On Friday November 3, Thames Valley-based Complete IT (CIT), an IT support provider with six offices across the UK, turned 25 years old, writes Jessica Symondson.
The day was celebrated with an ‘Ask the Exec’ style conference call with Trevor Davies and Colin Blumenthal, the founders, being asked anything and everything the team wanted to know about, from “Who had the most hair when you started?” to “What was your best year at CIT?”. One of the things CIT prides itself on is the lack of a hierarchy. Obviously there is a management system in place, but everyone is easily approachable, and the entire company know they can go to the exec team or any of the managers with ideas or for advice.
What should you be looking at when selecting an IT support provider?
At Complete IT we believe there are a number of factors you should take into account when picking an IT support provider. We want you to be sure that we are right for your business so that we can build an ongoing relationship and become a part of your team. Below are six steps to take before deciding on an IT support provider.
• The relationship is important
You need to feel as though your chosen IT support provider is a part of your team, that they have similar objectives and are committed to helping you reach your business goals. This is even more important when looking at an in-house resource; as well as a business relationship it is important that your IT partner shares the same values. You need to ensure you share a similar work ethic and that personalities do not clash. These are all key to building a lasting relationship.
• Plain speaking technical experts
Your IT support partners should enhance your business, not constantly talk about technology in a way that you do not understand. They should be able to talk to you with confidence in plain English about your infrastructure and the issues you may face.
• Regular face2face engagement
Whilst it may put your mind at rest knowing your IT support provider is keeping a constant eye on your infrastructure, you want to get to know the person behind the screen. Before committing to a provider you should ensure that you will be meeting with the correct people on a regular basis. This may be an account manager who knows your business inside out or a technical consultant who can find their way around your server with their eyes closed. Without this sort of engagement from your IT support provider communications may become confused leading to a breakdown in the relationship.
• Local to you
While you can get away with using IT support providers that are based on the other side of the country, you will not have the security of knowing they can get to you when you experience an IT emergency. Many IT issues can be addressed remotely but there are just as many that need on-site expertise, especially in the case of natural disasters such as fire, flood or burglary. Whilst these may not be regular occurrences they do happen more frequently than you would expect and you need to be prepared for the worst case scenario.
• Training and updating the team on changes within the world of technology
As we all know the world of technology is a fast-paced and continually changing industry, whether we are talking about the cloud, the increase in remote working or the Internet of Things. You must ensure that the IT support provider you choose to work with is committed to training and supporting their team so that they are able to help your business adapt to changes while educating you on the best ways to ensure your business utilises new and improved technologies.
• Establishing shared objectives and long-term goals
Finally, one of the most important factors to consider when making a decision on which IT support provider to use is that they share the same business objectives as your company. Your IT support partner should also spend time with you building an IT roadmap to ensure your business is on the right track to meet and exceed long-term business goals.
To discuss your IT requirements and ensure you meet your IT objectives, get in touch with us today and we will arrange for someone to come and have a chat with you.