AWS offers a number of support plans, but they require robust internal resources.

Key Takeaways:

  • AWS offers 4 support plans that include basic, developer, enterprise on-ramp, and enterprise
  • Each offers a different tier of support at a different cost that is dependent on your gross charges, which can be confusing
  • Support services are limited, may not be enough for your business, and you may not have the IT team to support the effort
  • A managed service provider offers end-to-end services with an expert team at a fraction of the cost of staffing your own team
  • A managed services provider makes budgeting easy with a fixed monthly cost

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the globe’s largest provider of cloud services, with over one million business users. While they do offer customer support, the basic plan only offers documentation, whitepapers, and forums for support. They also offer resource guidance and services health checks via a dashboard, and a few other services, but no real technical support.

AWS does offer premium support, with architectural guidance on specific-use cases, but it offers no code development, custom software debugging, and no system administration. In addition, support fees are calculated on a per-account basis, and how much you will be charged each month is unpredictable.

The level of support is likely not enough for your business, which is why many AWS customers are turning to an AWS Managed Services Provider (MSP) for the one-on-one attention, predictable pricing, and the holistic guidance and expertise they need to support the entire business. Let’s look at what support AWS offers under their various plans, and how an MSP could be just what you need for your business.

AWS support plans

AWS offers basic, developer, business, enterprise on-ramp, and enterprise support plans with varying features. All plans include the basic plan along with their add-ons:

Basic support plan

This plan is free of charge to all AWS customers and offers:

  • AWS documentation
  • Technical papers
  • Support forums
  • Service health checks – access to all checks in the Service Quotas category, along with six checks in the Security category
  • Best practice guides

This plan also offers account and billing questions along with support for service quote increases. The basic plan offers no human technical support.

Developer support plan

The Developer plan, which is recommended if you are testing or experimenting in AWS, offers everything in the basic plan, along with:

  • Best practice advice
  • Diagnostic tools
  • Architectural guidance to blend products, features, and services 

This plan also offers an unlimited number of support cases, but only one contact is allowed – the root user.

Business support plan

This is where support gets more robust, but it is not free, and your costs are far from predictable. This plan is billed monthly, and the support fees are calculated using each month’s gross AWS charges. The minimum charge each month is $100, and what you will be paying is either the minimum or a percentage of your AWS charges on a sliding scale:

  • 10% for up to $10,000
  • 7% from $10,000 to $80,000
  • 5% from $80,000 to $250,000
  • 3% over $250,000

For this price, you get everything in the basic and developer plans, along with an AWS Trusted Advisor console and the AWS Support API. This allows your IT team to inspect your environment to identify opportunities for cost savings, beef up security, as well as improve both reliability and performance. 

You’ll also get support for Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud instance operating systems and configuration, as well as help with performance issues involving the most popular third-party AWS software components. 

Enterprise On-Ramp and Enterprise Support plans

Enterprise On-Ramp and Enterprise Support plan customers get all of the services offered to business plan customers, plus application architecture advice, infrastructure event management, and a technical account manager who will work with your own specific use cases and applications.

You also receive white-glove case routing and management business reviews. These plans come with a cost:

Enterprise On-Ramp pricing is a minimum of $5,500 monthly or 10% of your AWS monthly gross.

Enterprise pricing has a minimum charge of $15,000 or:

  • 10% of up to $150,000
  • 7% of $150,000 to $500,000
  • 5% of $500,000 to $1,000,000
  • 3% over $1,000,000

Keep in mind that when using AWS support plans, if you use that plan once, you are still liable for the total monthly fee, and if you decide the plan isn’t for you mid-billing cycle, you will be charged for the entire month. 

Not only can billing be confusing, but these business plans may not offer the full support you need without radically beefing up your IT team. You’ll need to hire for overall cloud management, developers, and security experts, which is quite costly.

For many businesses, it only makes sense to hire a managed service provider. Let’s talk about why.

MSPs always have your back

Your business doesn’t need support only when something bad happens. You want to avoid problems, and MSPs offer a holistic solution with end-to-end management of workloads and applications. With experienced, expert Dev Ops and Sec Ops, as well as managed services, you can concentrate on your bottom-line concern, which is running a profitable business.

When it comes to the budgeting for technical support, with an MSP, there’s no guesswork or percentages of gross to worry about. Monthly expenses are predictable because you’ll pay the same fee every month. In addition, an MSP like CloudHesive offers these benefits to AWS users:

  • 24×7 availability
  • Efficient use of resources – your internal team can stay focused on internal business initiatives that keep you competitive and growing.
  • Ability to scale your business easily
  • Data security: Your MSP Sec Ops specialists can find and resolve security gaps while offering ongoing security monitoring for vulnerabilities in the cloud and in your company network.
  • Provide guidance to help you plan for the future
  • Peace of mind

Your AWS Managed Service Provider, as part of complete support, will help you plan and design, build and migrate, run and operate, and optimize your cloud implementations. Dedicated managed services give you access to the experience cloud engineers and architects you need at a fraction of the cost to hire an internal team. 

Get the AWS expert support and guidance you need with budget predictability

As a Premier Consulting Partner and an AWS MSP partner, CloudHesive goes through annual process and control audits, so you can rest assured we’re delivering expert services. 

Our Next-Generation AWS Managed Services fills any resource gaps you may have and eliminates siloed operations. With over 30 years of cloud experience, we leverage cloud-based technology to its full potential. Contact the CloudHesive team today.