When you are in need of an IT service provider for your business, it can be difficult to know which one will be the best fit. To help you make an informed decision, here are 5 common mistakes business owners should avoid:
1. . Not vetting the IT service provider’s website for pricing information
Always visit the website! Learn all you can about a Managed IT Service provider before you even call them. You should be able to find their services listed in some form of packages or hours, which should always include pricing.
Of course, every business's needs for IT are different. You may not see a set price for your exact requirement, but you should be able to get a rough idea. When it comes to managed IT services, transparency in pricing is extremely important upfront. If an IT service provider does not have clear, easy to understand service packages listed on their website, you may be in store for some big surprises concerning costs and hidden fees.
2. Not asking about the size of the IT support team
As technology continues to advance, IT support is becoming more complicated and time intensive. From managing servers in the cloud to keeping IT environments safe from the continual threat of hackers, malware, and viruses, one person (or even two) can rarely do it all.
No matter the size of your business, your IT requirements demand a vast set of skills across standard operating systems like Microsoft Windows and Mac OS. Additionally, specific, tedious networking experience is necessary to keep your office productive and operational. Business owners need to look for a managed IT service provider that showcases the certifications and expertise of their team. That experience should be both broad and deeply technical. An excellent place to look for this might be the team profile page of their website.
3. Not requiring a detailed proposal
As a business owner, you probably don’t know everything about IT, and you shouldn't have to! Your job is to run your business and keep your customers happy. When you search for a managed IT service provider, it’s not only okay to ask questions, you should ask questions. Ask them about the various aspects of what is included in your IT package and why. Getting answers to these questions is critical to help you hire an experienced and knowledgeable provider. If a managed IT service company pressures you for a decision, glosses over what they include in your package, or does not provide a full report of your IT environment including a proposal, it should be a red flag.
4. Focusing solely on price
A low price might be a good reason to buy a cheaper pack of pens, but it’s not the mindset that business owners should use when hiring a managed IT service provider. You have probably heard the adage, "You get what you pay for." There is a reason that phrase has been around for so long—it’s the truth!
What can happen if you hire a low-cost managed IT service provider?
Their help desk support may be slow or inefficient.
Their on-site support techs may not be friendly or thoughtful in their communications.
Their contract may include hidden costs or fees.
Price is always part of the decision-making equation, but when you hire a reputable managed IT service company, you should find that they have packages that fit your needs with your budget in mind.
5. Focusing on the short-term fix
Your business IT needs to be safe, scalable, and on all the time. Simply hiring a "quick-fix" IT person related to your next-door neighbor who may have a different day job is not going to work for your business in the long-term. You need a managed IT service company that can be there no matter what you need them for or when you need them.
When searching for an IT service provider, it is essential to look at the length of time they have been in business as well as the following:
When you review their website, you should see case studies and customer testimonials that showcase successful projects. When you browse their company page, you should see their owners and employees displayed with care and consideration.
Avoid these common mistakes to choose the right managed IT service provider for your business
If you follow the advice listed here, the decision making process will automatically become much easier. You will also know you have found the right company when you see that they invest in their community and their employees. As we have learned at Bit-Wizards, happy employees = happy customers. Good luck in your hunt!