Your best friend invites you to coffee.
You can tell that they are nervous, by the way they keep stirring their Americano (before they’ve added the sugar packet!).
Your buddy takes a deep breath and tells you some hard truth — truth that you’ve needed to hear for awhile:
”That relationship that you’re in? I think you deserve better.”
The truth can hurt sometimes
Whether it’s a mismatch of priorities, not making your relationship a priority, or settling for less than you deserve — some relationships simply aren’t working out. And we all need friends that will (gently) tell us the truth that we need to hear. Though we don’t know you personally, we do care enough about you to help you identify whether it’s time to end a relationship that isn’t working out.
We’re talking about managed IT service (MSP) relationships, of course.
We aren’t love gurus, but we do know IT.
And a business and their MSP should have a relationship built on trust and communication. In our years providing managed IT service, we’ve noticed some relationship red flags that show that a company isn’t getting the service that they need.
If your business is experiencing any of these four common managed IT onboarding mistakes — you deserve better.
So pull up a chair and we’ll pour you a cuppa.
Mistake #1: expecting slow response times
It just takes a long time to get IT problems addressed, right? It shouldn’t.
Getting the (IT) attention you deserve
Take Cibolo Nature Center. It was taking a long time for their former MSP to respond to IT issues. While they waited for hours on the phone for service by a single technician, their productivity and office morale suffered. Because their expertise is in conservation, not IT, they needed a responsive provider to address tech issues promptly.
The day that their server went down completely was the breaking point that caused them to realize they deserved better. They tried to contact their MSP multiple times — with no response. The office couldn’t operate without IT assistance, and their MSP was taking their sweet time. They recognized that it was time for a new relationship and contacted Varay. A responsive MSP made all the difference for their company.
Many businesses make this managed IT service onboarding mistake because they simply don’t know how much attention they should expect from their provider.
A responsive MSP should:
- Provide a customized number of support calls per month AND should prioritize incidents based on severity.
- Respond within a period of time that they and your business have agreed upon.
- Have enough technicians to respond to all of their clients’ needs without being stretched too thin to respond in a timely manner.
- Respond to outages within one hour.
Mistake #2: only playing defense
Reactive — instead of proactive — service is one of the biggest (and most common) managed IT onboarding mistakes. If your MSP is only fixing things when they break without anticipating your future needs, you can do better.
Fox Auto Group of El Paso was constantly dealing with outdated, slow, and inefficient equipment. It seemed that things were always breaking and having to be repaired, but their previous MSP made no recommendations for lasting solutions. They seemed locked in an endless cycle of break-repair-repeat. When they experienced a three-day internet outage and a huge loss of income, they decided it was time for an IT relationship that looked ahead to the future.
We have talked a lot about the difference between break/fix and proactive IT service. Break/fix IT only reacts to problems when they arise — the classic “it’s broken again, call a tech” model.
Of course, unexpected things are bound to happen.
But you can avoid this managed IT onboarding mistake by hiring an MSP that works to anticipate issues and catch them before they become problems! Through making budget-conscious equipment upgrades, providing training to prevent issues like phishing and ransomware, and 24/7 monitoring to see if there is any trouble looming on the horizon, MSPs like Varay implement long-term solutions instead of Band-Aids on problems that will reoccur.
Mistake #3: settling for insufficient service
It’s sad to say, but sometimes people just feel stuck in (MSP) relationships.
Maybe they know that they aren’t getting the best IT service, but they aren’t sure whether making a change is worth the hassle. Often, businesses are struggling and frustrated with their (lack of) IT service, but just don’t have the mental energy to make a vendor change. Gaps in service sometimes become apparent during already busy and stressful times (like holidays), and it just doesn’t seem like a good time to start something new.
If this sounds like your business — we understand. But we have seen time and time again that the biggest obstacle between a company and great IT service is indecision.
Companies tend to make this managed IT onboarding mistake when they are unhappy but wondering:
- Is it the right time?
- Will getting used to a new MSP disrupt my business operation?
- Will it be worth the trouble of getting used to a new vendor?
- Would another IT provider be more of the same story?
Making the decision to change can be hard, but once the decision is made — we’ll do the rest of the work.
At Varay, we have a detailed process for onboarding your business and taking the stress out of the transition process. We have a 30-day plan to onboard clients (including a weekly check-in), and a 90-day IT roadmap to make sure everything moves forward seamlessly.
Don’t settle for an MSP relationship that is less than your business deserves. You deserve great IT service. If you’re not sure you are getting that, Varay can help.
If you would like to experience the freedom that comes with a great MSP relationship, contact Varay for a free consultation.