24 June

Things to look for in a managed services provider

One of the larger issues surrounding IT support for most businesses is the cost in staffing an in-house team to manage the IT systems that are in place. Now that technology is thriving and has seen lots of advancements, it is possible to manage IT systems remotely. This has led to a growth in what we know as managed services providers (MSPs).

MSPs are independent companies that specialise in the remote management of IT for their clients. Customers can choose whether they want partially or fully managed IT services, and this will often depend on the support needs and budget of the customer.

Before choosing your IT support and managed services provider, there are a few things you should look out for:

Offering a wide range of services

The company that you choose is essentially going to become your IT department. They should be able to handle all the operational management of your IT, plus offer further support such as dealing with back-ups, implementing new software, and ensuring your systems are protected from cyber breaches.

How much your provider does for your business and the services that you receive will depend on the type of support you require, but it is good to choose a company that has a comprehensive list of services so that you have the freedom to access more services at a later date.

Relevant expertise

IT systems are complex, so make sure that your MSP can show that they have wide-ranging experience that will allow them to give you the best possible support and IT services management. Many IT support providers will have a team with a broad skill set and knowledge on different areas of IT and these companies are well equipped to assist you with all your IT needs.

Checking for any reviews and testimonials is always a good place to start, and keep an eye out to see if any of their current clients are in the same sector as you are as this will show that they are able to understand, and cater for, the needs of your business.  

Good communication

The MSP you choose must be responsive to your needs, and this response should include keeping you updated about what is going on with your IT system.

If you report an issue, they should be able to tell you the severity of that issue and this should be followed with updates on their progress. You should be able to enter support tickets by phone, text, email or by via some form of online support portal. This is common for almost all managed services providers and will save you a lot of time chasing for a problem to be diagnosed.

There are so many IT support providers available, so ultimately you should choose a professional and friendly company that you feel meets the needs of your business.