Managed Services vs. Professional Services: What are the Differences?

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Most larger businesses are able to sustain an internal IT department. However, if you operate a small business, you may not have the budget for one. 

To solve this problem, many businesses outsource their IT management. By the end of 2021, 85% of small businesses sought the help of a SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) provider. 

Outsourcing is also a great way to free up your team’s time so they can be more productive. In fact, 57% of companies report that they outsource their IT specifically for that reason.

If you have decided to try outsourcing your IT, you can choose either managed or professional services based on your needs. While there are some similarities between the two, it is important to understand that there are a few distinct differences. 

In this article, we’ll compare managed services vs. professional services to help you decide which service is better suited to help you meet your business objectives. You’ll learn what each service entails and some of the key advantages they offer.

Managed Services vs. Professional Services: Which is Right for You?

Find out today by partnering with KDIT to reach your business goals.

What Are Professional IT Services?

Professional services offer on-demand, project based support for specific challenges. Many companies opt for professional services when they are in need of support for a single major IT project, such as:

The scope of professional services can expand as far as you need to complete your project. Professional services can also assist you with your project’s planning, design, implementation, adoption, and training phases. 

Professional service providers remain focused on one specific issue for the duration of their contract. For this reason, professional services may be the better option if your company only needs help with one particular challenge. 

Some professional services focus on cybersecurity and will provide one-time threat assessments, strategic consulting, or cybersecurity training programs. Others may be more focused on implementation, making them great options for companies who are introducing new software. 

What Are Managed IT Services?

A managed service provider (MSP) offers ongoing support on a long term basis. Managed services are ideal for businesses that do not have internal IT resources or businesses with highly complex IT needs. 

Managed services may offer 24/7 IT support, network monitoring, and assistance with cloud services, among other things.

When a company decides to outsource their IT, some or all of their IT duties will be managed by the MSP. As a result, businesses are able to easily gap-fill any necessary skills, which can save on overhead costs. 

The ongoing nature of an MSP’s support can greatly benefit businesses with a rapidly evolving IT infrastructure. This is because business owners can easily get immediate advice from an IT expert whenever there are changes without needing to open a new contract.

Managed service providers also tend to build a strong relationship with their clients. In many cases, your MSP can anticipate your business’s needs based on their past experiences with you. Some MSPs may conduct detailed infrastructure assessments prior to launching their services. 

The information that the MSP collects about your business enable them to offer tailored services while ensuring that you won’t have to constantly re-explain your business framework to them. 

managed services vs. professional services
Credit: snehaltechnotery

What Are the Key Differences Between Managed and Professional Services?

In a nutshell, the primary difference between managed services and professional services is how they deliver support. Managed services provide constant, ongoing support while professional services support you on a project-by-project basis. 

A few other key differences are:

Managed Services

Professional Services

Provides resources and ongoing IT management

You will remain responsible for your own IT resources and management

Capable of scaling to growing projects

Better for fixed, one-time projects that are unlikely to scale

Takes a proactive approach with constant monitoring, remediation, and maintenance

Typically a reactive, break-fix-style service that addresses issues as they arise

Monitors several parts of your IT infrastructure

Only focuses on what’s needed to complete the project

Typically a monthly or annual contract or subscription, often with flat rates

One-time cost on a project-to-project basis


Interested in learning more about managed and professional services? Check out these blogs:

Managed Services vs. Professional Services: Which Should You Choose?

When it comes to comparing managed services vs. professional services, neither option is inherently better or worse. It all depends on what your business requires

In fact, most companies can benefit from both depending on their project needs. With this in mind, you may decide to partner with a managed service provider that can give you both options.

For the past seven years, KDIT has provided companies in Los Angeles, Orange County and beyond with a complete suite of managed and professional IT services. Our services come at a single flat rate with no hidden, added, or surprising charges. 

When you partner with KDIT, your business benefits from:

  • A Service Level Agreement (SLA) with every contract
  • Tailored service packages for projects of any size and with any budget
  • A fast, 30-day onboarding process so we can get to work on your project quickly
  • A dedicated project lead who acts as your primary contact throughout your process
  • 24/7 support availability with an average response time of one hour, even on weekends and holidays
  • Remote IT support and helpdesk services that proactively solve IT problems before they impact your productivity 

Trust our team of IT experts to help you meet your business goals. Contact us today to learn more about how we can ensure your next IT project runs seamlessly.