Modern businesses have a range of IT needs, and hiring a specialist in each aspect can get really expensive. How to choose a managed services provider becomes vital.
Choose a third-party team of IT professionals to manage systems and infrastructures on your behalf. Let this guide help you in choosing your provider.
How to Choose a Managed Services Provider: 4 Factors to Consider
The main advantage of managed services providers (MSPs) is the economy of scale, allowing you to receive the same professional services at lower costs.
Start with these four factors when choosing your MSP.
1. Response Time and Customer Service
Usually, small and mid-sized businesses rely heavily on third-party IT professionals to keep their systems up and running—including their data center and cyber security needs.
If you think you have the same need, then customer service will be a critical consideration. An important metric to check is how fast they can get back to you whenever you have concerns.
Having in-house professionals for incident response is an advantage if you’re looking at how to choose the managed services provider for your organization.
2. Data Security and Technology Standards
Despite being painted as a fast-paced and ever-changing industry, information technology remains governed by various standards. Compliance with these standards gives you assurance and establishes a certain level of trust.
MSP offers usually come with comprehensive technology platforms, which detail the services they can offer. You can use this as a reference in reviewing their compliance with existing standards and their capability to meet your business requirements.
Data security is becoming increasingly important, with IBM noting how data breaches could cost companies $4.24 million on average. Thus enters the need to consider managed security service providers (MSSP) as your partner.
An MSP keeps your IT infrastructure operational, but MSSP offers security as a service for your organization. Choosing an MSSP places additional emphasis on managed detection and response on top of the standard managed services.
For example, PCI DSS standards are mandatory for businesses handling cardholder data. If your business plans to accept card payments, it’s something you and your MSP should have. It details your security posture and the security tools needed to meet these requirements.
3. Cost Reduction and Return on Investment
Asking your teams how to choose managed security services and managed services, in general, is often accompanied by questions on how it will help your company save resources.
Since the main purpose of teaming up with an MSP or MSSP is to cut down on IT spending, the rates should be reasonable and attainable for your business, especially for long-term commitments.
Also, you’d want to check whether they’ll be implementing changes that can help your company improve security operations. A good MSP provider could help automate processes, set up a disaster recovery plan for your organization, and provide an incident response roadmap that aligns all parties involved.
Adopting these strategies makes sure you save up on fees that would otherwise go to hiring and training IT professionals or setting up additional infrastructure. You can also minimize the risks of falling prey to attacks and breaches, saving you from potential damages along the way.
4. Scalability and Future-Proofing
Different businesses have different needs. Therefore, they require different solutions.
Finding a good MSP or MSSP for your organization would also call for an understanding of your own company. That means making projections and ensuring that your partner can keep up with them.
For example, in assessing how to choose managed security services, the scope and size of your organization are important in creating a comprehensive endpoint detection and response (EDR) plan. If you’re seeing probable growth in your company, ensure that your security service provider can keep up with additional devices.
Similarly, if you’re looking to outsource parts of the business or cut down in the future, you’d want an MSP that can adjust to your downscaling plans. That is with reasonable adjustments to the pricing and coverage.
How Businesses Benefit from a Managed Service Provider
If you’re looking to weigh the pros and cons of availing the services of a managed service provider, you might want to look at the following benefits:
- Cost savings: You’ll no longer need to invest in hiring, onboarding, and training IT professionals to fit specific needs.
- Increased protection: MSPs, especially MSSPs, offer services backed by enterprise-grade cybersecurity, reducing your risks of data leaks and breaches.
- Data compliance: An assessment of your existing infrastructure identifies gaps and makes sure that your systems comply with applicable standards.
- Increased productivity: With IT operations off your shoulders, you can focus on managing and running your business.
Outfit Your Business With a Trusted Managed Services Provider
Finding the right MSP for your business might sound like a daunting task. However, it’s a matter of being introspective and transparent so you can identify your needs and the opportunities available to you.
Conversely, a good IT managed services provider should understand that there is no one-size-fits-all solution in managing another business’ IT operations.
The Isidore Group offers complete technology solutions for small and mid-sized businesses focused on the idea of keeping you focused on running your company. Contact us today and identify the tech support you need.