Partnering with a Managed Service Provider
Partnering with a managed service provider (MSP) is more than a simple one-time transaction or subscription service. Rather, working with an MSP should function as a true partnership in every sense of the word. Like any business or personal partnership, the keys to success are:
- Honest accountability & transparency
- Constant improvement
When all four of these essential components are present in a beneficial business relationship, both parties will maximize the value they get from one another.
However, if one or more of these essential components are missing, then it may be time to ask yourself an important question: is it time for a new Managed IT Services provider?
Change is hard.
Changing or switching out a provider in charge of your IT infrastructure and security in the midst of a pandemic can seem like an even tougher task. However, making these types of positive changes can impact your bottom line during tough times and breathe fresh life into your company.
Sticking with an existing business relationship out of habit or fear can be highly detrimental to your business in the long term. With the entire global economy relying more and more on remote working infrastructure and e-commerce, having the best MSP at your back, minimizing unplanned downtime, and boosting productivity, is more important than ever before.
7 Signs It's Time To Find A New Managed IT Services Provider
1. Is your current Managed Service Provider on the cutting edge of technology?
Ask yourself one overriding question: is my Managed Service Provider invested in my business's overall success?
In theory, a rising tide lifts all boats.
IT Managed Service Providers furnish an essential service to most businesses. Good MSPs benefit from clients that grow and flourish and continue to use their products and services. If it feels like your MSP is only out to nickel and dime you, with no interest in your business's long-term success and developing an ongoing partnership, it might be time for a change.
2. Is your current Managed Services Provider sustaining its reputation?
An MSP’s reputation matters. While it’s not unusual for slip-ups to happen from time to time, your MSP should have a sterling reputation overall for providing quality, reliable service when service is needed.
Identifying problematic patterns can go a long way towards determining whether to work with your existing MSP to improve their service or consider finding a new MSP altogether.
Signs of a poor professional reputation may include bad online reviews, negative word of mouth, poor overall communication, shady billing practices, or even past name changes.
3. Do you ever feel buyer's remorse?
Buyer’s remorse is real, and it is important to listen to feelings of remorse or dissatisfaction if they are present.
Chances are, if you are feeling unsatisfied or unsure about your current MSP, it’s time to make a change.
Some signs of buyers remorse include:
- Feeling like you overpay for IT services.
- Feeling like you aren’t getting the best value for your money.
- Seeing that your competitor’s IT is better managed.
- Experiencing unexpected downtime, despite promises.
- Not receiving the services promised.
4. Do you rave about their customer support?
A company’s customer support and communication can tell you a lot about them. In a mutually beneficial partnership, each party makes the concerns of the other a priority.
When you call your MSP, are they immediately able to pull up your company’s information?
Do you work with the same dedicated team of IT technicians and staff?
Most importantly, is your MSP responsive, empathetic, and demonstrably concerned about your IT needs?
An excellent MSP understands the critical importance of the services they provide your business and will field a responsive customer support team to resolve your issues quickly.
If your calls for support or service are met with endless waits, multiple transfers, repeated information input, or general rudeness, then your MSP is not the right MSP for you.
5. Does your MSP keep you in the loop?
How often do you hear from your MSP? This may seem like a silly question. After all, most companies only deal with their MSPs when there are major IT problems at hand. However, a sure sign of an excellent MSP is if they keep you in the know.
MSPs that truly value their clients will reach out proactively with strategic advice, knowledge updates, and information relevant and customized to your needs.
For example, if your business relies on securing sensitive information or managing valuable intellectual property, a proactive MSP might notify you when a new cybersecurity risk, such as a new virus or data theft play, has been identified. Not only that, but a proactive Managed Service Provider will also develop a strategy for dealing with this new risk and a contingency plan in the event of a breach.
A good Managed Service Provider won’t simply sit back and wait for you to call them when things break. Instead, they will keep you in the loop to see potential IT problems far in advance and take steps to address those issues before they trouble your business operations.
6. Do they keep your business secure and using the latest technology?
Some MSPs take an unacceptable period of time to update the systems and services they provide to their clients. Not only is this a grave security risk, but it can also put their clients at a competitive disadvantage in the marketplace.
Technology and cybersecurity is a constantly evolving and shifting landscape. Both hardware and software must be kept as cutting edge as possible to ensure security and seamless business operations.
Seamless connectivity and robust cybersecurity are more important today than at any time in history. Most consumers now shop online. Meanwhile, more and more employees are working remotely from home part-time or full-time. That means that businesses rely on important IT infrastructure components, such as cloud services and security, to work seamlessly to operate competitively.
If your MSP is slow to adopt, implement, or update key pieces of technology that you need, then it might be worth taking your business elsewhere.
7. Is your Managed Service Provider reactive or proactive?
Do you only hear from your Managed Service Provider when something has gone terribly wrong or when it’s time to pay the bills? If so, it might be time to switch to a more proactive, rather than reactive, MSP.
For the most part, when a business’s IT needs are being met, and everything is running smoothly, IT is the last thing on a business owner’s mind. It’s usually when technology fails when IT suddenly becomes very important. While putting out technological fires is part of every MSP job description, a truly excellent MSP will proactively communicate to you potential threats, ongoing countermeasures, and other proactive activities designed to prevent fires in the first place.
An excellent MSP will work with you to develop IT maintenance and security strategies. That doesn’t mean that they will spam you with constant, unwarranted updates. Instead, a great MSP partner will proactively reach out to you about any potential IT concerns, along with potential fixes, rather than the other way around.
Considering switching IT Managed Services Providers (MSP)?
Wright Business Technologies has the cutting edge tech, experienced IT know-how, and friendly staff you can rely on to help your business grow.