Our clients trust us. They trust us to maintain their backups and keep their systems up and running. They trust us to strategically direct their technology and accommodate changing budgets and growth plans. We can’t imagine what would happen if we were to do something that were less than ethical. But every day we see it happen. We see Managed Services IT providers take advantage of their clients’ lack of expertise. We see them abuse their technology and their role as a consultant to boost their bottom line. With Halloween just around the corner, we decided to compile a list of the 5 scariest things you’ve ever heard from your IT provider.
- “We can’t fix that.”
Say what? Don’t you pay your Managed Services provider so that you don’t have to worry about how to fix your technology issues? One of the scariest things a technology provider can say to you is that they can’t handle something. It gets worse when finger pointing becomes involved. Then you’re playing a game of tag when you’re really supposed to focusing on your business. That’s why a reputable Managed Services provider technician stays on tickets, e-mails and even handles issues himself until he’s positive they’re resolved.
- “Don’t worry. I got you a free version.”
Let’s just make this clear. You get what you pay for. Whether that’s a free anti-virus that isn’t updating definitions regularly enough and isn’t centrally managed (read about that here), or if that’s a pirated version of Microsoft Office that could land you in big trouble with Microsoft. You need to pay for every license on every piece of software that you use. Why? Because it’s ethical, it’s legal, it won’t get you fined and there’s a reason they charge for the good stuff. Enough said? I hope so. Because pirated software fees are expensive and free antivirus is downright terrifying.
- “I can’t recover that folder. It’s gone.”
Not to say that couldn’t ever happen. It could, and it happens to even the most diligent companies. But part of the reason that we’ve established checklists, onboarding processes and pay hundreds of thousands for management applications is so that we never have to tell our clients this. Whether it’s your personal folder with your kid’s baby photos or your financial spreadsheet holding the credentials and financials for the entire organization – you need it backed up. You should never, ever have to hear this from a provider.
- “The project is 3 months behind schedule.”
There is absolutely no excuse for a project going months beyond the scope of the schedule. With very rare exceptions, proper planning and execution allow reputable Managed Services providers to maintain deadlines. It’s not easy to do, but the right provider can do it repeatedly. The moment that your project starts to creep past deadline, it’s time to reassess.
- “We’ll have it fixed next week.”
Sure, maybe it’s not the worst issue in the world – but you expect prompt support. Every additional inconvenience added seconds and even minutes onto a single task. That means if a workstation printer is down, it needs to be fixed as soon as possible. Make sure that your provider is not only quick to reply, but also quick to resolve. Issues shouldn’t take days to resolve.
IT should never be scary. With seamless communication, experience, careful planning and strategic thinking it won’t be. If you’re in a relationship with an IT provider that is using one or more of these terrifying statements on a regular basis – it’s time to make a change. Stop waiting and start assessing the state of your technology and how a quality provider can offer you more than you ever imagined.