6 Reasons Why You Need Managed Services in Fort Lauderdale

The need for managed services has never been more critical as innovation in the business world is continually on the rise. A managed IT services provider based in Fort Lauderdale helps your South Florida business to mitigate natural disasters like hurricanes and keep up with the pace of the advancing technology and enhance your business’ efficiency.

Are you unsure if Managed Services are correct for your business?

Here are six reasons why you might want to reconsider:

1. Minimized Downtime and Increased Productivity

A managed IT service provider helps you to avoid system shutdown and failures, thereby reducing the time spent on making complex IT decisions. When these technology-related frustrations are minimized, your team is able to focus on their work, which in turn guarantees your company a higher level of productivity.

2. Improved Compliance and Security

As technology continues to advance, cyber-criminals are also continuing to invent new malicious attack methods, which puts businesses at a high risk of data breaches. A managed service provider will help protect your business from such attacks and offer quick solutions if one happens. They are also able to supplement additional protocols, procedures, and policies to ensure compliance.

3. High-Level Support on Up-to-the-Minute Technology

One of the benefits of constant system management and monitoring is that you can rely on the most current IT systems at no financial risk or extra costs. Additionally, as a result of their many years of experience, quality managed service providers are able to implement new IT systems within a short time, thereby saving you money and time.

4. Good Return on Business and Cost Effectiveness

Employing the services of a managed IT service provider is a cost-saving investment as it helps to control outgoing expenses, which in turn enhances return on investment.  A managed service provider is able to achieve this by minimizing hardware costs, keeping systems updated, providing expert knowledge, and sustaining high levels of security.

5. Access to a Wide Range of Solutions

Over time, your business needs various solutions such as customer relationship management software (CRM) and accounting software solutions to handle multiple individual needs that keep on rising. With accounting solutions, it becomes easy to monitor taxes, vendors, and financial information. CRM helps to gather greater business visibility through campaigns, notes, and surveys. Managed service providers are able to provide these solutions, which results in a more secure data controlled system that helps your company to manage both customer and business information.

6. Regular Maintenance

A managed IT service provider offers a proactive approach to maintenance, which rids you of the worries about dependability and network speed solutions. They are always on standby to detect any potential vulnerabilities, disturbances, and threats and then fix them as quickly as possible.

The Bottom Line

As technology continues to transform the world of business, there is a need for you to streamline your business’ IT operations. Hiring a qualified managed services provider saves you money, time, frustrations, and, more importantly, enhances your business’ productivity.

Are you worried about how to secure the best managed IT services provider in Fort Lauderdale? Worry no more! Bluwater Technologies, a WheelHouse IT company, has got you covered. Contact us today and see the difference.

5 Outsourcing Questions for Choosing Small Business IT Support

5 Questions to Ask When Choosing Small Business IT Support

One true fact is that no company in the second decade of the 21st Century does business without leveraging some type of technology. Hence, no company in this digital age doesn’t need IT support.

When you’re getting your small business up and running, hiring a full-time IT professional, let alone a whole team of IT experts, is something that you probably can’t afford. Nevertheless, you cannot afford not to have an IT team, because you very much need it. What to do?

Luckily, many IT service providers offer small business IT support to those companies that cannot afford to hire full-time IT professionals. If you’re considering outsourcing the IT functions of your small business to an IT service provider, then there are several crucial questions to ask your potential partner in technology.

Do you specialize in any industry?

Finding out the specific industries that your potential IT company specializes in is a crucial first step. For instance, if they make 60 percent or more of their revenues from logistics companies and you are a law firm, there is likely going to be some issues.

It’s best to outsource to an IT company that is conversant with the ins and outs of your industry and offers technology solutions that are valuable for businesses in your specific industry. An IT services provider who has enough experience in your field will understand your unique software and hardware needs, thus will spend less time familiarizing themselves with foreign applications and more time optimizing technology for success.

What services are included in your IT support contracts?

“We cover everything” is an answer that sure sounds good, but it is not the one you are looking for. You have to ask yourself, does “everything” means that all their services are preventative, proactive, or both?

It is important to understand your business needs beforehand, and then ask the IT provider if they offer the services that your business needs. Also, should you experience technical issues with your server that necessitate a replacement, will the replacement be covered by the contract, or will it attract additional costs?

How flexible are your IT support options?

IT support providers offer varying degrees of support, depending on their clients’ IT needs and budgets. As a small business, you not only need an IT provider that fosters company growth, but that is also capable of adapting their IT services to fluctuations in your business environment.

A reliable IT support provider is the one that is able to provide a variety of customizable solutions. For instance, the IT company should not only serve as your fully outsourced IT department, but it should also provide expert consulting to help create a solid IT plan that supports our company’s long-term goals.

Will we have a dedicated account manager?

It is of essence that you know who to contact in case of IT issues. Ask the IT provider whether you should reach out to an account manager, support desk, or the IT technicians themselves. A good IT support provider is one that appoints a dedicated account manager to handle responsibilities such as answering your questions, scheduling face-to-face meetings, etc.

How much does your service cost

When talking to a prospective IT support provider, you should be able to get a very close estimate of what it will cost to manage and support your IT network. Besides providing you with an estimate, they should also give clear and understandable reasons to justify their service cost. With these estimates, you can be able to compare the provider with other prospective IT support providers to find the one that offers the level of support your business needs at a cost that you can afford.

