If you’ve recently signed on with a managed services provider (MSP), congratulations! You are well on your way to improving your network’s uptime, ensuring your security online, and preventing outdated hardware from getting in the way of your operations. If you are wondering, “what should I know when working with an MSP near me,” there are some basic things to keep in mind or consider.

  1. Services: Make sure you understand the full range of services offered by the MSP. You’ll want them to explain to you everything they can do for you so you can choose what might be useful and what you might hold off on for the time being. 
  2. Benefits: Ask the MSP how they can help your business improve its bottom line and mitigate its risk as far as network downtime and cyberbreaches. The MSP should be able to point you to case studies that showcase how their efforts have helped similar companies.
  3. Team members: Decide who on your team will interface with the MSP. This person or persons should be able to represent your company’s interests and objectives. They need to be able to convey important aspects of the MSP’s work to the rest of your team in terms that your staff can understand.
  4. Expectations: Be clear about your expectations from the MSP. This way, you can be sure that both parties are on the same page and working towards the same goal.

What hours is an MSP available? 

Practical considerations are also important when it comes to getting started working with an MSP near you. Most MSPs offer 24/7 support, which offers peace of mind that someone is always available to help with your IT needs. This is especially important for businesses that have international operations or customers. 

Plus, networks can go down at any time, and unfortunately, a breach can also occur after hours.

What is an MSP’s service level agreement (SLA)?

An SLA is a contract between the MSP and the client that outlines the terms of service. This document should spell out the expectations of both parties and what will happen if those expectations are not met. You should carefully review the SLA before you sign it and ask your provider for help understanding anything that you do not understand. 

Can an MSP help with data backup and disaster recovery?

Yes, an MSP can definitely help with backing up data and recovering from disasters. In fact, this is one of the most common services offered by MSPs. They should be working proactively to ensure your data is secured (via a best-practice like the 3-2-1- backup method) just in case an outage or breach should occur.

What is an MSP’s average response time?

Most MSPs guarantee a certain response time, usually within four hours. This means that you can be sure that someone will be available to help you resolve your IT issues in a timely manner.

What certifications does an MSP have?

An MSP should have a variety of industry-recognized certifications, such as the Microsoft Certified Partner or the Cisco Certified Partner designation. The best type of certification is a SOC2 or Systems and organization controls. This shows that they have the skills and knowledge to properly support your IT infrastructure. 

Do you need an MSP?

Not every Albany, NY business needs an MSP, but if you have complex IT needs or limited in-house resources, an MSP can be a valuable partner. They can provide the expertise and support needed to keep your IT infrastructure running smoothly. 

How much does an MSP cost?

The cost of an MSP varies depending on the services provided and the size of your infrastructure. Some MSPs charge a flat monthly fee, while others charge by the hour. Be sure to ask about pricing before signing up for service. 

Final Thoughts on MSPs

When choosing an MSP, it’s important to do your research and find a company that you can trust. Once again, make sure to do the following when you first get started with an MSP: 

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– Make sure you understand the full range of services offered. 

– Ask about pricing and be sure to compare rates between different companies. 

– Check industry certifications and reviews. 

– Choose a company with a good reputation and solid customer service. 

Need help understanding how a managed services provider can help you? Give TAG Solutions a call. We are the premier Albany, NY MSP and can help you with everything from network security to a new phone system to backup and recovery. Contact us today!