Change is hard. But staying in a bad relationship with your Managed Service Provider (MSP) is never worth it. Technology is an integral part of your business. If your MSP isn’t working hard to make that experience excellent, it’s probably time for a change.
When we talk to our customers, we see three areas where MSPs lose business: service, solutions, and strategy. If your MSP is falling down in any of these areas, it causes major pain points that become deal breakers.
When You Aren’t Well-Served
Excellent customer service takes a combination of the right people, processes, and technology. If anything in the equation is subpar, it compromises the whole experience. What does customer service done right look like in the world of MSPs? Here are a few areas to consider:
- Good communication: Anytime you reach out, the MSP’s team is readily available, answers questions in a clear way with actionable next steps, and seems genuinely interested in being helpful. No ambiguity or bad attitude is getting in the way of solutions.
- Consistent follow-through: This is about doing what you say you’re going to do in the timeframe you specify with the desired outcome or results. If you’re being well served, the provider always does what they say they’re going to do.
- Service disruptions: You don’t experience unplanned service disruptions that lead to costly downtime. There are situations where service disruptions can happen that aren’t the MSP’s fault, but you should never have to pay for their lack of planning or communication.
- Fluctuating service costs: Your costs are consistent or changes are communicated in a clear and understandable way. If you’re receiving invoices with new or unexplained costs, that’s a red flag.
- Data loss: This is a biggie. Companies rely on their MSP to protect their vital business data. If data is compromised, it can have costly consequences. Your MSP should be protecting and backing up your data—and clearly communicating protocols to you.
They Aren’t Providing a Better Way
A solution-oriented MSP is looking for ways to best serve your company and technology needs. And they have the right solutions in place to handle your needs, even as your business changes over time. A few areas to look at include:
- Proactive maintenance: Does your MSP simply react to problems when something is broken, or do they routinely come to you with timely solutions to ensure your networks and systems get the job done?
- Latest software and programs: Your MSP should be making sure your systems remain current and optimized. You should receive updates to make sure you are running on the latest versions of software, for example. And you shouldn’t have to ask.
- 24/7/365 monitoring: Your technology never sleeps. That means your MSP should have the right blend of remote and onsite service to address your needs day and night.
- Security: See data losses above. Most company’s come to an MSP to have multi-layered security protocols that protect data against data loss. That said, if your security is breached, it’s time to look elsewhere for a new solution.
Being a Vendor vs. Partner
It’s one thing to have a vendor and another to have a true partner that works seamlessly with your business. An MSP that has your best interests in mind brings you strategic solutions that address your immediate needs and long-term goals.
- Proactive versus reactive: Is your MSP bringing solutions to you or do you only hear from someone when there is an issue? Remember, true partners want you to be ahead of the curve, so they should approach you with insights versus upsells.
- Contingency planning: If there is a cyber-attack or serious disruption, has your MSP brought a plan to you on how it will be addressed and what next step should happen? That’s a must-have strategy for your business.
- Supporting long-term needs: Ask yourself if your MSP can address your needs if your business scales. If your business grows from 100 to 1,000, you need to be sure that your MPS is prepared to handle that uptick.
We know that finding a trustworthy MSP who meets your needs is challenging. It takes time, money, and resources to find someone new who is the right fit. But, it’s worth it because a bad MSP can cost your business even more in the long run.
There’s good news: Calyx is all about delivering on the service, solutions, and strategies that elevate your business. Contact us to schedule a diagnostic and review your goals.