Industry News

How do you safely switch to a new Managed IT Service Provider?

How do you safely switch to a new Managed IT Service Provider? Three people meet to discuss their options.

Summary

  1. Thre are four key areas of risk when transitioning to a new MSP
  2. Computer One takes responsibility for leading you safely through all of them
  3. You can relax and have confidence in our system

Every relationship has some loose ends when it’s over.  Switching to a new Managed IT Service Provider is no different.  As the company helping you migrate, Computer One will take you through a managed on-boarding that includes responsibility for off-boarding you from your previous service provider.

What do we do to make your transition safe?  Broadly speaking, we will help you wrap up the financials, establish support processes, secure your hardware and the software used to run your organisation, and ensure you’re not left in the lurch at the cutover date.

Here’s how we do it:

Financials

Make sure you understand who is responsible for what when it comes to the financials. There can be misunderstandings about who owns what hardware, software and contracts.  Computer One will take care of liaising with your service provider to determine the cutover date for services, which will then allow you to set a finite point in time for billing from your previous provider to stop.

The complex, integrated nature of IT systems, and the desire to be cautious around the time of transition can sometimes mean that important services are run in parallel by both providers for a brief period before you are confident enough to let your previous provider go.  This is normal.  It can mean a short period of double-billing, but think of it like a kind of insurance against losing your ability to conduct business for a couple of days – that would probably be a lot more expensive.

Support Processes

Your previous provider will have well-worn methods for responding to your requests for help.  These methods should be written down and able to be shared with us during transition.

Where such a body of knowledge doesn’t exist, or your previous provider refuses to share it, Computer One will take responsibility for producing it.  This knowledge will be the cornerstone of our support for your business – it will mean any of our service desk staff can resolve your issues and over time it will become embedded into each team member.  It is considered to be your intellectual property and you are welcome to access it at any time and to take it with you if you eventually decide to move on from Computer One’s support.

Hardware

Do you own all the switches and access points used at your premises?  How about the PC’s and any on-site or hosted servers?  For those hosted offsite, which data centre holds them, and do you have approved access to manage them, update or remove them?  Are all your licenses current?  Computer One will step in again at this point and handle the tricky and potentially confusing process of determining who owns what and how it is to be accessed during and after transition. 

If we discover that your equipment is out of support by the vendor and in need of a refresh (this happens quite regularly), we will arrange temporary or permanent remedies to keep your transition on track.  This may involve the purchase of new equipment, managed rentals or arranging an extended lease on your old hardware.  We will take care of all the arrangements and keep you apprised of your options so you can make the decision that best suits your budget.

Software Licensing / Cloud Licensing

Do you have direct billing relationships with your software providers or are you managed and billed by your provider under their own licensing arrangements with vendors?  Do you have a software asset register with the due dates for software renewals recorded in it?

This is the fourth major area where Computer One will take the lead role if it’s required.  We will liaise with your incumbent provider, identify all the required licenses, arrange their migration to our oversight and ensure that your transition is smooth.

The Final Word: Relax, we’ve got this.

The thing that keeps many clients in a poor relationship with their incumbent provider is fear of the unknown. What if your new provider is just as bad, or worse, than the incumbent? What if the on-boarding / off-boarding process goes badly and you are left without adequate support for days or weeks?

Knowing that Computer One has a cautious, proven approach to managing your transition, and has completed hundreds of them over the past two decades should give you the confidence to go forward. We have, quite literally, seen it all and we have a plan to tackle every situation.

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