I want to tell a story to explain the origins of this blog post. It's one that I hear far too often recently. In the early days of working with a customer, some members of the Ideal team were onsite delivering a WAN project. They got chatting to our customer and it came as a massive surprise to them that the customer didn’t have a contact number for their Managed Service Provider. We’re not talking DDI to a dedicated account manager; they didn’t even have a switchboard number!
This customer and their Managed Service supplier had been working together for some time and the supplier had become too comfortable. That’s not a problem unless, like in this case, the service they were supplying hadn’t evolved with the market, which meant the customer was receiving a service far below industry standard.
Ten years ago you may have expected a Managed Service Provider to supply the bare minimum, so you may have put up with poorly defined SLAs that didn't relate to business success, and minimal contact between the MSP and your business.
Now the market is hyper-competitive and providers have recognised they need to up their game. As a result all providers are offering something different to help them standout in the market. But there are key service elements which, from our experience, are staples that customers should be receiving from their MSP. If you’re not experiencing the below, it may be time for a change.
The top 5 things you should expect from a Managed Service Provider:
- Access to experts with deep knowledge and industry expertise
- Access to best-of-breed technology that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to
- ITIL aligned, robust governance and compliance processes
- Quick and simple access to manned 24/7 support with permanent staff who know and understand your business
- Confidence that you are receiving a proactive service which monitor thresholds and security
So how can you avoid receiving a less-than-average service?
In the words of one of our Solutions Architects "I’m sick of seeing companies receive a bad service”. But how do you avoid being taken for a ride? We recommend regularly reviewing and evaluating your service and talking to peers to benchmark their satisfaction. And, don’t be afraid to challenge your provider and ask them about your service and requirements.
We'd love to talk to you about our Managed Service and how we meet the five items on the checklist. To get in touch, call us on 01273 597500
Image: Daniele Levis Pelusi on Unsplash