In a previous blog, we have discussed the benefits of moving to a managed services model; increasing staff productivity, savings, mitigating risk and secure IT management to name just a few. In this blog we will focus on how to make the right choice between which Managed Services Provider (MSP) you choose, particularly if you wish to review the management of both your hardware infrastructure and your business applications. Factors to consider:
Matching skills, experience and credibility with your MSP
A successful MSP will have skills far beyond the basic operating system repairs, they will have skills for managing / predicting change, middleware and databases, network infrastructures, cloud, mobility and security. Specialists should be able to make recommendations on best practice and delivery models including cloud, on-premise, hybrid plus traditional IT and strategic outsourcing or a blended managed service model– configured to meet your needs.
An MSP’s financial stability is vital when you are forming a strategic partnership. A long-standing services provider’s incorporation date is not a reliable predictor of future longevity. Make sure you have an idea of the MSP’s financial resources before forming a partnership.
A good step is to request references from your provider or your shortlist of potential providers – specifically in the skillsets and type of contract that you wish to use, in order to build up a picture of their relevance and experience in the space you are interested in.
Outline your strategic business requirements
Many Managed Services Providers offer scalable solutions to suit your IT requirements, and can outline a useful specification of what you require including resources, specialised skill sets, support times and data requirements, based on feedback on strategic business needs.
The value of problem prevention and continuous improvements within your managed services provision
Going beyond device management and monitoring, your managed services partner should be proactive in prevention using analytics and alerts to determine failure patterns and escalation then suggest remedy procedures. What back-up systems are in place? How will they support your Disaster Recovery strategy? Do they have a way to prevent incidents?
Knowledge sharing with your managed services provider
An MSP should have an information sharing system that allows staff to access historical problem patterns and resolution information from any location. An MSP should act as a trusted technology advisor, partnering you with leading technologies and vendors that deliver the best fit for your business. The benefit of outsourcing to a specialist is the ability to allow visibility into the strength and performance of your infrastructure and business management applications. .
Comprehensive service delivery is key for a provider to flex with your needs
A managed services provider with global abilities can help position companies for further development. Global delivery abilities offer many benefits, such as co-ordinated implementation across multiple countries. Look out for local language support, knowledge and resources to address regulatory and legal requirements by country.
One provider – a portfolio of services
Sourcing a single provider with a broad range of services and skills allows you the flexibility to scale up or scale down to your requirements, to align them to your current business model. This removes the additional cost and risk exposure within your outsourced managed service strategy. Using multiple service vendors can be expensive, although there is a perception of “best in class” to this pick and mix approach, it can be harder to manage, make change much more difficult, create silos and impede agility.
Choosing the best fit of MSP partner
Strategic partnerships can affect the business’s core business model and overall culture. If innovation and revolution are key to your business strategy, how can your MSP enable this? Can they provide understandings or experiences that may influence future technical or market shifts? How can the provider’s expertise, resources and partner networks help you develop your business?
With a single point of contact for all your IT requirements, Prodware can transform your security and performance with end-to end infrastructure management for all your software and hardware requirements. Prodware can provide insight for improved workflow, training, and software systems and provide insight into your business and industry. Contact us today to find out more about our UK and multi-national support and managed service offering