What to consider when choosing your IT provider
We understand that our potential customers are faced with a huge task when trying to decide on an IT Support Company. There are so many to choose from and services offering and cost can vary widely, so how do you know which is best for you?
In order to assist you with this huge appointment we have provided some quick points that we think you should ask and consider to put your IT Support Providers through their paces:
Check what is actually included in their cost and make sure you compare like-for-like
It is key to make sure you are considering both cost and quality. Critical downtime can outweigh the saving made with cheap IT support package in a matter of hours.
- Make sure that support includes onsite visits and that they are not limited- most of things can be fixed and done remotely but this is still essential service.
- Do they have Service level agreements that they stick to their agreed response time? You can check this with their current customers to find out what response and resolution times they can deliver for issues.
- It’s not all about fixing it. A good company will resolve the issue, find out why it happened and work out how to prevent it happening again. This may be more expensive in short term but you will see the benefits over long term.
- Do they provide remote and pro-active monitoring and how is this managed?
Check their references and existing clients
- You should be able to contact any of their existing clients and find out first hand on how satisfied they are with:
- the service
- response time
- By checking their existing clients you can easily find out if their requirements are similar to your own (or even more demanding) and if they understand different areas.
- Do you have to log a call or can you simply talk to a team member that understands your business operations?
What is their experience and knowledge
- Consider what products you use in your business and if they have relevant experience or qualifications with that product.
- Make sure they have a team of specialists who can cover wide range of services and products (networking, VoIP, back-up etc)
- As a good IT support provider, they should be able to advise and supply solutions and products that are the best option for you (not just a specific brand from which they can make the most profit)
- Look for a company that has IT support service as part of their core offering. Some service providers outsource to a telephone reseller or HR agencies with IT support as a bolt on.
- Are they willing to liaise with the specialist software vendor when required, even if they do not have the expertise with a specific product?
Contract terms and notice period
- Do they offer a trial period? If they are as good they say they are than a 3 month break in a 12 month contract shouldn't be an issue.
- Make sure you don’t get yourself signed in a long term contract. A one year service contract term is standard and you should not have to sign into anything over and above this without incentive.
- Do you have an option to cancel and what is the notice period? Be wary of excessing notice periods - this should be anything between 1-3 months but should not be any longer than this
Company trading status
- How long have they been trading and do they have a solid financial status?
- What is their office like? Do they have skills and infrastructure to cope?
- Complaints - can you speak to someone who will take your issue seriously?
- Do they have relevant insurance? They should be able to provide you with the copy of liability and indemnity cover for your peace of mind.
- Check their website:
- is it up to date?
- are there recent projects and news?
- any feedback or testimonials from their customers?