The technologies utilised by organisations are continuing to develop at a rapid pace, and, as a result, the breadth of skills and expertise needed to manage and optimise critical infrastructure has grown significantly. As a result, organisations are finding it more difficult than ever to retain the necessary resources to monitor and optimise their ICT systems and many are turning to Managed Service Providers (MSPs) to help them to take full advantage of their technology investments.
Before aligning with an MSP, however, there are a number of important considerations that every business should take. Over the course of our next two blogs we’ll look at the seven main things that you should bear in mind to ensure that your organisation extracts the maximum value from a relationship with a managed service provider.
- Customer references
- Financial position and stability
- Service Level Agreements
First of all, it’s crucial that you assess the organisation’s reputation prior to aligning with them. And the best way to accurately assess the real-world performance of your potential managed service partner is by assessing customer references. Simply get in touch with the MSP and ask them to provide one or more references, so that you can make a more informed decision about what it’s like to work with them as a service provider. If they’re unwilling to do this, it should immediately raise a red flag.
If you’re going to engage the services of an MSP, you need to be confident that they will be around for the long haul. Take the time to look into their financial position and the stability of the company. The length of time they have been in business is another helpful measure of their ability to serve customers over the long term.
When aligning with an MSP it’s essential to implement performance-based service level agreements with regular and transparent reporting to benchmark how well they are performing against agreed targets. For best effect, make sure that the agreements are easy to understand and seek an MSP whose SLAs are managed and responsive, ensuring continuous improvement of their services.
Organisations’ needs change over time and so they require flexibility. The services and solutions that you avail of today are unlikely to be the same as those you will require in five years’ time. For this reason, it’s important to select an MSP that can provide the flexibility of service to scale up and down according to the evolving needs of your company. This will allow your organisation to choose from the services that add most value at any given time.
It’s also important to ensure the contractual flexibility is there so that you don’t suffer penalties should you decide to increase or decrease your commitment with the provider. As well as this, you should make sure that you align with an organisation with a proven ability to respond to changing market needs, conditions and demands, and one that employs the latest technologies to help you to add value to your business.
Choosing a managed service provider is a significant step for any business, so it’s essential to carry out your research and due-diligence before making any decisions. Datapac works closely with Irish businesses to manage and optimise their infrastructure, freeing them up to concentrate on their core activities. Aligning with a trusted provider such as Datapac can enable your organisation to make effective use of your existing resources while adding value to your technology investment.
Keep an eye out for the second part of this blog, where we’ll outline three more considerations that every organisation should bear in mind when choosing an MSP. In the meantime, if you’d like to find out more about our services and what we can do for your organisation, contact us today.
"With Datapac’s managed services we have an IT team that has expertise across a very wide range of technologies. Smartsourcing IT resources makes sense for an organisation such as ours, which relies heavily on cutting edge IT to protect and streamline our operations, without the need for a huge cost outlay".
"At Barretstown, we rebuild the lives of children, and their families, affected by childhood cancer and other serious illnesses. We serve 5,000 campers a year and have 1200 volunteers each year. Communication is crucially important and Datapac has helped us to streamline, improve and ensure efficiency."
"For many years Datapac has been our sole supplier for the maintenance of Personal Computers and Peripherals in Ireland. Through their Service Centres in Wexford and Dublin, Datapac provides excellent support to our businesses throughout the country and consistently meets the SLA targets which we have set. The skill, expertise and experience of their engineers and other technical support personnel are of the highest standard."
“The value of dealing with an HP Gold partner in this process can’t be underestimated. Datapac provide us with a local touch and can cover the full range of our IT requirements, but when there is a specific technical requirement like this, they can bring the specialist technical resources of HP to the table. HP and Datapac had a thorough discussion with us around our requirement - and had really done their homework - and then were able to provide us with a very highly specified test platform for us to prove the application on before we committed to purchase.”
Datapac understands our needs and requirements and has the expertise and experience to follow through on all our requests. Our constant need to reduce costs has been assisted by Datapac's ability to suggest alternative solutions and methods whilst improving both efficiency and productivity. Our partnership with Datapac is akin to having an IT department on site that we simply could not provide ourselves.