Are you looking to hire an IT support company for your small business in Milton Keynes?
Small businesses of all types depend on IT systems for mission critical functions.
Whether it be email, ecommerce, electronic point of sale, customer service helpdesk, VoIP phone systems, client conference calls, for example – the reliance on a good IT set-up is both a critical and universal business need.
Given the importance, how does a business shore up its IT performance against adverse occasions of failure or attack?
First-class IT support, quite simply.
In this article, we will compare some of the best IT support companies in Milton Keynes.
Why hire an IT support company?
Enlisting the help of a best-in-class IT support company, will open up the following benefits:
- the best digital and cloud-based tools at your disposal
- continual system upkeep
- proactive upgrades and interventions
- peak IT performance – every time
- no downtime
- contingency and back-up
- disaster recovery
- tip top security
The end result being a better, faster, more accurate and liberal business performance. More customers served and satisfied. Increased sales revenues and larger profit margins.
But it does come at an upfront cost. Therefore, IT support is definitely an investment. The cost vs. benefit needs weighing up.
However, if you:
(a) value the positive commercial impact IT best practice can have on your bottom line, and;
(b) partner with the right IT support provider who understands and embraces your business strategy…
…then, every £pound invested in quality IT support has the potential to be worth many multiples more (and abundantly so) coming back to you in financial returns.
Video introduction (courtesy of 2UPC)
A simple sketch of an outline to help set the scene of what an IT support company will do for your small business:
If you’re now looking to select the right provider for your business, here are some tips on finding the best match.
Finding the best IT support companies in Milton Keynes
IT support companies are a varied bunch on many fronts, much like any professional class of service provider.
And so, it’s worth doing your homework and market research before committing to a partnership.
Getting the right fit for your business can in the very best cases be transformational both to performance and profit. And at the least, cost saving and peace of mind which in any economy is comforting.
But how should you go about finding the best IT support company for your business?
Here are the recommended steps for commencing a project to scout and recruit that perfect IT partnership:
1. IT Audit: examine current usage & forecast future (inc. growth metrics)
Gather a project team together and establish a business-wide IT baseline.
This way, you firstly understand exactly how you use your IT systems and where the potential for benefit or risk sits.
Having done this, you’ll be strategically attuned to the exact characteristics you are looking for in the perfect IT support match.
So, an IT audit is where it starts. Here is a quick graphic detailing the areas that your IT audit should cover:
2. Draft requirements
Once you’ve done the first work of knowing what you need and why.
Next, simply write out a checklist or shopping list of requirement. Separate out the ‘must-haves’ from the ‘optionals’ and this suffices a framework for assessing the best IT support company for your business.
Now, to hit the market and examine the offerings and profiles of IT support companies in the area. All serious contenders will have websites, which is a good starting point. Take particular note of core competencies, leadership experience, packages and pricing – plus accreditation with advantageous solutions providers.
Based on your scouting expedition, with all due diligence done, the natural step to follow would be to order the contenders by list according to how well they satisfied your requirements on paper.
5. Put together a detailed RFP
Now, to draft a request for proposal (RFP). This will be a document rich in detail and context, though straight to the point and simple to understand.
Simply put, with this communication, your goal will be to put your selected providers in perfect understanding: what you want doing, why you want it and leave them enough room for suggestion – at what price.
Be sure to issue a courteous deadline for coaxing respondents to submit proposals in a timely fashion.
6. Field responses
Do your bit to follow up and gather in the pitches. Once you have all responses submitted prior to the deadline, you’ll need to evaluate the details amongst your project team members.
With the paper responses all examined, you’ll want to put some meat on the bone of what you’ve gathered thus far.
And so, naturally, next comes a series of in-depth provider interviews.
Be sure to prepare carefully and individually before each interview so that you ask the right questions to uncover all potential areas of benefit and risk involved.
Once your internal project team has further whittled down the provider selection to a much shorter list of preferred IT support companies, you’ll want to put them to a practical test.
IT support is a partnership after all and for the long term too.
It isn’t beyond the mark to ask to try before you buy.
9. SLA review
Lastly, once you’re certain on your final choice of IT support provider, you should review their SLA and through a series of reviews and amendments via negotiation – you should shape the most equitable and beneficial SLA (service level agreement). Top tip: Design your own SLA using a user-friendly template like this one from process.st
With an iron-clad SLA in place, next is to officially agree a deal with all the flexibility and security you require and get started with your new IT support partner!
What qualifications should your IT support company have?
IT support is a professional business service at heart. A supporting act to you increasing productivity, lowering cost and increasing profit.
You could argue, IT support is much less about raw technical know-how, but rather about a blended mix of these skills:
- knowing what to do,
- how best to do it, and;
- being able to do what’s best and delivering in the most suitable manner for your business.
In our opinion, here are the best features that qualify an IT company of being worthy to trust and invest in:
- Experience: Years under the belt don’t guarantee results, but it helps to grant confidence. Companies that have been around for some time, typically have had time to settle within a particular lane that works for them and their customers. They’ve learned not to do too much and also know the cost of dropping the ball. Commercial maturity is what you’d hope for here. Even if the company itself is relatively new, should the team behind it have experience this ought to be regarded in your assessment.
- Track record (seasons and successful campaigns): successes demonstrate ability. “If they’ve done it before, they can do it again…” – is the thinking here. A mere line-up of social proof ‘Our Client’ logos is not good enough, you need solid case studies and verifiable contacts at client businesses. Follow up the leads, ask relevant questions and put your mind at rest.
- Business acumen: as said before, IT support is a professional service business. It isn’t just about tech knowledge, but best application in a business sense – and for YOUR business. Therefore, the best IT support company for you will be the team that can ‘read your needs’ and provide the best solutions to suit.
