Choosing an IT service and support provider can be an overwhelming prospect. With so many players on the market, the choice is puzzling and there are many factors to consider. We have created this guide to help you identify the most important factors to consider when choosing a partner for your IT service and support.
We mention this first because it is by far the most important factor. Do you think this IT service and support provider really understands your business? Do they know how you work, how customers find you, and how do you meet their needs? Do they really control your internal processes?
You should be able to speak to your IT support and service provider on purely business terms. In other words, you need to be able to explain the problems you face or the results you want to achieve, without even referring to specific software, hardware, or technologies. Your IT service and support partner should be able to build a bridge between your expressed needs and the technical details of your solution, and explain your proposal in terms that you can easily understand.
There is more to the business approach than just the basics of operational details. Cultural factors are also important. Will this IT service and support provider fit in?
Remember, members of this IT service and support team will visit your facility, interact with your staff, and possibly train them on how to use new software and hardware. New IT systems bring change, and change is something that many people find difficult. You’re looking for people who can offer the right level of tactful and patient IT support, regardless of the level of technical expertise your team has.
Quality of proposals
If you are considering investing in IT or an ongoing IT service and support contract, you will want your potential vendor to submit a written proposal outlining their recommended approach. As you review it, here are some questions to consider:
- Is the proposal legible? Has the supplier made an effort to express his ideas in plain language so that you can understand him as a general business person? Have the technical terms been explained or can you easily request an explanation from the supplier?
- Are the prices clear? Are you sure the price you see is the price you will pay for your IT service and support, with no hidden extras?
Can you compare? Has the IT service and support provider made it easy for you to compare like-for-like and confirmed that they are priced competitively?
Are the third-party brands included in the proposal reassuring? Is the IT support and service provider proposing leading and recognized IT brands or proprietary solutions you’ve never heard of?
Does it feel tailor-made? Do you have the feeling that the vendor has really tried to build a solution around the IT service and support needs of your business, or is it trying to push you towards the products you prefer?