Over the past 20-plus years, Anderson Technologies has seen what works really well in the IT industry and what should be avoided. Simply completing a project is the bare minimum needed from your IT partner and shouldn’t be where managed services ends. Along with technical knowledge and skill, three key traits improve the relationship between client and IT team more than any other – excellent communication, logical systemization, and earned trust.
Technical Knowledge and Skill
One of the primary reasons you hire a managed services team is for their technical expertise and they should be capable of handling most any technical challenge you face. This really isn’t a secret! Additionally, dedication to maintaining a high level of technological skill should be key for any IT firm.
It can be difficult to determine if a managed services provider prioritizes technical skills, especially for a small business owner who isn’t familiar with the technology industry, but there are a few clues for the layperson. In addition to checking their history and references, information like certifications, education, and satisfied customers can reveal much about a managed services provider, even before they’re hired.
Fixing what’s broken is the fundamental requirement for any managed services team but when building the Anderson Technologies team, technical knowledge and skill is only the first ingredient we look for, and just the beginning of the “secret sauce” of IT services.
A huge part of managed services is acting as an interpreter.
Every industry has its own language, whether it’s attorneys, dentists, nonprofits, finance, manufacturing, engineering, etc. It’s probably easy to remember an incident when communication was a barrier rather than a bridge. The best managed services providers can explain a problem and its solution in laymen’s terms as well as industry-specific vernacular, and easily translate between the two for clients. Poor communication between system administrator and client makes gathering accurate information and completing a project successfully unnecessarily difficult.
Clear communication is vital to not only providing clients the best service but helping them understand what needs to be done and why it is important.
Hand-in-hand with excellent communication are the systems and processes a managed services provider follows to deliver truly excellent service.
- Logical Systemization
A huge part of systemization is establishing ideal methodologies and creating processes and specialized documentation designed to produce consistent, repeatable results. Taking the time to develop these best practices and build a structure around them can be easily overlooked by busy entrepreneurs. Members of an effective managed services team should be enthusiastic about combining technical and communication skills into this vital process documentation. Keeping accurate and detailed records not only helps you, the client, but maintains a consistent level of service throughout the team and ensures requests are resolved quickly and correctly.
Systemization and record keeping aren’t incidental to the best managed IT services teams – it should be built into their approach from the beginning. Included in Anderson Technologies’ managed services plans are an extensive client onboarding process, regularly scheduled proactive maintenance designed to prevent breakdown, periodic audits of client infrastructure, systems for tracking project progress and responding to user support calls.
Process documentation and customized methodologies enhance the performance of managed services providers, and, even more important, the performance of the client.
- Earned Trust
For some IT firms, an individual’s technical ability trumps everything else. But the system and network administrators hired to interact with your most confidential data and technological vulnerabilities should be a team you can implicitly trust.
When building our managed services team, Anderson Technologies seeks those who align with our core values: Integrity, Respect, Dedication, Team-Oriented, Dependability, Initiative, and Client Focused.
These qualities are the most important ingredients in our “secret sauce.” They define our organization’s character, which has been developing over two decades. It is who we are as a team and what we represent and strive for every day as a company.
The best managed services firm goes beyond that skill to provide service on another level. Excellent communication, logical systemization, and earned trust combine to make the secret sauce that comprises an IT managed service that truly shines.