Managed IT Service Providers: 6 Critical Things to Look For
A managed IT service provider will empower your business with the right hardware and software for your operations — but it’s not always easy to understand why one provider is better for you than another.
Take the time to research your options carefully before you make a decision. If you pick a provider that lacks experience with companies in your niche or the resources to cater to your specific needs, you could struggle to find the value for money you expect.
So, what are the most important things to look for in a managed IT service provider?
Here are 6 ideas to help you start your search.
Effective and Efficient Support You Can Rely On
You want to know you can reach out to your managed IT service provider in an emergency and receive a quick response. The last thing you need in a crisis is the added stress of trying to reach the people you’re paying to help you in that type of situation.
A trustworthy team will be ready to help you when you experience a problem with your hardware or software.
Some providers may take on more clients than they can reasonably handle. They could be a small firm with just a few tech experts and meagre resources, and spread themselves too thin across a growing client base.
And that means your business (and others) could be overlooked when you need urgent professional assistance.
Make sure your provider has the capacity to accommodate client needs effectively and efficiently. Ask how fast they aim to respond to requests, and whether they guarantee a specific response time (e.g., 30 minutes maximum).
A Security-Conscious Approach
Cybersecurity is one area no business can afford to be complacent. According to a CCTX (Canadian Cyber Threat Exchange) report, the average overall cost of a data breach for Canadian companies was $4.50 million, and Canada loses 0.17% of GDP to cybercrime (amounting to more than $3 billion annually).
Any reputable managed IT service provider prioritizes effective security processes to safeguard clients. They should offer ongoing monitoring, maintenance, reporting, and updates to protect your company.
Such a proactive approach helps minimize the danger of security incidents and reassures you that you’re in good hands.
Check what security solutions are available when exploring your options. A trustworthy provider will be upfront about the type of security they offer and how they implement it.
- Firewall with customized configuration and rules
- Intrusion prevention
- Website tracking and filtering
- Threat detection and response
- Email spam blocking
- Secured VPN (Virtual Private Network) for remote access
A comprehensive security setup like this reduces your risk of being affected by a common threat, such as ransomware.
A Secure Disaster Recovery Service to Avoid Costly Delays and Lost Work
Cloud storage enables managed IT service providers to offer clients secure backup. Data will be stored in the cloud to protect your business from lost work and productivity disruptions in case of a disaster, such as a fire or equipment theft.
Keep backup services in mind when looking for a provider. They should be proactive in their approach to securing your data, and ensure all systems in place work effectively — rather than just hoping they do in the event of an emergency.
GenX’s committed team will test disaster scenarios thoroughly as part of our Backup Process Engineering solution: we’ll confirm the backup system’s performance for your total peace of mind. We also complete on-site installation for all essential hardware software in a single setup.
A Vendor-Agnostic Methodology
Be wary of managed IT service providers who have close relationships with one or two vendors only.
Why? Because they may set your business up with a particular software suite whether it’s right for your operations or not.
And you could lose out in the long run if the software fails to help you achieve your goals.
A vendor-agnostic methodology ensures your provider will tailor a bespoke plan for your company and processes, incorporating the best software available regardless of brand.
You’ll get better value for money and have access to the solutions you need to perform at your best.
A Strong Reputation
Check a provider’s background and reputation before you sign up. Look for online reviews and testimonials from other companies, covering those within and beyond your niche.
Take the time to read reviews carefully, whether they’re positive or negative. Think about how the provider’s range of services and client base relates to your business.
- Do their prices fit within your budget?
- Do they seem to offer value for money?
- Can you expect fast responses or do other clients complain about slow service?
- When do they operate and what locations do they cover?
- Is there much company information available online or do they appear suspiciously absent?
A Variety of Support Channels for Maximum Convenience
Watch out for providers that give vague responses when you ask about communication channels and support methods. If they only appear accessible through a generic email address or mobile number, you may doubt their professionalism and reliability.
The best managed IT service providers offer clients a variety of convenient communication options to suit different preferences and needs.
You have your own preferred channels, whether that’s instant messaging or voice calls. Other business-leaders have theirs. And quality providers can increase their appeal to clients by implementing diverse support channels.
GenX is available to speak to you through our instant messaging, phone, and in-person support methods. We’re here to discuss technical problems, answer questions, and ensure you receive the expertise you expect.
And we also offer remote-desktop connections to troubleshoot issues directly. Sit back and let our specialists investigate, diagnose, and resolve problems for you.
Look out for these 6 critical things when searching for a managed IT service provider. Ask the right questions and do your research to find the right team offering the support your business needs to succeed.
Want to learn more about GenX’s managed IT services? Contact our experts now!