A company using a technology MSP (Managed Service Provider) can run into all different problems working with an IT provider for many reasons. Besides the general technology and service, what supplementary areas should you focus on when choosing an MSP so you don’t find yourself in this situation?
Here are a few things to pay attention to when assessing a Managed Service Provider (MSP) to assist with your IT:
- Are they brand conscious?
- How is their reputation?
- Do they provide proactive advice?
Here’s a scenario: You are meeting with a new MSP today as your old IT company does not respond to any of your requests for help. In walks the President and Operations Manager with a technician in tow to meet with you. Check out their “brand”:
- Is the executive wearing a suit jacket? Does the technician look like he crawled out of a dusty computer in the corner of a darkly lit lair, or does he look professional?
- Do they speak knowledgeably about their products?
- Are they energetic, well spoken, and talk to you without throwing a lot of IT jargon around?
- Are their marketing materials well designed and clearly understandable?
You can pay less money for the IT guy who keeps his office in the back of his car, but when a catastrophe happens, can he fix it and prevent future disasters? Branding can be a sign of things to come with an MSP.
The companies that have great public reputations are consistent and secure in what they recommend to their clients. They hire and fire their clients rather than the other way around because they have quality, not quantity. Companies that you hear about from associates and friends are the companies you want taking care of your IT.
Does the IT company advise you on what to do with your network? If they come in to your office and look around, declaring that everything “looks good” without testing your equipment, they aren’t doing their job and not looking out for your best interest. If they aren’t creating a five year plan for you or asking to create one with you, then they aren’t investing in your success.
Managed Service Providers don’t just “fix computers”. Each technician works across multiple networks with different specifics each year. This is the equivalent to your full time network administrator putting in three years of service with your company. The expertise gained across the different networks enhances the ability to advise correctly. That technician can be confident in making the recommendations to where you spend your money, how you make technology changes, and what can truly work for your business.
Article contributed by Nick McCourt, IT Consultant, Tier One Technology Partners, a division of MKS&H
About Tier One Technology Partners: MKS&H’s technology consulting group, Tier One Technology Partners provides your growing organization with IT strategy and effective IT services solutions to keep you one step ahead. Tier One was founded in 2000 in the response to listening to the needs of our clients and the business challenges that they were facing in such a rapidly changing IT environment. Thus, Tier One was developed with the simple goal of being an IT consultant, partner, and support firm.
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