4 Important Signs It’s Time to Switch MSPs
Switching to a new managed IT service provider (MITSP or just MSP for short) is hard. Finding suitable vendors, sitting down with the leadership team, vetting their experience and skills, then making a final decision can each become a major sources of stress.
At the same time, it’s also critical decision. A good MSP relationship is critical to keeping your business technology healthy and your team efficient.
But, even after the most careful vetting process, there’s a chance you’ll discover that your MSP isn’t a good fit anymore.
This can happen for a variety of reason. As your company evolves, you may naturally outgrow your current IT service provider. Sometimes cybersecurity or regulatory compliance needs can become too complex for your current provider. In other cases cases you simply add too many endpoints for your existing MSP to manage effectively.
Below, we’ll explore some of the common signs that you and your MSP are no longer a great fit.
1 – You’re Not Getting Proactive Technology Direction
The core responsibility of your managed IT service provider is to support you team and technology. But a reputable MSP will go beyond providing IT support to create and manage a proactive strategy that keeps your business on the cutting edge of productivity.
A virtual Chief Information Officer (vCIO) is a high level technical resource who will meet with your company’s leadership on a set schedule, review your network and technology health metrics, discuss their latest priorities, and then transform their feedback into an actionable IT strategy.
The result of that work is called an IT roadmap. Here are some of the key components of a roadmap:
- Vision and Objectives
This outlines what you need to achieve with your technology to gain competitive advantage in your field and how those objectives fit into your overall business strategy.
- Roles and Responsibilities
By defining stakeholders initiatives, the IT roadmap helps ensure accountability and oversight
Key objectives you need to accomplish to achieve its next IT goal, milestones keep your strategy focused and ensure that projects are completed on time.
An IT roadmap is a central component to effective technology management, especially large initiatives like server or ERP migrations. If your current managed IT service provider doesn’t have a clear process for developing, implementing, and updating your overall strategy, then it’s time to switch providers.
2 – Your IT Services Provider Doesn’t Understand Your Business
When your IT services firm doesn’t have any experience in your industry, you’re exposing yourself to a range of problems.
At best, it means wasting time and energy explaining to the trends, concepts, and challenges that you’re facing. In more severe cases an MSP that fails to properly understand your security or operational challenges can expose your business to catastrophic downtime.
This isn’t the relationships you’re supposed to have with your managed IT services provider. The MSP is supposed to be your technology leader, teaching you the best way to improve your technology and guiding your team toward optimal productivity.
That can only happen when they understand your industry and unique challenges.
Take for example Astute Technology Management. We specialize in working with companies in a few specific industries, bringing decades of expertise in that field to work faster, smarter, and more effectively than other service providers could in that area.
We know how to keep a team of construction professionals, sub-contractors, and suppliers connected and secure, whether they’re at a jobsite or in the office. This includes safeguarding project bids, contracts, and company intellectual property as it moves between on-premise systems, securing project management software, building out secure VPN tunnels, and deep familiarity with all the major construction software vendors.
Deep familiar with HIPAA and HITECH are important qualifications for a healthcare IT service provider, but a reputable MSP will go beyond compliance to help providers incorporate increasingly sophisticated healthcare technology and provide a deeper, more responsive experience to patients.
3 – You’re Experiencing Recurring Technology Issues
Another important reason that businesses switch MSPs is their chronic network issues haven’t been resolved.
The first thing a new managed IT services provider is supposed to do when they onboard you as a client is to run a comprehensive network assessment to remediate areas of instability. That includes updating obsolete systems, resolving any incompatibilities, and finding alternatives for systems that no longer meet the needs of your team.
After that initial onboarding phase, your MSP should continue to perform regular testing and audits of your systems to ensure that the issues are solved over the long-term, and that new ones don’t appear as the technology in your business evolves.
If your chronic problems still haven’t disappeared after you’ve been working with your MSP for some time, then there are likely a few things happening:
- They don’t fully understand your technology which indicates a lack of technical competence
- Their senior engineers are too busy and low-level technicians are servicing your network
- They don’t have documented network management processes and are trying to provide creative workarounds
- Their network monitoring tools aren’t configured to locate or diagnose your problems correctly
4 – Your Current MSP Doesn’t Respond to You Fast Enough
Maximum productivity is a fragile thing and even small IT hiccups like slow computers, lost passwords, and printer problems add up to a serious waste of time. According to research by staffing firm Robert Half, companies are losing around two weeks of productivity per employee, per year dealing with minor IT and technology problems.
When an MSP help desk is slow to respond, that only exacerbates your IT issues and makes it harder for your team to respond to customer requests. Any reputable managed IT services provider will carefully track the status of each support ticket, periodically review their help desk metrics, and implement an aggressive process for optimizing those metrics.
It comes down to more than just metrics and KPIs though; your MSP should make you feel both valued and listened to. That means having a culture of customer satisfaction and excellence that starts with engaged leadership and informs the behavior of every technician in the company.
If you feel like you’re waiting too long to hear back from your managed IT service provider then you are, and it’s time to start looking for a vendor that can help your organization succeed.
Ohio’s Trusted Team of IT Service Professionals
For twenty years we’ve been providing businesses in Columbus, Cleveland, Cincinnati, with some of the highest-rated IT service and support in Ohio. Is your organization ready to work with an MSP that makes satisfaction a top priority? If so, let’s chat.