You’ve decided to hop aboard the Managed Service Provider (MSP) train and contract out your IT services. Before you sign a contract with a provider, it is smart to get all the burning questions that can make or break your decision answered.
What services do you offer?
Different providers may offer different solutions and you want to ensure that the type of services you receive fit your needs. Do you need your entire IT infrastructure maintained or just IT maintenance and support? Ask your provider the different options available and go with a price point and plan that covers you fully. Typical services include:
- Software as a Service (SaaS)
- Networks as a Service (NaaS)
- Cyber Security
- Desktops as a Service (DaaS)
- Infrastructures as a Service (IaaS)
- Help Desk Support
- Management and Monitoring
What type of support do you offer and what are your hours of operation?
Most companies these days don’t operate in the usual 9-5 timeframe. Business is conducted at all hours, so it’s imperative that the MSP you choose has technicians or help desk support available day and night in case your network crashes or you have server trouble.
What is your pricing model?
Cost is always a factor when contracting out parts of your budget. You want the most bang for your buck without sacrificing quality or paying for services you don’t use. Check with your provider to see their billing model, whether payment is done via a monthly service fee or based on time spent providing services. Fixed fees are generally better for ease of use.
Ask whether services are scalable, meaning that you can pick and choose your services dependent on your current business requirements.
What is your experience and expertise?
One of the biggest advantages of contracting out your IT is not dealing with the hassle of tech issues. However, knowing you’re leaving your IT in capable hands is paramount. Does your MSP have tech experience? What IT skills do they bring to the table? Do they have experience dealing with a variety of industries? Can they fix a wide range of problems? Knowing that if a problem arises, it is fixable and your entire business won’t suffer is crucial.
What kind of performance metrics do you use?
Do you receive regular status updates from your MSP? Are you getting monthly performance reports? You should. An open line of communication between you and your provider ensures you get the most out of your service. Plus the reports can identify patterns that might showcase underlying problems (outage issues, security concerns). For example, at ITC Communications, we seek to provide tangible results, including measurable ROI and greater performance.
There are countless other questions you may ask a provider, but if your MSP can successfully answer these burning five, then you’ve likely picked a sound partner. We encourage questions so you can get all the information you need so ask away. Contact us now to get the conversation started.