Technology today is evolving rapidly. This makes it tough for companies to stay on top of all the advances it can offer while still running and growing their business.
That’s where outsourced IT pros come in. These Managed Services Providers free up companies to focus on their core business by taking care of all their technology needs with a goal to reduce downtime and increase productivity.
But, how do you find one that has the experience and expertise you need and that you can trust to do a good job at a fair price?
Our responsive IT Support Team at Technology Visionaries has heard some of the IT horror stories out there from clients that used a different IT provider that didn’t live up to their promises. But if you choose wisely, you can have a productive and long-term relationship with your IT pro that helps your business thrive.
We’ve got some of the strategic questions you need to ask before hiring an outsourced IT provider. They’ll ensure you’ve done a thorough review of the company and are much less likely to have any unpleasant surprises.
First, let’s look at an overview of what an IT provider typically does for an organization and why it’s important for all sized businesses to have one.
What Does an IT Provider Do and Why Do I Need One?
An IT provider takes care of your important IT infrastructure to keep it running smoothly. Technology has made its way into just about every facet of business operations, from the emails sent and received daily to managing accounting transactions and customer data.
That’s a lot of moving parts for any small or medium-sized business in New Jersey or anywhere else to keep up with, which is why an outsourced IT provider can be a huge benefit… once you find the right one.
Here are some of the services that Technology Visionaries and other IT providers offer:
- Data backup and recovery
- Monitoring and maintenance of hardware and software
- Virus & malware removal and prevention
- Ongoing network and device security
- Email and spam protection
- IT vendor management
- VoIP phone system and Wi-Fi installation and maintenance
- Server and cloud-based computing solutions
- Electronic document management
- Help desk support
- Managed Services Plans (that bundle services into a set monthly charge)
Reasons Companies Outsource their IT
Besides reducing frustration, there are some significant monetary and productivity benefits to using an IT service provider for your technology needs.
59% of businesses outsource to save money. (Deloitte)
In Deloitte’s Global Outsourcing Survey, the top four reasons that companies gave for outsourcing include:
- Cost Cutting Tool (59%)
- Enables Focus on Core Business (57%)
- Solves Capacity Issues (47%)
- Enhances Service Quality (31%)
Key Strategic Questions to Ask to Find the Perfect IT Provider
Most vendor relationships fail because not enough of the right questions were asked up front. To find the ideal IT relationship for your business you want to ask the following questions.
What is the Average Response Time and Hours of Response?
If you’ve just had a server crash and your website and emails are down, waiting hours for a response can cost you a lot of business. If you work on the weekends, you want an IT partner that does too.
Give them scenarios up front and ask how fast their typical response time is and what hours they will be available.
What Guarantees Are Provided?
If you’ve paid hundreds of dollars to install a new server and wireless network, and it goes down a week later, you want to make sure you’re covered by your IT provider’s guarantee. Ask them about warranties and guarantees for their services in detail.
What is Their Hardware and Software Experience?
If your IT provider works mainly on Windows systems, but your company uses Macs, you don’t want to find that out after you’ve signed a contract with them. Ask about their overall experience with the hardware and applications you use.
Do They Have References?
Contacting references and checking them out online will give you a good feel for the work an IT professional does and what others have to say about them. Be sure to look not only at the reviews on their website, but to also check them online at places like Google and other review sites.
What Type of Proactive Support Do They Provide?
Companies usually first reach out to an IT service when something’s broken. But if you’re choosing an IT provider for your ongoing tech support, you want to know that they do more than just repairs. You want someone that proactively maintains your IT infrastructure to reduce downtime and ward off problems before they happen.
What Are their Prices and Managed Services Plan Prices?
It seems obvious to ask pricing up front, but you might be surprised how many companies don’t get to that question until after they’ve been given a bill.
Make sure your provider is transparent about all hourly rates, whether they charge extra after hours, and how much you can save by signing up for a Managed Services Plan.
What Examples Do They Have of Helping Businesses Succeed?
There are a lot of trustworthy and good IT providers out there, but the crème of the crop go the extra mile for their clients. They don’t just keep them at a status quo, they suggest things a company can do to take better advantage of technology.
Look for companies with an example of how they’ve done this for their clients and helped them succeed.
Looking for the Best IT Support in New Jersey (and Beyond!)?
We’d love to share with you how we’ve helped multiple clients save money and improve their business through our expert IT support and guidance.
Contact Technology Visionaries today to see what we can do for you. Call 732-587-5960 or reach out online.