SWITCHING I.T. PROVIDERS
Has switching IT providers been on your to-do list for quite some time but it keeps getting tossed in the ‘too hard’ basket? You’re not alone. Here’s the good news: it’s actually a lot easier than you’d think. Let’s get started!
SHOULD WE CHANGE I.T. PROVIDER?
New customers tend to fall into one of three categories: switching because they’re unsatisfied with their current provider, a brand new business, or seeking external consultancy. When people talk to us about why they want to change providers, they often share stories about providers who:
Treat them like a ticket, not a person e.g. it can take weeks for them to return calls or emails
Make it difficult or costly for other vendors to work with you and lack depth of capability and/or coverage
Are reactive and not proactive, and are often caught talking the talk but not walking the walk
Focus on their own success, and not your combined success
Have not put technical infrastructure in place that facilitates business growth
Pick and choose what services they offer and software they will support
Have their customers sign a long-term, lock-in agreement with fixed fees
Are not onboard with modern IT best practices like cloud solutions or training programs
It’s important to mention that not all IT providers are like this and we know you will be able to find a provider who cares about your business and much as you do.
Like we mentioned earlier, switching IT providers is easy. But, there are a few things you can do to make the entire switch seamless. Following this 4 step guide will ensure a smooth transition.
SWITCHING I.T. PROVIDERS: SIMPLIFIED
1. Identify what you want to achieve by switching providers
Switching providers is an exciting opportunity for business growth and shouldn’t be wasted by poor planning. Be ruthless. Take notes on what you don’t like about your current provider: is it the fixed fees, poor communication, or lack of opportunity? Before you commit to change, we recommend that you speak to your existing provider about your concerns and allow them a chance to improve. If they aren’t willing to comprise, then you can say bye-bye without looking back.
Your earlier notes will have helped you determine exactly what you’re looking for in a new provider, so you’ll enter the market prepared. Dream big: there will be a provider out there who tickets all of your boxes, and maybe even more.
2. Start the conversation with multiple vendors
You will find that some providers specialise in particular industries or business structures, so some may want to speak with you more than others. While you’re hunting for a new provider, be transparent. Talk about your business goals and the technical barriers that are standing in the way of achieving them.
We recommend speaking to multiple providers to gather and compare quotes until one stands out. Start with us by requesting a FLEX proposal. We like to book a no-obligation call with customers before sending them a proposal to ensure we have all the details we need to provide a tailored solution.
Our pro tip: ask prospective new providers these questions…
Will we have a dedicated Account Manager?
Do we have to sign a lock-in agreement?
Where are your Help Desk staff located?
Do you have guaranteed SLA’s and what are they?
Can we access support outside of business hours?
What software do you support?
How often do you communicate with your clients?
How do we know if services are being delivered as promised?
Of course, other factors matter too, like education and qualifications. But we’d suggest that the quality of communication between you and the provider is much more important. You will be in contact with your provider on a regular, or at least a semi-regular basis, so you want to find a provider who brings you good vibes. People in IT have a reputation for being nerds who like to overcomplicate things, so just keep searching until you find the perfect-fit nerd for your business.
3. Let your incumbent provider know you’re leaving
Once you’ve selected your perfect fit new provider, it’s time to let your existing provider know that you’re leaving. We understand that out of all of the steps, this one might be the most confronting. Almost no one likes breakups, but it’s like tearing off a band-aid. You can do it!
But, if you really can’t, then don’t let this deter you. Simply ask your new provider to do it for you. Most providers will be happy to contact your existing provider on your behalf and organise the secure transfer of your data.
Our pro tip: review your current contract before you contact your provider to cancel. Is there a notice period, can you get out because they weren’t meeting SLA’s, do they have outstanding work to complete? Don’t get blindsided – go in prepared.
We recommend you record the software and systems you use as some of these may transitioned to the new provider. In most situations there is no outage or disruptions when changing providers.
4. Getting started with your new provider
Once you’ve accepted the terms, signed the paperwork, and your new provider has your data, they are all set to take over..
We suggest catching up with your new Account Manager and reminding them of your business goals from your initial conversations. Be prepared with a list of expectations you need them to meet and a timeline for outlining when you will review them together.
Each provider will have a unique onboarding process. At Myrtec, a typical customer cutover takes less than a day with no downtime. We grant our new customers access to our Customer Only Portal so that they can contact support, review their list of assets, and access our exclusive training materials and resources.
From here, it’s time to put your feet up because the hard work is over, and your business is officially headed in an exciting new direction.
IT’S TIME TO UPGRADE YOUR IT PROVIDER. WE WORK WITH BUSINESSES THAT ARE COMMITTED TO RISING TO THE NEXT LEVEL. IS THIS YOU?