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Co-Managed or Full-Service Delivery – what’s your flavor?

Upon joining Olive + Goose, my goal was to create a value driven, impactful Support Service to our consulting customers. In my view, O+G’s strength was its depth and experience as a Microsoft partner: a majority of O+G’s consultants are Microsoft Alumni, with a wealth of relevant insights and expertise. This background lends itself well to strengthening the partnership between O+G and Microsoft, and both companies’ focus on customer success in employing cloud technologies. As I began to expand on O+G’s existing Managed Services program, I had to acknowledged that there had been a strong shift in end-client needs and in their plans for supporting their IT infrastructure and users.

For many years customers’ focus was on outsourcing IT – both staffing and infrastructure –as a cost saving effort. The C-level and investors loved this approach because it showed an immediate positive impact on the company’s bottom line, and it became the norm for some time. However, the current trend is increasingly to rebuild internal IT staff, while still controlling costs.

Most IT organizations today are faced with the challenge of supporting a large number of applications and services, often with too few resources and staff who lack necessary skills and experience. The urgency of day-to-day troubleshooting routinely shifts IT’s focus away from high-level strategic and operational goals, with the net effect of forcing in-house IT staff to work longer, higher priorities and with greater pressure. This can be stressful, leading to employee burn out and stress.

Hiring additional staff or backfilling attrition with the right mix of skill and expertise isn’t always an option due to budget limitations. Outsourcing IT functions to a managed services provider (MSP) can be a cost-effective way to gain access to expertise, but it isn’t right for every organization. For example, some organizations fear giving up too much control over certain functions. And if you already have in-house IT staff, you don’t want to lose their knowledge of your environment, processes, and priorities.

Co-managed IT services offer a hybrid approach, with outside experts supplementing your own staff. It is more of a partnership than an outsourcing arrangement, with your internal IT team directing the Co-MSP’s staff to ensure that services are customized to meet your technical and operational requirements. This allows you to cost-effectively boost staffing levels while maintaining control over operations. The co-managed model delivers a high level of flexibility. You can choose whether you want outside help with routine tasks to free your staff for strategic initiatives or get expert help for special projects while your staff handles day-to-day operations.

Olive + Goose’s take on Co-Managed IT Services is designed to fulfill customer needs in several ways, including escalation support for the internal IT team, subject matter expertise for specific topics, or general staff-augmentation. For example, consider the Data Scientist role. Many companies are coming to the conclusion that data is king – but how do we utilize data? How do we take advantage of the data? How do we manage the data? Our first thought might be to hire a Data Scientist to put together a program for all this – and yet many companies find that their expensive new Data Scientist ends up only 30-40% utilized. So instead of hiring in, why not partner with O+G for Data Science as a service. Your cost goes down because you’re contracting for only a fraction of full time – for example by purchasing a set number of data science hours per month or contracting for the delivery of a core set of resources.

Co-Managed IT Services is NOW. It is O+G’s core Managed Services offering, which we believe will have the biggest impact on customers’ ongoing IT efforts. We are here to offer you the support you need. The ITSM tools we’ve chosen are designed to help us in this effort by extending our Ticketing system to use at two different levels of detail. We can also fully integrate with most of the industry common ITSM tools. Our team consists of Support Engineers, Consultants, MSFT MVPs, Subject Matter Experts, all here to ensure your IT Team is Enhanced, Supported and Supplemented when or where needed.

Yes, we still provide and fully embrace traditional Full-Serviced Managed Services, we can be your help-desk or IT Infrastructure Admins as well. There will always be the need for this level and type of service, and we were built with this in mind.

Reach out to us here today!