Have you been shopping around for Managed IT Services, but are daunted and confused by the terms and conditions of their agreements? Don’t worry; we’ve scrolled through many of them and can furnish you with the basics of what the terms mean.
What’s Included In Managed IT Services?
Before we jump into the terms, here’s a quick insight into Managed IT Services. For starters, they’re just as diverse as the businesses they support. There’s a wide range of things that managed services providers can handle, and here are some of the most common.
Network, Infrastructure, and Cloud Services
One of the most valuable areas that a Managed IT Services team can support is the physical infrastructure that underpins the technology you rely on daily. These teams can help with everything from upgrading servers to updating your company on the latest technology.
They can also help you move your computing over to the cloud.
Cybersecurity, Compliance, and Disaster Recovery
Cybersecurity is critically important. Not only are data breaches more likely, but the risk of having customer and client information stolen is greater than ever before. Managed IT Services can help you minimize these security risks.
They can also help with disaster recovery. When the worst happens, you want to know that professionals can help you navigate the most demanding technological challenges your company will ever face. Whether they’re recovering data from a crashed server or helping you navigate a data breach, Managed IT Services have seen it all.
Compliance is another vital service offered by managed services providers. The laws and regulations around technology and data are constantly shifting. Rather than front-loading all that information on your team, a Managed IT Services provider will stay on top of everything for you.
Planning and Management
What’s your five-year plan for your IT infrastructure? A Managed IT Services provider can help you develop concrete goals for where you’re taking your company’s technology. These are strategic updates designed to minimize downtime and improve your productivity.
Now, let’s look at the terms you can expect when working with a Managed IT Services company.
Terms to Expect In A Managed IT Services Agreement
The specifics of your Managed IT Services agreement are going to vary based on your needs and the company you’ve engaged. However, a few key areas are important to know ahead of time. This is what you can expect in a typical Managed IT Services agreement.
- Scope of Services
- Fees and Payment Schedule
- Coverage and Support Hours
- Minimum Standards
- Response and Resolution Times
- Liability and Limitations
- Confidentiality Agreement
The Users, Equipment, and Services Covered
The terms of services you agree to with your managed IT provider will cover everything from the IT services they offer to confidentiality agreements to protect your business information.
It’s also important to outline the hardware and software the Managed IT Services company will help support. This is the physical and digital infrastructure of your business and discussing this at the outset helps everyone understand the scope of the work.
Your agreement will also outline the limitations of the services offered. This gives you an understanding of when you can reach out to the Managed IT Services team and their response times. This part of the agreement will also cover the limits of what they will provide.
Now that you know the ins and outs of a Managed IT Services agreement, let’s look at how you can pick the best of the best.
Outsourcing IT Services: Vetting Your Next MSP
Picking a quality MSP that can work with your company doesn’t have to be challenging. There are a few quick strategies you can implement to find the right company for you. Let’s look at three key factors you can use when picking a managed services provider.
The first is taking stock of where you’re at as a company. This should include the physical hardware your business relies on, covering everything such as computers, servers and small things like printers and security monitors.
The next thing to do is consider the goals you have for your company and technology. These can range from transferring operations to a cloud-based system to upgrading your technology. Consider where you’re at now and where you want to be to help you pick a company that can deliver on those goals.
Now let’s talk about the managed services provider itself. You want to find a company that has experience in your industry. They should also be enthusiastic about working with you and ask questions about your goals and the scope of the job they’re looking at.
Referrals are another key thing to look for. These IT professionals should take pride in their craft and have clients willing to stand up and testify for the quality of their work.
Final Thoughts on Managed IT Services Agreements
The best Managed IT Services providers will be able to answer your questions about technology, goals, and the agreement you build together. If you’re ready to improve your operations, lower your overhead, and step into the latest generation of technology, a managed services provider is exactly what you’ve been looking for.
Reach out to OIT today to learn more about working with a Managed IT Services provider and what we can offer your Columbus, Dayton, or Cincinnati company.