Moving from one MSP to another can be a daunting process. You might be thinking there are so many things that could go wrong, with multiple complexities and challenges to overcome. You’re not wrong, but that doesn’t mean you should stay with an MSP you are not happy with.
By following a tried and tested process, you can smooth out the transition from one IT support company to another. Plus, you won’t even need to do much of the work. Here’s how.
Establish a Project Lead
A good first step is to establish a project lead who will handle all communications, make day-to-day decisions, and ensure the transition stays on schedule.
If you don’t appoint a project lead, things can get missed, miscommunications can occur, and you might experience unnecessary downtime.
Understand Your Existing Contract
It is essential to get a full understanding of your current contract.
Some things to look out for include:
Identify Your New MSP
You should identify your new MSP before you start the cancellation process with your existing provider. There are two main reasons for this. The first is to ensure there is no break in IT support. The ideal situation is a smooth and seamless transition.
The other main reason for identifying your new MSP before canceling with the old one is that your new MSP can help with the changeover process. In fact, your new MSP can handle most of the heavy lifting.
When identifying a new MSP, think carefully about why you want to change. Your expectations need to be clearly communicated and agreed on by the new MSP.
Understand Your Existing IT Estate
Working with your new MSP, you should conduct an audit to get a complete understanding of your existing IT estate. The audit should include hardware, software, cloud solutions, and IT infrastructure management tools.
The audit should also include security, including anti-virus, firewalls, and other perimeter security solutions. Special focus should be given to security as the solutions currently in place could be specific to your existing MSP. In these situations, the process of switching needs to be carefully considered to ensure gaps in security don’t develop, and to keep systems running smoothly.
The audit should also identify anything within your IT estate that is difficult or challenging to support. Your new MSP will need this information.
Give Your Existing MSP Notice
Follow the procedures in your existing contract to give your current MSP notice that you are moving to a new provider. You should also introduce your old MSP to the new one, as they will need to work together to make the transition happen.
It’s important to do whatever you can to make the change as frictionless as possible. A good starting point is to make sure you follow the clauses in your existing contract and ensure there is good communication. This includes making sure you are up to date with invoice payments.
Plan the Steps in the Changeover
A big-bang approach is rarely effective (or even possible) when switching to a new MSP. Instead, it is a process that takes place gradually, so it should be properly planned. Careful consideration should be given to the final stage processes, such as when the old MSP withdraws from your IT network, collects hardware they own, and shuts down their accounts.
You should consider potential system downtime when planning the steps. If it cannot be avoided, it is best to plan downtime when it will have the lowest possible impact on your business.
Communicate to Employees
Changing your IT support provider will have an impact across your organization. Therefore, it is beneficial to communicate with your employees, making sure they have contact information for whenever they need to get in touch with support.
Also, inform them of any steps they will be involved in. For example, your new MSP might provide training on automated tools, self-service tools, or ticketing systems.
Your New MSP Takes Full Control
At the point where your new MSP takes full control, all admin logins and access points should be changed to prevent your old MSP from being able to access your systems. A full backup will probably be taken by your new MSP.
Improving IT Support in Your Organization
There are some situations where you are forced to move from one MSP to another. For example, your business might be outgrowing the capabilities of your existing provider, so you want to mitigate the risks that this presents. However, in most situations, the main reason for switching to a new MSP is to get an improved level of service – such as the high standards of service that we offer at StepUP IT.
By following the points outlined above, you will optimize the transition process to your new MSP.