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There’s nothing quite like the managed services market. It’s filled with players – both long-term and new companies popping up each and every day. Sometimes, it seems like they’re all touting the same claims of phenomenal client service, quick response times, and an unmatched breadth of services. But how do you know if they will actually back those claims up in the real world? Who do you trust to provide the technical support you need, when you need it the most?
If you’re sold on the benefits of managed IT services, it’s time to find an MSP to provide them for you. You’re excited about the possibility of paying a flat-rate monthly fee for access to an entire team of experts who will take all of your technology headaches away. Sure, MSPs all provide a similar set of services, but the way they provide them will differ from one MSP to another. Before you sign an agreement, it’s important to do your due diligence.
Here’s the thing… Even a short hour of unscheduled downtime can cost you thousands upon thousands of dollars. Your MSP should be capable of providing support around-the-clock with requests for support handled as quickly as possible. If they don’t have around-the-clock availability, you may be left with downtime when you really can’t afford it.
This goes well above and beyond the typical antivirus software and firewalls. Today, cybercrime is more advanced and sophisticated than ever before. Your MSP should be prepared with proven tools, technologies, and processes to help you stay safe. It’s important that they also offer cybersecurity awareness training to keep your staff aware of threats.
An MSP must be innovative in terms of working with automated systems that allow them to better manage your network. For instance, a system that detects and resolves issues, then alerts their engineers is much more reliable than someone watching a screen and waiting for issues to pop up.
When you’re in a meeting with an MSP, always pay attention to whether or not they’re listening to you or trying to sell you something. A good MSP learns all about you to figure out if they’re actually able to help you as opposed to deciding to sell you something before they know anything about your business.
Don’t be afraid to ask if you can speak to a couple of their current clients. They should be happy to give you a couple of names and contact information so you can get an idea of what their current clients experience in terms of response times, agreements, and overall, the relationship they have with the MSP.
This is especially true if you’re operating in a highly regulated industry that involves any sort of data privacy laws. Always ask about any other clients they have in your industry so you know they’re truly experienced with it. Spend some time asking what kind of regulations they are aware of and how they handle them from a technology standpoint.
In general, this is a sign of a great company, regardless of the industry they’re operating in. If your MSP has high employee retention rates, chances are, they have an engaging culture where they’re actively training and encouraging their team members. This is important because you want qualified, happy people working with you.
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