For many SMBs (Small and Medium-Sized Businesses), it can be difficult to establish a strong and secure network without possessing the spending budgets of their larger competitors. This is why outsourcing to an IT MSP (Managed Service Provider) can dramatically increase their IT capabilities and give smaller businesses access to software and hardware that their larger competitors are using.
MSPs offer IT services such as network security services which is crucial for a business to protect its network against digital threats such as hackers, data theft, malware and other viruses. They are also a much more effective and affordable alternative as opposed to hiring an in-house and full-time IT team.
But when searching for a managed IT service provider, how can you be sure that you are choosing the right provider for your business? What are the most important factors to consider?
Will they be there when you need them?
What will happen in the event of an IT emergency? Will your managed service provider be available when you need them the most?
When searching for a managed service provider to outsource your IT needs, you need to make sure they can provide 24/7 on-call support. Whether it is during the holidays, after hours or on the weekend, your business must have instant access to your MSP in the event of an IT emergency such as a network breach. This will ensure that your business is always being looked after.
How will they address your specific IT needs?
Each company, regardless of the industry it is operating within, is unique with different needs specific to the business. As there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution when it comes to network security services, the managed service provider you choose must offer a personalised approach.
Will they be able to conduct a risk assessment of your current network and IT infrastructure? Will they work closely with you in order to understand the exact needs of your business? Will they offer hardware and software solutions that are in-line with your IT issues and needs?
Do they offer 24-hour monitoring?
Even though your business might not operate 24/7 – hackers still do. Your chosen MSP might offer 24/7 on-call support, but what if a network breach or other IT failure occurs during the weekend when no one is there?
It only takes a short amount of time for an intruder to breach the network and cause serious damage such as hacking and defacing your website oraccessing sensitive information such as employee and client information.
As the old saying goes: “prevention is better than the cure” – and this has never been truer in terms of your network security. With 24/7 IT monitoring services, an MSP will detect and be alerted to any potential threats or suspicious activity. This then allows them to intercept and correct the issue before it can progress any further.
A cost-efficient solution
Sourcing, hiring and training your own IT staff to look after your business’s network is expensive, let alone buying all the equipment required. Many managed service providers have exclusive relationships with major vendors such as Dell EMC, Microsoft and VMware. This enables you to purchase the latest software and hardware including next-gen firewalls and virus protection without the usual expensive price tag.
MSPs will also analyse your current business processes to identify if any cost-saving solutions can be implemented such as automating certain manual processes with new software, decreasing your overall spending while increasing productivity.
Whether you are looking to increase the security of your network or to outsource your entire IT needs, turning to a managed service provider for professional network security services is the best solution for businesses large and small.