Are you looking for a managed IT service provider? Outsourcing your IT can be complex — there are many factors to consider, and there are many IT solutions out there. Before you start looking for managed IT services, you need to know what you're looking for.
What Type of Managed IT Service Do You Need?
Not all IT solutions Philadelphia are made equal. A managed IT service may offer very minimal services or very extensive services, and it's up to your business to determine what level of service you need.
Managed IT services may provide:
- On-premise or off-premise IT administration services. An MSP may provide services either on-site or remotely. If services are provided on-site, an MSP may complete hardware upgrades and troubleshoot hardware problems, while working directly with employees to resolve issues. If services are provided remotely, an MSP may operate primarily server-side and through screen sharing. Either way, IT administrative services will bridge any gaps a company currently has with its internal IT department.
- Managed cloud services. Many companies are moving towards cloud-based solutions. MSPs that specialize in cloud services will secure, protect, monitor, and maintain the company's cloud solutions, providing an as-a-Service infrastructure for the company. Companies that want to outsource their software solutions may want to establish a relationship with a cloud-based MSP, as they will be able to deploy the needed cloud-based solutions.
- Help desk solutions. Companies that don't have an internal IT department (or who want to refocus their IT department to higher priority tasks) can use the services of a help desk solution. A help desk solution will respond to trouble tickets from within the company, addressing internal issues and putting out fires. This frees up the company's own IT staff for more important tasks.
- Data backup and protection. Data is central to the operations of the modern business. MSPs may provide advanced data backup and protection suites, which will protect the company's data from malicious attacks or negligence. Frequently, cloud-based backup solutions are used to redundantly sync and protect data.
- Security solutions. Security-as-a-Service is becoming a more popular way to protect a company's infrastructure and its data. Advanced security solutions are able to monitor a network environment and identify potentially malicious behavior. An MSP will be alerted to security issues and can work to mitigate them quickly.
Some IT services will provide all these services; others will provide only some of them. Assess your current IT infrastructure and pain points to determine the services that you need.
Does Your Managed IT Provider Have the Experience You Need?
Many MSPs work with specific types of clients. An MSP may specialize in financial services, legal companies, or medical clinics. The needs of a company can vary depending on its industry; it's often ideal to work with an MSP that already understands your industry's needs. If your MSP doesn't have any direct experience within your industry, you can ask them whether they have experience that they deem similar and relevant.
How Long Will the Process of Onboarding Take?
A timeline is important with any substantial move. Ask your MSP how long onboarding will take and what the process is. Will it take weeks or potentially months? An MSP should be able to provide you with a roadmap of your transition, including project milestones and an estimated time to completion. Your company may have its own deadlines in place, such as needing to set up a functioning new infrastructure before the end of the fiscal year.
Is the Managed IT Provider Large Enough for Your Support?
There are IT solutions Philadelphia of every size, from small boutique firms to large enterprises. A small firm isn't necessarily a negative, but it may not have the resources available if a business later wants to scale. You should ask your MSP about the size of the businesses that it currently supports, and whether it will be able to continue its level of service if your business expands.
If you don't have a scalable MSP, you may find the services of the MSP declining as you grow. You may also find yourself embroiled in a costly disruption, as you will need to change your IT provider when you scale.
Questions to Ask IT Services in Philadelphia
Apart from knowing the basics about an IT service, you should also conduct a thorough interview to make sure that they can meet your needs When interviewing IT services Philadelphia, there are a few critical questions you should ask:
- How will you learn about our business and our needs? This will tell you how much your MSP thinks about your company's pain points, and what they're willing and able to do about these pain points.
- Do you have a process intended for modernizing IT? You probably don't just want your MSP to maintain your existing assets; you want them to modernize and future proof them, with limited disruption to your processes.
- Can you optimize and improve upon our existing infrastructure? Ideally, an MSP should be able to add value to your existing system. If your MSP has no strategies for optimization and improvement, they will only be maintaining status quo. That may be all you’re looking for, but you likely want more.
- In what ways is your IT approach customized to meet customer's needs? It's important to know that your MSP is willing to work with you and that your MSP has strategies for developing their services to your best benefit.
The above questions will give you a better idea of what the IT service can do for you — and will make it easy to compare multiple MSPs.
Finding a Good Managed IT Service is Hard: Let Us Help
A managed IT service is going to work with you as a partner. It can be difficult to find the right managed service provider, but once you do, you'll be able to improve upon and optimize your company's entire IT infrastructure. For more information about finding the right IT services Philadelphia, download our ebook: Should You Hire a Managed Services Provider?