Some of us have devices that we have probably used for almost one decade. But have you ever experienced your device suddenly shutting down on you? Or how about urgently needing a software upgrade with your hardware unable to handle it? It might be a mere inconvenience on a personal level, while it can be devastating for a business.
The narration above describes a disadvantage of the break/fix model. The name was coined from the idea of an IT provider being called upon to fix anything only when it broke. That means an IT provider only delivers services when needed.
Using this support model, your IT provider only carries out services as needed to sustain normal network operations. Those services generally include installation, repair, component replacement, upgrade, and network management.
A break/fix approach eventually restricts the success of your business. Let’s discuss why.
Why the Break/Fix Support Model Doesn’t Work
With a break/fix information technology support model, once anything goes wrong and your network goes down, your team’s productivity is instantly negatively impacted. It is by then you will need to place a call through to your IT provider and explain the issue to them.
However, they get to choose when to attend to you and who to attend to you. Since your network is perhaps not their topmost priority, it may take them hours, or even days, before they reach out to you. Meanwhile, those seconds, minutes, and hours that the network downtime existed, eventually lead to missed golden opportunities, lost revenue, and dissatisfied clients.
Unpredictable IT Costs
When planning IT expenses, businesses continually look for ways to cut technology costs. This goal is often why companies adopt a break/fix service model since they will not need to spend any amount on their IT until they compulsorily have to.
However, while that mentality can help you save money today, it could eventually cost you more tomorrow, should anything that involves your network go awry.
Even though the break/fix support model initially appears to be cost-effective, the cost of repairs, hourly labor, and IT consulting rapidly become significant. Worse thing, there will be no preventive measures to put in place to guarantee that it doesn’t repeat itself.
Oftentimes, especially for small and medium-sized businesses, it can feel like going through a disaster without insurance to fall back on. Other times, unpredictable IT costs can go as far as bankrupting a company that strongly depends on technology for its operations.
Sometimes, some businesses sacrifice scheduled upgrades to resolve the issue at hand, but this develops a situation where they can eventually work with legacy tools which can lead to increased exposure to cybersecurity risks.
Furthermore, break/fix service providers gain from IT problems taking longer to resolve. This is because the more callouts they get, the better for them since it is their main source of income. They enjoy handling issues case-by-case, resulting in invoices with unexpected costs.
There is not always a robust service level agreement (SLA) with break/fix vendors. This means that their response and repair time will be according to their availability and workload. It is quite understandable, however, because the nature of the break/fix services is highly uncertain.
The lack of SLAs poses a considerable risk for organizations that rely on their underlying IT infrastructure to sustain their daily operations. For instance, significant downtime poses a threat to the reputation of your brand, your business relevance, as well as your revenue.
Even if the issue is related to cybersecurity threats such as ransomware attacks or malware, or even a data breach, businesses must deal with it as soon as possible, within an acceptable time frame, as every second the IT system of an enterprise remains down costs the business money.
Additionally, downtime tends to become more than expected or envisaged if the supposed IT professionals are not familiar with your IT system. They will need time to get acquainted with it before they start to tackle the problem on the ground.
As one that uses the break/fix support model, if you only apply a temporary solution to get your IT operations up and running again, several other related IT issues can go hidden. This means you will be subject to a rude awakening whenever you notice them.
Moreover, break/fix vendors don’t give remote monitoring and management (RMM). Hence, you can bet that you will not notice the issue until the damage is done.
Obstructs Overall Productivity
Businesses often depend on a couple of IT staff to take care of their daily information technology operations. However, in the long run, it will prove not to be a proactive approach, as whenever things go very wrong, you will always have to wait on IT professionals to make out time for you before they start the journey of solving the problem.
If a business heavily relies on technology (which is very common), the majority of the staff or even everybody in the enterprise will not be able to get any work done during the period of downtime, which will consequently harm the overall productivity of the business.
Managed Service Model
The alternative to a break/fix service support model is the managed service model. By employing the use of managed IT services, customers pay a certain fixed amount monthly for IT services.
This model gives room to an IT partner to have more active participation in the approach to your technology platform through comprehensive services that continuously optimize and safeguard your network. When things go wrong with your IT, you know exactly who to call, and you will not have to pay every time you call, as the monthly fee will cover repairs, network problems, and other IT services.
Generally, a managed service IT provider is a proactive approach to maintenance, security, updates, and helpdesk support.