It’s hard to find a business that doesn’t rely on computers to run these days. Even if you still use a lot of old operating methods, you’ll still use computers to run a more productive operation.
But creating an IT infrastructure that works isn’t easy, especially if you don’t have tech experience. That’s why the managed IT market is expected to reach a value of $393.72 billion by 2028.
If you’re looking for local IT support near me, there are a few things you can learn to help with your search. Follow the guide below to make the right choice when you hire an IT support company.
Consider Your Exact Needs
There is more than one way to handle IT support. If you’re a small business, you won’t need every service available that a larger company uses. However, if you’re a larger company looking to expand, you may require more services from your IT provider.
Because of this, it pays to determine your exact needs before searching for an IT support company. Examine your current requirements and develop a list of services you need.
Of course, don’t stop with what you currently need either. You may need to expand in the future, so try to find a company that can grow with you. This will ensure you hire a company that can handle your needs now and in the future.
Ask About Response Times
There’s nothing worse than hiring a support company and not being able to reach them when it matters the most. Unfortunately, some companies don’t employ enough staff to get every company the attention they deserve.
This happens because things don’t always go wrong. IT companies can get by without enough staff because they aren’t always being used. But if you get a sudden surge of support requests, you won’t be able to solve everyone’s problems.
When working with a support company, you need to look for a guaranteed response time. For issues that aren’t serious, you don’t want to wait longer than 24 hours. But for problems that need an immediate response, you need a higher-priority contact that will get back to you quickly.
Learn About Security
Cybercrime is a big deal in today’s world. As more companies come online, hackers are looking for any opportunity to breach security and compromise sensitive information.
Reports show that a cyberattack happens every 39 seconds. If you don’t prepare your business for potential threats, you’ll compromise your data and suffer.
Luckily, most established IT companies have security specialists on their payroll. Be sure to ask what security services you’ll receive when hiring a company. You should get a security audit, help with security software, and advice on the next steps to take.
Work doesn’t only happen during regular business hours these days. People working from home and in different time zones may not work simultaneously as your typical support team.
This is a big problem if something goes wrong. If you have people working on critical projects, they may not be able to get anything done until the next day when your support gets to the office.
Many IT support companies know this and hire people to work every shift. Be sure you get support at every hour you need to avoid shutting down during off hours.
Ask for Proactive Services
The most basic IT services will do a great job of keeping your systems up and running. They’ll have experienced technicians who can troubleshoot problems and get your computers back up and running.
However, you’ll still face downtime in these situations. In some cases, you’ll be down for hours while your technicians troubleshoot and repair the problems.
But that isn’t your only way to do things. There are many proactive monitoring tools available that will look for problems before they get too serious. Your IT team will get alerts indicating potential issues when they get discovered.
This means your IT team can get ahead of things before they cause downtime. Your team will be more productive as a result.
Check Your Pricing Options
Finding the correct pricing is necessary when searching for an IT support company. If you plan to use many services, you may pay a lot of money.
You can’t afford this if you’re a small business. You may only need a few hours per month for computer support, so you don’t want to pay an expensive monthly retainer.
In cases like this, you want to hire a company on an hourly basis. This pricing structure will help you keep your costs down.
But if you need regular support during the month, hiring a company on a retainer will probably be more cost-effective. You’ll get a certain level of support every month and may get a discount for signing a retainer contract.
Even if you hire a local IT company from the start, proximity may still be an issue. This is especially true if you live in a larger area. If you need someone to come on-site for support, you don’t want to wait hours to have a technician get to your office.
Yes, you may be able to handle some issues remotely. But that isn’t possible if your tech team can’t access your computers.
Try to find a company as close as possible to your business. You can search on Google to find the companies closest to you. From there, interview those companies to see if they can offer you the best service.
Look for Vendor Experience
Even if you don’t already have IT support, the chances are good that you already have vendor preferences. You may pick computer brands like Dell or HP. You can also decide to utilize Mac or Windows desktop environments.
Each of those vendors has unique considerations when running. A generalized IT company may be able to give you support in those environments, but they may not be the best.
That’s why it pays to look for a specialist company. There are many certifications an IT company can get that prove they know how to handle specific hardware and software. If you can, hire a company with proven experience in the IT environment you already run.
Look for Industry Experience
You won’t need special IT support in many business situations. Regular companies probably don’t store much sensitive information, so they don’t need to do anything extra with their IT infrastructure.
But that isn’t true for every industry. Health care and finance, for instance, have unique considerations. You have to follow regulations that dictate how you manage your infrastructure.
A generalized IT company may not have that experience. During your search for an IT company, be sure to verify that a company has experience handling your unique needs.
Find a Partner
There’s more to excellent IT support than fixing issues as they arise. An IT company is a partner there to help your business succeed.
That means a company shouldn’t just show up and do nothing but fix problems. They should actively look for ways to improve your infrastructure and tell you why going that route makes sense.
Be sure to hire a company that takes this approach. You want a partner who will help you improve things and not just leave them as they are. When you go this route, you’ll have a business partner willing to tell you the truth about what needs to be done.
When this happens, you’ll have a better tech infrastructure to help your business grow.
You don’t want to hire an IT company without looking for other feedback. A company may put on a good show when you interview them but fail to deliver real results once you pay them.
A great way to avoid this problem is to get references. As your IT company options to provide references from other clients. You can ask them directly the good and bad points of working with a company.
The best IT support companies will also have reviews on local websites. Check Google to see how locals rate them.
Start Searching for Local IT Support Near Me
IT support is something you can’t go without in business these days. You need tech tools to collect data, increase productivity, and improve employee communication. But creating a robust IT infrastructure is easier said than done.
That’s why it’s critical that you find local IT support near me with the expertise required to set your business up for success. Remember the guide above when you choose an IT support company to find an IT provider that can meet your unique needs.
Head back to the blog if you want to find more tech tips that will help your business thrive.