What applications, diagnostics checks or analytic tools does your Managed Services Provider use to help anticipate problems or hidden issues?
Your networks are running smoothly, which is great, but are you aware that one of your servers is operating at maximum capacity and could fail any moment?
This is Question 5 of our 7 Key Questions to ask a Managed Services Provider series.
What would happen if that server should fail?
My guess is that it wouldn’t be pretty.
Having confidence in your networks and in your supplier to help you avoid these situations is vital. You need to know that it is being taken care of and managed and you can carry on doing what you need to do to drive your business forward.
You certainly don’t want to be worrying about whether small changes to your networks are going to cause the whole thing to come crashing down.
Monitoring the Network
Your networks are critical to your business and should be treated as such - monitored 24x7.
Your Managed Services Provider should be able to monitor your entire network, including devices, applications and traffic and availability. This type of information helps prevent outages, optimising your networks to improve services.
Does your Managed Service Provider have the capacity to drill down this far into the network?
It is possible to mask errors, meaning your system appears healthy at first glance, but deeper insights can show that the system is underperforming.
Tools and Applications
What software and applications does your Managed Services Provider offer you? Are they running and supplementing your networks with their own tools?
If a Managed Services Provider is operating its own custom-made solution you can rest assured that offering customers excellent network monitoring is high on its agenda.
We use netREPORT, an in-house development powered by market leader PRTG, but with extensions and plug-ins that we have created to provide enhanced reporting and monitoring of telephony, call centre and recording systems. This monitors entire networks – right down to device and application level – and can be configured to your specification to send alerts when limits are reached or warn you (and us) of any potential hazards.
What If Something Does Go Wrong?
The dreaded error happens. Now what? What happens now?
How are resources aligned to you and your business? We will go into this in more detail next week as we look at providing a single point of contact for your business, but it is important to review now.
Do they provide round the clock support and give you a place to launch your own issues? Nothing worse than being in the office on a Friday afternoon when there is a problem and feel that there is no chance to resolve it before next week.
It is an interesting statistic, but we fix 93% of reported issues remotely. We pride ourselves on this capability. We know how business critical your communications are and the impact of having to wait to book in time with an engineer and wait a day or two to have your issue resolved.
We also invest heavily in our engineering department, ensuring they are all qualified to the latest specifications from our partners. If you are looking for a Managed Service Provider this should be something to pay attention to, because if they are contracting their support out too then issues could take a while to be resolved.
How does your Managed Service Provider deliver support on your networks? Are they making suggestions for improvements or simply letting you know when there are issues and concerns? Are they pro-active or reactive? Are they working with you to move your business forward or just maintaining the status quo?
We would like to hear from you and find out what works for you and your business.