Your data is important. There’s no getting around that.
As your company grows, it may be important to store your data elsewhere. It’s fortunate that there are so many providers of IT managed services in St. Louis.
With so many providers of managed services in St. Louis, where do you turn to make sure your data is safe?
If you’re unfamiliar with IT and technical language, it may seem like you’ve quickly gotten in over your head. If you aren’t tech-savvy, you need the experts!
Still, there are several ways to make sure you take charge of the situation and get what you need out of a provider, including a healthy working relationship.
Keep reading for some foolproof tips to find your business the perfect IT managed services in St. Louis!
Get references For Managed Services in St. Louis
If you’re already looking for managed services in St. Louis, make sure you get references on those you’re most considering.
Remember that you need to understand the level of work that you’ll be entrusting to this company. That means you need to make sure they’re trustworthy.
Ask around regarding their reputation. You can ask anyone: colleagues, peers, competitors, etc. Make sure they can compare to your company’s size and needs
This is also a great way to find a provider in the first place! If another business is using a provider, they may be more than happy to give you a reference.
It’s important that your provider has experience within your industry.
We live in an age where things are becoming more specialized and niche every day, and your provider likely has a type of clientele that they already cater to.
Make sure that they have the appropriate experience because that translates into knowledge. If your provider doesn’t know anything about your business, there will be a disconnect and a breakdown in communication.
The provider you choose should understand the requirements of your business and industry, and you need to be able to trust them not to violate it.
A provider which specializes in IT would be the best way to go for your managed services in St. Louis. Don’t assume that all services are created equal!
It seems obvious, but is your provider organized?
How does their team function?
How do they handle problem-solving?
Are they going to be looking out for your best interests?
Are they thinking ahead of the curve to push your technology further?
Your provider needs to be able to handle the workload you give them, and most managed services in St. Louis have more than one client at one time.
If their workload is already overwhelming, or they seem stressed, it may be a good idea to steer clear.
You’ll need to be proactive and define the expected workload you’re giving your provider. You don’t want any miscommunication with something as vital as your IT data.
Naturally, you can always divvy out more work later, but, if they shy away from your proposed workload, they may not be the provider for you.
If you can’t trust your managed services provider, then why are you working with them in the first place?
Part of this ties back to industry experience. If your provider has no idea what they’re doing, you aren’t going to be able to trust them with your data.
It’s important to think of your relationship with your provider as a partnership. This is someone that you’re entrusting with your vital data.
You need to know that your chosen provider of managed services in St. Louis is going to be able to handle any sticky situation, regardless of when it comes up.
How do you determine whether or not a provider is trustworthy before you’ve agreed to work with them?
That involves a little sleuthing, but it’s nothing that some references and an interview can’t help you figure out!
Don’t be afraid to ask the hard questions, including asking about response time. Ask if there are any limitations to their services. Even asking some scenario questions can help figure out if the provider is right for you.
List of Services
If you’re already interested in a certain provider, it’s not unheard of or unreasonable to request their scope of services up front – the full menu, so to speak.
Make sure to analyze what a provider offers you to ensure that it’s the best choice. If you’re looking for 24/7 IT support but the provider you’re scoping out doesn’t provide it, then they aren’t a good fit for you, are they?
If you have any questions regarding services, don’t be afraid to ask! Things go south very quickly when the right questions aren’t asked.
Make sure your provider of managed services in St. Louis can actually provide everything that you need.
Where are your provider’s servers held?
Are they in another state?
Are they still even in the USA, or are they in another country?
Make sure there are no laws preventing you from storing your data overseas!
Several cloud service providers work across the globe and have their centers outside of the US. It’s very common, so it’s vital that you research this as much as possible.
Even if it isn’t illegal for you to have your data stored overseas, there are pitfalls that can occur due to it.
Your data may wind up traveling slower than you’d like due to the distance between the two countries.
It’s definitely ideal for your provider to store their data in the USA, and in St. Louis, if at all possible. Look for local providers first!
It might go without saying, but make sure you read the terms of your contract carefully. Look it over with a hawk’s eye: you don’t want to run into anything that may send your business crashing down.
Contracts often include fine print detailing things that business owners don’t typically ask about. And once it’s signed, the contract is good as law.
Make sure you go over the terms carefully and ensure that they’re acceptable to you. Even if a provider seems to be working in your best interests in person, the contract may tell a different story.
Don’t let yourself get roped into an ironclad contract with no room for negotiation.
Sometimes contracts offer wiggle room and can be negotiated. If you run into any terms that aren’t in your favor, pipe up! Don’t be afraid to ask.
However, if the provider refuses to budge or a certain point is a dealbreaker for you, it may be time for you to walk away from it.
Your data is sensitive. Important information regarding your company needs to be kept under lock and key. The last thing you want is a data breach.
This means you’ll want a higher level of security than password protection. Passwords can be uncovered very easily, leaving your data vulnerable.
Before you sign any kind of contract, ask your potential provider about the security measures they take with their data.
If they offer anything less than data encryption and protection for data that’s both resting and in motion, that may be cause for concern.
Other beneficial things to look for would be two-factor logins, access controls based on roles, and monitoring capabilities.
If the unthinkable happens and something bad does happen to your data, you’ll want to make sure your provider has the ability to run forensics after the fact.
This can give you vital information regarding who caused the attack and what exactly was compromised. Don’t settle for less.
Sometimes you can do everything right and things just don’t work out. It’s nothing to be ashamed of.
Not every relationship has to last forever, and that includes business partnerships. If your experience with managed services in St. Louis is not up to your standards, you’re free to walk.
Of course, that does depend on the terms of your contract. If it’s got an iron grip on you, you need to have an exit strategy.
Make sure, before you sign anything with anyone, that you have a solid plan in place to get your data back in case of a partnership breakdown.
Additionally, make sure you understand what you’re going to do with the data once you get it back.
Look over your contract to see if there are any terms for termination, and if so, what you need to qualify for that. Try to resolve the situation with as little drama as possible.
Finding a provider for your managed services in St. Louis can quickly turn overwhelming if you don’t know where to look. Still, there’s no reason to panic!
Though your IT data is sensitive, finding a provider doesn’t have to be a huge ordeal. Think of it like any other business agreement, and you’ll be able to enter into a partnership that will protect your most valuable assets.
Learn from the experts and those who have already been down this path. Keep these tips in mind and you’ll find a provider and a business partner to suit your needs best!