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What should you have expected from your IT provider?

by Rupert Davey
July 2020

What should you have expected from your IT provider?

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented some extraordinary challenges to businesses up and down the country.

Hospitality and events getting hit the hardest, many industries have struggled to survive without the demand or ability to function.  The IT sector didn’t get away unscathed, many providers were overwhelmed with increased workloads and remote working being deployed at mass to each and every customer.

Nevertheless, as an industry, those working within IT were better equipped than the majority of other businesses. We were ready to deal with the unsettling list of operational challenges the pandemic was about to throw at us. Although operations were highly tested, managed service providers (MSPs) around the country should’ve rose to the occasion to provide businesses with the support they needed.

Businesses are now returning to a some sort of normality; we look back over the lockdown to talk about what you really should have received and expected from your IT provider.

Prompt support & maintenance

Given the circumstances, fairly basic requests should have been dealt with a timely manner.

Connectivity problems from home should’ve taken a few moments to triage, not a few days. The demand for IT support was ferociously high during the first few weeks of lockdown. However, if your business operations were harshly dented by deficient support, it may be time for a change.

You should have been able to keep tabs on IT support demands from a management portal allowing you to see tickets and analysis.

Cost-effective and appropriate solutions

With the majority of lockdown restrictions being slowly eased, it’s been a long few months for many industries. This is where solutions are required from your IT providers for the upcoming changes and retuning team members.

Remote working was legally enforced, hundreds of businesses who have never used working from home have been called upon to keep team members out of the office. Accessing data being a top priority for many, remote access to office networks should’ve been swiftly available to your workforce. Not having to rely on old physical hardware options or ill-advised solutions that pose data risk or inefficient working.

Your IT provider should have had enough knowledge of the way you operate in order to successfully tailor solutions to perfectly meet your requirements, that are suitable and cost appropriate.

Safeguarded and regulated solutions

Compliance requirements have sky-rocketed over the last few years, many businesses are having to deal with more rules each day to remain compliant, both industry-specific and more widespread legislation such as GDPR. Before the national lockdown, the FCA announced that businesses should ‘take all reasonable steps to meet their regulatory obligations.’ Meaning that your provider should’ve taken steps to assure the solutions offered would allow you to operate in adherence with any compliance obligations you currently had in place.

Compliance generally relates to personal data, how it’s used, stored and accessed. Your IT provider should have been able to supply hardware, such as laptops, and ensured they were protected, updated, backed up, featured sufficient anti-malware protection and were encrypted.

IT consultancy

Your IT provider should have been available for advice and guidance. Their service desk open and reliably manned at the hours they specified and any emails you sent across were answered promptly.

Ultimately you should’ve felt like your IT provider ‘had your back.’

If they were conspicuous by their absence during lockdown - when you needed them most – it’s fair to assume that they will let you down post pandemic.

The worldwide disaster we all find ourselves in may have you feeling sympathetic or you may be slightly more prone than usual to accept poor service... but you shouldn’t. If you experienced any of the issues above ask yourself whether or not your IT company is really up to the task of supporting your business through adversity, and if not it may be time to search for a new provider.

Next steps

If your IT support company or your IT provider faltered, or was swamped with requests, or didn't have your back during the worst of the lockdown, now is the time to switch to us.

If your IT support company was overwhelmed or if your IT support company is failing, now is the time to switch to us.

Please get in touch.