How to Choose an MSP for Your Business

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November 29, 2022

When your business is growing, it’s important to make sure you have the right systems and processes in place to support that growth. 

One of the most important aspects of this is having a reliable and efficient IT infrastructure. Many businesses choose to manage their IT in-house, but this can be difficult and time-consuming, especially as your business grows. 

A better option is to outsource your IT needs to a managed service provider (MSP). MSPs provide a wide range of services that can help your business run more smoothly and efficiently. 

In fact, over 60% of organizations will stay dependent on managed IT services for the foreseeable future. Clearly, there are major advantages to be gained by outsourcing your IT needs to an MSP.

To help you make the most informed decision possible regarding how to choose a managed services provider, we will discuss 10 essential criteria that you should use when judging prospective MSPs.

What are Managed IT Services and Why Do Businesses Prefer to Use Them?

First, let’s define managed IT services. 

These are outsourced IT services that allow businesses to have a team of experts managing their IT infrastructure and systems for them. This can include anything from network monitoring and management, to data backup and disaster recovery planning. 

There are several benefits to using managed IT services. One major advantage is cost-effectiveness. It can be expensive to hire and train in-house IT staff, not to mention the cost of purchasing necessary equipment and software. 

 

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Another benefit is access to a wider range of expertise. MSPs often have a team of professionals with different skill sets, so they can handle a variety of tasks for your business. And because MSPs specialize in providing these services, they often have more advanced tools and technology at their disposal. 

10 Managed Services Selection Criteria

Here are the 10 main managed services selection criteria that you should keep top of mind when searching for a new MSP:

1. Industry Accreditations and Certifications 

It’s important to choose an MSP that has relevant accreditations and certifications. These indicate that the provider has met industry standards and is up-to-date on current technologies and best practices.

2. Flexible Service Offerings

Look for an MSP that offers a range of services, so you can choose the ones that best meet your business needs. And it’s important to have the option for flexibility in adding or removing services as needed.

3. Proactive Approach to IT Management

A good MSP should have a proactive approach to managing your IT systems, including regularly scheduled maintenance and updates, rather than just responding to issues when they arise. This helps prevent potential problems from disrupting your business operations.

4. Strong Security Practices

Cybersecurity is a major concern for businesses, and an MSP should have strong security measures in place to protect your sensitive data and systems. Ask about their incident response plan, response times, and how they monitor for potential threats.

5. Clear Service Level Agreements/Objectives (SLA/SLO)

Look for an MSP with clear and specific SLAs and SLOs, outlining the services they will provide and how they will handle any issues that may arise. This helps ensure that both parties understand what is expected from the partnership.

 

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6. Customizable Services

Your business’s needs may change over time, so it’s important to choose an MSP that offers customizable services to adapt as necessary. This includes being able to scale services as your business grows or add specialized services for specific projects.

7. Good Communication and Customer Service

Communication is key in any partnership, and the same goes for an MSP. Look for a provider that offers responsive, helpful customer service and keeps you updated on important information related to your IT systems.

8. Proven Track Record and Satisfied Clients

It’s always a good idea to ask for references and do research on an MSP’s track record before making a decision. Look for one with proven success and satisfied clients in industries similar to yours.

9. Cost-Effective Pricing

Of course, cost is also an important factor when choosing an MSP. Look for competitive pricing and options for payment, such as a flat fee or pay-as-you-go model.

10. Partnership Mindset 

Your MSP should view your business as a partner, working together to meet your IT needs and achieve success. Look for a provider that takes the time to get to know your specific business and industry and offers personalized solutions.

Choosing the right managed IT services provider for your business can have a major impact on how smoothly and securely your technology runs. By considering these 10 criteria, you can find a strong partner to support your success now and in the future.

5 MSP Qualifying Questions to Ask

Here are 5 questions to ask an IT MSP to better determine if they would be a good fit for your company and also provide you with all the IT services your company requires. Please feel free to copy, paste, fill out and print these technical questions for qualifying an MSP for your own use.

1. Can you provide references or case studies from clients in a similar industry as mine? 

a.

2. How do you handle security incidents and breaches? 

a.

3. What is your approach to preventative maintenance and updates? 

a.

4. Can you outline the specific services included in my plan and how they can be customized as my needs change? 

a.

5. Can you provide a breakdown of pricing and payment options? Also, how do you determine any additional fees for added services or support beyond the initial plan?

a.

Hopefully these 5 questions to ask during an MSP discovery session provide you and your company with enough information to go on and make a final decision when selecting a managed services partner.

Managed Services Selection Criteria

Finding the Right MSP with the Correct Managed Services Vendor Selection Criteria for Your Business

The bottom line is that you shouldn’t settle when it comes to ensuring you’re choosing the right MSP for your organization.

With ample experience and an award-winning track record, here at CalTech we fulfill all of the above criteria and more.

Our Managed Service+ is an easy, all-inclusive solution for your company’s IT monitoring and support needs. With Managed Service+, you can avoid the stress and uncertainty of keeping your valuable IT infrastructure up and running smoothly.

If you’re interested in learning more about our Managed Service+ and what it can offer your business, simply schedule a free consultation with us today, and we can identify your specific business IT needs together.

We're Integris. We're always working to empower people through technology.

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