managed service provider

4 Managed Service Providers Types: What They Do

Today’s businesses are always more and more reliant on technology. New innovations and systems have been rolling in. It has been challenging for entrepreneurs to keep up with such a rapid digital transformation. And these new technologies come with a lot of opportunities and risks. 

This is where MSPs come in. Managed service providers can look after your cybersecurity, daily operations, long-term IT strategy, and much more. However, no two MSPs are the same—which type will you choose?

Lower Level Managed Service Providers

If you are looking for a team of experts to maximize uptime, resolve issues quickly, and keep your systems working, you might opt for lower level managed service providers. 

These are often teams of 2 to 4 IT experts that implement and use cutting-edge technologies. Their company is often youthful and implementing systems such as cloud-based structures and marketing. Lower level managed service providers can represent a particularly attractive category of IT experts. Their offer will allow your business to have access to great infrastructures for a limited price. 

However, these companies are often characterized by a lack of experience in using these tools. This is likely to show over time when your MSP cannot scale up or fully understand the implications of a system. 


  • Perfect to have access to cloud and marketing service at a low price
  • Youthful and approachable


  • Common lack of experience and business direction
  • Not suitable when crafting a long term business strategy

Mid-Level Managed Service Providers

Mid-level MSPs are usually larger companies of 8 to 15 IT professionals who work together to offer clients a greater variety of backgrounds and expertise. While larger than lower-level MSPs, these companies also provide very inexpensive services. 

However, these companies have unique selling points that many other MSPs don’t offer: hourly options and “break-fix” services. A great number of companies, especially small businesses or local shops, tend to resort to these services when something breaks. 

These businesses are not usually heavily tech-reliant, and they don’t require assistance with long-term IT strategies. So, “break-fix” services might be suitable in the short term. In the long run, such fixes can make IT services even more expensive!

This type of MSPs works with a limited set of tools—enough to fix common issues. 


  • They offer “break-fix” services and hourly options
  • They can be very inexpensive


  • They lack business direction and experience
  • They overlook the overall strategy of a business

Higher-Level Managed Service Providers

Higher-level MSPs are usually larger organizations that include tens or hundreds of IT professionals. While this variety of backgrounds might suggest impressive experience and expertise, it is important to further research the company. 

While this group seems to be an MSP at first, its core competency might actually be something else. The company’s background might be in other aspects such as insurance sales, audio/video solutions, or tech support for some appliances. They start to offer MSPs because many companies that are already operating in a neighboring industry want to find new revenue streams. 


  • The company is large, so you can consult with more IT professionals
  • It can be inexpensive


  • They lack the experience of trained MSPs
  • They might not have a direct background as MSPs

Expert Level Managed Service Providers

Expert level managed service providers are those professionals you should trust when you are devising a long-term success plan for your business. Indeed, the technology you use is likely to grow with you, and you will always need the services of an MSP that is versatile, experienced, and scalable. 

Expert level MSPs can usually put more than 25 IT professionals at your disposal, each with years of experience under their belt. Throughout time, these professionals have understood the services and their implications better than most others in the industry, and they can help you with several aspects of your IT strategy. 

These MSPs are considered more expensive and offer services that make them designed to be a long-term partner for your business rather than a technician to call for a quick “break-fix.” These professionals also have a business direction, and they know what the industry-specific trends in your sector are like. So you can customize your IT strategy and align it with your brand values. 


  • They have years of experience as MSPs under their belts
  • They are suitable for long-term partnerships


  • They might be pricier

When looking for the right managed service provider to partner with your company, it is crucial to understand your company’s needs. Without the right guidance and support, your business might end up not reaping the right benefits of your investment while still exposing itself to unnecessary risks.