As applications become more critical to running daily operations and grow more complex, the task of maintaining them becomes enormously time-consuming.
Your in-house IT department can easily get stuck with routine application management and troubleshooting rather than focusing on more strategic, business-growing tasks that might have a significant impact on the long-term success of your company.
Instead of burdening your in-house IT resources with maintaining existing applications, you can source application managed services from an external vendor.
But is externally sourcing application managed services truly effective for maintaining your applications? What do these vendors offer that makes them valuable? Is there anything you need to look out for in terms of concerns or key strengths with these vendors?
What are Application Managed Services?
Fundamentally, what application managed services refers too, is outsourcing the maintenance and support of your existing applications to an external vendor.
It’s a solution where instead of taking on the fixed (and usually high) cost of hiring new IT staff, hardware and/or software to support your existing applications, you get the maintenance work done from outside as a service.
Like a managed software suite for which you pay a monthly or annual fee, application managed services would be an operational cost that you pay for as long as you’re using the service.
Why are Application Management Tasks & Services Appealing?
The advantage of the application managed services model is that once you’re done maintaining that particular application, you can clawback the service and its associated costs. On the other hand, an expanded in-house IT staff would be a fixed cost. That cost will stay even if you’ve stopped maintaining the application you had internally expanded to handle in the first place.
So, if you’ve already set your mind about outsourcing your applications to a Managed Services Provider, then you must also know that there’s more to managed application services than flexibility and cost-savings which is why we’ve prepared this handy checklist to help you make the right decision.
The Managed Services Tasks Checklist
To further aid you, this checklist is divided into three categories:
|Roles and Responsibilities||Description|
|Basic||Any MSP you choose should offer these functionalities within their application managed solution.|
|Intermediate||These functions require more expert knowledge on the behalf of your application managed provider.|
|Advanced||These cutting-edge, extremely advanced functions will ensure all your software and applications run at peak performance, 24x7x365.|
Basic: Proactive Application Monitoring
When an MSP monitors your software they’re collecting data regarding its performance. They then use this data to identify, analyse, and resolve inefficiencies and vulnerabilities in your system, which means any problems are ironed out before they turn into downtime.
Basic: Application Backup and Recovery
A good application management service will also include a backup and recovery program which will ensure protection against natural and man-made disasters such as fire, floods, hacks, scams, and more. And in the rare event of data loss, you’ll be able to recover all your data within minutes thanks to a multiple-redundancy recovery program.
Resolute is Fully Equipped to Manage Your Applications
Basic: Capacity and Performance Monitoring and Management
This function means your application managed provider will allow for scalability. A good AMS provider will proactively monitor your various key performance indicators related to scalability (bandwidth, memory, disk capacity, CPU usage, etc.) and recommend when to increase to match your business growth and usage.
Intermediate: Event Management
Before outsourcing your software you have to ensure that your application managed provider offers this feature. Event management allows for an MSP to detect issues before failure. They’ll get alerts of potential cyber threats, and will be able to identify and resolve serious issues quickly and correctly.
Intermediate: Data Fixes and Data Conditioning
Applications and software do not always function at maximum efficiency. They might collect and store irrelevant or incorrect information in your databases that may need to be tweaked. Working with an MSP that fulfils this responsibility ensures your applications run smoothly 24×7. Advanced: Queries and Reports
Oftentimes, software and apps don’t come with comprehensive enough reports and statistics which can be used for data analysis. An application managed provider can bridge the gap and create custom queries and reports to get the data you need. Advanced: Database Administration
A managed application provider can also take over the responsibility of a database administrator. Because their experienced technicians are experts at supporting a variety of platforms including MS SQL Server, Oracle, MySQL and Postgres, they can properly manage and maintain your database for faster speeds and high uptime.
Advanced: Vendor Management
A responsible MSP can also act as a single point of contact for all your software vendors. They can assist with package selection, review of releases and perform impact analysis of the software upgrade, software roadmaps, patch review and application testing, license renewals, contract management, all while adhering to benchmark SLAs and industry compliance regulations.
Founded in 2005, Resolute Technology Solutions is in a unique position to provide unbiased, expert advice that maximizes your business efficiency and performance. Contact Resolute today for a free 30-minute consultation with a senior IT consultant who can help you make the most of your applications and overall IT.