Are IT issues leaving you struggling to keep up with your primary business tasks? Are outdated technologies and network inefficiencies holding you back? If so, your business could use the help of managed technology services. This article explains what managed technology providers are, their importance, and what you should be looking for when considering a partner.
Managed technology services are provided by an outside IT services company to manage, support, and optimize a business’s IT infrastructure and systems. Rather than handling IT internally, businesses can outsource some or all of their technology needs to an expert third-party provider.
The managed services provider proactively manages networks, endpoints, security, data backups, and more. They monitor systems, provide support, and handle maintenance and updates. This allows businesses to focus on core operations rather than things like network infrastructure, information technology, and security strategy.
There are many potential benefits to outsourcing IT management and support to a managed services provider (MSP):
- Access to enterprise-level IT expertise and solutions without having to hire expert staff internally
- Predictable costs based on a flat monthly fee rather than high hourly rates for break/fix services
- Proactive maintenance and monitoring to improve uptime and performance
- Access to advanced security solutions and expertise to enhance network security against cyberthreats
- Scalable solutions that can grow with your business
- Disaster recovery systems to ensure business continuity
- More efficient IT operations and less downtime
- Staff focused on core business activities rather than IT management
Whether you’re seeking managed IT network services, a partner to provide IT security support services, or a comprehensive provider, there are specific factors you should consider when making your selecting an MSP.
When evaluating potential managed IT services partners, it’s crucial to assess their experience in delivering solutions for organizations similar to yours. Look for an established track record of success managing IT infrastructure and services in your industry.
Expertise in key technologies like cloud, security, networks, and mobility is also important. Ensure they have certified experts on staff. Look for advanced credentials like Cisco certifications, CompTIA, Microsoft and more.
Reputable managed service providers should be able to furnish strong references and positive testimonials from current and past clients. These provide validation that the managed technology services provider consistently delivers excellent service and solutions that improve operations, security, and ROI.
Talk to references and the provider’s business partners to understand their experiences working with the provider. Look for evidence of strong client relationships, responsiveness, and understanding of client needs and priorities.
Avoid managed IT providers that take a one-size-fits-all approach. Look for a partner who can understand your unique network infrastructure, challenges, and business goals. If the provider isn’t asking you questions about your day-to-day operations, the security threats you’re facing, network performance requirements, compliance needs, or long-term goals, how can they come up with solutions for those issues?
MSPs should offer flexibility in designing solutions tailored to your environment and operations. The solutions should align with key business objectives around efficiency, growth, costs, security, and service quality.
Some firms focus on a single element of managed technology services, like cybersecurity. Others have a broader focus and can offer their expertise across a broader spectrum of IT. Consider the range of services offered before selecting an MSP:
Evaluate providers on their ability to offer comprehensive management of LANs, WANs, Wi-Fi networks, software-defined networks, network security, and more. They should have capabilities to monitor performance, troubleshoot issues and optimize networks.
Cybersecurity should be a prime consideration. Look for providers experienced in configuring firewalls, threat prevention systems, VPN access, and antivirus solutions. Capabilities around vulnerability testing and risk assessments are key.
Endpoints like laptops, desktops, servers, mobile devices, and peripherals should be covered. Seek unified endpoint management capabilities, including patch management, software deployment, and configuration management.
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Selecting the right managed services provider (MSP) is a crucial decision that can significantly impact your business. Approaching this decision methodically helps ensure you find the perfect partner to meet your unique needs.
After researching potential MSPs, request formal proposals from your top choices. These proposals should outline the provider’s services, experience, pricing, and more. Carefully analyzing each proposal is key to making an informed decision.
Look for details on the provider’s specific areas of expertise, certifications, client references, service level agreements, security practices, and tools they use to deliver services. Make sure the services offered match your business requirements. Also, verify that pricing models align with your budgetary needs.
Many MSPs offer tiered pricing based on the level of support or types of services provided. Be aware of any hidden fees or extra charges that may arise. Get clarification on exactly what is included in each tier or package.
Schedule calls or in-person meetings with MSP finalists to ask questions and gain more insight. Discuss your business goals and challenges to determine if they have relevant experience supporting organizations like yours.
With proposal details, you can now make an informed decision based on your business needs and budgetary constraints. Seek an MSP that offers a comprehensive set of relevant services that provide real value.
For example, prioritize advanced threat protection capabilities if security is a top concern. Or if budgets are tight, seek providers with flexible tiered pricing to align costs with your business. The perfect MSP delivers quality support tailored to your unique requirements.
By taking a methodical approach, requesting detailed proposals, asking tough questions, and evaluating providers based on your needs, you will be equipped to make the right managed services decision for your organization.
Akisha Networks is at the forefront of providing cutting-edge IT solutions to businesses of all sizes. With our experienced team, state-of-the-art technology, and commitment to delivering exceptional results, we can optimize your network infrastructure and ensure smooth operations. Don’t let outdated systems hold your business back any longer. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and discover how ANI can revolutionize your IT infrastructure and drive your organization’s success.
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