There are many advantages of working with a virtual CIO. They will help you in creating a perfect IT strategy for your business. Many SMBs are now thinking to outsource a CIO for their business. Every organization needs IT support for running their business. However, you can’t hire a dedicated professional team for your network. If you have a small or medium-sized business, then you might be thinking to hire a virtual CIO. This will ensure that you don’t need to hire an in-house IT team for your company. Experienced MSPs like Bleuwire will help you in achieving your business goals. However, you should first make sure that your IT partner can help you in maintaining the network. You should test the knowledge of your virtual CIO before hiring them. Make sure that they can maintain your servers and network.
Every business should first focus on computer connectivity as they are important for your business operations. If you are running a service business, then you need to access your contract, resources, service agreements, and customer records. Your retailers need to manage shipping and inventory. They need to process sales transactions. Similarly, construction companies need to manage their materials, regulations, and electronic plans. Most business operations have to deal with payroll, spreadsheets, documents, and email. You also need VoIP for running your telephone service. If your network is down, then you will lose a lot of money.
According to a study by Gartner, companies can lose more than $5,600 per minute of downtime. Avaya has also done their study and according to them, a data center downtime can cost around $7,900 per minute. You can lose more than $540k per hour. If your network is down, then your business can lose a lot of money. Thus, you should first evaluate your virtual CIO before hiring them. Make sure that your IT partner can handle your needs. They should be proactive in their approach. A good MSP like Bleuwire will help you in avoiding downtime. In this article, we are going to share some questions that you should ask your vCIO before hiring them.
Experience and Expertise
First, you should check if you are working with an experienced managed service provider. Make sure that they have been running their business for a while. If you are dealing with retail operations, then you should ensure that your MSP can handle the point-of-sale system. Similarly, if your company is relying on telecommunication, then your MSP should be an expert in VoIP. Make sure that your MSP expertise is relevant to your business operation.
You should check the reviews of your managed service provider. If your MSP provider has satisfied customers, then you can work with them. You should have honest conversations with their customers. This will help you in understanding the weaknesses and strengths of your virtual CIO.
SLAs or Service Level Agreements
Experienced MSPs like Bleuwire will provide very good SLA to their companies. You can use these SLAs for holding your IT vendors accountable. If your IT vendor is not providing good services, then they will pay you fiscal penalties. MSPs will provide you a minimum level of promised service.
You should ensure that routine service agreement is a part of your MSP Service level agreement. If your vCIO is regularly checking your network and systems, then they can remove most of the errors. Make sure that your vCIO is going to regularly maintain your systems. This will ensure that your systems are up-to-date. They should take a proactive approach by regularly maintaining and monitoring your system.
Make sure that your vCIO is offering a minimum response time. Good MSPs like Bluewire can offer you 24/7 support. They will help you in quickly resolving your issues. Your vCIO should at least provide you sufficient response time. First, you should calculate the RTO or recovery time objective of your business. This is the amount of downtime that your business can tolerate. Make sure that the response time of your vCIO is less than your RTO.
Most IT support companies are now offering remote monitoring services to their clients. This is very important now as most of your employees are working remotely. Your vCIO should use web consoles or other tools for checking your network performance. This will ensure that they can quickly spot problems in your network before they become critical issues.
Data Protection and Security
You should check the protocols that your vCIO will use for backing up your system. They should also ensure that your data backup is secure by using some security tools. Bleuwire can even protect your company from a data or security breach. These things are becoming more important with time because the network architectures are becoming complex with time. Many companies are using a hybrid network that uses both on-premise and cloud resources. Make sure that your vCIO can help you in handling natural disasters. They should help you in creating a disaster recovery strategy that will protect your business from disasters.
Cost is always going to be a big factor when you are working with an MSP. Make sure that your vCIO is more cost-effective when compared with a full-time CIO. However, this doesn’t mean that you should go for the cheapest offer available on the market. Reliable expertise is always going to be a little expensive but make sure that your SLA contract has fixed or predictable cost. You should ensure that there are no hidden fees that can increase your costs.
Many SMBs are hiring a vCIO for their business. But, they should make sure that the vetting process is tough and rigorous. You should ensure that you are only working with a good Managed service provider. They should truly become part of your enterprise. Your vCIO should help you in solving both complex and simple IT problems. You should ask difficult questions before hiring your virtual CIO. If you need more information regarding vCIO, then you can contact Bleuwire.
Contact us today to learn about Bleuwire™ services and solutions in how we can help your business.