Guidelines for choosing the best managed services provider

February 11th, 2019
Guidelines for choosing the best managed services provider

Virtually all businesses today need technology and online presence for success. Traditional enterprises with adequate staff and budget opt for an in-house IT team, but more innovative small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) now have the means to compete with bigger companies. They are turning to managed services providers (MSPs) to take care of their IT needs.

MSPs can provide a steady level of support that businesses need to increase their efficiency, protect their data, and make the most of their IT. There are a lot of managed services available, but it’s important to choose the one that provides services tailored to your company’s needs. Here’s how you can find the best MSP for your enterprise.

#1 Make sure that the MSP is complementary to your business

There is no one-size-fits-all MSP when it comes to business. Every company is different, so you have to find an MSP that complements your business’s goals and needs. You should hire one that provides the highest quality of service while working closely with your enterprise to devise solutions to address your specific issues.

# 2 Know how you can get the most out of your monthly fee

One advantage of hiring an MSP is paying a fixed monthly fee, so you can budget your finances better. Most service providers have similar rates, which is why it’s your job to find the one you can most benefit from.

They should be constantly providing value to your business by reporting regularly and constantly implementing improvements and upgrades. Choose an MSP that is committed not only to improving your business, but also to enhancing its ability to serve you. An ideal MSP should guarantee 24/7 service, remote IT support, and fast response and resolution times.

#3 Check if the MSP has an excellent cybersecurity and disaster recovery protocol

Cyberattacks on SMBs have become commonplace. In 2018, the most common type of cyberattack was ransomware on cloud services. Ransomware can be detrimental to your business, as it triggers interrupted operations, more downtime, and ultimately, revenue loss.

With state-of-the-art security tools, MSPs like Integrated Technology Services can protect your private data, ensure that your files are backed up, and recover data easily in case of a disaster. In fact, our CompleteCloud customers have never experienced a data breach nor data loss in our 16 years of operation!

#4 Check for regulatory compliance

Protecting your data should be of utmost priority, which is why a kickass cybersecurity and disaster recovery isn’t enough. MSPs should also take on responsibilities for regulatory compliance. You can ask if they have undergone a third-party accreditation, such as ISO 9001 (for quality management systems) or ISO 27001 (for informal security management systems), or if they follow any business continuity standards.

#5 Gauge their adaptability and scalability

Your IT needs are going to change as your business becomes more profitable. Therefore, your chosen MSP must easily scale your technology up or down, depending on your preference and company needs.

#6 Know their level of expertise

To know if your MSP is competent, check if they’re consistent with industry best practices. MSPs constantly improve their assets and human resources to provide more consistent service delivery, standardized processes, optimized service and product deployment methods, and clear and rational communication processes. This means improved efficiency, more cost savings, and risk reduction.

With a culture of adherence to industry best practices, MSPs also improve their customer experience. You can check their certifications as proof of their skills and commitment to excellence.

#7 Demand an SLA

The best way to assess your MSP’s commitment is to negotiate a service level agreement (SLA). It sets out clearly what you can expect from the vendor, and it guarantees a recourse if the MSP fails to meet their obligations. It’s usually tailored depending on the two parties, but the typical components are warranties, client duties and code of conduct, and protocols when problems arise.

You can do this by giving your chosen MSP a seat at the table. Include them in staff meetings to update them on business strategies and decisions that are mission-critical to your company.

Have you found the best MSP for your company? If your Charleston, Goose Creek, or Mount Pleasant business wants to partner with a top-tier MSP, contact us and benefit from Integrated Technology Services’ flat fees, fast response time,and fantastic support. Call us today!