Many small businesses are now partnering with an IT service provider to help with IT operations and strategy. Outsourcing your IT needs to a Managed Service Provider (MSP) takes pressure off your employees and puts your valuable IT infrastructure in the hands of experts.
This is true for all businesses, but especially for smaller ones without the resources to hire and train a big IT force of their own.
Why work with an IT partner?
The benefits of working with an IT partner can be enormous. It’s thought that small businesses lose around $700 billion every year due to outages and downtime — $1 million a year for a typical mid-size company. This is the type of loss that your business can avoid by working with a trusted MSP.
Though the benefits are great, the process of finding the right IT Service Provider can seem challenging. It’s important to take this process seriously, since your business will ultimately want to build a meaningful and productive relationship with the right IT partner.
There’s plenty of choice, with service providers often specializing in different areas. The main thing is to be sure that the IT Service Provider you choose is the right one for your business.
Let’s take a look at how you can do that.
What is their experience?
Always make sure to check how much experience they have, especially in your industry. Work with a team that understands your tools to keep you productive.
Look at what they’ve achieved in the past, and the kinds of businesses they typically work with. Tangible results are something to keep an eye out for in particular, along with satisfied clients.
Your IT partner should have a solid understanding of your industry and a proven track record of delivering results.
Here are some questions to ask:
- What’s their experience and track record supporting Apple devices? (Have they recently started supporting Apple devices or have they done it for a long time?)
- What are their industry certifications and how recent are they?
- How much experience do they have working with companies of your size in your industry? Can they provide references?
- Here are the industries SupportMyMac works with. (Click each one for more info)
Will you get along with them?
Remember that you want to form a relationship with your IT partner. You wouldn’t get into a relationship with someone incompatible, and this is no different.
Look for signs that this team will be easy to work with. Are they good communicators? Are they on your wavelength? Your IT partner will be responsible for some of the most sensitive and critical parts of your business, so it’s very important that you can trust and rely on them.
Look at their values, and make sure they align with yours. You need to have common goals and interests in order for this kind of partnership to work out. To gain an idea of what to expect, check out what other clients say about them.
Are they right for you, and your tech?
IT is a big blanket, with lots of different types of technology out there. You want to work with an IT Service Provider that understands the ins and outs of your IT infrastructure specifically.
For example, at SupportMyMac we specialize in Apple, unlike most other IT Service Providers which tend to focus on PCs or a mix of Apple and PC. That means we tend to understand Macs and the Apple ecosystem better than other IT companies.
It’s best to work with an IT partner that focuses on your kind of technology, instead of generalists or a team that’s geared towards something completely different. “You wouldn’t bring your Audi to a Ford dealer…”
Are they security focused?
It’s no secret that cyber security is a big deal. Cyber crime is expected to cost a total of $6 trillion by 2021, and around 43% of attacks target small businesses.
Your IT partner should be monitoring on an ongoing basis, constantly updating and repairing any problems and making sure that your business is protected with the most up-to-date security.
Security must be a priority for any IT Service Provider you choose to work with. Check their website and do your homework — this is an area you really can’t afford to neglect!
If you’ve looked into us and want to see if we’d be a good fit, here’s where to find us!