4 Key Questions To Ask Your Managed Services Provider
December 17, 2015
1. Is Providing Managed Services The Sole Focus Of Your Business?
There are some cowboys out there who offer managed services as a bit of a sideline to some other endeavor that they are more focused on. Ideally, you don’t want to partner with an MSP of this kind. You want to make sure that providing managed services is the full time job of your MSP, and that they are experts in all fields of the services that they offer.
Further details that you will want to check in order to try and confirm this information is to ask how long they have been in business, how many employees they have, and, importantly, that the service provision includes ongoing support.
2. Who Will Be Authorized To See My Data?
Privacy and data security is your number one concern, both for your business and your customers.
You may want to set up your managed services so that your MSP will be in charge of, but not be able to see, your sensitive business data. However, most MSPs will probably still retain the ability to see your data. And so, you will need to ensure that it is drawn up in your contract that there will be various controls in place that will prevent your MSP reproducing or sending your data in any form.
Even though your MSP will have control of your data, but the responsibility of it, and therefore the liability, will remain with you should it ever become compromised.
3. What Kind Of Support Do You Provide?
This is where you will be trying to get down into the nitty gritty details of the service. For example, will your MSP offer around the clock support? Is there a fully-staffed call-center that can be contacted should you encounter a problem? Are you able to provide a scalable solution should my business start to grow in the future?
Remember, there are never too many questions that you can ask. You want to make sure that your MSP offers every single one of the services that you require of it, so dig deep.
4. How Do I Access My Data Once I’ve Handed Control Over To You?
Even though you will be handing your data over to an MSP to look after, it is nonetheless still your data and therefore you should be able to have access to it around the clock. And this means that you will want to make sure that you have actual physical and personal access to the data center where it is stored, as well, of course, as being able to access it as and when you need it online.
Another consideration along this vein is that you will want to have it drawn up in your contract that should you ever wish to change service provider then your MSP will be able to hand all of your data back to you quickly.