Managed Services are for many businesses a natural go-to solution to the challenge of leveraging technology while controlling or reducing IT team head count. Selecting the right Managed Services Provider (MSP) is of course essential.
In my last article, I looked at three of the key criteria that ONI’s customers use to assess us as a Managed Services Supplier – the issues they considered to be key indicators of our suitability and capability.
In this article I’ll explore the next three in the list, relating to preventing issues from recurring after they’ve been addressed, improving TCO and ROI by taking a proactive stance on system and process improvement, and the need for MSPs to provide evidence of their sales and marketing claims.
Let’s dive straight in.
Anyone who’s been in IT for any length of time has experienced the situation where something has gone wrong. Problem resolution is clearly a key capability for any managed services provider, but the real benchmark measure is not just how problems are resolved but, crucially, what the provider does to prevent issues recurring.
A truly excellent service partner will have a proven, effective approach to continued service improvement, working with you to review and enhance the service based on past performance.
Proactive or reactive?
Entirely understandably, most customers have a strong focus on how quickly and effectively issues are resolved. An equally important measure of excellence, though, is how infrequently problems arise in the first place.
Any service provider worth their salt will be proactive, coming to you with ways of enhancing your system. This might be driven by regular fail-over testing, or perhaps through bespoke software development to test parts of your solution that conventional tools cannot monitor.
Ultimately, this goes beyond reducing incident rates. It’s about improving your TCO and ROI – this is where true value lies!
Cold, hard proof
Assessing these issues appears to require a leap of faith. You don’t know if the provider’s claims on any of these fronts are honest until you’ve actually experienced their service. By that time, of course, you’ve signed the contract and you’re past the point of no return.
Always ask any potential partner to provide you with solid evidence proving their delivery record. Ask for documented evidence or speak to some of their existing customers to be sure you’re choosing the right partner.
Managed Services are becoming an ever more important part of the IT services mix, and selecting the right MSP has never been more important. We’re assessed on criteria such as these every day – to find out how we stack up, please do get in contact.
About the author
Trevor Mockett, Customer Services Director
As ONI’s Customer Services Director, Trevor is responsible for ensuring we always put the customer first and embodies the ideal of “going the extra mile” to ensure we deliver service excellence.
Trevor has over 25 years’ experience in the IT industry, most of which has been spent in a systems integration or managed service environment. He joined ONI in 2012 and has been instrumental in the development of the majority of our Cloud service propositions.