What should your IT provider be doing for you?
In the previous blog in the series we explored the problems with traditional IT support and how, more often than not, it does not do enough to meet the needs of businesses in the modern world.
We also identified that traditional IT support is predominantly reactive, usually consisting of a team of IT techies that are on hand should you have a problem or an outage of some kind resulting in your inability to keep up with work. While they are more than likely maintaining things behind the scenes, their approach is generally static and not dynamic enough. They fix the problems as they arise, but this does not allow for alignment with the organisation’s future plans of growth or allow for you to utilise the ever-changing landscape that has become the modern technological workplace, or the tools it has to offer.
When you understand how your arrangement should work with your IT provider it is then easier to highlight what an IT provider should do for you and how a good relationship between business and technology would be beneficial to your company.
Business focus, not tech focus
A good IT provider will be able to overcome the barriers that you experience as a business. Let us take a look at how – with a good relationship with technology alongside a good understanding of your business – this is possible.
A good IT provider should offer expertise to a level at which most businesses do not have, otherwise what is the point in employing their services? The provider should – at every opportunity – pass on their expertise to their counterparts in-house wherever possible, as well as to your own team. Keeping your employees educated is imperative to ensure that you are getting the most out of the tools you are utilising.
No one – especially not businesses – want to waste money. A good provider will communicate with you regarding your goals both now and going forward, and will then develop a plan on how to achieve them using the most cost-effective ways and appropriate methods.
A good provider will take into consideration the time constraints which a lot of organisations need to adhere to. It can be difficult to find the time to implement the new technologies recommended by your IT provider/ support, and then even longer to adopt educational means for your team to learn how to use them. A good provider will implement these new strategies over a time scale that not only suits you and the running of your business but also to one that will be most beneficial to your business.
An IT provider that knows their stuff, and the sector in which your business resides in, will look ahead to identify potential problems before they arise. It is impossible to know every single issue that could arise in your business – some things that are issues may not even be viewed as such by you or by the team that need to report them to you. A good provider will take time before a problem occurs to communicate with team members from across your organisation in order to find any potential bug bares which individuals may have with a particular sector, or work process, in your organisation. Your employees will appreciate the fact that you are considering their concerns, whilst making their workday easier, which will in turn boost their moral and productivity.
Absorb the pressure
What every business owner in the world has in common is the pressure that comes with running an organisation that is potentially – depending on the size of your business – the livelihood of many. A good IT provider will absorb as much of this pressure as possible. As much as you will still be the overruling voice that ultimately decides whether an idea should be implemented or not, they will handle the technical ‘ins and outs’ of the implementation, allowing you to feel less pressure, remain calmer and therefore achieve a more productive workday.
Traditionally, IT support covered the essential parts of your IT systems, and the main goal was to ‘keep the lights on’ by any means necessary – and there was nothing wrong with that. However, this will not suffice in the modern technological age. ‘Keeping the lights on’ is, of course, still a concern but the functions that keep the wheels turning are run predominantly by themselves. Modern IT support is centred around the single most important part of every business all around the world – the employees. You were expecting us to say the customers or the money, weren’t you? Both are obviously important, but your employees are the beating heart of your organisation – which allows your business to trade at a high standard – so, if they are provided with the correct tools and trained on how to use them effectively, the other elements of your business – including the customers and money – take care of themselves.
Your IT support specialist should be delivering the future to you
Stereotypically, tech minded individuals are not the best at communicating. This can be a problem when it comes to your IT provider – it is essential that you have a clear line of beneficial communication in order to achieve the most from your organisation’s IT.
Do not settle for the occasional dry conversation about how things are going in your organisation! With the modern communicative abilities that technology has, communication is not only possible but easy and leaves a provider with no excuse as to why they aren’t constantly offering you support, guidance, and education. They should go the extra mile and make regular courtesy calls to ensure you maintain a positive beneficial relationship and to guarantee that they stay up-to-date with any changes that have been made to the business.
A strategy lead approach
False advertising is a problem when it comes to support providers. Most IT providers advertise themselves as a ‘proactive’ provider with ‘excellent service, unrivalled by any competition’ and you believe their claims because you have no reason to think otherwise. Predominantly these are lies; they will just sit back and receive your money every month from your plan, with their fingers crossed that the phone won’t ring and they will have no actual work to do.
In the modern workplace it is now possible to achieve so much with so little – technology makes this possible. You and your IT provider should be working closely to ensure that you implement the right technology, and they should work out a strategy that best fits the way that you do business. If your competition are using technology to its full potential and have a good strategy in place (organised closely with their provider) and you don’t then you are likely to be left behind.
A technological strategy – Roadmapping
In the past, IT support specialists would not have even discussed roadmapping. For those that don’t know, a Roadmap is simply a plan for the future of your IT.
Businesses in the past have become so accustomed to only speaking to their IT support when an issue occurs that they don’t even know that a Roadmap is an option. In the modern world it is highly beneficial to have a Roadmap. By creating a plan of action to onboard new technological solutions you can align different sectors of your business – like IT, operations executives, software engineers, and even sales teams – to be sure they are all achieving the most possible with their workday whilst simultaneously working in unison toward the same goal.
Every business in the world adheres to rules regarding their compliance. Traditional reactive IT support ran compliance risks for organisations – the potential legal ramifications of this could be disastrous, in fact, depending on the extent of the breach of rules, it could be business-defining.
A modern IT specialist – as we have already explored – will know the sector in which your organisation operates and also learn the business itself very thoroughly. They will take the time to get in tune with what makes your business tick, and the regulations which you operate under. A good IT support specialist will guarantee that they are up-to-date with regulation changes and will adapt your tech accordingly.
Employee experience with IT
As we explored previously, your employees are the most essential part of your business and are essential to its success and longevity.
Previously IT providers didn’t even include employees as a component in their IT decisions for a business – this is simply unacceptable. How do you expect an employee to get the most from their workday when you provide them with tools that make their job more difficult just because no one has asked them what they think? A lot of the time an employee knows what they need, they do the job day in, day out and know what would make their job easier and therefore more effective.
For example, a good provider will communicate with you and your team and identify where time is wasted on the mundane tasks. They may then – where possible – implement Business Process Automation (BPA) – this will improve the team’s experience with IT as it will allow them to go back to being productive whilst leaving the mundane to technology.
Ensuring a modern and proactive approach to your IT support
4TC take time to understand the daily challenges that your business faces, we then provide cost-effective tech solutions to these challenges that will help you save time, protect vital data and enable you and your staff to be more effective with your time management. Utilising your IT to its full potential is essential to guarantee that you and your business can thrive and grow into the future. If you would like to find out more on how 4TC Services can provide affordable tech management to your business, drop us an email or call us now for a full demonstration.
We’re 4tc Managed IT Services
4TC can support you with all your IT needs! We are trained professionals with years of experience and can guarantee you a service like no other.
We will give you and your business consistent attention – assuring that we do not only provide you with the best now but also continue to provide you with the best going into the future. We can act as either your IT department or to supplement an existing IT arrangement.
Get in touch now!
Tel: 020 7250 3840
124 City Road
Dew Gates The Street