Is Your IT Support Company Productive for You?

As we approach the end of another year, and what a wild ride it was, many business owners are beginning to review the year to see how things went for
them. How were sales? How did the new product launch go? How did the new location perform?
But how many business owners ask the question “Was my IT company, that I rely on so much, actually productive for me this year?”.
Before we go further, we need to clarify that an IT company that is busy for you is not the same as one that is productive for you. Keep that in mind
as your read this article.
Much of what a good IT company, generally known as an MSP (managed services provider), does is behind the scenes. Good data integrity services like
data backups, replication, security, recovery, and automation are one such hidden task. Other tasks such as remote monitoring and management of your
network 24/7 is another. These services, running all the time, are usually only noticeable when there is a problem or when you see the monthly itemized invoice. BTW: if your IT company does not itemize its invoice, you should really find out why. What exactly are you paying for?
So, if your IT company is doing all this for you, are they productive for you?
Not really. What they are doing is preventative in nature. They are protecting you. And that is very good. But all good MSPs protect their clients.
That is MSP 101. What you need to know is how do they make your business and your IT resources productive?

Here are three things to consider:

  1. Is your MSP a Guard or a Scout?
    A guard is someone who stands vigil, he is preventative. A scout is someone who actively moves around to warn you and to help you take advantage of
    opportunities. Does your MSP scout for opportunities for you? Does he seek out savings on IT or ways to make you more productive. In effect, is he a
    consultant for you. Most MSPs will gladly tell you ways to improve your operations, but you might have to corral them because they are busy.
  2. Is your MSP a Resource or a Pain?
    At PARKERTECHGROUP we have inherited many clients that were burned by their former IT company. Besides these new client being skittish of geeks, we
    have noticed a common experience among them – they felt that the former company did not willingly advise them of issues or opportunities. The phrase
    “like pulling eye teeth” epitomizes their stories. We believe consulting is one of the most appreciated services we provide for our clients. We have
    even answered Christmas present tech questions from time to time.
  3. Is your MSP looking for business for you?
    We can all acknowledge that a business referral is the best means of advertising. It is free and it is trusted by the hearer. MSPs often ask their
    business clients to refer them to others. However, not many refer their clients to other clients or businesses on an active basis. We think that’s a
    shame. And we think that is something you need to think about when looking at your MSP relationship.

There are more than these three indicators that your MSP is productive for you, but these hit the target- opportunistic internally for your business,
communicative when you need their advice, and opportunistic externally with referrals. If your current MSP is not doing well on these three factors,
it may be time for a change.

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