- Subscriptions and accreditation: accessing the best tools of the trade makes a big difference for delivering value. The IT support provider with the most advantageous subscriptions will help give you the edge commercially in the market.
- Best fit: IT support is a partnership. Your business’s IT requirements being carried by an expert operation behind the scenes who have just what you need to succeed. Don’t look for the IT support provider that has it all, that’s if you don’t need it all. Rather seek a partnership that has the desired match.
- Affordability: you need to find an IT support company that has set price-points that work within your budget. Of course, it’s a trade-off. The more you require, the more you pay for. But be careful not to compromise too much on delivery for the sake of saving cost, because this can become counterproductive.
- Understand your vision: the right IT support company should take the time and effort to understand where you are going as a company. Not only should they ‘get’ your vision, but also should be enthused to lend a helping hand. Once you get a partner who is committed to your success and have the goods to give (at the right price), this will undoubtedly bear good dividend for the long term.
- Aligned strategic ambition: business isn’t business unless there’s growth. You should have confidence in what you do and should therefore want to do it for more and more people, as time goes on. Ambition, however moderate, is a necessary ingredient in business management – and finding an IT support company that is willing to run along side you at the same pace is key to a successful partnership.
- Complimentary company culture: speaking the same language and having similar manners will help the partnership thrive. Be sure to understand your provider’s code of ethics and company values before engagement. That way you avoid awkward clashes or misunderstanding in the long run.
- Professionalism: finally, your provider should want your custom and know how to take care of it. They should communicate well and desire to be held accountable to service levels. Clear performance metrics, regular reporting and proactive service provision should come as standard no matter who you choose, or what their price.
And finally, we thought it would be a worthwhile resource online to produce a list of the leading IT support companies in Milton Keynes.
Below, you’ll find the details of the top IT support providers in Milton Keynes along with a named key decision maker within their management team. This is everything you’ll need for making a meaningful 1st contact when enquiring about partnering with them.
Here is our recommended list of best IT support companies in Milton Keynes:
List of the top IT support companies in Milton Keynes
To qualify for making this top IT support companies list, these selected providers met the following criteria:
- A company website
- Managed services (i.e. IT support, security plus cloud & connectivity)
- Identifiable team members
- Quality vendor accreditation
- Google reviews
- Offices based in Milton Keynes
Here are the top 17 providers that our research discovered:
Cloud & More
11 Drakes Mews Milton Keynes MK8 0ER
01908 010 981
0845 257 8010
Linford Pavilion, Sunrise Parkway Linford Wood, Milton Keynes
0345 565 1953
7 Clarendon Drive
13 Shenley Pavilions, Chalkdell Drive, Shenley Wood, Milton Keynes, MK5 6LB.
03333 446 336
62 High Street
151 Silbury Boulevard, Milton Keynes Buckinghamshire MK9 1LH
0800 033 4800
01908 237 007
5 Shirwell Crescent, Furzton, Milton Keynes, MK4 1GA
10 - 100
33 Shenley Pavilions, Chalkdell Drive, Shenley Wood, Milton Keynes, MK5 6LB
Innovation House, 4 Presley Way, Crownhill, Milton Keynes MK8 0ES
0330 053 8180
10 Rusland Circus
01908 776 941
9 Linford Forum, Rockingham Drive, Linford Wood, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire,
255b Queensway Bletchley Milton Keynes Bucks MK2 2EH
01908 371 488
28 – 29 Clarke Road,
How to choose your preferred IT support company?
Given all IT providers above:
- offer near identical support services on paper,
- are based in Milton Keynes,
- are experienced, and;
- have on average 4/5 star reviews from customers
– just how do you choose 1 best company amongst them?
In our opinion, there are 4 factors which should guide you in making your perfect choice:
- People: …always the MOST unique quality of any service. Get to know the people from your shortlisted vendors and very quickly you’ll know if you’re speaking with your final choice or not.
- Tools: it might come down to what they use. If your business already have developed dependencies on certain software or hardware subscriptions, you might be swayed to choose a vendor accordingly.
- Pricing: budget always plays it’s part. However, in light of an investment, it should be the upside potential that has greater weighting in determining the final commitment. But where it’s near impossible to differentiate, cost will separate.
- Extras: and then there might be the wild card services that are thrown in by the provider that just tip the balance in their favour.
We’ve included a final bonus IT support provider to illustrate the point that generalist providers might not actually be what you are looking for.
In the case of the provider below, they would particularly appeal to you if you were and small-medium sized hotel operator in Milton Keynes.
Here’s who they are and why you might consider them:
Hotel Technology Management (Specialist IT Support Provider)
HTM (abbreviated) are the UK’s premium hotel IT support specialists and they are based in Milton Keynes.
They specialise in supporting SME hotel businesses leverage IT for greater efficiency and profitability.
Their services include:
- wi-fi and internet inc. interactive messaging
- guest facing solutions like In-Room TV, IoT
- high-speed networks
Since being founded in 1995, HTM have served hundreds of hotel clients in UK, Ireland and mainland Europe.
For more information, contact them direct:
Hotel Technology Management (htm) Ltd
56 Alston Drive, Bradwell Abbey,
(01980) 525 140
For a specialist IT support help desk outfit with automation and innovation benefits, then Managed might just pip it for you.
If you are heavy Apple users, then perhaps 10-100 are your best bet.
And finally, if you are a solopreneur looking for reliable yet affordable IT support, then 2UPC have the most appropriate packages.
We hope that this article has helped direct you to the best IT support company for your Milton Keynes based business.
Still undecided and need more help?