Conclusion

Deciding to outsource your small business IT support services is a big smart decision. The above five questions can help you to choose the IT company that is best suited for the job.

With the right IT support company, you will be able to establish a favorable client-provider relationship and set your business up for success.

Forbes: Does Your MSP Have Your Back?

Forbes: Does Your MSP Have Your Back?

While small businesses, like their larger counterparts, need end-to-end services to keep them running smoothly—file sharing, software, and security as a service to cloud backups—less-experienced MSPs may simply be riding the cloud surge to keep their doors open.

As the Forbes Technology Council notes:

“…so many MSPs are newbies and/or are opportunistically hanging out where the action appears to be. It appears that the accent today is more on “provider” and less on “service.” A fair number of MSPs have taken to selling the cloud — a “best of times” development at first blush.” 

Sizing up your MSP…

Aside from basic services, does your MSP stand ready to do the really heavy lifting in times of Disaster Recovery, or handling hybrid installs with your latest SaaS applications?

SMB owners often place their networks ‘at risk’ on many fronts when timely security updates are shuffled to the bottom of their to-do-lists. What’s more, just attempting to keep ahead of the latest IT developments can translate quickly to poor productivity in light of ever-changing market conditions.

Vetting your MSP…

Make sure you’ve made a list of questions to ask your potential candidate. including:

  • Do they offer more than off-the-shelf, basic services—can they tailor services to your specific needs?
  • How many years in the business?
  • Staffing: Level of engineering experience?
  • Is the service level agreement fit your needs? Penalties for not meeting requirements

Ask the tough questions….

A ‘biggie’ is making sure the MSP is SSAE (Standards for Attestation Engagements) compliant, offering 14-day retention, for example, with its managed backups, as well as “application-level protection, advanced monitoring, and multilevel intrusion prevention, SSL capability, hardware firewall, and IP-restricted FTP.”

BluWater Technology can offer your company levels of expertise tailored to your growing needs. Contact us to learn how our services can help your business run more efficiently: we improve bottom lines by bringing ‘fixed costs’ to your operation’s IT expenditures.

Outsourcing IT Functions Reduces Costs and Increases Productivity

Tips for Maximizing A Managed Help Desk Service

The  ‘Forbes Technology Council’  reminds business owners to ask the right questions before making their next IT purchase: Is that hardware, program or application “vital, a luxury or redundant?”

Forbes: The under-capitalized SMB faces IT challenges

In general, larger companies have the financial where-with-all to maintain an in-house IT department, leaving the under-capitalized SMB-owner in a “struggle to stay afloat” during a downturn. 

“Lack of expertise” behind many IT expenditures

Keeping up with the changes in technology can impact IT expenditures. Worst case is not knowing just how the purchase will ultimately help their business succeed. 

Consequently, decision-makers can be “overwhelmed with choices,” and an overall  “lack of expertise.”  

Budgets consume business-critical systems

In fact, according to a recent Deloitte ‘Tech Trends’ report, it is not unusual for IT expenditures to consume “as much as 70%” of the budget just to keep “business-critical systems” up and running. 

Cheaper storage, cloud, and outsourcing have lowered…budgetary outlay(s) by 20 percent or more. Yet in an era of perpetually tight IT budgets, finding ways to redirect financial and human assets from operations to innovation remains a top…goal.

Forbes favors IT outsourcing

Forbes recommends ‘outsourcing’ IT functions to help remedy cash-flow problems, or issues stemming from a business downturn. By offloading some, or all, of their IT operations to an experienced, MSP business owners benefit by having more time to run their business. 

Ultimately, using a  managed service provider (MSP) like BluWater Technology can not only reduce IT costs but can also add that next level of expertise to your operations. Ultimately, this leads to a “win-win scenario of saving time and money” while “improving team productivity.”

To find out how your business can operate more efficiently by using our MSP services contact us.  We help improve bottom-lines by assigning fixed costs to some—or all—of a companies’ IT expenditures.

Tips for Maximizing A Managed Help Desk Service

Tips for Maximizing A Managed Help Desk Service

Technology is an essential component for most businesses today because of what it can help workers and business owners achieve. Ensuring that your team has the necessary resources for handling daily responsibilities will promote the achievement of set goals. A managed help desk service is part of the resources that will prove beneficial for entrepreneurs seeking IT support services.

When you invest in technology, you need to identify competent individuals who can manage your systems and offer your employees the support they need, and that is what you will achieve through a managed help desk service. Here are some tips on how you can maximize managed help desk services.

Acquire the Right Help Desk Solution

One of the advantages of managed IT services is that they withdraw the financial burden of investing in hardware, which results in savings that entrepreneurs can redirect to other profitable activities within their businesses. However, you cannot take advantage of such IT services as a managed help desk service without investing in the right software.

Acquiring the ideal managed help desk solution is advisable because it helps you maximize the services your provider is offering that relate to this particular software.

Prioritize Availability

If you want to get the most out of your managed help desk services provider, they should be available round the clock. You cannot tell when you will experience IT issues or downtime in your enterprise, and for that reason, your service provider should furnish you with details on how you can reach them whenever you need their assistance.

Outsource

Managed help desk services are critical because they facilitate the continuity of your business operations. Business operators who do not have the resources and skills necessary for establishing an in-house IT department should consider outsourcing managed help desk services. Apart from realizing profitability as a result of savings, outsourcing managed help desk services allows you to enjoy the professionalism of experts in this field.

If you need more information on ideas for maximizing managed help desk services, contact us today!