When choosing a Managed Service Provider (MSP) you are going to incur an operating expense there is no sugar coating that.  But the benefits of having an MSP will be worth the expense.  The benefits, increased efficiency, better operations, improved production, improved services and reduced costly risks which lead to an overall increase of Return on Investment (ROI).  Just what should one look for when choosing an MSP?  Its not an easy decision to turn your IT over to a provider.  The MSP should meet criteria that your company requires and the MSP should be able to deliver on most if not all the requirements.  Here are somethings to look for when choosing a Managed Service Provider:

Longevity: You want an MSP that has been around for a while and can provide references from its clients.

Good references: Get references from clients of the MSP.  This way you will have a better idea of just what the MSP company can handle in terms of IT capability. You will get a sense of how satisfied a client of the MSP company is.  From the reference you will find out how reputable the MSP is that you might use for IT services.

Industrial Experience: Does the MSP have industrial specific knowledge.  If the business you are in is a Medical practice does the MSP know the compliance that is required and do they know how to deal with trouble shooting issues that arise from software that is used.  If you run a restaurant you may want an MSP that has experience dealing with restaurants. Making sure that the company deals with clientele that is similar to your business.

Designing an IT system: Does the MSP design an IT system that Supports the company’s growth, there are many service providers out there that are more interested in their bottom line as opposed to creating a symbiotic relationship.  The IT system that is designed should consider where the company the MSP is providing services to today, where it will be tomorrow and beyond.

Remote Management and Monitoring (RMM) and Onsite Support: One of the must haves in choosing an MSP company is do they have 24 hours 7 days a week and 365 days a year Remote Management and Monitoring (RMM).  The MSP should be able to manage and monitor your entire IT infrastructure remotely.  The MSP also should provide onsite support as well. When it is time to switch out parts or to handle onsite issues that can’t be done remotely. A good MSP doesn’t leave your side when you need them the most; they should make the necessary house calls to make sure everything is running smoothly.

Consultation Service:  The MSP company should offer consultation service to its clients making suggestions as well listen to suggestions that will improve efficiency for the company as well as for the MSP.  Making IT purchase can be costly a good MSP should be able to guide you on the proper route and help to minimize unnecessary expenses and provide customized solutions to meet your needs. 

Service Contract: Does the MSP list all the services that they will provide on the contract and details of contract work as well as noncontract terms.  The last thing a company wants is to be stuck in a contract with an MSP that cannot meet the needs of their client. Make sure that the terms are agreeable and there is flexibility which will allow you to add or remove services.

Response Time:  Having an MSP that has a good response time is important for both parties. An MSP should be able to provide a time frame of when they will be able to address any issues that may arise.

Are They insured:  It is important to verify if the MSP is insured and has a current policy in place to protect your company from any mistakes on the MSP’s part.

These are just some of the items to look for when choosing a Managed Service Provider.  Hiring an MSP for your IT can be a difficult task. Choosing an MSP that is right can help a business become efficient and profitable, by allowing the company to concentrate on the things that matters the most growing the business.

Customized Computer Services Inc., (CCSI) has been serving the DFW area for 29 years.  Our staff has over 20+ years of experience.  We provide services to all facets of industries from Architecture firms, Aviation, Government facilities, Medical practices, Manufacturing industries and Restaurants.  Contact us to set up an initial consultation and find out what CCSI can do for your company’s IT.