In this tech-driven world, having a reliable managed service provider (MSP) onboard is the key to an organization’s sustainability. Of course, while MSPs won’t take control of the entire IT infrastructure, they play a key role in ensuring the security and integrity of IT operations while working in tandem with a firm’s IT personnel, particularly the Chief Information Officer (CIO).
Given this crucial role, numerous managed service providers are now offering services to big and small businesses. Hence, the question arises, how should one identify the right MSP for the company?
In most cases, the responsibility of hiring the right MSP comes under the CIO of the firm. Below is a quick list of some critical concerns that the CIO should address while choosing an MSP.
Before Choosing a Managed Service Provider:
Since an MSP directly manages a company’s IT infrastructure, it naturally demands keen attention when taken on board. The most common factors that the CIOs should bear in mind include:
Is the MSP credible?
The first thing to check before finalizing an MSP is their reputation and performance. Since the MSP directly manages the firm’s IT structure, they can be involved in maintenance and security. Thus, the CIO must assure that the MSP has the capabilities of handling such crucial jobs without issue. For this, reviewing the company’s history, testimonials, longevity, and overall reputation will help provide a rounded picture of the company.
Is the MSP capable of managing complex tasks?
The next thing to check besides the MSP’s history is its capabilities to manage complex tasks. Of course, a credible stance would hint at that. Yet a thorough review regarding how the company would handle the complicated activities at various levels of app customization, integration, and deployment to your firm’s IT structure will help judge the MSP’s suitability for the business.
Does the MSP know my business model?
Regardless of how reputable an MSP is, it won’t really help if it fails to thoroughly understand a firm’s business model. As the CIO, it is vital to ensure that the respective managed service provider would be interested to know a firm’s IT resources, for example cloud providers in use, databases, and other resources that a firm requires for managing data and workloads for.
As the CIO, discussing these things with the MSP ensures that both companies are on the same page when it comes to managing IT services. Furthermore, if the MSP asks any questions in this regard, it indicates the company’s keenness toward serving your firm.
Does the MSP exhibit the desired skill set?
Discussions regarding your business model not only help assess the MSP’s understanding but also give an idea of the firm’s skill set. As the CIO, you know your business’ IT structure inside out. Thus, such discussions will help one analyze if the respective MSP possesses the desired skill set to manage network and operating systems, troubleshoot, and handle integrated technologies. Ideally, the job should only be finalized after thorough communications in this regard.
What support services are offered?
The main reason for a CIO to onboard a managed service provider is to ensure a system’s security round the clock. Hence, the CIO must look for a provider that offers 24 x 7 x 365 monitoring and remote management services. The reputed MSP like Indusface handles the responsibilities of thorough system monitoring, maintenance, identification of any vulnerabilities, and deploying timely measures to prevent network disruption and downtimes. This includes robust scanning of all devices, servers, firewalls, and workstations connected to the network.
Is the MSP flexible for different environments?
Finally, the CIO should check the MSP’s flexibility with different environments. Ideally, choosing a managed cloud service provider is beneficial in that the provider can adopt across private cloud, public cloud, multi-cloud, and hybrid cloud environments. It then facilitates the business in integrating new technologies and improving the IT structure without worrying about the system and data security.
The above are just some of the numerous concerns that a CIO should consider before hiring an MSP. The key thing here is to make sure that the MSP understands the business model, services, requirements, and IT resources, and is ready to adapt to new technologies with time. Ideally, the provider should be willing to establish a long-term relationship with the businesses. In turn, it helps the CIO avoid the hassle of searching for MSPs in the future and to gain more time to focus on business improvements.