The short answer is: very.
Businesses looking to remain competitive and prosper are requiring reliable and flexible IT systems which will grow with them and should be looking to switch to a proactive technology partner who can deliver.
Every business has its own specific set of reasons for looking to switch IT service providers but it often boils down to two common complaints – the current IT service provider is not proactive enough and because no forward planning is taking place; the business is suddenly confronted with a large quote or bill because a piece of hardware or software is old and at danger of failure. A healthy business is always looking to grow and it may be the IT service provider has not kept pace with businesses’ technological and regulatory requirements.
Added in to the mix is the way the IT service provider charges for its services. Is it on a ‘break-fix’ basis – something breaks and they’re called to come along and fix it? The present IT provider charges on a ‘by the hours’ basis, or pre-purchased ‘block hours’: either way it can be a bit of an open-ended chequebook when it comes to budgeting a business’ IT needs.
Increasingly, businesses are opting for a third, more cost-effective way forward and that is to choose to work in partnership with a managed services provider (MSP). A business’s IT requirements are covered by a monthly fee which is a win-win for both parties: the client knows whatever the issue, it will be sorted through the agreed contract, at no extra cost and the provider wants to fix it as quickly as possible. That’s because that fixed price contract is based on a calculated estimation the MSP has made of the monthly time it believes will be spent on that client. If it’s over, the MSP absorbs the costs and not the client. So, the simple economics of this arrangement means problems need to be fixed as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Here at Resolution IT we’re an MSP and we passionately believe this is the way forward for companies looking to outsource their IT services. For us, we’re looking to become the client’s trusted advisor, a pro-active resource that is there to support and help businesses grow. And with the increasing recognition that businesses need to digitally transform (in an ever-increasing data security conscious landscape) and therefore the strategic importance those IT decisions place on the business, we believe we’re expertly placed to be the MSP of choice and the business’ IT department, located just down the road.
Making the switch
Once the decision to switch IT service providers has been made, it should be a relatively simple process; one which could actually be completed within a day. However, before this happens, we’d carry out an IT audit, giving us a complete overview of your IT systems. This would allow us to identify any potential issues and present suggestions for any new technologies to help you improve efficiencies and processes. When we have a clear understanding of each client’s business requirements, we'll then be able to produce an IT roadmap, giving the client total clarity on what their IT milestones and expenditure are likely to look like for the foreseeable future.
The majority of IT service providers use industry recognised hardware and software, ourselves included, making switching a very straightforward process. Working daily with such a range of clients and systems, there isn’t anything we haven’t experienced before. And recognised as being a top global MSP*, we know that the solutions, software and skills we offer, are up there with the very best.
Once we’re all in agreement, we’d then need all your passwords, as well as all the licences for your third-party renewals. Your existing IT service provider will have these and as you retain ownership of them they can quickly be passed on to you. We record all these on our systems and as part of your fixed managed contract, it becomes our responsibility to make sure they are renewed and managed.
Disruption to staff would also be negligible. They’d be given new contact details, bringing them swiftly through to our Service Desk whose aim is to sort problems as quickly as possible.
And once on-board, how do you know the trusted advisor relationship is working? Depending on the size of the client, we meet with them weekly, monthly, quarterly, or at a mutually agreeable time interval to ensure the relationship is working well and also as a reliable source of expert advice Whilst we visit the client, we do encourage the client, at the start of on-boarding, to come to us and meet the team who will be looking after their IT needs. It’s all part of our aim to be treated as a trusted extension of their business and IT department.
And if at any point you or your staff require extra support, we also offer staff training on everything from how a particular software package works, to cyber security - this includes offering the UK government recognised Cyber Essentials certifications, increasingly being sought after by businesses concerned about their levels of cyber security.
If this sounds like the kind of IT relationship you’d like, please get in touch and we’d be happy to provide you with some great examples of clients who have made the switch.