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What to look for in an IT service provider

Regardless of what sector your business might fall into, in the modern world, it’s highly unlikely that you won’t require some form of IT services. 

The real question isn’t whether or not you need IT services but whether or not your business relies on it enough to cultivate your own expert team or whether you would be better off using the services of a third-party company to either fill in the gaps or take over all of a business’ IT operations.

The truth is that ‘IT services’ is an incredibly broad term that is widening every day. It covers everything from day-to-day applications and data management to cybersecurity and with IoT (internet of things) connected tech becoming more common, the remit will only get more eclectic as time goes on.

But with so many facets to consider and so many third-party IT service providers to choose from, what should you be looking for to ensure you end up with a company with specialisations, services, and provisions that match your needs?

A good team

IT might be all about machines, but it’s the people behind those machines that will be doing the lion’s share of the work (for the foreseeable future, at least). 

It’s important the company you choose has a diverse team made up of engineers and technicians with different specialists that are able to work together to tailor their services to your specific needs.

Maintenance that makes sense

IT services will form the backbone of most organisations and if there is a problem with that backbone then everything can fall into disarray. That’s why you’ll want to ensure that any IT services provider you choose to partner with is able to provide 24-hour IT support  comprehensive cover and has a proven track record of proactive preventative care.

A winning reputation

How many years has the provider been in business and what is their reputation like within the industry. Of course, we’d never suggest writing anybody off because they were new on the scene. 

However, it makes sense in any situation where you’ll be inviting a third-party into the ‘inner sanctum’ of your organisation that you are going with a ‘brand’ you can trust. If online feedback is scarce, reach out to businesses that have used their services in the past to gauge how well they might work for you.

Regular updates

Technology is developing at an exponential rate so it’s vital that your IT support service provider is able to ensure they are using the very latest software and hardware.

They also need to keep on top of any updates (security or otherwise) and new products on the market that might be suited to your needs.

Ticking every box

  • Make a list of your business’ needs, taking into account the advice of your staff.
  • Figure out the kind of hardware and software that will work for you.
  • Map out your budget and include an ‘upper’ and ‘lower’ figure.
  • Make a shortlist of providers and go through them individually, evaluating what each has to offer.

Finally, you need to figure out simply if they are the right provider for you. This is a more personal and specific consideration, but as long as you can pinpoint something that sets your choice apart from the pack and can be sure that you can trust them then you should be on the right track to a long and fruitful relationship.