How to compare IT providers

Looking for a new business IT provider?

Whether you’re a start-up or you’re just fed up with poor service, we believe there are five things you should consider when comparing the IT providers on the market.

Let’s jump straight in!

What industry are you in?
Do you need an IT team that specialises in your industry? Every sector has vastly different needs – for example, the automotive sector needs an IT provider with experience in factory direct communications, and the medical sector needs an IT provider with experience in the Best Practice software suite. At Xenex, our IT services are suitable to all industries, but we have plenty of experience in the automotive, medical and agriculture sectors. Is there a specialist out there for you?

What is their approach to IT?
Read through the provider’s website to get an understanding of their approach to IT. Bonus points should be awarded if they mention having a proactive stance to IT as opposed to a reactive one. This means they will spot small issues before they become big issues and work ahead of the curve to solve them! They should also preferably handle all of your third-party vendor partnerships agnostically, to give you the best choice of product range on the market. A good IT provider will promote complete visibility over your system so you can see everything when and where you need to. Finally, at minimum they should have clear and concise SLAs and high-level security qualifications.

What do you need them to do?
There is a basic range of IT services that most providers will offer, but it pays to inspect their service offering closely to make sure you’ll be able to get what you need in future. You also want to make sure you’re only paying for what you actually use. Write out a list of all the services you would use now, like remote 24/7 support, monitoring, security, data recovery and hardware and software provision. Then, add to that a list of services you might need in future – like cloud migration, telephony and custom internet connections. You don’t want to select a provider that can’t provide for you when your needs change!

How will they service you?
Fourthly, consider how the provider will service you. Do they offer lock-in contracts or no-lock-in-contracts? Do they request payment in full or do they amortize? If they offer remote IT support, this might suffice – but if something goes wrong on-site, do you need a provider who can physically come into your office? The ability to service clients face-to-face is often overlooked in favour of cheap offshore arrangements, but it might be critical to your business continuity and risk management plan. There are no right or wrong answers here, but it’s important to think about how you’d like them to deliver their service and how you’d like to pay for it.

How did others feel about them?
Finally, and perhaps most obviously, think about how others feel about the provider you have in mind! Always read Google and Facebook reviews, testimonials and case studies to assess whether this provider is trustworthy, effective and pleasant to deal with. Once every other box is ticked, a strong 4+ star rating is all the evidence you really need. And just so you know, our rating is 4.9 stars…

In summary, if the provider you’re looking at suits your industry, offers the services you need, has a convenient delivery and billing model, can add a bit of extra value and seems to be well-supported – you’ve picked a winner.

Now might be a good time to add that Xenex definitely suits all of that criteria… but we’re biased!

To find out more about our business IT services, reach out for a chat.

We also offer a free systems audit if you just want to see what you could be doing better!

Free Audit Enquiry