PGH Networks

Selecting the Right Managed Service Provider

Selecting the right MSP for your company’s IT operations is an important task that should be treated like any other major business decision. Establish an open line of communication with any potential consultants to answer your questions. The right MSP can help your business reach new heights of efficiency and capability.

Here are some questions you should ask potential managed service providers to piece together the strength of their service:

  • How large is your client base? Handling larger numbers of clients shows the scale at which an MSP can operate, including overall satisfaction of service.
  • How do you address customer assistance following installation of new software and hardware? Look for special attention to clients and guidance through new programs and equipment.
  • How many years have you been in business? Generally speaking, the longer the tenure, the more reputable a company is. If the company has a long history in Pittsburgh, then it might be a strong candidate.
  • What IT services do you outsource? It’s common practice for an MSP to outsource services. For example, many companies use overseas call centers for their customer service lines, so you’ll want to find out whom you’ll be speaking with in the event of an emergency.
  • Do you handle standalone projects, or focus on monthly retaining services? If they take one-time contracts, how does this pricing compare to ongoing projects?
  • Will we be working with a steady account representative? Having a consistent representative means they can understand your overall IT situation and better grasp the current issue.
  • What is your privacy policy concerning client data? Will they be sharing certain information with their partners? You’ll want to know if any of your sensitive data is changing hands.
  • Do you communicate openly with clients regarding your services? An IT consultant should never hide nor withhold information from clients, especially when it involved the client’s data.
  • What are your after-hour customer support lines? How can you reach them if something goes wrong in the middle of the night? Will someone be available?
  • What do you monitor in terms of security threats and system performance? Different managed service providers monitor different aspects of network health and security. Determine what’s important to you and see how prospective MSPs align.
  • How do you compile information regarding system performance and managed services? When it comes time for strategic planning, this aspect is key. Regular performance and health reports can determine the needs of fewer or additional services in the future.
  • What are your specializations the MSP market? If they specialize in the area for which you need service, this can be fantastic for your business.
  • What are some of your success stories in IT services? How will that translate to your business’ needs?
  • How do you view your clients in the long-term success of your consulting firm? This is their sales pitch to you, and how your company’s success should be the focus point of their services.

Our consultants at PGH Networks would love the chance to sit down and answer these questions, or any other questions you may have about hiring a managed service provider. Learn more about PGH Networks and our Pittsburgh or Hagerstown locations by visiting Contact Greg Pack at PGH Networks; call 724-888-7007 or