IT disasters can strike at any time. Such disasters can range anywhere from software bugs to cyberattacks.
Some of these ‘disasters’ may not require an urgent fix, however others may need immediate action in order to prevent serious damage being caused. For instance, if immediate action is not taken against a cyberattack, it could lead to huge amounts of sensitive data being stolen and misused. This is why it is necessary for many businesses to have round-the-clock tech support.
To make sure you’re getting the best 24/7/365 tech support for your needs, here are three strategies you can use to find the right fit:
Research Managed Service Providers
Many companies hire IT technicians on a break/fix basis. This is one of the weakest forms of tech support—such technicians are rarely available all hours and may be too busy with other clients to provide an immediate fix.
Furthermore, the temporary solutions they provide don’t have your long-term interest in mind and simply seek to put out IT fires rather than solve problems for the future.
Hiring a single in-house IT technician is a better solution for providing immediate support, but is still not ideal. In these cases, such employees can only be expected to provide IT support during working hours. For many companies, this means only having IT support available between 9am and 5pm on weekdays—which isn’t particularly useful considering that most cyberattacks occur on weekends.
One solution to this is to hire a team of in-house employees who are able to work in shifts, taking turns to provide support at all hours of the week. This is very expensive, however, and a solution that most businesses cannot feasibly afford.
A better solution is to outsource IT management (or aspects of it) to a reliable Managed Service Provider. These third-party specialists employ vast teams of IT technicians that provide 24/7/365 service and are able to attend to problems remotely. It’s much more affordable than hiring a team of in-house employees, and you’re much more likely to get immediate support.
Managed Service Providers can also be hired alongside in-house IT support employees. This could be a way of taking some of the strain off of in-house staff while still having staff to focus on strategic infrastructure improvements.
Examine the Specific Services they Provide
Not all Managed Service Providers offer the same services. Some may only offer basic IT services, such as patches when necessary or a basic level of network monitoring. Others are able to offer more advanced cybersecurity and personalized compliance services.
It’s best to assess your needs first to understand what kinds of 24/7 service you’ll need. For example, if you’ve already got an in-house team of IT technicians, continual system monitoring may be all you need to help take some of the strain off your existing staff. If you don’t have any IT employees, you may prefer to have an MSP that offers round-the-clock help desk services. This is important to distinguish so that you’re getting the right level of support.
Ideally, you want around-the-clock support from a company that is willing to understand your unique business model. Such companies can offer tailored support, protecting you from weaknesses that may be specific to your business instead of providing a generic blanket service.
You also want to outsource a company that you can trust so that you can develop a long-term relationship. Reviews and testimonials may be able to offer you an idea of the quality of service that they provide.
Ask About Their Help Desk
Some Managed Service Providers claim to offer immediate 24/7/365 support, but this isn’t always a reality. You may find that while they constantly have staff on hand, they rely on an inefficient system when dealing with clients. If there’s already a queue of clients to deal with, you could find yourself waiting hours to get a response in an emergency.
A quality Managed Service Provider should have a much more efficient ticketing system in place and will be able to attend to client needs quickly. To get an idea of just how ‘immediate’ their service is, it’s worth researching the MSP’s response times and uptime rates for clients. You could also try giving them a call to see how long it takes to get hold of a representative.
In some cases, only certain members of your team may be able to contact the help desk—make sure to discuss this too if you need to allow access from multiple staff members.
As you consider 24/7/365 services from a Managed Service Provider make sure to do your research and understand how their service options can benefit your specific business.