Choosing the wrong provider could be a very expensive decision, so it is important you get it right first time.
Below is a series of questions for you to ask when recruiting a new IT service provider.
At National IT Solutions, we work hard to deliver all of the above. Please refer to Our Approach for more information as to how we conduct our service arrangement.
Is the Helpdesk support phone answered by a real person or are you forced to deal with an answering service?
In business today, it’s essential that your IT infrastructure is running smoothly but should your systems become unstable you need to be able to call for support and speak to a real person for immediate assistance.
Some IT companies claim to offer a helpdesk but when you call for support you need to leave a message with an answering service.
At National IT Solutions, our Helpdesk line is answered by a team of IT experts during office hours.
** Additional helpdesk support hours and pager support is available if required **
Do they provide a guaranteed response time for the services offered to your business?
When your IT systems FAIL, you need immediate assistance! When calling the National IT Solutions helpdesk, you’ll immediately speak to an IT expert who will connect using the latest support tools to investigate and resolve the problem remotely or alternatively organise an onsite visit. We understand that for every minute your IT systems are down it’s costing you money. So if we don’t adhere to the guaranteed response time we’ve specified as part of the service level agreement we’ll automatically compensate your business.
Do they take the time to explain what they are doing and answer your questions in terms that you can understand or do they make you feel silly for asking simple questions?
In today’s society, many IT companies’ get caught-up with acronyms and over complicate the explanation provided to end users. You should NOT feel silly asking your helpdesk anything, no matter how basic.
At National IT Solutions, our technical services team will take the time to answer your questions and explain everything in simple terms, making it easy for you to understand.
Do they consistently offer new ways to improve your IT systems or do they wait until you have a problem to make recommendations?
The world of IT changes quickly so if your IT systems are not reviewed regularly, you’ll miss-out on the latest technologies that could improve your business efficiency and profitability.
At National IT Solutions we conduct regular review meetings to look for new ways to help improve your business operations, lower costs, increase efficiencies, and resolve any potential problems that may arise in the future. Our goal is to help our clients become more profitable, efficient, and find a competitive advantage.
Do they provide detailed invoices that clearly explain what you’re paying for?
At National IT Solutions we provide a detailed monthly invoice that lists all completed service requests including service ticket number, time spent and description.
To ensure you have the ability to keep track of service requests and reconcile the monthly invoices, National IT Solutions also email a job status report when a ticket is initially created or completed.
Do they guarantee to complete all projects on time and on budget?
Why should you pay for someone else’s incompetence?
At National IT Solutions we strongly believe in ACCOUNTABILITY so all projects are fixed priced and guaranteed to be completed on time and on budget.
If we do spend more time than expected then we wear the costs. Not your business.
Do they provide 24x7 remote monitoring of your IT infrastructure?
Your IT infrastructure is running 24x7 so why would you expect anything less from the real-time monitoring system provided by your IT support provider.
Our 360o IT Care system continually watches over your network to ensure your IT infrastructure is running efficiently sending alerts if any issues are found.
Do they provide you with a monthly report detailing the health status of your IT systems?
Do you know what’s managed each month to keep your systems running efficiently? Are you clear about what you are paying for?
Are you confident that your IT company is working for you?
At National IT Solutions we email a report every month that shows the overall health of your network including installed updates, antivirus definition status, security checks, hard drive space, backup status and much more.
Our health reports keep you informed every step of the way.
Is it standard procedure for them to provide you with written network documentation detailing what software licenses you own, your critical passwords, user information and hardware inventory?
Do you know your company server passwords & network settings?
You should never allow an IT company to withhold this information from you. If you suspect that your current IT provider is keeping this information under their control to ensure their job security, get rid of them immediately.
At National IT Solutions, we believe that you are the rightful owner of this information and you should have the details readily available at all times.
To keep you in control of your systems we update you with your passwords and network settings after every change.
Do they have other technicians that are familiar with your network in case your regular technician goes away or gets sick? Do they have more than one employee?
Don’t risk your company data and viability to a ‘one-man’ IT support business as they don’t offer enterprise grade monitoring services offered by National IT Solutions. In addition, if something was to go wrong with this one-man operation such as business closure or long-term sickness; you’re putting your company at serious risk.
How would you retrieve your company information?
At National IT Solutions we keep detailed network documentation allowing any of our technicians to pick up where another left off.
Do they monitor your backups? Are both onsite and offsite backups verified?
Your company data is imperative to the running of your business so make sure you have a disaster recovery plan in place that is tested on a regular basis.
Ask yourself the following questions -
What’s the impact to your business if you lost company data because nobody knew when your backup failed?
Our 360o IT Care monitoring system checks each backup daily and notifies our Helpdesk team if the backup fails.
Do they perform periodical test restores of your backups to make sure the data is not corrupt and can be restored in the event of a disaster?
The WORST time to “test” a backup is when you desperately need the data and it’s too late.
Each month we complete a file restore to ensure the data can be recovered in the event of an emergency and for additional peace of mind, depending on your 360o IT Care plan we also complete a full disaster recovery check in our datacentre.
If you were to experience a major disaster, do you have a written plan for how your data could be restored FAST and/or enable you to work from a remote location?
It’s too late to recover from a disaster after it happens. If you don’t have a plan then you plan to FAIL.
We provide our 360o IT Care client’s with a disaster recovery plan to ensure their systems and business will survive a major disaster and be up and running quickly.
We also encourage our clients to create a full disaster recovery plan for their entire office, but at a minimum, their server including email and company data will be covered should a disaster strike.
Do they provide you with a spare server in the event of a disaster or if your server is stolen?
What’s the cost to your business if your server was destroyed or stolen? If your business shutdown even for a couple of hours, how much business and money would you be losing?
We understand the impact downtime has on a business so we provide our 360o IT Care clients with a spare server if required.
Is their helpdesk based in Australia or outsourced to an overseas or third party IT Company?
We employ our own help desk team based in our Melbourne head office. We keep your data and company information private and secure.
Do their technicians maintain current vendor certifications and participate in on-going training – or are they learning on your time?
Our technicians are required to keep the most up-to-date vendor certifications in all the software we support, including Microsoft, Cisco and VMWare. As part of our stringent hiring process we test all employees with real-life technical problems in a specially designed environment to make sure we employ the right person to manage your IT systems.
Do their technicians arrive on time and dress professionally?
Our technicians are true professionals. They dress professionally, show up on time and if they cannot (for some odd, unforeseen reason) we always notify the client immediately.
We believe these are minimum requirements for delivering a professional service.
Can they support your unique line of business applications?
We take responsibility and accountability of your business application issues and work with the 3rd party software provider to find a quick solution to resolve your problems.
We support many different software applications like AutoCAD, REVIT, Tekla, MYOB, Quickbooks, WinSteel, Total Synergy, AIS (Animal intelligence software) and much more...
When something goes wrong with your Internet service, phone systems, printers or other IT services, who owns the problem?
Sick of your IT Company passing the blame?
At National IT Solutions we own the problem on behalf of our clients, allowing you to concentrate on your business.