Collaboration or Chaos? The Case for Co-Managed MSP IT Partnerships

Collaboration or Chaos? The Case for Co-Managed MSP IT Partnerships

In today's fast-paced technological landscape, businesses face the daunting task of managing their IT infrastructure while striving for innovation and growth. Many companies opt to engage Managed Service Providers (MSPs) to handle their IT needs efficiently. Yet, the question arises: should it be a hands-off, outsourced relationship, or a collaborative, co-managed partnership?

The Traditional Approach: Outsourcing IT to MSPs

Outsourcing IT services to an MSP has been a popular choice for organizations seeking to offload the responsibility of managing their technology. It offers several advantages:

  • Expertise and Specialization: MSPs bring specialized skills and expertise, offering a broad range of services, from network management to cybersecurity.
  • Cost Efficiency: Outsourcing IT to an MSP can potentially save costs associated with hiring and training an in-house IT team.
  • Scalability and Flexibility: MSPs can quickly scale services up or down based on business needs, providing flexibility in managing resources.

The Emergence of Co-Managed IT Partnerships

While the traditional model of outsourcing IT functions to MSPs has its advantages, an emerging trend towards co-managed IT partnerships is gaining traction. This model involves a collaborative approach, where the internal IT team of a company works alongside the MSP.

The Benefits of Co-Managed IT Partnerships

  • Enhanced Control and Visibility: With a co-managed approach, businesses retain control over their IT operations while leveraging the expertise of the MSP. This fosters better visibility and understanding of how IT aligns with overall business goals.
  • Tailored Solutions: Co-managed partnerships allow for more customized solutions. The internal IT team understands the specific needs of the organization, collaborating with the MSP to develop tailored strategies and solutions.
  • Knowledge Transfer and Skill Enhancement: Working alongside the MSP, the internal team gains valuable insights and knowledge, fostering skill enhancement and reducing reliance on external support over time.

Finding the Right Balance

The key to a successful co-managed IT partnership lies in finding the right balance between internal and external expertise. Here are some tips to achieve this:

  • Clear Communication and Defined Roles: Clearly outline roles and responsibilities for both the internal team and the MSP to avoid conflicts or misunderstandings.
  • Regular Collaboration and Knowledge Sharing: Foster a culture of collaboration, encouraging regular meetings and knowledge-sharing sessions between the internal IT team and the MSP.
  • Aligned Goals and Objectives: Ensure that both parties share common goals and objectives, aligning their efforts towards achieving the company's strategic vision.


In the ever-evolving landscape of IT management, the choice between outsourcing and co-managing IT functions with an MSP is not always black and white. While outsourcing provides specialized expertise, co-managed partnerships offer a collaborative approach that leverages internal knowledge and external support for optimal results.

Finding the right balance between collaboration and outsourcing can lead to a harmonious and efficient IT environment, where businesses can navigate complexities while driving innovation and growth.

FREE eBook: The SMB's Guide to Cyber SecurityLearn More Here
+ +