I recently did some training in SEO. Search Engine Optimisation for those who are unfamiliar. I didn’t do it because I want to do SEO for a living. I did it so I could have better conversations with the people we use for SEO and the Apprentice we’ve brought in who will eventually take over from them. I wanted to know enough to understand what they are doing is right.
Maybe I’m a bit odd!
But if you’re the type of person who likes to have a basic understanding of something before you talk to a supplier then this article is for you!
First things first: We are not about to bore you with technical jargon or gobbledegook. Please do not panic!
What we are going to talk about are the basic things that – if every client knew them – would make our lives a lot easier. So according to us at least here is what every IT support company wishes you knew about IT.
1: YOUR SETUP NEEDS CONSTANT MONITORING AND MAINTENANCE. IT IS NOT A ONE-OFF JOB
Computers and other devices ask you to update them all the time. And that’s because things are constantly changing.
The same applies to your network and infrastructure. Software is always changing; operating systems are being tweaked; and hardware deteriorates. It literally never ends.
It’s virtually unheard of in professional IT circles that an IT setup isn’t constantly monitored and maintained. If you’re not offered 24/7 monitoring and maintenance as part of your IT contract, run a mile. You will start seeing issues before the ink on the contract is dry.
Most IT support companies do it all in the background and you simply never hear about it. In fact, a great IT support partner will spend a great deal of its time monitoring what’s going on within your system, and fixing issues before you even realise you have a problem.
You’ll simply never notice its going on. And really, that’s exactly what you want; monitoring and maintenance you don’t even notice.
2: THE SUPPORT TRIANGLE IS LIKE THE HARDWARE TRIANGLE
The second of our list of what every IT support company wishes you knew about IT is this is a fun concept to learn about buying hardware.
Picture a triangle in your mind. The three equal sides of the triangle represent quality, price, and speed.
If you make one side longer, then all the sides will lengthen to keep the triangle together. For example if you pick a faster computer, typically the quality and price will also increase.
IT support has an identical triangle with the same three sides: Quality, price, and speed.
If you buy cheap IT support, it’ll be slow and lower quality. And vice versa.
Ideally, you’ll look at what you can realistically afford to spend on IT support, and go with the top of your budget.
That’s because you understand IT support is actually an investment into your business. Get your IT setup and your business IT strategy right; and it makes hitting business goals so much easier.
3: BEWARE THE BEDROOM WARRIORS
Picture a guy, sitting in his bedroom, carrying out your IT support service. He hasn’t got the overhead we have, so of course his service will be a lot cheaper.
But remember the triangle – his speed will be slow and he won’t have access to the professional IT tools, because they’re expensive.
If you choose a bedroom warrior, doing everything themselves, to provide your IT support – that’s fine. Providing you’re their only client. Realistically, one person should be able to carry out the IT support, maintenance, and monitoring that a business like yours requires.
But what happens when he gets another client?
And another? And then realises, because he’s cheap, he needs even more clients just to make a decent living?
The quality of the service you receive falls. As does the speed in which he reacts to your problems. It’s likely that he’ll also stop doing the proactive work for you, because one person simply cannot service a large number of clients properly.
Yes you pay more for a larger business with an office, team and all the tools. But you also know that they’re set up to keep service levels high, no matter how many clients they take on.
4: WE ASK FOR A LONG-TERM PARTNERSHIP TO PROTECT YOU MORE THAN US
We don’t want to work with people short-term.
We refuse to do ad-hoc work, and one-off crisis management.
We only want to work with businesses as part of a long-term partnership.
Well, obviously, it’s good for us to build our own business around long-term clients. It‘s a great business model, if we’re honest.
But the real benefit of long-term partnerships for us comes from the investment we’re able to make in our clients. So that we know you inside out. It means we can:
• Work more closely with you
• Learn about your priorities and take an active part in getting you towards your goals
• Customise your infrastructure and IT strategy around where you’re heading, rather than where you currently are
• Build an infrastructure that grows with your business
• Keep you better protected, because we can take an honest and strategic approach when we work as part of a trusting partnership.
When you work with someone on a short-term basis, it’s impossible to do this.
A long-term partnership means we’ll be as invested as you will be. Because we genuinely care about your business. If you’re doing well, we are too.
5: OUTSOURCED IS BETTER VALUE FOR MONEY. AND IT HELPS YOU ACCESS BETTER EXPERTISE THAN THE SAME SPEND IN-HOUSE
As you’re reviewing your IT support, it’s probably crossed your mind that you could hire an in-house employee.
There’s a big downside to be aware of. When you have an in-house person, you’re asking them to do several different specialised jobs, and support a huge number of people, all at the same time.
Someone that can do that without having some kind of breakdown would be hard to find! Certainly they’d soon learn to cut corners, just to get home on time each day.
When you outsource this work, you probably pay less than an in-house person. But you’re gaining access to multiple people, with a broad range of skills and specialities. And they don’t go home until the work is done.
Now You Know Lets Talk!
Now you are armed with what every IT support company wishes you knew about IT it’s time to talk to some suppliers. And we’d love to be on that list! You can call us on 0115 8220200, if you’d rather we call you then complete our Contact Form, or book a time to chat in our calendar.
Before we talk we’d recommend reading ‘The 2021 IT Buyers Guide‘. This Article is taken directly from that guide and there are 9 more chapters of really useful information to help you make an informed choice of your next IT support partner.
We don’t think you should have to fill out a form to get really useful information so click on the book cover or the link above and you’ll get straight to the Guide. Prefer a physical copy? Email your address to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll post one out to you.