Information Technology is a lifeline for most businesses today. And there’s a lot at stake when it comes to IT management. You can’t afford to hire an IT company that doesn’t adhere to best practices. But how do you ensure you’ve hired a good one? – By asking the right questions before hiring them.

In this 4-part series, we reveal 17 questions that you should ask before hiring an IT company.

Missed a past video?

Check out video 1 of our series.  Click Here.
and then…
Watch video 2. Click Here

Are You Using The Right IT Company?

Chicago IT Company

Information Technology is a lifeline for most businesses today. And there’s a lot at stake when it comes to IT management. You can’t afford to hire an IT company that doesn’t adhere to best practices. But how do you ensure you’ve hired a good one? – By asking the right questions before hiring them. In this 4-part series, we reveal 17 questions that you should ask before hiring any IT company.

This is Part III in our series where we address 9 – 12 of the 17 questions you should ask.

9. Are your IT projects on time and on budget? Or will the IT company end up costing you? Will delays cost you in downtime and money? Do they complete projects on time and on budget, or does every project end up taking longer than their clients expected?

According to McKinsey, on average, large IT projects run 45 percent over budget and 7 percent over time, while delivering 56 percent less value than predicted. Software projects run the highest risk of cost and schedule overruns. This isn’t something you should take lightly.

Just as you manage your time and business budget, your IT service company must do the same. If they don’t, you’ll be the one to suffer. They must keep track of your IT project’s scope, timeline, resources and budget to prevent cost overruns and missed deadlines. Ask how they do this, and what their percentage of success is in adhering to predicted costs and timelines.

10. Do they offer guarantees on their services and the quality of their work? If they don’t complete a job properly the first time, will they fix it at no cost for you? When you sign on with an IT service company, they should provide an SLA (Service Level Agreement) that defines explicitly and guarantee what you will receive.

SLA response time refers to how quickly your IT solutions company will respond to a technical issue. They should clearly define their work hours and ensure that you know what hours are included in response time.

They must also be clear about resolution times. This refers to the length of time it takes from the time a ticket request is logged until the issue is fully resolved. Typically, an IT service company will establish a range of job priorities with a target resolution time for each. For example, a downed server will be a higher priority than setting up a new computer.

Other things to look for in an SLA include:

  • The processes for reporting problems, who you should contact, procedures for escalations of trouble tickets and the steps that will be taken to resolve your issues effectively and efficiently.
  • Who will monitor the performance of your system, how data will be collected and how much access you’ll be given regarding performance statistics.
  • The consequences if the IT company doesn’t meet service obligations, such as reimbursements or the ability for you to cancel their contract.   Examples include not meeting uptime requirements.

If your IT company doesn’t provide an SLA, look for another one.

11. Are their staff members professional in appearance and will they be on time when they come to your office? The way technicians present themselves matters. Do they come in with rumpled clothes that make them look like they just rolled out of bed? Do they present themselves with confidence and competence? Will your staff comfortable when they’re working around them? Demeanor that is less than professional can equate to the same for the IT company.  In an effort to show commitment to their service excellence standards, all of their employees should maintain a professional appearance and demeanor at all times.

12. Will more than one technician be familiar with your network? If a technician goes on vacation, will another who is experienced on your systems be able to step in to help? Do they have proper documentation so that all technical personnel understand and can support your network environment? The IT company should also have a team of IT professionals who are experienced in different solutions and services. Some will be more informed about cybersecurity and others with business phone solutions. Whatever you need, they should have more than one technician on hand to provide it.

Infiniwiz does all 4 of these things and more for businesses in Chicagoland. Contact us, and we’ll be happy to do the same for you.

In the meantime, be sure to watch for Parts III and IV in this series. And stay up to date on the latest IT news and info by checking out our Blog.