More businesses than ever are starting to outsource their IT support, and for good reason. A recent study found that companies that choose to outsource IT have seen reductions in spending of up to up to 40%!
In addition to saving money, there are lots of advantages that come with outsourcing your business's IT support. But, in order to really reap all these benefits, you need to make sure you're working with a reliable IT provider.
One way to tell if a provider can meet your business's needs is to learn about the specific kinds of IT support services they're able to perform.
Keep reading to learn about the most important services that every provider should offer their clients.
1. Fast Service
When a program or website is down, you and your employees need to know that it'll be back up again soon. If you or anyone on your staff is unable to do their job for hours at a time because of IT issues, money is wasted. That's why support that can be performed quickly is crucial.
Look for an IT service provider that is known for getting the job done fast. Many providers even have a guaranteed response time.
You should also check out the company's reviews online. If there are any complaints about the speed with which they provide their IT support services, you should look elsewhere.
2. 24/7/365 Availability
To provide you with fast IT support service, your IT provider needs to be available around the clock.
Your computer network never takes a break. If something goes wrong while everyone's away for the night or weekend and your website is down for hours or days at a time, your business could be in serious trouble.
3. Multifaceted Support
There are many different levels of IT support. That's why most reputable IT providers have a variety of people on their team to take care of all these aspects. It's not realistic for one person to handle everything.
Look for a provider that has a variety of people performing its IT support services. Some of the roles that should be filled on the team include:
- Helpdesk technicians
- Business consultants
- Network admins
4. Participation in Your Business Plan
Your IT provider should be involved in your business plan and be invested in helping you implement the best practices. Your IT provider should understand that your success is their success and should work to help you prepare for the future.
There are lots of ways that your IT provider can do this, including:
- Meet with you regularly
- Learn about your business objectives and identify IT solutions to help you reach your goals
- Help you understand the latest IT developments and how they can help your business
- Keep you up to date on common IT issues
- Help you create a budget for future IT needs
5. Cloud Storage and Backup Services
Businesses accumulate data quickly, from customer and contact information to payroll and HR information. All this data can easily overwhelm your servers. That's why cloud storage and backup services are so important.
Online storage makes it easy for you to save money and space. So, when you hire a provider, make sure they're backing up your data to a remote server consistently and automatically.
You'll also want to look for an IT provider that offers a variety of hosting solutions to fit your business's specific needs. A one-size-fits-all approach is never a good sign when it comes to IT support services.
For example, a private cloud storage solution might be best for a larger business that has a lot of data storage requirements and wants to be in complete control. A private cloud option will store all data on a company's intranet and protect it behind a firewall.
However, a public cloud option -- where data is managed and maintained by the provider -- might be more convenient for smaller businesses.
6. Regular Security/Maintenance Testing
It's not enough for your IT provider to just be available 24/7. You also need to know that they're regularly monitoring, testing, and updating your business's network. This ensures that your business is protected from cybercriminals and hackers.
Some common network maintenance tasks that your IT provider's network admin will handle include:
- Installing, replacing, or upgrading hardware and software
- Monitoring, documenting, and optimizing the network
- Securing the network against internal and external threats
- Planning for network upgrades, expansions, and enhancements
- Scheduling backups
- Ensuring compliance with legal regulations and corporate policies
- Troubleshooting problem reports
7. Disaster Planning and Cleanup
It doesn't matter how well prepared you are. Sometimes, disasters just happen, and you need to know that your IT provider can help you recover from that disaster, whether you're hit by a fire or are a victim of theft.
In addition to helping you get things back up and running as soon as possible after a disaster, your IT provider should have a plan in place before anything bad ever happens.
When you're looking at reviews of IT providers, look for information about how certain companies handled a crisis.
Were they quick to respond? Did they follow the plan they laid out ahead of time? Did they take steps to prevent future problems?
If a provider doesn't offer disaster planning and cleanup as part of its IT support services, you don't want to work with them.
Want an IT Support Services Provider That Does It All?
If you want an IT provider that provides all the IT support services discussed above, contact us at NSIS Systems today. We offer a variety of cloud services, as well as disaster recovery and basic support, so we've got all your tech support needs covered!