In the world of Managed Service Providers, strong relationships often fall by the wayside very quickly in the event of IT issues, outages or data breaches. When “IT” are seen as the bad guys, this can create a toxic environment and poor working relationships. So what leads to the relationship breakdown between MSP and client, and what can be done to prevent it?
Constant communication with clients is absolutely vital for the ongoing strength of a partnership. If there are reports of network issues it’s always prudent to speak to all the clients as soon as possible and to provide them with regular updates in line with SLAs. Too commonly though, when there are network problems clients are forced into unworkable environments. This then fosters contempt from the business owners and staff due to “internet down” behaviour, including and not limited to, reasonable anger!
Infrastructure that can grow with clients
Understanding a business’s aims and objectives is important – the network or infrastructure an MSP agrees to work with can be vastly different to the one the client needs or has. Taking over the management of old networks can be hard work, intricacies must be understood and disruption must be minimal and yet, it’s the perfect time to improve upon what’s already there. Going to a client, potential or current, with a vastly improved infrastructure will strengthen the relationship and shows them that you understand their challenges and focus as a business.
Consistency in staffing
One common theory is that relationships suffer because there’s always a different person at the end of the phone - particularly prudent when it comes to network support. MSPs that have a lineup per client - dedicated account managers and technical leads for example - tend to fare better from a relationship perspective as they allow the engineers and customer service agents to build rapport with the staff client side, meaning that any problems are resolved by someone who is familiar with the network and the people, rather than by someone entirely new.
By ensuring that the above points are covered when working with clients, MSPs can work to build the best relationships possible.
To work with us and our small, dedicated cloud and data centre support team, please do get in touch on 0161 498 1200.