9 Key Items That Must Be Covered In Your Managed Service Agreement (Contract Essentials)
If you’re looking to outsource your organization’s IT support, then you’ll have first to sign a managed service agreement. Find out below what that means and what the agreement should cover.
So, you’ve finally decided to outsource your IT support? In that case, you’re probably familiar with all the numerous advantages, including greater efficiency, improved security posture, and so on. But before you realize any of the benefits, you first need to know what to expect from your service agreement.
Not quite up to speed? Keep reading to find out more!
What Is a Managed Service Agreement?
A Managed Service Agreement is a contract that highlights which services you’ll be getting from your provider and how much each will cost. An agreement also specifies the service provider’s roles as well as the duration of the contract. It might outline any special services or terms that both parties have agreed upon mutually. In a nutshell, the arrangement must cover everything your business requires.
However, before putting pen to paper, you need to be certain you understand the SLA. Don’t be afraid to request clarification on any terms you find unclear.
What Are the 9 Key Items That Your Service Agreement Should Cover?
All managed IT services must incorporate basic server maintenance, storage maintenance, network administration, and routine network issues. Ideally, the service agreement should cover all that you need to be taken care of on your network. A great way to achieve this is by compiling a list of your requirements before meeting with your provider.
Security is at the forefront of everyone’s thinking nowadays.
Your IT services company needs to have a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy that involves:
- Intrusion detection and prevention.
- Firewall settings.
- Encryption at the file level.
- How they’ll carry out those services.
Helpdesk Support (On-Premises or Remote)
Are they a local managed services provider, or do they only offer remote support? If your current IT services are cloud-based, then remote support ought to be satisfactory. But you still need to take note of their Helpdesk Support hours as stipulated in your arrangement. Preferably, you want an IT vendor that is available 24/7.
You need to ask how your information will be backed up and stored. Perhaps you already have on-premises storage and backup infrastructure. The thing is, your service provider might only deliver those services via the cloud.
You’ll have to bring these concerns up with your vendor, and in case they only utilize the cloud, you’ll need to ask:
- Is their backup hosted on a public or private cloud server?
- How secure is their cloud backup solution?
- Where will your backups be done?
- Will they test the backups to ensure they work?
Control is key, particularly when it concerns any vulnerabilities with the potential of disrupting your network. Your provider needs to monitor mobile devices, virtual machines, remote workers, and every other aspect of your network. Monitoring should also involve intrusion prevention and detection as well as firewalls and configuration.
Policy Creation and Updates
As your organization expands, you’ll need to adapt your IT infrastructure to match your increased demands. Similarly, you’ll also have to replace old policies with new, updated ones. This is particularly true if your industry has strict compliance regulations.
Disaster Recovery Plan
Your provider must have a comprehensive, per-location recovery plan since catastrophic events are occurring much more regularly. A robust recovery plan guarantees you’ll be back up and running in no time in case disaster strikes.
Termination of Service
For various reasons, you might ultimately decide to return to in-house IT support. Your agreement needs to lay out what occurs should you end the contract early.
It should protect both parties meaning none of you should have the option to recruit each other’s employees. Naturally, they must also agree not to sell your information to other companies.
In the Market for a Reliable Managed IT Services Provider?
Our experienced technology professionals at tca SynerTech are eager to answer any IT-related questions you may have. We serve business in West Michigan, Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, South Bend, and Michiana.
Contact us now to schedule an initial consultation!
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