On a fairly regular basis, an MSP will post to Reddit or Spiceworks or another IT forum to ask about the best ratio of techs to supported users, or what other companies are finding sustainable.

The question usually comes from an overworked tech who’s drowning in tickets and trying to understand what’s considered a reasonable ratio.

The answers can get interesting.

On Spiceworks earlier this year, more than 85 people responded with details about the environments they support—and the range was notable.

On the low end, a few lucky techs were each supporting about a dozen users. On the high end was one company with a tech for every 3,400 users.

To be fair, nearly all of the respondents with more than 700 users per tech were supporting schools. Their numbers included both staff and students.

If you take out those highest numbers, here’s how they average out:

  • The median average was 123 users per tech.
  • The mode average was 150 users per tech.
  • And the mean average was about 161 users per tech.

This is the distribution with the numbers over 700 taken out.

MSP tech user ratio chart

Chart by Auvik / Data from Spiceworks

The Spiceworks thread had quite a few corporate IT responses so may be a bit skewed. Yet the averages aren’t too far off what a number of MSPs on Reddit have said is the magic number of about 200 to 250 users per tech.

MSP tech user ratio Reddit thread

Source: Reddit

Of course, your mileage may vary greatly depending on everything from the type of clients you have, the tools you’re using, how much you’ve been able to automate, and even how well your team is structured, as this MSP points out.

MSP tech user ratio Spiceworks thread

Source: Spiceworks

What’s the ratio of techs to users in your MSP? Has it changed over time as you’ve brought on new clients or systems? Leave a comment and let us know.

Jennifer Tribe

About Jennifer Tribe

Jennifer is the Director of Content at Auvik Networks, where she manages the company's publishing programs and hosts the Frankly IT podcast. From the Auvik blog and newsletter to ebooks and website content, Jennifer is focused on delivering practical intel that helps IT leaders manage high-performing teams. Trained as a journalist, she has worked in all sorts of content roles from blogger to book publisher.


3 comments on “The Ideal Ratio of Techs to Users”

  1. Icannot PutMyname says:

    You should look at Humana Insurance.
    The Corporate Campus in Louisville KY.
    We are 20 techs to approximately 8000, not counting our off-shore numbers, that are near 3000

  2. Adam says:

    Great article, but something I want to know is whether these techs are also supporting anything else (IE infrastructure, or are they purely user support?

    We’re in the region of 350:1 (500:1.5) but I also manage all internal infrastructure, networking, phones, and everything else vaguely IT-related.

  3. better not visible says:

    We are a international Bank with a ratio of 67:1 for the complete IT team, not only the support group!. Managing everything what looks like IT (incl. Phones, ATMs, etc) in 12 countries. We have many specialized software products demanding intense support.
    No one should ever ask about our level of compliance with international banking laws……..

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