Outsourcing IT management has become a common practice, but it can be difficult to choose which provider is best for your business. Many MSPs have similar product/service offerings, but only a few are committed to delivering long-term value. Here are five questions to ask a potential Managed Service partner.
1. “What companies do you partner with?”
If an MSP has high-quality connections to vendors in the tech industry, that’s a good sign. Companies like Cisco and Microsoft wouldn’t work with an MSP who underperforms or disappoints their customers. When it comes to making an investment in your technology, make sure your partner invests in theirs.
2. “What is the scope of your capabilities?”
You need to understand what the provider can and cannot do. Ask for background on their engineers, including certifications earned. MSPs that have experience in your vertical might be a smarter choice because they’ve learned from previous deployments.
3. “Where do you utilize automation?”
IT is not a break-fix process anymore; daily tasks (patching, updates, managing backups) can be automated with cloud tools. If an issue arises, the MSP team will be alerted and begin troubleshooting before any disruption occurs. A good partner takes responsibility for the back-end functions, so your in-house team stays focused on innovation.
4. “Are you able to scale?”
As your business grows, demand for IT resources does too. For example, maybe you don’t need desktop support for work-from-home employees right now, but it could be useful to implement in two years. Your MSP should be able to scale up or down in real-time, according to your specific needs.
5. “Can you help us build a long-term IT strategy?”
This is probably the most crucial question to ask a potential MSP. Find a partner that will work with your team to build a comprehensive IT roadmap, focused on streamlining operations and minimizing risk. An MSP that commits to fully understanding your needs will be able to guide you towards the best tech for your business.
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