Yes, it is. But we don’t expect you to believe us – yet.
The truth is that the golden land of great IT seems like a distant and unreachable destination to many leaders. So they settle for a disappointing MSP that is almost certainly affecting their ability to scale.
In this post, we’ve listed some of the most common queries we hear from ‘interested but concerned’ organisations thinking of switching IT provider. Then we reveal the approaches that help ensure a smooth transition.
We’ve also pointed out some trust signals you should look out for to help you pick a reputable provider.
How do I know I can trust a provider with my data? And will there be a lot of downtime?
Without doubt, there is the potential for mistakes when switching IT provider. This could include data loss, or tortuous transitions that affect day-to-day running.
Look for evidence of a plan, process or roadmap. Whatever your proposed provider calls this essential document, it should reveal clear methodologies for making a smooth transition.
For instance, we take the time and care to review our customers’ environment and document all aspects of it prior to transitioning their service. This thorough review ensures that no data gets lost on the way and potential problems can be anticipated before they occur.
Look for evidence of the following:
- An Assessment and Planning phase, including detailed documentation that logs your current IT environment.
- Risk Analysis and Mitigation strategies around data loss or service disruptions while switching IT provider.
- A Contractual Agreement, including a service level agreement (SLA) with you; and legal agreements with the current supplier to ensure a smooth transition.
- A Data Migration and Backup Strategy to prevent data loss during the transition.
- Testing and Validation. There should be a test environment to validate the new systems, including input from key stakeholders to ensure the new IT setup is fit for purpose.
- Phased Implementation to minimise disruption and close monitoring at every stage.
- Post Transition Support to address any unforeseen issues or concerns.
How do I know my provider has the experience to complete this transition successfully?
Ask for evidence of previous completed projects in industries similar to yours.
For example, we’ve completed transition projects for an aviation consultancy, risk management experts, an apprenticeship provider, an insurance software provider, a minerals supplier, and an actuary company, among many others.
In the case of the aviation client, the process of moving to a new system was so seamless colleagues didn’t even notice.
Keep your ears open and trust your gut. Is your IT provider demonstrating that the challenges of your project are typical? Or are they flustered by the scope of your job?
In our case, we’ve been doing this since 1996 and we’ve seen all systems and types of setup. This experience comes across in our dealings with clients and reassures them.
How do I know my solution will be secure from criminals?
When switching IT provider, you must work with a supplier holding ISO 27001 certification, the international standard for information security.
Intersys holds ISO 27001 and is a ‘Security First MSP. This isn’t merely a slogan. We have a dedicated and specialist cyber security arm to our business; and this knowledge feeds into all of our IT consultancy projects, including transitioning from a previous supplier and our ongoing managed MSP offering.
Look for ISO 27001 certification on your potential IT partner’s website.
Am I going to be burdened with bureaucracy and form-filling that diverts my attention from my business?
You definitely shouldn’t be. But, with the wrong provider, you might be.
We’ve seen other IT providers make the client do masses of work filling out forms and explaining technical areas, rather than lifting this burden and responsibility of switching IT provider from them.
In our case, we do as much of the leg work as possible. We gather all the available facts about the current environment and liaise directly with suppliers, so you don’t have to.
From a high-quality IT partner, a successful transition isn’t just about the technology – it’s about offering a complete service that lets you continue running your business uninterrupted.
Ask directly what your IT partner will need from you. Any written processes and methodologies will also give you an idea of who is responsible for what.
This is a big and significant change for our organisation. Will I have a single point of reliable contact?
Quite rightly, fear of not being heard is one of the biggest concerns. Getting ‘lost in the machine’ of an IT provider during a critical transition is simply not acceptable. Your concerns should be heard and fielded by a dedicated project manager.
Intersys provides a dedicated contact who can answer any questions about switching IT provider and spend as much time as needed alleviating concerns.
We explain technicalities in plain English and provide frequent, personalised communication to make everyone feel valued and at ease. We learn about our clients’ businesses and their culture, and take time to understand them, so that we fit in.
Ask if you’ll have a dedicated contact. Also, have the team dealing with your enquiry or proposal changed frequently, or do they need repeated ‘catch-ups’ from you about the proposed project so far?
Not a good sign.
How do I know that the solution offered when switching IT provider is legitimate – and not a sales pitch?
There are too many providers offering products they want to push, rather than finding solutions that are right for their clients.
We don’t upsell software and services that aren’t needed. Our strategy and ethos has always been about forming good, long-term relationships with customers based on trust.
Easily said, you may well say. And that’s a fair point. If you are considering working with Intersys, you’ll need to chat to us to get a sense of our values and our ‘service over sales’ ethos. These things take time and we never rush clients into working with us.
You can start to get to know a little more about what makes us tick by looking at this post about our 25 years in the industry.
Being sold to feels like being rushed and confused all at once. If your provider hurries you, or is reluctant to drill down to details, it might be because their ‘solution’ has more sales pitch in it than they’d like to acknowledge.
How do I know my partner will handle my various IT-related needs?
Don’t want the headache of picking and mixing between different providers?
Identify an MSP that offers value-added services and additional expertise such as risk management, development/DevOps, and security.
We offer all of these services and more, which means we can quickly put an expert from our own team in front of a client. This colleague can be quickly up to speed with your unique needs and provide the continuity that is so valuable in IT.
Read your potential partner’s website with care. If they offer a service that isn’t advertised there, undertake due diligence to ensure they are not passing on the work to a third party.
Where can I find a firm local to me?
Searching ‘IT services near me’ or similar will yield results, and often generate a map showing providers in your area.
Intersys has offices in Essex, Cambridge, London and Cornwall and can provide remote and onsite support in these areas. We also have clients across the UK as well as several multinational global clients.
Struggling to get the service you deserve from your current IT provider?
Intersys is a security-first managed service provider (MSP) that helps businesses, NGOs, schools and universities run streamlined IT and reach their goals. We have a track record of providing seamless transitions from other providers and excellent reviews from ongoing clients. Get in touch to find out more.