A composite image showcasing a handshake superimposed with a cityscape and various Key Performance Indicator (KPI) graphics.

Key Performance Metrics to Consider When Selecting a Managed Services Provider for IT Support

Not having access to their technology is a significantly expensive experience for organizations. For example, a recent report highlighted that during a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, businesses lost an average of $6,130 per minute of downtime. 

However, no matter the cause, the consequences of downtime on your infrastructure extend beyond financial losses. To help mitigate these risks, companies can benefit from building a healthy IT environment that keeps their operations running smoothly. However, the internal management of IT complexities often presents its own set of challenges, prompting an increasing number of companies to seek external support from managed service providers. 

Yet, finding the right partner for their technological needs can feel intimidating. Below, you’ll learn about the essential performance metrics to consider when selecting your provider, which will help you use a data-driven approach to connect with someone who can best support your long-term objectives. 

What is a Managed Services Provider?  

A managed service provider is a third-party company that can remotely manage a business’s technology, offering organizations the option to offload some work. MSPs employs a team of experts that businesses can leverage to enhance their IT ecosystem. Typically, they provide a range of IT services on a subscription model, that includes performance monitoring, cybersecurity, data backups, and among other essential IT functions.  

This monthly service program approach helps organizations tackle their IT needs more proactively, as well as rely on a predictable working relationship and ongoing assistance – helping them identify and address issues before they escalate, while increasing efficiency and productivity, 

What’s more, this consistency is more cost-effective.  

Organizations don’t have to worry about financially supporting an in-house IT department, and they can benefit from a skilled professional’s regular maintenance helping them avoid expensive repair costs. 

The Essential Performance Metrics When Evaluating An MSP 

An organization’s IT is critical to their success – used for communication, collaboration, project management, and other important activities. So of course, you want to offload its management to the most capable hands. 

To achieve that, you’ll need to thoroughly evaluate providers. Here are some metrics you could consider in that process: 

Response Time 

When something goes wrong with your technology, swiftly addressing them is crucial to minimize disruptions and restore normal operations. As you evaluate potential providers, look to see if providers can commit to a guaranteed IT support response time in their service level agreements, and even better, if they specify initial response time and the time to resolution. Some providers may outline their promised response times based on problem severity and a priority level determined by the number of staff that an issue affects, the time-sensitivity of the work needing completion, and the issue’s impact on overall productivity.   

Resolution Rate 

As part of your evaluation process, investigate how effectually an MSP can commit to resolving issues. Often, a provider can provide their first-call resolution rate, which refers to how often an IT team can resolve a user’s issue during their first time contacting them about it, preventing the user from needing to call a second time. 

Uptime Commitments 

Since your business operations rely on having uninterrupted access to your IT resources, finding an MSP who can commit to consistently available and reliable infrastructure is crucial. Ask about their uptime commitments and whether they can guarantee in their service level agreement that your technologies can be available for a certain percentage of time during a particular period. Also, inquire about their capacity to implement and support a disaster recovery plan.  

Scalability and Flexibility 

Your organization’s requirements for your technology will likely shift on an ongoing basis, depending on customer demands, industry regulations, and other factors. An MSP should be able to scale services up or down as necessary. They can also help you optimally allocate your resources to avoid underutilizing and overburdening your IT infrastructure. 

Customer Satisfaction and Feedback 

Looking into an MSP’s current and past client’s perspectives can provide an excellent window into their service quality, responsiveness, reliability, and other critical factors. There are several metrics for measuring customer satisfaction, including Net Promoter Score (NPS) and customer retention rates.    

Compliance and Security Standards 

Your organization can benefit from inquiring about an MSP’s knowledge of industry compliance standards, recognized frameworks, and best practices in cybersecurity – as well as their strategy for adhering to regulations pertinent to your industry and region. 

Cost Efficiency 

As part of assessing an MSP’s performance, evaluating the cost of their services relative to the value they promise to deliver will be essential. To calculate that, look for providers that offer transparent pricing models and commit to no hidden costs or surprises.  Then, to determine value, consider your own goals, objectives, IT budget and whether the MSP’s service quality and expertise align with them. You may want to conduct a cost-benefit analysis of their IT services. 

Additional Considerations to Make When Selecting an MSP For IT Support 

On top of these critical performance metrics discussed above, we suggest you explore these additional factors to help you make a truly well-informed decision when selecting your IT support partner. 

Technical Expertise and Certifications 

Your provider can provide higher quality service and support if they are qualified in the technologies your organization uses. Look at the platforms and tools you use and ensure the MSP has specialized knowledge and skills in navigating them so they can effectively troubleshoot any issues and optimize their performance. Depending on the technology, the MSP may hold official qualifications and certifications demonstrating their expertise. For example, at PC Corp, we are an official Hewlett-Packard Enterprises solution provider at the gold level. 

Proactive Management and Strategy 

Your organization can benefit most from partnering with a managed service provider who takes a strategic approach to your IT.  

  • Do they regularly maintain your IT infrastructure and systems to ensure optimal and secure performance?  
  • Are there robust systems in place for continuous monitoring, allowing their team to quickly address and resolve any arising issues? 
  • Do they ensure that every technology purchase, maintenance practice, and IT project is aligned with your long-term business goals and objectives? 

A proactive, forward-thinking strategy that anticipates future requirements and supports your growth is key to maintaining reliable IT as your organization advances 

Communication and Reporting 

You want to work with a provider who takes a collaborative approach. That will require finding an MSP that can commit to providing detailed reports about the activities and projects that they initiate on your behalf.  

  • Will they frequently communicate with you about the status of IT operations, ongoing projects, and any potential issues or concerns?  
  • Are they interested in transparency and accountability, or do they want you to take a hands-off approach?  

Your organization will also benefit from an MSP who regularly connects with you about the effectiveness of the IT solutions they implement, proactively shares areas for improvement, and includes you in any decisions. 

Partner with PC Corp for robust IT support 

Key performance metrics, from response time and resolution rate to customer satisfaction and uptime commitments, are incredibly important to help organizations select the right provider for IT support. To pinpoint your ideal match, we recommend that you undertake a thorough evaluation process that considers both quantitative metrics and qualitative factors. This data gives you measurable insights into a provider’s potential effectiveness and service quality, helping you feel more confident that they will be reliably able to meet your needs. 

When you work with PC Corp managed IT services, our team of experts commits to providing high-quality IT support keeping your business systems running optimally, allowing your teams to work efficiently, and ultimately supports your business to thrive.

Contact PC Corp today to discuss how our tailored and flexible solutions can optimize your IT infrastructure for greater peace of mind. 

Small Business