How easy is it to change IT Support Provider?

February 25, 2021 -

Humans don’t like change. Now you might say you’re the type of person who loves to try new things. But changing something fundamental, even when you know it’s not quite ‘right’ is difficult. For example how many of you have changed virtual meeting platform since the pandemic began. Chances are if you started off using Zoom, you’re still using Zoom. This is despite all the security issues it had last year, and the massive improvements Microsoft have made to Teams.

It’s OK. We are actually ‘hardwired’ to resist change. Part of the brain – the Amygdala – interprets change as a threat and releases the hormones for fear: fight or flight. Your body actually protects you from change.

This explains why we have very positive discussions with some business owners who then opt to stay with their existing provider. Even though they’ve had enough of an issue to talk to other providers in the first place!

The business owner or manager thinks making a change of IT Support provider is going to be disruptive. They are not just thinking of the change for them of dealing with something new, it’s a change for everyone in the organisation.

Why make a change?

There has to be something wrong with the service you’re getting. We are great believers that the vast majority of IT Support Providers give a good service, especially doing the basics.

Of course if you’re Help Desk support is slow, sloppy, bad at communicating, or just simply doesn’t fix things then have a look around. But this is rarely the case.

Generally, the enquiries we receive are from businesses looking for a little bit more from the provider than just fixing the problems put in front of them. The catalyst for change is often a long-standing issue that never gets ‘properly fixed’. In other words, the provider fixes the symptoms never the cause.

Another common issue is the unexpected cost. As an example, a server might fail. Suddenly you’re looking for several thousand pounds for a new one, or an unplanned move to an alternative solution. The provider simply says ‘well you should have expected it, the server is 7 years old’. You wanted some warning, to start discussing that change 2 or 3 years before it’s going to be needed.

Is it hard to change IT Support provider?

Probably not as difficult as you think.

Once you’ve decided to change IT Support provider then the new provider should take control of the situation. Most incumbent providers will be cooperative. Everybody in our sector loses customers from time-to-time. The better providers believe in not burning bridges. We’ve had clients in the past think that a change would be beneficial only to return to us in the future.

Contract being exchanged. Length of contract can be a factor in how easy it is to change IT Support Provider.

When we take over a new client we’ll discuss with the client how they want to handle letting the existing provider know. Occasionally relationships have really broken down fully and we’ll liaise with the old provider on behalf of the client.

The actual change to a new IT Support Provider is not technically difficult. We have our system ‘The Hassle Free IT Takeover’ and other providers will have theirs. Any competent provider should be able to onboard you with an absolute minimum of disruption.

Communication is the absolute key. The provider should take control of this. Ensuring they communicate with all of the users in your business, not just you, to make them aware how they access support has changed.

Added complications

If you have phones, broadband, mobile or anything else ‘tech’ with your existing provider these can usually be changed over too. You’ll need to be aware contract lengths on those services might be different.

Taking over licencing from people like Microsoft is straightforward. It’s done in the background and you’ll notice nothing different.

A good provider will do their homework. They’ll undertake a thorough audit of your existing systems (ours is a 50-point check) and SHOULD have anticipated any complications. We carry out certain tasks outside office hours to ensure minimal disruption.

Is change worth it?

We all know the phrase ‘better the devil you know’. It’s not always the case. In fact it’s very often not the case!

Making a change is worth it if you’re not getting what you need from your existing supplier. But before you start along the road make sure you really are ready to move.

There is something called ‘Formula for Change’. Invented by David Gleicher in the 1960’s and refined by Kathie Dannemiller in the 1980s.

It looks complex: C = D × V × F > R

What it means is in order for (C)hange to take place you need (D)issatisfaction x (V)ision of what’s possible x (F)irst concrete steps toward the vision to be greater than (R)esistance

In IT Support terms that means (D)issatisfaction with the existing supplier or the IT systems in place, a (V)ision from the new provider of what things will be like after the change, and a simple (F)irst step for making things better all of which is greater than you being afraid to change. Because difficulty in changing provider is NOT the resistance. But you’re mindset could be.