Managed service providers (MSPs) are a great way to outsource your IT services or assist the staff you have internally to provide best-in-class services for your business. As IT is brought to the forefront in so many aspects of businesses these days, it’s important to feel good about the support system you have in place for your critical business systems and applications.
As your business adapts and changes, so will your IT needs, and the company you’ve been utilizing in the past may not be the best fit for you in the future. If your MSP contract is nearing renewal, there are some things you should evaluate before resigning on that dotted line for another term. Consider the following signs that your MSP isn’t meeting your needs.
1. You experience recurring issues
As the old saying goes, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” The same line of thinking can be applied to your IT support. If you’re running into the same issues repeatedly, whether they’re large-scale issues with network outages and server crashes or smaller issues with routine helpdesk support, it’s time to consider making a change in providers.
Recurring issues can mean that your MSP doesn’t have the proper staff to correct an issue the first time it comes up, or doesn’t have the documentation to support their engineering team to know the correct steps to take. It can also mean that the proper time isn’t being spent to diagnose and correctly resolve things that can impact your business, and band-aids are being put in places where permanent solutions and best practices should be.
2. You lost data through a security breach or after an incident
The security of your business-critical data should be a top priority for your MSP. If the proper standards are not put in place to protect your systems and applications like email, data backups, disaster recovery protocols, etc., then you could have a very serious problem on your hands.
According to a study conducted by the University of Maryland, there is a hacker attack every 39 seconds across the globe. Without meticulously designed standards in place for username and password criteria, anti-phishing software, and multi-factor authentication (to name a few), then your business could become a part of that statistic very quickly.
Security concerns aside, if you don’t have the proper disaster recovery and backup protocols in place, you’re at a huge risk of losing data due to a server crash, network outage or many other issues that could arise.
3. You are confused about your IT roadmap (or you don’t have one)
Your MSP should be taking care of the past, present, and future of your IT infrastructure. It is their job to assess the state of your organization’s IT best practices and make corrections where necessary, to provide best-in-class support for your users on a daily basis and to provide you with a clear roadmap of recommendations that will enhance your business through optimized IT standards.
You should be having conversations with your MSP about your business initiatives and goals so that they can provide you with a prioritized list of projects that will help you achieve those goals. Your roadmap should clearly outline all recommendations, the cost and duration of each project, and a suggested priority list based on a combination of your objectives and their best practices for security, stability and more.
If your MSP is not providing this to you, they are doing you a disservice. While they may be doing a great job of supporting you in the day-to-day, they aren’t aligning you for success in the future.
Finding a new provider
Your business should be as important to your managed service provider as it is to you. You cannot afford to waste time, energy and money on correcting issues that should have been resolved the first time, and you certainly can’t afford to lose data due to a security breach or failed backup solution. Your MSP should be supporting you through solid documentation and defined standard best practices.
ZAG Technical Services has over 200 defined standards that they implement with every client they onboard, and the list continues to grow as new technologies and issues are presented.
If you’re looking for best-in-class support from a company with dedicated technology strategists focused on your success, you can learn more about our managed services offerings here.