So, along with all the other hats that you wear you are also landed with the job of overseeing your organisation’s network. What was once 1 or 2 computers and a printer has now grown and so has your dependency on them! You now have 5 or 6 and maybe a server and when they go wrong you have staff siting around which you are paying doing nothing!
When you get stuck you call a friend in who comes after work but you feel unhappy about taking up his spare time and he is not always available and you can sometime wait a few days. Or maybe you are with a company that you are not happy with – you feel that you are not getting the service you are paying for.
But you are frightened of change! Better the devil you know scenario? Well this guide is to help you find the right IT provider for support by making you aware of the pitfalls.
5 Simple checks to make sure you find the right IT Support Provider in Peterborough.
1 Not checking what’s covered by the contract
Currently you have paid your money for your maintenance contact but every time you contact your support company you receive a bill. Nothing you call them for seems to be covered and you get those annoying little (or not so little bills)!
Make sure you check:
- Parts are covered with in the contract
- Server and workstation software support is included in the contract (Microsoft SBS 2011, Microsoft Server 2012, Symantec Back Up Exec, Microsoft Windows & Office) to give a few examples.
- Check that your antivirus and malware packages are included
- All call outs, labour and travel time are included
- Get a list of what is not covered (i.e. installing new equipment or upgrades). Find out if there is a reduced charge for this type of call if you are a contract customer.
- Is loan equipment supplied free of charge if required
2 Being tied in to a long term contract by not reading the termination clause
You are not happy with their service or you have had a cheaper quote. However you go to change provider and you have been told that you can’t cancel because you have not given the correct notice period.
It is standard in the computer industry that maintenance companies have a clause that states that you can only cancel the contract by giving 90 days’ notice prior to the anniversary of the contract otherwise it rolls over to another year.
- Check the small print
- Negotiate an amendment before you sign.
- Check it’s just an annual agreement
- Ask for a three month trial
3 Paying too much
You seem to pay a fortune for a service you hardly use and when you do use it there are additional charges.
- Decide what cover you really need
- Approach 3 companies for quotes (you can get them to quote by email – there is no need to see their sales person who will take up your valuable time).
- See if you can yet a deal when changing i.e. 15 months for the price of 12
4 Response is Slow
You call out your current provider and you have paid for a 4 hour or 8 hour response but you are not getting it.
- Check that you have critical equipment covered on a 4 hour response with a guaranteed fix or replacement time
- Get references from their existing clients – ask for a list of clients the same size as you and pick 3 and ring or email them for a reference.
- Ask about the response and fix times – are they happy with the service?
- How long have they been a client?
5 Quality of the engineers
When you call out your existing company they take 3 or 4 times to fix what you consider to be a simple problem. When you ask the engineer for an explanation he rattles on in a language you cannot understand.
Ask for a free health check before committing to a contract & speak to the engineer. Do you get on with him – does he speak in plain non tech language.
- Are they Microsoft qualified?
- How long have their engineers worked for them? This will give you an idea on happy their staff are and how experience they are.
- When you speak to their current clients for a reference ask about the quality of the engineers. Do they get the same engineers each time and how happy are they with them?
- Check they are insured. Do they have public liability insurance and professional indemnity cover? If they have an accident on your site are they covered under their own insurance rather than yours? If they are negligent are they adequately insured?
Giving access to your IT equipment is a big deal. You need to make sure you give this responsibility to the correct company. By doing your homework initially you will choose the correct provider and be able to build a long and lasting relationship with them.
If there is any other information you would like or if you require a quote for IT Support in Peterborough or you have a question which is not covered in my report then please feel free to contact me.
June@yousystems.co.uk or 01733 56900