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Four Tips for Choosing a Great Managed IT Services Provider

Unified communications

Are you looking for computer maintenance support for your business? Every business — regardless of size — needs computer maintenance to keep operations going as they should. If you are a small business, you probably can’t and shouldn’t employ your own tech team to cover your computer maintenance. Having a full-time tech guy is going to cost you at least sixty or seventy grand (if you’re lucky). Not to mention, our current, ever-changing web-driven culture requires a considerable skill set and continual training to stay current. You would have to hire multiple tech employees to get all of the networking, desktop support, cyber security, and computer maintenance support that you need to run your business, and then spend a considerable amount of money to keep their skills up-to-date. As a small business owner, there is a high likelihood that this isn’t even possible for you to swing.

When you use managed services providers instead of trying to grow your own IT team in-house, the benefits are far-reaching: You have access to cutting-edge computer services list, as you need them, without having to invest in training a member of your staff yourself. You can pick and choose the services you need and pay for them a la carte, instead of paying for a whole new employee for every IT function you need. You can custom knit a managed IT support services that meets your needs, without having to be an IT expert yourself.

However, your managed IT services plan is only as successful as the service provider you use. We’ve put together a list of tips for finding the best provider for your business:

Four Tips for Choosing a Great Managed IT Services Provider

  1. Look for experience in your industry.

    The IT needs of your industry are going to be different than that of another industry. This is particularly important if you work in a regulated industry, such as utilities, health, or banking. In addition to providing computer support, you need your IT services provider to keep you in compliance for reliability and security in your particular niche. Choosing a service provider who already works in your industry is a great way to ensure they understand your particular needs and are prepared to meet them.
  2. Pay attention the the provider’s transition plan.
    When you move your IT services out of your own wheelhouse, it could turn into a massive disaster if the provider you use executes it poorly. Failure to transition to a service provider will get you off on the wrong foot, and potentially make the entire adoption of a third party provider a failure. While selecting a managed IT services provider, pay attention to their plan for transitioning your services over. Make sure it makes sense, and is well thought out (extra points if they have been successful providing similar services to a similar-sized business in your industry).

    A good transition plan involves strategically moving each service in sequence; once one service is successfully implemented, the next one is transitioned. If you just go from 0 to sixty in one she-bang, you’re setting yourself up for failure.

  3. Make the organization’s staying power a priority.

    One sure-fire way to make your outsourcing efforts a colossal mistake is going through the effort and expense of transitioning to a third-party provider, only to have them go belly-up down the road. Look for a company that has been in the game for a long time, this is a good sign that they are here to stay. Pay attention to the stability of the providers structure, and their strategic plans (as much as you can gauge), to ensure there are not indications of cracks in the foundation. You want to use a IT managed services provider who is in the game as long as you are!

  4. Ask about strategic alliances.

    No man is an island. This is particularly true in the tech industry. Your managed services provider might offer awesome support, but it’s impossible for them to be the best in every aspect of the industry. Many great managed services providers forge alliances with other experts in the industry, such as marketing firms, disaster recovery experts, and testing houses. If the support you need isn’t something they specialize in, they can call upon one of their partners for advice.

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