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Managed Services Market Growing, But Still A Work In Progress For Many IT Firms, New CompTIA Study Reveals

DOWNERS GROVE, Ill., Dec. 19, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Managed services are a steadily growing market for information technology (IT) channel companies even as concerns about revenue, staffing and the impact of cloud computing lead many firms to take a go-slow approach, according to a new study released today by CompTIA, the non-profit association for the IT industry.

Half of all channel firms surveyed for CompTIA's Trends in Managed Services Operations study say they provide managed services either exclusively or as part of a broader business portfolio. That's up from four in 10 companies in 2011.

Additionally, 17 percent of companies expect their managed services business to account for 75 percent or more of their total revenue over the next five years. Just under two-thirds of firms see managed services as an escalating share of overall revenue during that time.

"The managed services model is becoming more commonly practiced across the channel and generating demand among end users," said Carolyn April, director, industry analysis, CompTIA. "It's a steadily growing market that is not going away despite some uncertainty."

That uncertainty has prompted most IT channel companies to make an initial foray into the managed services market, but not a full-fledged switch.

"The incidence of pure play MSPs is pretty low," April noted. "It's still an added practice as part of an overall business. Many, if not most, MSPs continue to sell hardware and other infrastructure to their customers, do the implementation and only then take over management of said devices under a managed services contract."

Financial considerations and staffing issues are two big contributing factors that prompt companies to make a cautious move into managed services.

Among IT channel companies not offering managed services, four in 10 say they are waiting to see the impact that cloud computing has on the managed services market.

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