What should you expect from your IT Support in 2023?1 February 2023
The threat to cyber security in 2022 and how zero trust can combat this28 February 2023
Selecting the best IT supplier can seem like an insurmountable challenge in a market that is extremely saturated. It can be challenging to distinguish between service providers who specialise only in self-promotion and those who actually give first-rate service because so many claim to deliver greater service and customer care than their rivals.
Even though post-incident helpdesk support is still a crucial part of outsourced IT, it only covers a small portion of the services your supplier should be providing. The finest providers offer a wide range of goods and services that may be customised to meet the operational needs of their customers, from proactive security and remote maintenance to workplace productivity tools and premium corporate connections.
We aimed to assist you in evaluating the calibre of the IT support you are currently receiving in our previous article. Let’s now have a look at 5 qualities you should seek in an IT supplier so you can confidently select the best partner for your company.
Custom solutions and services
Websites from IT companies are frequently somewhat formulaic. You’ll frequently be given a list of managed services, there may be a telecoms component, and they’ll frequently stress their adherence to best practises in cyber security.
How then can you tell the best from the rest?
The greatest IT service providers deliver their services in a flexible approach and customise their offerings based on the requirements of certain customers. Terms like “co-managed IT” are an excellent indicator of a supplier willing to offer such services if you’re just searching for an add-on solution to complement an internal IT team. On the other hand, keep an eye out for terms like “full service managed IT” and “virtual CIO” as these denote suppliers with an all-inclusive service offering if you’re looking for a provider who will fully own your digital estate.
Additionally, you want to search for vendors who try to tactically deploy solutions to handle the pressing business issues and pressures their clients are dealing with. These providers will refer to their willingness to customise solutions to specific operational difficulties and stressors by using words like “IT roadmap” and “long term plan.”
Experience working with your industry
It pays to select an IT partner with past experience in your industry if your organisation runs under a severe, industry-specific compliance load or in a sector where IT plays a particularly business-critical role. A supplier with experience in your sector will be able to leverage technology to hardwire compliance into your organisation, whether you offer financial products and are subject to FCA regulation or you are a care provider working under the regulatory authority of the CQC. Additionally, you want a provider who has experience managing and maintaining the sector-specific software tools you employ, such as legacy databases. Simply put, an IT provider who is knowledgeable about your industry will be better able to guide you through the regulatory landscape and support the infrastructure that you rely on.
Frequently, service providers who concentrate on a certain industry are eager to share this information on their website. Ask them about comparable organisations they’ve worked with in the past if your industry isn’t included to help you judge their fit.
Cyber security is a top priority
According to the 2022 Cyber Security Breaches Survey, almost 40% of UK businesses were victims of a cyberattack in the preceding calendar year. The survey also revealed that the average attack caused £4200 in financial harm, a price that could bankrupt small- to medium-sized businesses.
It is crucial to locate an IT company who has a firm dedication to security best practises. A crucial line of defence is remote monitoring/management, which guarantees the health of your network, its component devices, operating systems, and software applications, as well as the disciplined, timely application of security updates. Without this crucial capacity, a provider will find it difficult to protect your environment’s integrity, leaving it open to online threats and susceptible to unsettling outages.
Additionally, they should be able to provide a wide range of technical safeguards for each hub and spoke of your IT system. Make sure a provider provides a wide range of technologies to help protect your environment and your data, from email filtering and endpoint antivirus to firewall safeguards and cloud backups.
Dynamic support backed by a comprehensive service level agreement (SLA)
In our last post, we stated that a service level agreement’s terms are only one aspect of good IT support. While we firmly believe that, a thorough SLA is essential to guaranteeing that the service you receive is planned and provided in line with your expectations. The SLA should include information on the services that will be provided as well as any performance goals with references to important performance metrics. A well-run IT supplier will be willing to guarantee some parts of service delivery and may even provide a right of recourse if important goals are not achieved.
When it comes to support options, seek for companies who can give a helpdesk that is staffed around-the-clock. This could seem needless, but if you ever decide to work late or go on a business trip abroad and require support, it will suddenly make sense. Next, think about metrics for response and resolution times. A reputable service provider will try to respond to help queries in less than 30 minutes and work to resolve problems completely on the first occasion.
A commitment to great customer service
This is what sets the best IT service providers apart from the rest. If your company has a culture of excellent customer service, you and your team will feel confident asking your provider for guidance or support. The finest service providers will do a thorough onboarding process to learn about your organisation, industry demands, financial limits, and the present status of your IT system before they begin working with you.
You actually need a professional account manager to supervise every facet of service delivery if you’re looking for an IT supplier to take on a comprehensive technology management role. This person will get informed about the specifics of your IT and how you do business, enabling them to function as an extension of your team. Seek guarantees that a specific point of contact will be appointed.
Technology, when used carefully and intelligently, can have a transformative impact on company. However, it may be more difficult to realise these potential rewards without the correct IT partner. This little blog series should have been helpful in assisting you in assessing the level of support you are currently receiving. It might be time to look elsewhere for your IT assistance if your supplier is doing their fundamental duties poorly and lacks the motivation to help you get the most out of your IT.
Do you need better IT Support?
If after reading this article you think that you may need to switch IT Support provider then please get in contact with us here at CloudHost. Our team of experts can help you with any technical issues or ideas you may have.