How much should an RIA expect to pay for IT services nationwide?


Break/fix and managed IT services are essential in the world of business IT support, and the cost of these services can vary greatly depending on a variety of factors. From how complex your IT environment is, to how unique your business demands are, to how many technology users you have — the list goes on.

To better understand how much your RIA or financial advisory firm should pay for these types of services, let’s explore what each service entails and how much they normally cost.


Break/fix services are the more traditional form of IT support where you’ll pay an hourly rate for your technology provider to fix whatever issues your devices or systems are experiencing. This can cost from $150 to $250, depending on the complexity of the repair. The biggest benefit of break/fix services is the convenience factor: if an issue arises, help will usually arrive within a few hours or less.

The transactional nature of break/fix services also means that you’re not locked into a contract, and there are usually no long-term commitments. You don’t have to undergo the tedious process of contract procurement and can instead just call your technology provider on an as-needed basis.

However, there are some drawbacks to this type of support. For one, because break/fix services are reactive in nature, your provider may not be able to prevent issues from happening in the first place. Additionally, a break/fix relationship with your IT provider means they don’t spend time to understand your needs in depth. And this is especially important for RIA and financial advisory firms that need security to be the top priority.

In addition, the hourly rate can add up quickly if you have plenty of IT issues, your environment is complex, or you require emergency or urgent services. You’ll also need to pay extra for any hardware or software that need to be replaced. These make it very difficult to predict your monthly IT budget.

Managed IT

On the other hand, managed IT services provide a more holistic and proactive approach to your technology needs. Rather than waiting for something to break before addressing it, your managed IT services provider (MSP) will work to prevent issues from even occurring. This typically includes tasks like server and device monitoring, patch management, and malware protection, among others. These proactive measures will reduce the number of incidents you experience, thereby saving your company time and money and keeping you operational and productive.

Managed IT services are typically priced on a monthly basis, and the rates can vary depending on the size of your business and the services you need. In general, there are three managed IT services pricing models. Let’s take a look at each one:

Per device

In this model, your MSP bills you for the total number of devices on your network. This can include servers, computers, mobile devices, printers, copiers, and the like. The typical pricing is between $5 and $100 per device per month. This is a good option if you have a relatively smaller IT environment and want to keep costs as low as possible.

Per user

In this model, your MSP bills you based on the total number of users in your company, regardless of how many devices they use. Typical pricing ranges from $125 to $200 per user per month. This is a good option if you have many employees and want to ensure that everyone has access to the best possible IT support.

Flat fee

With this pricing model, your MSP charges you a fixed monthly rate for all the managed IT services you need. This often includes remote and on-site support, network monitoring and maintenance, and updating and patching. Some providers even offer consultation services, so you can get expert advice on how to improve your IT infrastructure.

There’s no definitive price range for this model since MSPs must first determine the scope of your RIAs’ IT needs. However, flat-fee pricing is ideal if you want predictability in your IT expenses or if you have a complex environment that would otherwise be difficult to price out individually.

Break/fix vs. managed IT: Which is better for your RIA firm?

Ultimately, the decision comes down to your RIA firm’s specific needs. If you have a relatively small environment and don’t need a lot of support, break/fix may be the better option. But if you have more than five employees, want preventive maintenance, and need access to expert IT professionals, managed IT services are the way to go.

At RIA WorkSpace, we offer an all-inclusive, flat fee per employee available in your choice of three different plans. Reach out today and get a free quote to get started!

At RIA WorkSpace, we offer three different all-inclusive managed IT services plans, which are available for a flat monthly fee per user.