For many companies, working with an IT firm is the best solution to keep their business and software up and running. Having real-time support and technical experts on-call, companies can focus on running and growing their business rather than spending hours fighting site outages.
While it might sound like an easy task, finding the right IT firm for your business is not as easy as it sounds. There are numerous things to take into consideration and choosing the wrong company could mean wasting your business’s precious time and money.
That’s why in this article, we’ve compiled a list of tips to help you make the right decision when it comes to hiring an IT firm. These tips will help set the groundwork for your research and make the most informed decision possible.
Here’s a quick look at the tips we’ll cover:
- Make sure the firm can serve your specific business needs.
- Know what is covered, and what isn’t.
- Research the firm’s previous experience.
- Find a company that is easy to access.
Things to Consider When Choosing Your IT Firm
Before you even begin to research IT firms, you’ll want to make sure you know exactly what you need out of an IT firm. Having a clear understanding of what you’re looking for out of this partnership will allow you to avoid companies that are just looking to make a profit. You’ll want to find an IT partner that is dedicated and wants to help your business.
So let’s dive into the 4 tips to help you make the right choice when choosing the right IT firm.
Do you need a company that can remotely access your systems? Or are you looking for someone to be onsite when you have IT needs? Just two things to consider when outlining your business needs. Image courtesy of Pexels.
1. Make Sure the Company Offers the Specific Services You Need
This one might sound like a no brainer, but it’s a really important step in selecting the right IT firm for your company.
Before you even start researching and looking into IT firms, you need to know what your specific IT needs are. Make a list and rank them from most important to least. That will give you a starting point on what companies can meet the needs of your business.
Here are a few things you may consider:
- Do you have specific hardware or software that they need to know how to manage?
- Are you looking for an IT firm that can provide remote service? Or do you want them to be close by in case of an emergency?
- What levels of support are you looking for? And how quickly are you expecting to receive that service?
- Can the firm service your custom applications? Or are they just going to provide troubleshooting services?
While this list is just a starting point, use it to help identify the most important factors in your IT needs. Knowing exactly what your business needs will help you quickly and easily identify firms that don’t meet your needs and make room for the ones that do.
Don’t set yourself up for any surprises. Ask questions to understand exactly what is and what isn’t covered in your contract. Image courtesy of Pexels.
2. Know What is Covered, and What Isn’t
There are many firms out there that advertise as the all-in-one company and while that may be true, it could come at a cost.
In most cases, firms will charge you for the services you are expecting them to render. If you don’t know exactly what is covered ahead of time, you could quickly find yourself forking out extra money.
It could be for exceeding a service ticket limit you didn’t know you had, requesting services that weren’t technically included in your contract, or a number of other reasons. No matter the case, you want to make sure to ask these questions ahead of time. You can then identify those companies who want to sell you a not so all-in-one product before falling into their scheme.
Once you’ve moved onto the contracting phase, you’ll want to make sure that your contract outlines very specifically the details and line items that are covered. This will help you avoid any unexpected costs down the road.
Spend time researching the IT firm and learn more about their previous experience. Take notes and compare the companies you’re considering. Image courtesy of Pexels.
3. Research Their Previous Experience
You should research the IT firm’s previous experience to ensure they can provide you with the results you’re looking for.
It’s one thing to read about their services on their website, but you need to spend time researching the firm to ensure they can fulfil your needs. Whether that means reading up on past projects, setting up demos with a sales representative, or looking into customer reviews — you should get familiar with their previous experience.
Here are a few things you should look for when researching their previous experience:
- Performance on similar projects in the past.
- Experience working with businesses similar to your own.
- Understanding the specific needs of your industry.
- Real customer case studies, testimonials, and reviews
By taking the time to research the firm, you can identify any red flags and address your concerns ahead of time. After doing your research, if your instincts tell you something seems off, it may be best to keep looking.
You’ll want to make sure your IT company is easy to access and will quickly address your concerns. Whether it’s quick onsite assistance or a phone call within an hour of submitting a ticket — you need to know what to expect. Image courtesy of Pexels.
4. Find a Company That’s Easy to Access
When you have a problem or need assistance, it’s important to make sure your IT firm is easy to access and provides a quick response.
You’ll want to make sure you know what their typical response and resolution times are and how they are working to keep your business up and running. Many IT firms will have a response time guarantee, this is good to know upfront so there are no surprises when you’re running into a problem and need IT assistance.
Another consideration when it comes to getting a hold of your IT firm is if you’ll be assigned a dedicated account manager. This is someone who is your main point of contact at the IT firm that you can build a relationship with and call on when you have an issue.
It’s very important to know how and when the IT firm will address your concerns before signing a contract. You don’t want to be locked into a year contract with a company that takes a week to respond to your IT tickets.
Don’t Rush the Process, Make Sure it’s a Perfect Fit
The vetting process may take some time, but you’ll be happy that you did it in the long run. With the right support and partner, your IT needs will be one less thing you need to worry about allowing you to focus on other pressing needs.
Finding the right IT firm will provide you with peace of mind and ultimately will make your daily operations run smoother. So don’t be afraid to ask the hard questions. Get the information you need to make the best decision for your company — you won’t regret it.