5 Characteristics of a Qualified Managed Service Provider
Over the past two decades, Managed Service Providers (MSP) have started to be in high demand for certain industries, such as financial, banking, legal and health care, but what precisely is a MSP, and what are the services provided?
An MSP, in essence, provides management of IT (Information Technology) assets. Some might provide general services, while others may specialize in specific services or work with specific types of customers. Some specialties include security, hosting, and mobile device management.
Many businesses are now turning to Managed Service Providers to help them become as efficient as possible, rather than relying on in-house operations, with one study showing that more than 1,650 CIOs planning on expansion were planning on partnering with an MSP. But what do you look for in a qualified MSP?
The MSP should have a proven track record, with experienced personnel, including project managers. They will work closely with your business to plan solutions to your needs. Having a seasoned MSP at your disposal will ensure smooth operations.
Whatever your particular needs, the MSP should possess the latest technology. Some MSPs will have developed their own systems, which will often allow them to be more responsive. Systems such as advanced analytics and technology-assisted review (TAR) help limit both costs and time expenditures.
The MSP must be able to offer support for virtual storage, application management, infrastructure and end-user computing.
The MSP should have multiple levels of security and in the event of a disaster, they should have a disaster recovery plan in place. Discuss with the MSP how they plan to proceed in the even of a disaster. Together, you should outline all procedures and determine which applications are most critical to maintain continuity.
The provider should have experience handling confidential data. Inquire as to the systems they have in place to ensure the safety of confidential files, and how they intend to safeguard them.
You may wish to ask if they have a security manager and what their qualifications are.
The MSP should have the ability to process, manage, host and store large amounts of data, and they should be able to scale with your operations. Be sure to review their capabilities and limitations. Some considerations would be:
- The ability to adapt to a growing network
- The ability to maintain full functionality regardless of expansion
- The ability to add new features to a system
- The ability to accommodate more users and a greater workload
Responsiveness and Availability
Perhaps the greatest concern is how quickly the MSP can respond to your needs. The MSP must be available at all times in the event that you would need to call upon them. This is vital for your business.
Ask your MSP how quickly they will be able to respond to various situations. Response time will vary depending on whether the MSP’s customer service is handled by a call centre, or their own in-house experts. Ask about their guaranteed response time so that you know what sort of delay you might encounter. Obviously, in terms of responsiveness, you will want to seek the quickest time possible.
Partnering with a Managed Service Provider can certainly aid in the development and success of your business, so long as you ensure that they can meet your particular needs. Be sure to inform yourself fully about their qualifications and their ability to respond to the challenges of your enterprise before engaging in a partnership, and you will certainly be able to profit from their expertise.
For a professional Manager Service Provider that can meet your requirements, contact us today!