Partnering with an IT service provider that will directly manage your IT infrastructure is a decision that should not be taken lightly. Cyber-crimes, identity theft, and data breaches are all too common, and it’s important that the provider you hire be well-versed in both keeping your IT infrastructure running smoothly, as well as safeguarding your business.

There’s an almost endless sea of IT service providers, and if you’re like many small businesses, you may feel overwhelmed by the sheer number of options.  As you’re evaluating your options, it’s important to ask the right questions to ensure that the company you hire is the absolute best fit for your needs.

Here are the top 5 questions you should be asking…

1. How Often Will – or Do – They Review IT Systems and Infrastructure?

This is a great icebreaker question, since it can help you gauge just how “on top of things” they are.  Regular reviews reduce the likelihood of issues occurring and ensure that your systems are both optimized and secure.

2.  What Is the First Thing They Would Change?

You’re not expecting them to divulge all their secrets here, but a solid managed IT service provider should be able to look at your current system and make a few immediate suggestions, including a tentative game plan for replacements and updates. This question serves to both assess their capabilities and provide a baseline for what you can expect in terms of onboarding should you agree to work together.

3. What Is Their Guaranteed Response Time Should an Issue Arise?

Breaches in data and other IT disasters don’t punch a time clock. Your business is at risk 24/7, and when catastrophe strikes at an off hour, you want to know without question what to expect in terms of response time and service from your managed IT provider.

Likewise, you don’t want to be waiting in queue behind their other clients with less urgent needs. To put your mind at ease, ask the IT provider what you should expect in terms of response time, and if they prioritize by urgency or if they work on a “first come, first serve” basis.

4. What Is Their Level of Experience In Your Industry, Including Emerging Technology?

Too often businesses set out looking for the “best” managed IT service provider without giving much consideration to if they’re actually a good fit for their operation. Hundreds or thousands of 5-star reviews serve no purpose to you if the provider doesn’t have a handle on your industry or niche.

For example, the provider that serves the corporate big guy down the street won’t be in touch with the needs of small business and could possibly overlook minor details that have the potential to turn into huge problems.

Then there’s the issue of new technology. Ask them to identify the emerging technology in your field and assess their comfort level with it, along with what steps they take to stay ahead of the tech development game.

5.  How Will They Handle Your Growth?

Successful businesses don’t remain stagnant. No matter where you are currently, somewhere in the future you have visions of growth, and that means that your current infrastructure might not meet tomorrow’s demands. How will your managed IT service provider adapt?

Better yet, what can they do now to prepare for your future growth without investing in systems that are too advanced, and expensive, for your current needs?

Get in Touch with Proactive IT

We know that when it comes to choosing a managed IT service provider that you have lots of questions, and we’re here to answer them all. Contact Proactive IT today, and let’s begin a conversation about the value of IT services for protecting your growing business.