What You Should Look For in a Managed Service Provider

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If you are on the prowl for a managed service provider, you might feel a little overwhelmed. There is a surprising number of managed service providers available for hire, each with its own unique strengths and weaknesses. Some offer bare bones service with a handful of technicians while others have full-fledged teams of technical experts who provide a myriad of services. Here’s what to look for in managed services provider prospects.

Comprehensive Services

Do not hire a managed services provider who is merely willing to “put out fires” so to speak. The best managed services providers offer extensive support from a helpdesk to maintaining and monitoring your company’s website and beyond. One or two technicians will not suffice for these duties. Find out how many people the company staffs, their level of experience and their approach to client communication before pulling the trigger on a hire.

Round the Clock Support

Managed services providers worth their keep are willing to tend to website problems whenever necessary. If your company’s website stops functioning at 10 o’clock at night, your managed services provider should be ready to lend their expertise to rectify the problem in a timely manner. If a prospective managed services provider is unwilling to designate a technician with the proper knowledge, skills and experience necessary to solve emergency problems, move on to the next candidate. Give this emergency technician a late-night call a few weeks after hiring the provider to see if he answers and whether he is willing to lend critical assistance without delay.

Proper Monitoring

The configuration of a monitoring system is not an easy task. A large number of managed services providers do not have the appropriate manpower or technology to establish proper monitoring. In some instances, these providers will implement a weak setup that causes a seemingly endless number of alerts that end up being ignored or forgotten about. The best managed services providers offer automated monitoring along with human responses to remedy problems before they impact your business.

The Right Personnel

Vet each managed services provider in-depth to determine the skills and qualifications of their staff. If a provider’s personnel is comprised of professionals with an array of talents and skills, there’s a greater chance that they will be able to solve unique problems without performing time-consuming research.

Furthermore, a team of individuals with diverse skill-sets and knowledge will be able to figure out exactly what caused the problem to prevent it from recurring in the future.

A Detailed Contract That Includes Website Devotion

Updating a website is a challenging task. Plenty of service providers will craft agreements that do not specify how and/or when the client’s website will be patched. The best managed services providers are willing to fully and properly patch client websites. Furthermore, these providers are willing to put such obligations in writing. Hone in on website patches and updates during the vetting process to ensure that the managed service provider is capable of implementing the proper technologies for timely updates that pertain to your company’s specific applications. Ally with a devoted managed services provider and you won’t have to worry about whether your website operates efficiently and securely at all times.

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