The life of an IT support company is a complicated one. At one end of the spectrum, when the IT isn’t working, they will get clients calling to say “The IT isn’t working. What are we paying you for?” At the other end of the spectrum, they’ll get clients calling to say “We never have any IT problems. What are we paying you for?”
Let’s have a look at these statements a little closer and see if we can come up with answers.
The IT isn’t working. What are we paying you for?
IT is a wonderful thing; it allows us all to do so much more than we used to. We can send 1000 emails in a few minutes, thanks for MailChimp, DotMailer et al. We can keep all our documents and files without using up half the office with filing cabinets and we know a fire isn’t going to destroy our business. Unfortunately, IT also has an ability to go wrong, seemingly all by itself. Most of this will actually be human error (either inside the business when someone does something they shouldn’t, or outside when a workman, for example, puts his shovel through your internet cable) but there are other causes of unexpected IT failure.
- What is being paid for: the ability to have someone get started on resolving the problem quickly. Without IT support, or with a PAYG contract, you are likely to have a much longer wait, costing you downtime.
- What is being paid for: the knowledge to resolve the issue
We never have any IT problems. What are we paying you for?
IT is a wonderful thing. If you look after it, the chances of things going wrong are reduced dramatically. Proactive monitoring and interaction can stop problems from occurring so that there are no IT problems for the users to deal with.
- What is being paid for: Downtime is expensive. You are paying so that you don’t have the downtime.
- What is being paid for: Strategic planning to ensure that IT doesn’t break down in the future.
- What is being paid for: Peace of mind.
Does this put this question to bed forever? I would love to think that was the case, but I bet we still hear this question again in 2016