Male IT specialist in server room with female IT specialist

As a small business owner, your network needs to run smoothly, or you risk critical downtime and loss of revenue. A managed service provider (MSP) can help ensure that your system is up to date and protected to reduce any potential risks. An MSP can assist your current IT department or add entirely new IT services to help grow your company.

At Computer Services Unlimited, our Managed IT services provide businesses with the peace of mind they need to continue growing their company. We help to increase productivity, shorten downtime, and reduce your overall IT costs. Keep reading to learn our list of the most important questions you should ask any potential managed service provider.

1.  What Services Are Covered?

Every MSP has a different set of services they cover, and some may even focus on specific aspects of managed IT services. But before you ask what services an MSP provides, you should develop your own list of services you know you need first. After discussing your needs with an MSP, they may suggest services you never thought of or didn’t know you needed.

Even though every MSP may offer different services, a good MSP should always offer products like network security, IT backup and disaster recovery, IT support, and reliable response times. Also, don’t forget to ask what services are not covered in their services plan.

2.  What Is Your Response Time When We Have a Problem?

Response times are essential, so make sure you ask any potential managed service provider about their current response setup. Any good MSP should be able to discuss their average response times with you, and maybe even offer past client stories or testimonials. But, don’t forget to ask about after-hours emergencies. Make sure that your MSP will be available when you need them the most.

If you are in any city or heavily traveled area such as the DC Metro or Chantilly, Va. areas, you should also ask about remote assistance options. Many companies—like us at Computer Services Unlimited—understand how crucial it is to take care of your problem right away. It’s why we employ remote support specialists who can assist you with your issues remotely and shorten response times.

3.  What Happens If My Network Goes Down?

When your network goes down, you need it back up and running quickly. When hiring a managed service provider, you should feel confident that they have a plan in place if your network goes down. Ask them about actions they have in place for any network downtime, including hardware failure, cyberattacks, or user error. Your MSP should have a response time and plan of action for almost any scenario.

When inquiring about network downtime, you should also ask about data recovery and backup services. These data solutions go hand-in-hand with the network security and IT solutions that keep your network running smoothly. Don’t risk losing data because of a network failure, and lack of data backup and recovery services.

4.  How Often Do You Update Your Infrastructure?

When using a managed service provider, your network and data recovery solutions are only as good as theirs. Your MSP should have regularly scheduled maintenance on their systems to ensure quality protection and optimization. Ask any potential MSP to detail how often they update their systems, and if you will have any downtime because of the updates.

5.  How Will Your Services Optimize Our Operation?

Proactive planning will keep your operation running smoothly instead of only trying to put out fires as they come up. Any good MSP will talk with you about your current IT pain points and help develop ways to optimize your IT solutions for success.

As a managed service provider, Computer Services Unlimited helps to manage not only your network but also your relationship with software and hardware vendors. Our streamlined approach to your IT services will enable you to focus on growing your company while we focus on round-the-clock monitoring of your network and computers.

6.  How Will Your Services Help Us Adapt More Quickly?

Technology is changing and adapting every day, and your managed service provider needs to be able to meet and be ahead of those changes. MSPs should offer you technology that adapts as your business grows. You don’t want outdated software that is vulnerable to cyberattacks—like the Windows 7 end of life that is affecting some businesses today.

7.  How Well Can Your Services Scale With Our Company?

Just as you want your MSP to adapt to changing technology, you also want them to provide services that adapt as your company grows. Have your MSP walk you through service scalability to make sure it can accommodate your business. Cloud computing and data storage are two areas that managed service providers can easily scale for your company.

8.  Do You Utilize Any Automation?

In today’s world, there is so much opportunity in automation—especially for IT companies and service providers. Many tasks that managed service providers do for IT clients can use smart technology to learn habits and patterns to complete routine tasks. Automation frees up time for your managed service provider to focus on more critical IT strategies and solutions.

Need a Managed Service Provider in Northern Virginia?

At Computer Services Unlimited, we provide fast and highly responsive IT services. Schedule a FREE 30-Minute Network Audit today to see how we can help as your managed service provider. Our flat-fee structure enables you to control IT costs and focus on your business. Let us help manage your IT services today!

Call Us Today for a FREE 30-Minute Network Audit