Managed Services vs.. Staff Augmentation: What’s the Difference?

by | Jun 14, 2023

When it comes to managing your IT, there are two main avenues you can take. You can choose to outsource it through the use of managed services. Or, you might consider staff augmentation, where your IT team is complemented with some additional assistance.

A recent study from Deloitte found that 59% of organizations are currently employing third-party managed services, and an increasing number are turning to staff augmentation as well.

You might be wondering which of these two options is the better choice for your business and its needs. In this article, we’ll compare and contrast them to help you make the right decision.

Exploring the Main Differences Between Managed Services vs.. Staff Augmentation for IT

Managed services and staff augmentation, two seemingly similar terms within the IT sphere, can often be mistaken for each other. But when we dig into their individual DNA, we uncover significant contrasts.

“Let’s start with managed services. In this model, your business partners with a Managed Services Provider (MSP). Now, what does an MSP really do? They don’t just handle your IT tasks; they practically adopt your IT ecosystem.”

As stewards of your IT operations, they actively predict, prevent, and tackle IT issues, such as system failures and downtime. This preemptive approach means issues are often resolved before they even emerge as business impediments, creating a smoother, more efficient operational flow. 

From a cost perspective, MSPs offer scalability. As your business grows, they can adjust to your expanding needs without you having to hire more staff or invest in additional infrastructure.

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On the other hand, there’s staff augmentation, where additional IT specialists are temporarily hired to bolster your existing team. 

This is particularly useful for specific projects or when you need to plug knowledge gaps. Staff augmentation offers flexibility and speed, letting you quickly scale your team up or down based on project requirements. 

Although you may face a higher upfront cost than with managed services, you also gain the advantage of not committing to a long-term contract. This can result in significant cost savings in the long run, especially if your IT needs fluctuate seasonally or project-by-project.

A study by MarketsandMarkets suggests that the managed IT services market is set to explode, with a forecast value of $354.8 billion by 2026. Meanwhile, staff augmentation carries its own momentum, but its trajectory is a different narrative entirely. 

As we see, each approach has its own merits, and the choice between managed services and staff augmentation ultimately depends on your business’s unique needs and objectives.

Comparing IT Staff Augmentation vs. Managed Services for Various Business Sizes

Each has unique needs and faces different challenges, especially in terms of IT staffing. How would IT staff augmentation vs. managed services fare for each?

The table below provides a detailed breakdown of what staff augmentation and managed IT services offer for the three major types of businesses.

Small BusinessesMid-Sized BusinessesLarge Businesses
IT Staff AugmentationIdeal for short-term projects or specific IT needs. Saves on overhead costs.Good for filling specific skill gaps, maintaining control over the workforce, and managing costs.Excellent for accessing specialized skills and increasing operational efficiency during peak times or projects.
Managed IT ServicesGreat for businesses with limited IT resources. Provides comprehensive IT support and security.Offers an efficient way to manage complex IT operations and security, without the need for a large in-house team.Provides strategic direction and a holistic approach to IT, freeing up the internal team to focus on core business areas.

The decision between staff augmentation and managed services is not a one-size-fits-all but rather a tailored suit, precisely cut and stitched for each business size. 

Whether you operate a small business or a large corporation, understanding your specific needs and challenges will guide your choice in this crucial arena.

Managed Services vs Staff Augmentation

Making a Choice Between IT Staff Augmentation vs. Managed Services with the Help of Computers Made Easy

We have now extensively examined the domains of IT staff augmentation and managed services, comparable to investigating the intricate details of a complex study. 

Our objective has been to provide you with a comprehensive understanding. However, we acknowledge that choosing between these two can be a challenging decision.

At Computers Made Easy, our proficiency lies in simplifying complex decisions. We are readily available to provide our expertise.

We invite you to contact us for a complimentary consultation. We will work together to identify your specific needs and challenges, and then design the most suitable IT staffing solution.