastructure, offering a comprehensive suite of services ranging from network management to cybersecurity.

Here are some of the disadvantages and benefits of managed IT services.


Cost-effective: Outsourcing to an MSP is often more cost-effective than maintaining an in-house IT team. You pay a fixed monthly fee and avoid expenses like salaries and benefits. In fact, according to a survey, around 50% of businesses that engaged an MSP saved 1-24% in annual IT costs.

Access to experts: MSPs have a team of experienced professionals with diverse expertise, ensuring that all your IT needs are met.

Latest technology: MSPs can access the latest technology and implement advanced solutions to enhance IT operations.


Less control: You may have less direct control over your IT operations when outsourcing to an MSP.

managed IT services

Which is better: In-house or managed IT services?

Choosing between in-house and managed IT services depends on your business size, budget, and specific IT needs. So now’s the time to ask, why choose managed IT services over in-house?

For small businesses with limited IT requirements and budget constraints, managed IT services may be a more cost-effective and efficient solution. Even for larger companies, managed IT services can be a great way to access the latest technology and ensure 24/7 support without worrying about hiring, training, and maintaining an in-house team.

On the other hand, hiring an in-house team gives you more control over your IT infrastructure and processes. You also don’t need to rely on a third-party service provider for support.

Businesses can also have an in-house IT while outsourcing specific IT tasks to MSPs. This hybrid approach can help businesses gain a competitive edge by taking advantage of an MSP's resources and expertise while still having direct control over their internal IT operations.

Which is better: In-house or managed IT services

Features to look for in a managed service provider (MSP)

When it comes to in-house vs. managed IT services, choosing the right  MSP is just as important. If you’re looking for an MSP to help you manage the IT side of your business, here are some features to consider:

1. Customization

A good MSP should offer customized solutions tailored to your business needs. They should be flexible enough to accommodate your requirements, regardless of your company's size or industry.

2. Proactive support

Look for an MSP that offers proactive support, including 24/7 monitoring, timely updates, and routine maintenance. This approach helps prevent potential IT issues before they arise, ensuring smooth and uninterrupted operations.

3. Expertise

An experienced MSP should have a team of professionals with diverse skills and expertise, including network management, cybersecurity, cloud solutions, and more. This ensures that a knowledgeable team meets all your IT needs.

4. Security and compliance

A good MSP should provide comprehensive cybersecurity solutions to safeguard your business against threats. Additionally, they should help ensure compliance with industry-specific regulations and standards.

5. Scalability

As your business grows, your IT needs will likely change. Look for an MSP that can easily scale your IT services to accommodate your evolving needs without incurring excessive costs or disruptions.

6. Transparency and communication

A good MSP should be transparent in its operations and pricing. They should provide clear communication and regular reports, helping you stay informed about your IT performance and any potential issues.

7. Integration capabilities

Your MSP should be able to integrate its services seamlessly with your existing systems and tools. This ensures smooth operations and enhances the efficiency of your IT infrastructure.

8. SLAs and response time

Service level agreements (SLAs) outline the services the MSP provides and their responsibilities. Ensure that the MSP offers SLAs with clear response times and issue resolution expectations.

Proactive support

Enhancing IT management with DivergeIT

If you choose to hire an MSP, it's not enough that they can carry out the work. You must ensure that your Managed Service Provider (MSP) is a good fit for you and your organization.

At DivergeIT, we always align our services with your business's needs. We strive for perfect alignment of our insights, methodology, and service delivery capabilities to ensure that your IT is managed in the most optimal way.

We believe technology should be used as a differentiator, not an operational cost. Our team is made up of highly experienced tech professionals who are passionate about making sure you get the best output from your IT management strategy. To learn more about our services, click here

partnering with the best MSP

Elevate your IT game with the right choice

Clearing the debate over in-house vs. managed IT services, we’re sure you still have a lot to think about, and that’s okay — no one should be deciding on the spot. After all, it’s still your company at stake when talking about IT services, and you want to ensure you get the best results. 

But choosing either ultimately depends on your unique business needs and budget. Both options offer their own advantages and challenges, and it's essential to weigh them carefully before making a decision. By evaluating the specific requirements of your business, you can choose the most suitable approach to IT management that propels your business forward, ensures robust security, and enhances productivity.

Now that you understand the pros and cons of in-house and managed IT services, it's time to take the next step. If you're ready to optimize your IT operations, streamline your workflow, and safeguard your business against cybersecurity threats, the experts at DivergeIT are here to help.

Ready to make the right choice for your business and unlock a new realm of IT excellence? Tap into the expertise of DivergeIT today and explore a world of IT solutions tailored to your unique needs. Let’s make IT work for you, not the other way around.

Frequently asked questions

1. What are the key differences between managed services and in-house IT support?

Managed IT services refer to outsourcing a range of IT services to a third-party service provider. These services can include cloud services, hardware and software support, cybersecurity, and more. On the other hand, in-house IT support involves hiring in-house IT staff to handle all IT tasks within the company. The choice between these options depends on your business's specific needs, budget, and service level expectations.

2. What are the pros and cons of managed services vs. in-house IT support?

The main benefit of managed services is that you can access a wide range of IT services from experts who are always up-to-date with the latest technology trends. Managed IT service providers also typically offer 24/7 support, whereas in-house IT support may only be available during business hours. On the other hand, in-house IT staff can provide more tailored support and faster response times since they know your company's specific needs. However, hiring and maintaining an in-house IT department can be more expensive and time-consuming than using managed IT services.

3. Can my business benefit from managed IT services even if we have in-house IT support?

Yes, your business can benefit from managed IT services even if you have in-house IT support. Managed services can complement your in-house IT staff by providing specialized services that your in-house team may not have expertise in, such as cloud services or advanced cybersecurity measures. Managed services can also help your in-house IT staff focus on more strategic tasks rather than spending time on routine maintenance and support.

4. What should I consider when deciding between in-house integration and managed IT services?

When deciding between in-house integration and managed IT services, consider your budget, IT needs, and available resources. If your business requires a wide range of IT services, has a limited budget, or lacks the resources to build an in-house IT department, managed IT services may be the better option. On the other hand, if your business requires highly specialized or tailored IT support, has the resources to hire in-house IT staff, and prefers to keep everything in-house, in-house integration may be more suitable.

5. Do managed services offer support outside of regular business hours?

Yes, many managed IT service providers offer 24/7 support, ensuring that your IT needs are met anytime. In contrast, in-house IT support is typically only available during regular business hours. This difference can be crucial if your business operates around the clock or if you experience an IT issue outside regular business hours.

6. How can managed IT services help my business?

Managed IT services can help your business by providing a wide range of IT services, freeing up your in-house staff to focus on other tasks, and ensuring that your IT infrastructure is always up-to-date and secure. Managed services providers offer expertise in areas your in-house team may not have, such as cloud services or advanced cybersecurity measures. In addition, outsourcing IT tasks can save your business time and money compared to building and maintaining an in-house IT department.

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