The True Cost of a Break-Fix Agreement

I know a business owner whose email server broke down and ground operations to a halt. His IT vendor sent a young associate to fix the server, and the kid didn’t have a clue.

The so-called technician was on the phone half the day, speaking to some other expert who directed the process.

The “fix” took 7.5 hours. The IT vendor billed hourly for the service so the owner paid a hefty price for the technician’s inexperience…

…and the fix didn’t take.

Turns out the server was obsolete so the nightmare continued.

New budget-busting hardware. Another visit from a technician — this time one with more experience. And a big, fat invoice that included line items for  “research and purchase of new server solution,” new server installation, and old server removal and disposal.


So it goes with “break-fix” tech support.

Who Really Benefits From Break Fix Vendors

For business owners who only want to pay when technology becomes inoperable, a break fix company may seem like a practical choice. But let’s consider the following…

  • Break-fix vendors benefit when a fix takes a long time or requires a follow-up visit. (They rack-up hourly charges while your hands are tied.)
  • Break-fix is not designed to prevent future problems. They don’t bother to notice that the email server was aging and prone to breakdown.  They thrive on repeat visits. Translation: They benefit when your stuff breaks. They earn less when everything works as it should.
  • No one monitors your system when you choose a break-fix vendor. Your system’s performance suffers when not updated properly, and you may be leaving yourself open to hackers, malware, and viruses.
  • Your costs are unpredictable with break-fix vendors. Good luck setting and sticking to a tech budget. Things go wrong when you least expect it, and with a break fix model that can be an expensive surprise.

A break fix model works great for the tech companies, but you might prefer a fixed fee arrangement…

One Fee, Many Services.

Here’s how we do it. You pay us a flat, monthly fee and we provide consistent predictable services: Help Desk, Tech Monitoring and Updates, Network Administration, and Planning.

The consistent services reduce the chances of surprise breakdowns. And the planning allows you to upgrade aging tech proactively, with a schedule and budget certainty.

To learn more about STR’s managed services and discover how to avoid nasty break-fix surprises, create budget certainty, and achieve tech peace of mind…

..schedule a free consultation at or click the big button below.