How to Find the Right IT Managed Service Provider for You: A Guide

IT Services | January 28, 2022

Between 2020 and 2025, the managed service market in the US could grow at a CAGR of 6.3%. Managed IT services could increase your team’s operational efficiency by up to 65%. It could reduce internal IT costs by as much as 45%, too.

With the right IT services, you can also protect your company from ransomware attacks or lost data. You could avoid costly downtime while increasing customer confidence as a result.

Not sure which IT managed service provider suits your needs? Here are nine tips that can help streamline your search.

With these tips, you can choose the best IT services available. You’ll have peace of mind knowing an experienced provider is offering the tools and services you need, too. With their help, you can protect your business and experience lasting growth.

Discover how to find an IT services provider you can trust. Start searching with these nine simple tips today.

1. Gather Professional Referrals

You can streamline your entire search for IT services by turning to other business owners you know and trust. Ask the members of your network if they work with a managed services provider. If they do, learn more about the IT company they’ve hired.

Consider drafting a list of questions to ask as you consult your professional network. Determine your goals and priorities as you draft your questions. For example, perhaps you want to find a reliable team with fast response times.

Other questions might include:

  • How long have you worked with the IT company?
  • Is the team knowledgeable and professional?
  • Have you encountered any issues?
  • How were the problems resolved?
  • What services have you requested?
  • How have they benefited your business?
  • How do you communicate with your IT company?

Think about the IT problems you’ve encountered in the past year. Then, consider what services you might use to avoid those problems in the future. For example, you might have concerns about security.

In that case, try to speak with a business owner who utilizes IT security services. Make sure they’re satisfied with the services they’ve received.

If you’re struggling to build a list of referrals, look for an IT company online instead. You’re not limited to companies in your general area. Instead, choose a company that offers remote monitoring and management services.

They can support businesses around the globe.

Once you have a list of IT managed service providers, you can use these tips to find the best IT services on your list.

2. Look for an Established Business

As you learn more about each business on your list, determine how long each company has run and operated. Try to find a business with years of experience in the IT industry. Make sure they have years of experience offering the services you need, too.

A long-established business already has its footing in the industry. They’ve likely gained the respect of their clients. These businesses also know how to withstand competition.

Finding an established business will give you peace of mind. You won’t have to worry about the company shutting down. They won’t experience operational issues that might impact your business, either.

If you encounter any brand new IT companies, remove them from your list.

Make sure to review the company’s credentials as well. Choose a company that’s licensed and insured. Determine if they have both worker’s compensation and general liability insurance.

If an accident occurs, the company won’t hold you responsible. Choosing an insured business can give you further peace of mind.

3. Check for Relevant Experience

There are now over 844,600 computer support specialists throughout the country. The industry could grow by 72,200 specialists between 2020 and 2030 alone. Some specialists have more experience than others, though.

Before choosing an IT managed service provider, determine who you’ll work with. Ask if you’ll consult the same technician with every support ticket. Working with the same specialist can simplify your experience.

You won’t have to worry about explaining the problems you’ve encountered in the past. You might feel more comfortable developing a long-standing relationship with the same specialist, too.

Learn more about the specialist who will support your business. How long have they worked in the industry? Consider if they cover any specific areas of IT services as well.

Make sure their experience and expertise suit your needs and goals.

Ask the technician if they have experience with businesses within your industry, too. What services did those businesses require?

Choosing a managed service provider with relevant experience can benefit your business. They’ll have more intimate knowledge about your needs and requirements.

Determine if the provider has any certifications or specialized training as well.

These professionals will have an easier time answering your questions or resolving the IT issues you experience.

4. Review Their Services

Over 40% of cyber attacks target small businesses. About 60% of these attacks cause businesses to shut down within six months. If your business is vulnerable, you might want to consider cybersecurity services.

Review the list of problems your team has experienced in the past year. For example, perhaps you’ve already fallen victim to an attack. Maybe you’ve lost data or continue experiencing downtime.

Understanding the problems you’ve experienced will help you determine which IT services you need. Then, you can look for a managed service provider that offers those services.

For example, you might want to consider disaster recovery planning. Look for an IT team that can complete daily backups. If there’s an incident, you can restore the backup without too much downtime.

You might want to consider cloud computing services as well. Your team can start working remotely. If businesses have to shut down in the future, you’ll have peace of mind knowing your team can work from home.

Make sure the IT company you choose has prior experience offering the services you need.

5. Consider Their Approach

Consider the approach each IT company follows when helping clients.

The company should start by learning more about your business. They should consider your distinct needs, requirements, and IT problems. These companies are more likely to develop a customized plan based on your needs.

Determine if the company uses a proactive approach to resolving IT problems, as well.

Most businesses follow the break-fix method for resolving problems. They wait for an issue to slow down or halt operations. Then, they pause everything to troubleshoot and find a solution.

The break-fix method can cause your team unnecessary downtime. It could also frustrate your customers while they wait for help.

Instead, look for an IT company that remains proactive. They should look for shortcomings in your current infrastructure. Then, they should make suggestions that will help your business improve.

The improvements you make before IT problems occur can help you save money, stress, and valuable time.

6. Discuss Response Times

As you learn more about each IT service provider, make sure to consider their availability. Ask how many clients they currently help. You should also determine how many technicians are on staff.

If the IT company is understaffed, you might wait before you receive the help you need. That downtime could cost you customers in the future.

In the same vein, ask the company about their response times. How long will you wait before someone responds to a support ticket? If it takes a few days for them to respond, scratch that company off your list.

Instead, choose a company that offers quick solutions to the IT problems you experience.

7. Request Reviews

You can also ask each managed service provider on your list for references and reviews. If you can, speak with three of their recent clients. Try to speak with a client that works within your industry.

Then, ask them about their experience with the IT provider. Are they happy with the services they receive? Do they ever experience long wait times?

Consider checking online for reviews. Visit the company’s website, Google My Business listing, and Better Business Bureau profile.

Choose a company that’s already earned the respect of their clients.

8. Look for Innovation

If you want to benefit from the best IT services, look for a company that focuses on innovation. These companies know the importance of tracking the latest industry trends. With their help, you can utilize new technologies to get ahead of competitors.

They’ll understand how to update the existing services you need based on trends, too. For example, new forms of cybercrime develop every year. A company that focuses on innovation will know how to safeguard you from new attacks.

9. Compare Prices

Gather quotes from three different companies on your list. Request a copy of each company’s contract. Determine how they calculate pricing.

For example, some companies use a fixed rate and charge you per support ticket. Others require monthly payments.

Requesting multiple quotes will help you determine the industry average. Then, choose a company that suits your budget and needs. Determine if the company offers different plans based on your requirements, too.

Start Searching: 9 Tips for Finding a Reliable IT Managed Service Provider

Choosing a reliable IT managed service provider shouldn’t feel like a hassle. Instead, use these tips to simplify your search. With these tips, you can find the best IT services with your company’s needs in mind.

The provider will set your business up for long-term growth and success.

Eager to get started? We have the IT services you’re looking for.

Contact our team today for reliable IT solutions.