While the Managed Services (MS) concept is not a new idea by any stretch, it is a spin on something that has been around for decades. Cable television providers are an excellent example of Managed Service in that they include the box with their service for a monthly fee. If there is an outage, a problem with the service, or the equipment becomes faulty, they fix it without billing you each time. The key is that their goals are aligned with their customers in that they want to proactively maintain, and even improve, the quality of service to avoid high costs for you- the end user.
The same goes for technology-based Managed Service Providers (MSPs); they have a clear-cut goal to do everything in their power to ensure that customers' technology is always running at peak performance. MSP's intend to take technology headaches out of the hands of their clients by becoming their IT department, from CTO to Help Desk technician.
What services are covered in a Managed Service Agreement?
The key to any great service is customer experience and you will find that it is no different with any MSP. Let’s explore the Top 5 items that every great MSP includes in their Managed Service Agreement (and why).
#1. Help Desk, Unlimited On-Site Support & Trouble Ticketing
The job of an MSP is to make the customers’ business day-to-day easier and hassle free. The first step to this is to provide a convenient way for them to log any issues they have and to provide confirmation that they have received the incoming trouble tickets. Either by phone, email or a simple click on a desktop item, MSPs log your trouble tickets and ensure that the customer gets a confirmation number and constant communication. The reported issue is on their radar and in the process of being handled.
#2. Data Backup, Disaster Recovery & Business Continuity
These are all essential elements for any business. With a combination of On-site, Off-Site and a good disaster plan, businesses will always be one step ahead of their competition.
#3. Proactive Maintenance, Network Monitoring & Patch Management
With automobiles, every three months (or 3,000 miles, as we're taught) vehicles need to have the oil changed in order for the engine to function properly for a long period of time. We can think of computers the same way. By staying on top of Windows updates, application updates and Anti-virus issues, MSPs ensure that your system is running at its best. And by doing it at night, they are able to provide an uninterrupted work day for business to operate.
#4. Network Security Network
Security is a key factor-- possibly the most crucial factor-- in determining whether or not a business has entered into a contract with a quality MSP. Why? There are a number of reasons with productivity and data security topping the list. By stopping threats at the “Front Door”, so to speak, MSPs minimize the disruptions and potential downtime that can happen if those threats make it onto their customers’ network(s).
#5. Vendor Management
Vendor Management means that businesses have one number to call. How much time each week do companies spend on the phone with these vendors? The answer is, too much! A great MSP understands the needs of their clients and communicates those needs to their technology vendors. Thus saving time and energy, allowing businesses to do what they do best. In summary, technology based MSPs allow businesses to do their job and focus on their business. MSPs take on the headaches, asset management, break-fix hurdles, expansion planning, disaster prevention/recovery, and everything else IT-- with greater expertise, less interruption, and at a lower price than a business in-housing the same effort.
We are Impact Solutions. We are a premier MSP in Northwest Indiana. We would love to discuss the technology at your business, for free. You can reach us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/impactsol, clicking the Partner Profiles link at ValpoLife.com or calling us at 877-262-9140.