There are a lot of managed service providers in the world; as a company looking for a partner in the digital world, finding the right one can be overwhelming.
Happily, you don’t need to start from scratch. Top managed service providers (MSPs) share some common traits. By making sure your potential partners have these abilities, you’ll have a better chance of getting the right MSP from the start.
Work with companies in your industry
Different types of businesses have different needs. Tech companies, media companies, and construction companies all have wildly different focuses – but within their industries, there are certain standards that should be met. Good MSPs will offer you testimonials and reviews from previous clients. Make sure to ask for information about other companies in your industry and their experiences.
You should always ask what companies do proactively to avoid problems. Do they have active security that monitors for cyberthreats? Do they proactively monitor network traffic to look for weaknesses? Do they offer training to employees to help them understand the internal risks of phishing and whaling hacks (they jumped up by 21% last quarter)?
A good company is always available; a great company is ready before you even need them.
Consider you a partner
Some MSPs seem to expect to walk into your business, offer you a set of solutions, and then wait for you to implement them. That’s just not reasonable. Even when an MSP is deeply familiar with companies in your industry, they don’t know your business; no company has a one-size-fits-all solution.
A good MSP will see you as a partner in your relationship. They may know the IT side of things far better than you do, but you know your business inside and out. They should be listening to what you have to say about how your business runs and what you need.
You and an MSP may build a plan with the best of intentions and as much information as you have at your fingertips. But as you get to work, you may realize that you’ve missed details or that something has gone a bit off the rails.
A good MSP will be able to take your phone calls and re-evaluate what you have on the table. “Oh well, that’s what we agreed to” are words you should absolutely never hear.
The market for MSPs is growing, and new MSPs are appearing weekly. You want to make sure that the company you’re signing an agreement with is safe, reliable, and ready to take on your workload.
But look at the company’s leadership. Where have they worked? What projects have they done before? Find out as much as you can about the company itself before you sign on the dotted line.
Finding the right MSP can be complicated, but it isn’t impossible. Look for these important traits to narrow down the playing field and find the right MSP for your company.