How Good is your IT Support? (Part 1)
Technology has revolutionized the way we work by untold amounts over the last two decades. It is continuously evolving, and there are new tools and features being released on a regular basis which assist us in our daily lives, both at work and in leisure times. Businesses all over the globe now have technology intertwined into practically all of their work processes, whether it be a multimillion-dollar corporation, or a privately owned family run business – technology has the power to change everything.
With technology becoming such an important part of our work lives, it is imperative that you not only implement the right tools but, crucially, that the support around the use of those tools is of the highest possible standard. As the reliance in technology grows more and more, IT support businesses are popping up claiming to ‘give the best support’, using words like ‘proactive’, ‘forethought’, and ‘catered’ – but what is good IT support, and how do you know if you are getting the best support possible?
A common myth around IT support is that it is exactly that – support. This statement couldn’t be more wrong! Back in the day when IT was only just being implemented into workplaces it would have been true, because tech hadn’t evolved to the point at which it could be catered to the needs of an individual sector. This meant that there was no way of planning for the future as it was very much a ‘one size fits all’ solution – but today that isn’t the case. Modern IT support is more than just support; it should be personalized to your organization – the professional(s) in charge of your account should do so much more than just support you. Let’s explore this in more detail.
A good IT support specialist will …
Take an interested, proactive approach
This is a particularly important point. Most IT companies are not proactive in the slightest, they have no interest in the history or the future of your business – they act as an insurance provider and only provide support when there is a problem. They should take an interest in your organization, your vision for the future of it, and where you have come from – this will allow them to prepare for the worst in a way that suits your particular organization. (For example, some businesses could afford four days of downtime whilst a severe issue is remedied, and others not even four hours.)Every business is different, and they deserve to be treated accordingly.
This proactive approach will then lead you and your team to be prepared for any problems that may arise, purely because they are anticipated and then prevented from becoming a major issue It is of the utmost importance that you get IT support that is strategically aligned to the way you work – doing this will assure you that they are recommending the right tools to complete the job to the best possible standard, in turn encouraging your business to move forward.
Not limit the number of calls you can make
Any IT support provider that limits the number of calls you can make to them should be forgotten about instantly; it is ridiculous to expect you to know when, or how often, you are going to need them – do they expect you to look into the future? If you had those powers, then you wouldn’t be calling them for help at all!
Communicate with you effectively
The majority of tech minded individuals – I think it is fair to say – aren’t usually the best at communicating as effectively as is necessary. This doesn’t take away from their technical prowess at all – but it can severely affect the quality of the service you receive. This lack of communication can have detrimental impacts on your IT landscape and the relationship you have with your provider. If they don’t confer with you about any future plans for the technological landscape of your organization then you will be completely in the dark going forward, and, on the flip side, if you have no, or poor communication, with them then your provider will have little to no knowledge of what you are trying to achieve.
Your IT provider should be in frequent contact with you or the representative of your organization. Obviously you shouldn’t expect a phone call every single day to see how you are getting on because your provider – especially if they are good – will likely have a full book of clients they need to communicate with. This being said, they should still make a conscious effort to get to know you, your team, your organization, and, arguably most importantly, your current and future expectations of technology in your organization. They should get to know your organization on a non-technical level, the challenges you and your team are facing on a daily basis, and the landscape of your industry. Every business is different, but having experience of working in the industry will give them – and you – a head start to get the right tools to do the job efficiently.
Offer an SLA (Service Level Agreement)
For those that don’t know, an SLA is the agreed parameters around the minimum an IT provider can deliver as part of the service. Different providers obligate themselves to different things, but predominantly they are based around response times depending on severity of issues. It is imperative that you check these with your provider at the first opportunity – don’t just sign it! If you do, you could be committing to a service that simply doesn’t meet your needs.
IT support – the right way
Business owners aren’t getting what they pay for when it comes to IT support – this simply isn’t acceptable. Our team offers a wide range of managed IT service plans specifically catered to fit your organisation’s needs whatever your budget. We utilise cutting edge technology to improve the efficiency of your business whilst simultaneously ensuring we adhere to your company ethos and the way that you like to do things. Get in contact and find out how we can work together to achieve your goals with IT as a powerful weapon in your arsenal.