The US managed service market could grow by a CAGR of 6.3% by 2025. More businesses are experiencing the benefits of working with a managed IT company firsthand. Not every managed service provider will have the tools you need, though.
Instead, it’s important to do your due diligence when vetting your options. With a plan, you can find the best managed IT company with your business in mind.
Not sure who to hire? Here are eight tips that can help.
With these tips, you can start narrowing down your options. Finding the right managed IT service provider can reduce IT costs by 45%. Your operational efficiency could rise by 65%, too.
With the best managed IT company supporting your team, you can give your business the boost it needs.
Set your business up for lasting success. Start your search for a managed service provider with these tips today.
1. Choose an Established Business
First, take the time to talk to other business owners in your network. As if any of them are currently working with a managed IT company. If they are, ask about their time partnering with the managed service provider (MSP).
For example, you can ask:
Talking with your professional network can help you develop a list of options. Then, you can use the rest of these tips to narrow down your choices.
Speaking with your professional network can also help you gain insights you can’t find online.
If your network can’t point you in the right direction, that’s okay. Instead, start your search online. Google “the best managed IT company near me.”
The company offers remote monitoring and management services, they don’t have to operate in your area. Still, there are many benefits to finding a local MSP. You might need them to make changes or repairs on-site.
As you start researching each company, look into their professional history. You can check the company’s Better Business Bureau listing.
How long has the company lasted in the industry? Look for a long-established business. These businesses won’t take your money or disappear overnight.
Instead, you can feel confident in a company that’s worked in the industry over the years. It’s likely they’ve learned and made improvements with that time. An established business likely won’t have operational issues it needs to work out, either.
2. Look for Industry-Specific Experience
Once you find an established business, learn more about the team’s experience. How long has each technician worked in the IT industry? How many businesses has the company helped over the years?
Try to find a managed IT company with experience in your industry. They can use their prior experience to improve your IT infrastructure. Make sure they’re under the leadership of an experienced expert, too.
For example, you can learn more from the Be Structured CFO.
Before choosing a managed IT service, ask if you’ll work with a dedicated technician. Working with the same technician on each call can save you time. You won’t have to explain the previous IT issues you’ve experienced in the past.
Instead, you’ll have peace of mind knowing a familiar voice is on the other end of the line.
The best managed IT company will pair you with a technician who has industry-specific experience. Ask the technician about the clients they’ve helped in the past. How many businesses were similar to yours?
Ask the technician how they managed to help their clients, too. Consider the services their client selected as well.
Before choosing a managed service provider, try to learn more about the technician’s credentials. Do they have any certifications that might benefit you in the long run?
Choosing someone with years of experience and expertise can give you peace of mind. You’ll know you can always call if you have questions. Otherwise, they might have to pass you around the office before you find someone who can help.
3. Ask About Their Approach
Before choosing a managed service provider, ask about the company’s approach. How will they help your business?
The company should sit down with your team to establish your current IT infrastructure and long-term goals. Then, they can help you determine what services you need. Otherwise, the company will use a cookie-cutter approach.
Your business is unique. The company should develop a customized plan based on your needs. Otherwise, they’ll fail to accomplish your goals.
Many businesses are still using the break-fix method when it comes to their IT needs. They wait until a problem impacts their operations. Then, they pause everything to troubleshoot the problem.
The break-fix method can cause unnecessary downtime. You could lose money and notice changes in your team’s productivity. Instead, look for a managed IT company that uses a proactive approach.
With the proactive approach, you can identify potential IT issues you might experience in the future. Your managed IT service provider can then determine the best solution for those problems. With their help, you can avoid IT issues before they impact your team.
Choosing a managed IT service provider that uses the proactive approach can save you time, money, and stress.
4. Consider Their Tools and Services
About 60% of small businesses go out of business within six months of a cyber attack. Unfortunately, over 40% of attacks target small businesses. Only 14% of businesses are prepared to mitigate an attack, too.
As you look for the best managed IT company around, don’t forget to consider their services. For example, you might want to find a company that offers cybersecurity.
Ask the company how they’ll protect you from a potential cyber attack. Consider how they’ve helped clients that fell victim to an attack in the past, too.
Neglecting cybersecurity services could impact your company in the future. In addition to paying off ransomware, you could lose customers. Clients might struggle to trust you with their private information, too.
Your business can benefit from cloud computing as well. More teams are working remotely in light of COVID-19. Cloud computing can make it easier for your team to work and collaborate.
Ask the company if they offer daily backups. You can store regular backups in case of an incident. You’ll never have to worry about losing valuable data or files again.
Otherwise, consider disaster recovery planning. You’ll have peace of mind if a storm takes down your files.
Remember to review the IT solutions you need with your provider to develop a customized plan.
5. Determine Availability and Response Times
There are over 882,000 IT tech support specialists across the US. Not every managed service provider employs a large team, though. Before choosing a company, ask how many technicians are part of the team.
Then, ask how many clients they’re currently juggling.
If the team is understaffed, they could experience a backlog of support tickets. They might take a while before responding to your requests. Instead, ask each managed service provider about their average response times.
You shouldn’t have to wait days or even weeks for a response. Instead, make sure the company can react within minutes or hours.
Companies with a fast response time are better equipped to help you in the case of an emergency. Otherwise, delays can cause downtime. Downtime could impact your bottom line.
6. Request Relevant References
Before selecting a managed IT service, ask each company for references and reviews. Speak with some of their current clients. Ask any questions you have about the quality of customer service the client receives.
You can also find reviews online. Check the company’s BBB and Google My Business listings.
It’s normal to find a few negative comments. If the bad reviews seem to outweigh the good, however, scratch that company off your list. Instead, find a company with a strong reputation.
They’ll strive to keep that reputation by offering top-notch services.
7. Check Their Pricing
As you start narrowing down your options, ask each company for a quote. Gather at least three quotes to compare your options. Don’t make the choice based solely on price, though.
Instead, make sure you know what’s included in their quote. What fee structure does the company use?
For example, do you have to pay by ticket or on a monthly basis?
Consider the different plans each company offers. If they can’t work within your budget, find another option.
Make sure you get any pricing details you discuss in writing.
8. Make Sure They’re Innovative
Don’t make your final decision yet. Instead, make sure the managed IT company you choose is innovative. An innovative team will keep your business moving forward.
They can help you determine which IT trends and technologies are relevant to your industry.
With their help, you could gain a competitive advantage.
IT Experts: 8 Tips for Choosing the Best Managed IT Company
Don’t rush to hire the first managed IT company you call. Instead, use these eight tips to vet your options. With these tips, you can find the best managed IT company with your team’s needs in mind.
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