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Know Your Managed IT Terminology

We get it- technology is full of jargon and acronyms that can be confusing and strange to newcomers. If you’re a new managed IT client or are thinking about going the managed IT route, you’ve probably come across some unfamiliar words and acronyms. Not to worry. You’ll be speaking the language of managed services in no time with this glossary of common terms.


Business Continuity (BC): The necessary planning and preparation to ensure that your critical business operations can continue to function in the event of a natural disaster, pandemic, power outage, or other crisis.

Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR): A combination of data backup and disaster recovery solutions that work together to ensure your company can get its systems restored and functioning as quickly as possible. Dependable data backups make effective disaster recovery possible.

Recovery Time Objective (RTO): A measurement of how quickly data must be recovered to ensure business continuity following a disaster or unplanned downtime. The shorter your RTO, the quicker you can get back to work. RTOs can vary widely from business to business, but it’s best practice to have an RTO of 4 hours or less.

Recovery Point Objective (RPO): Indicates which data must be recovered in order for normal business operations to resume after unplanned downtime. It’s usually based on file age (i.e. all data backed up before date X must be recovered). In conjunction with the RTO, it can help you determine how frequently you should backup your data. For example, if your RPO is 1 hour, backups must be made at least once per hour.


A structured process used to identify new business opportunities and ways to improve the company’s performance using technology. It serves as a roadmap for future tech investments and applications. At Hagan, we typically conduct SBRs with our clients on at least a quarterly basis to ensure each client’s technology roadmap remains aligned with the organization’s business goals.


A CIO is a company executive responsible for the management, implementation, and usability of IT and computer technology. They serve as a critical interface between the business needs, user needs, and the IT tools used in the company.

For many SMBs, adding a CIO to the payroll is impossible. That’s where a vCIO comes in. This person analyzes your current environment and helps you develop an appropriate IT strategy. A vCIO provides recommendations for what software and hardware to purchase. And they create a customized IT roadmap for your organization.


Remote Monitoring Management (RMM): A platform designed to help managed services providers (MSPs) like Hagan remotely and proactively monitor client endpoints, networks, and computers. RMM software is installed on workstations, servers, and other endpoints and then feeds information about machine health and status back to the MSP. Using this data, the MSP can proactively resolve most issues remotely – as well as keep all machines patched and updated.

Network Operations Center (NOC): Members of the NOC work in concert with RMM software. NOC engineers monitor clients’ infrastructure health, security, and capacity. They make the necessary adjustments to ensure your network performs at its best, keeping your organization productive. The NOC team resolves issues as they arise and works to prevent issues from occurring in the first place.

Security Information Event Management (SIEM): This system is a combination of two powerful technologies: SIM and SEM. Security Information Management (SIM) gathers data from the log files of your applications and network hardware. It then analyzes them and reports any security threats. Security Event Management (SEM) monitors your systems in real team, notifies your network admins about important issues, and establishes correlations between security events.

SIEM systems help companies stay in compliance and give them clearer insight into what types of security threats they are facing.

Security Operations Center (SOC): An information security team that monitors and analyzes your network and systems for anomalies that could indicate a security breach. They detect and respond to cybersecurity incidents. Managed IT providers use their own well-equipped SOCs to protect their clients.


This refers to any services where IT is delivered remotely to you through the cloud. For example, there’s Hardware as a Service (HaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). You can enjoy all the benefits of the service without the burden of expensive assets, long-term investment, and additional staff that would traditionally be required for new hardware, software, or infrastructure. In many cases, as a Service offerings are pay-as-you-go and priced based on usage.