2024 is here, and every business wants it to be the best year ever! It’s a time to consider what has worked over the last 12 months and what needs to be reviewed to improve your business and thrive. 

When it comes to technology, there can be some real ‘pinch points’ that companies just allow to become the ‘norm’, but why do companies ‘let it go’? 

Usually, there are the same few worries… 

  • It is probably more hassle than it’s worth to review.
  • If we change IT providers, it could mean downtime or a loss of data. 
  • We have been with our IT company since we started and even though we aren’t overly happy, we don’t want to upset them.
  • I never hear from the IT company so it must all be ok.
  • I haven’t had a cyber incident yet, so it must all be ok.

These pinch points, however, add up to annoyance and frustration and ultimately can be costly to the business. 

So, when and why should you seek a new technology partner? … 

1. Performance Issues

If your current IT provider consistently fails to meet service level agreements (SLAs) or if you experience frequent downtime, slow response times, or unresolved technical issues. This is a red flag of a company that cannot maintain their service and could be missing more behind the scenes than they admit too. This leads us to…

2. Availability of support

Are they always available? Do they have staff that support you when your main IT contact goes on holiday? Do they have an ‘out of hours’ service and weekend service managed by their own team, the people you know and trust and not an outsourced supplier? Your business may not always be 9-5, Monday to Friday, and neither should your technology partner.

3. Outdated Technology

How do you know If your IT provider is keeping up with the latest technological advancements? Outdated technology can impact your business’s efficiency and competitiveness. A lack of updates and modern solutions may hinder your growth and scalability.

4. Poor Communication

Effective communication is crucial in IT support. If your current provider is unresponsive, fails to communicate clearly, or lacks transparency in their operations, it can lead to frustration and misunderstandings.

5. Security Concerns

Cybersecurity is a top priority for businesses. If your current IT provider doesn’t prioritise security measures, leaves vulnerabilities unaddressed, or has a history of security breaches, it’s a red flag. Changing providers may be necessary to ensure the safety of your data and systems.

6. Lack of Scalability

As your business grows, your IT infrastructure needs to scale accordingly. If your current provider struggles to accommodate your expanding needs or imposes significant costs for upgrades, it might be time to find a more scalable solution.

7. Unmet Expectations

If your IT provider promised specific outcomes or features that haven’t been delivered, it could indicate a lack of competence or commitment. Repeated unmet expectations can be a valid reason to consider a switch. 

8. Cultural Misfit

Sometimes, the relationship between your business and the IT provider breaks down due to a misalignment of values, work culture, or business philosophy. A provider that understands your business needs and aligns with your goals is essential for a successful partnership.

9. Costs

Let’s face it: technology services can be expensive, but do you know exactly what you are paying for? A service provider who, every time there is a problem, just sticks another service or product on top of what you already have may not be keeping themselves professionally updated or trained on the products they provide. 

10. Contractual or Legal Issues

If there are contractual disputes or legal concerns, or your provider consistently violates agreed-upon terms, it might be time to explore other options.

Before making a decision, it is also advisable to conduct a careful assessment and due diligence of prospective new providers to ensure they meet your specific requirements and expectations. Read our next blog on the simple steps for businesses to consider and ask when changing IT service providers. 

Your IT service provider should be the technology partner of your business. You should trust their advice and feel assured that they are working constantly above and beyond to make your business thrive. 

Southern Solutions has been a trusted partner to businesses across the South for over 15 years. Advice is always available, so please give Oli a ring at 02382 022099