How to Evaluate Managed IT Service Providers

While there are many reasons to hire managed IT support, there are few reasons you may not want to. And it’s understandable that you might have some questions before you hire. In this article, we will share with you tips on how to evaluate managed IT service providers so you can make the right hiring decision for your company.

As a business owner, you must understand just how vital IT is to your company’s success and ability to stay ahead in an ever-changing technological landscape.

After all, a staggering 85% of businesses depend on IT to run smoothly and achieve their goals. When outsourcing, most companies choose to hire a Managed Service Provider (MSP) who will take care of all their IT operations for them. 

For most companies, as long as their Managed IT Service Providers are functional, they are content to pay the fees. 

However, most business owners don’t realize that they can get much more value for their money by choosing the right Managed Service Provider (MSP).

So, whether you are scouring the market for a new MSP partner or are discontented with your current provider’s services, here are a few things you should consider before choosing your next IT service provider.

What Is the Value of Their Service?

Most people instinctively evaluate the worth of a particular service depending on its cost. But this is not the most accurate way to go about it when it comes to managed IT service providers.

One way to measure the quality of IT services is through the types of service you get. What exactly does the package you pay for entail?

Some MSPs create packages with one or two essential services and a host of other less valuable services. Unsuspecting clients then subscribe to such packages, only to realize later that they have to pay more to access other critical services. 

This creates unnecessary expenses for such businesses.

Whenever you are signing a contract with an MSP, be sure to scrutinize the IT company’s list of services. Some critical ones that must never miss from this list include:

  • Security services
  • Network design
  • 24/7 support
  • Disaster recovery
  • Periodic status reports
  • Application development
  • Server solutions

Typical Response and Resolution Times

Another indicator of the quality of managed IT service providers is the typical response and resolution times. 

As you evaluate your outsourced IT Service Provider, you want to ensure that they promptly respond to your concerns and emergencies.

Some MSPs fail to respond to your issues due to capacity shortage. Therefore, as a rule of thumb, you must always make sure that you choose a company that can comfortably handle your needs.

If you prefer to work with a smaller IT service company, make sure that it will capably handle your needs. The last thing you want is to call your IT person when your site is down, only for them to tell you that they cannot deal with your issue at the moment.

You might also want to avoid relying on an individual for all your IT needs. What happens if you desperately need their services and get sick or go on vacation? It is wiser to minimize this risk by working with an IT team instead of an individual.

Moreover, it would help to inquire whether your MSP offers remote IT support. This can save your company a lot of time and money, as you will not need to call in a person every time you need their help.

What is the MSP’s Approach to Their Work?

Another critical factor to consider when assessing an MSP is their approach to their work. This means you should know whether the company adopts a proactive or reactive mindset in meeting your IT needs.

You can tell that an MSP is proactive if it takes preventative measures to avoid problems rather than waiting for things to go wrong so it can fix them. 

A proactive company will continuously monitor your systems and sites to ensure that they are always working correctly. This way, minor problems can be fixed or forestalled before they snowball into a crisis.

If your MSP has a break-fix mentality, they will drag you down and make it difficult to run your business effectively. 

So don’t hesitate to cut ties with a company that embodies this mentality. It will save you a lot of money and headache down the line.

Does The MSP Have Experts on Staff?

It is a fact of life that division of labor improves efficiency significantly. This universal truth also applies to the world of IT and MSPs in particular.

The best managed IT service providers will typically have each member specializing in one aspect of the job. Specialization allows people to become experts in that area, enabling them to execute specific tasks more efficiently.

You should also consider the company’s employee turnover rates you wish to engage for your IT services. For example, if the company has a revolving door of employees joining and exiting, you might want to reconsider choosing them as your MSP.

The disadvantage of high turnover rates is that you will lack consistency in your work. Inducting a new IT team member to your company several times a year is both daunting and retrogressive.

Additionally, you should inquire about the company’s documentation process. The more detailed it is, the easier it will be to deal with different team members.

How Easily Can They Scale?

Businesses typically have varying IT needs each year. 

For instance, if you run an online gift shop, you may experience a surge in demand for your products during the holiday season. 

On the other hand, if you specialize in selling winter clothing online, demand for your products will typically soar as the season nears.

As you evaluate potential managed IT service providers, you should ask about its ability to scale and meet your needs when they increase drastically. Otherwise, you stand to lose a lot of business if your online store crashes every other hour due to unprecedented traffic.

A Final Word on Evaluating Managed IT Service Providers

The best way to ensure that you are getting the best from your IT company is to evaluate their importance to your business continually. Remember, you can measure their worth in more ways than by the cost of their services.

Other factors that should inform your evaluation include the quality and timeliness of IT support you receive, the scalability of the IT services, the expertise of the team, and their proactive nature in dealing with issues.

If you are looking for a reliable, top-notch Managed IT consultant in New Jersey, look no further than Coban Computer Solutions. We are a well-established MSP with over 15 years of experience in this field. 

Contact us today to set up a free consultation. We’ll answer any questions you have, explain to you how the process works, and audit your network so you can discover what vulnerabilities need to be fixed and what optimizations can be made to improve your IT network. 

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