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Preparing to Choose an IT Technical Support Services Provider
Having one arrangement for IT technical support services is fairly common among small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs). However, given the complexity of today’s IT operating environment and the threats that are growing rapidly on the cybersecurity front, it is also important to consider a backup plan when those needs are not met. You might need to choose a different IT technical support services provider.
Here at thinkIT Solutions we can help you prepare for selecting a new IT Technical Support Services Provider when the time comes.
Questions to ask when choosing a new IT Technical Support Services Provider
In case there are changes in your technical requirements or pricing, you should have enough options when choosing a new IT Technical Support Services Provider so that your needs are met, and you are not shoe-horned into a plan that is not right for you.
How much do you pay to your IT Technical Support Services Provider?
The level of service gives you an idea of pricing. If you’re paying triple the amount to your current IT support services provider while you can get a value-based pricing model from another IT Support provider, you might want to reconsider your budget now and make sure you pay for what you need. A low price point may leave you exposed on coverage. Too complicated a plan might have you paying for services you don’t really use or need just yet.
What levels of support does your IT Technical Support Services offer?
Break/fix services tend to be much more expensive than pricing schemes. It is because of the hourly rates. The reason behind this is a bit complicated. Basically, proactively managed clients see significantly less downtime (as they practice problem prevention instead of having to scramble to solve the resulting problem), and troubleshooting becomes more involved as well. Ask these three questions to yourself:
a) Can I afford to pay for break-fix types of issues only? It is not cost-effective in the long run in most cases and may wind up spiking your costs when you least are able to afford them, such as when experiencing downtime.
b) Should I hire the IT Technical Support Services Provider for an hourly rate on an as needed basis?It is better to secure a block of time that you can leverage for both routine and emergency use insuring the access to technical experts in a variety of specialties. It is also avoids neglecting routine maintenance and security that, if taken care of on a timely basis, prevent a lot of headaches that become emergencies down the road.
c) Do they offer full IT Technical Support Services contracts? The most desirable arrangement is that one that does not require you to guess what will go wrong or predict the future. Comprehensive coverage for the systems and devices your business uses is always a smart move.
What does your IT Technical Support Services Contract include?
Read your contracts carefully before investing with a new IT Technical Support Services Provider. Do they state how many visits they cover? Do they include gadget and network troubleshooting? Think carefully if a customized plan or a value-based pricing model if right for you. Ask the new IT Technical Support Services firm if they can guide you with the available choices and discuss your limitations as well. Transparency is key for effective collaboration between you and the provider.
Will you follow a Service Level Agreement (SLA) with the IT Technical Support Services Provider?
In any company, an SLA is important. It states what service your business will receive and the guarantee you will receive the service. IT Technical Support Services Providers implement this to measure what levels of response they will provide when your printers and networks are acting up.
Can you cancel the contract when you’re unsatisfied?
Change can be uncomfortable but it’s still worth the try. Your IT Technical Support Services Provider should be a trusted extension of your business. It takes time to build and prove that trust. It’s advisable to discuss what flexibility the contract affords and what your options are to switch, upgrade, change, etc.
How about the response time?
Always remember that the right company will promise and guarantee a response time. They will make an effort to notify you so that you are aware of the issue and that they are actively working on it. Use caution with companies that guarantee that issues will be resolved within a specific amount of time; as this is something that no one should claim. What if they promised to resolve the issue for just an hour but took two hours and charged you for the additional hours? Certain issues take time to discover the problem and anyone that claims otherwise raises a red flag in terms of trust.
Ask about the business hours.
Do they support 24/7 customer service? When can you contact them when your system crashes? Make sure the IT Technical Support Services Provider you choose provides the level of service your business needs.
Over the last 5 years, what is their customer retention rate?
Customer satisfaction and retention are important. If their clients have been renewing their contracts every year or every five years with them, take that as a good sign. Ask for references.
thinkIT Solutions Provides Progressive Changes
thinkIT Solutions is always here to listen to your queries. Change is already a bit uncomfortable because many IT Technical Support Services Providers promise a handful of services that may not work for you. Communication is the key to each partnership. We will be happy to answer your questions and charter a course for your IT that works for your company. We have been serving the New Orleans area since 2001 and are in it for the long haul. We know you are too.
Visit our website for more details and to contact us today!