There’s a lot of support out there when it comes to outsourcing your IT help desk, but just like everything else in business, it’s important to set milestones and sense-check whether the service is working like it should and if the provider is making good on their promises.

That doesn’t mean a time-consuming or expensive agency review. There are some quick, but sure-fire ways, to review your outsourced help desk without breaking a sweat, or the bank.

Here are our top tips on the questions to ask of your business, to find the answers you need:

  1. Do you have more peace of mind?

Not having to worry about what could go wrong with your IT system or how to fix it in the case of an emergency is what you pay for.

The peace of mind that comes from knowing your tech is in good hands can be the difference between a relaxed or stressed vibe in the workplace, not to mention a good and bad night’s sleep.

  1. Are you seeing cost savings?

It’s safe to assume any outsource provider’s pitch would have included cost savings as a benefit you could expect to enjoy, and it’s an important one to follow up on.

These savings can be made in lots of different ways, such as reduced downtime, increased productivity and more reliable IT costs because spend is controlled and not spiking reactively as a result of IT crisis management and overtime.

  1. Has customer satisfaction increased?

Your help desk’s customer could be your employees or customers who’ve bought a product or service, but the outcome should be the same: fewer issues, faster problem resolution and increased client satisfaction.

If technical support is slow, issues are recurring, communication is insufficient or reporting has slowed…you should consider them flags and start asking questions.

An efficient outsourced help desk is not just available but proactive, responding quickly and keeping customers in the loop, so they know their issue is being managed and in good hands.

  1. Are you benefiting from statistical reporting?

Managed service desks are hotbeds of information and invaluable business insight. Tickets raised provide a unique view of the business and smart use of the metrics produced can help improve processes and procedures and transform the customer experience.

Examples of tracked areas might include: tickets by time of day (business hours and after hours), tickets by resolver, average tickets per day, average time to ticket close, average time to technician accepting ticket and average log entries per ticket.

With effective ticket management, you should have constant access to every detail of what goes on and regular reports or dashboards that allow you to digest the information in a useful way to make ongoing improvements.

  1. Is support available 24/7?

If your managed help desk works perfectly 9-5, but falls over if an issue arises at 4am, your provider isn’t cutting the mustard.

Tech support should be 24/7 and if it’s not, make sure it’s reflected in the price and you’re not overpaying for an office hours support system that goes to sleep at the same time you do.

  1. Is your service corrective and preventative?

Break-fix is all well and good, but a good help desk partner is one that looks for root causes, resolves issues, operates with a business continuity plan and takes measures to make sure those issues don’t happen again.

  1. Do you have fewer HR headaches?

If recruitment, set-up, training, rewarding and firing in some cases, is no longer your problem, you should be having an easier time on the personnel management front.

Your service desk provider is responsible for ensuring your business is fully supported, so you’ll never be in a position where you’re short-staffed or without the expertise you need.   

If you have experienced anything less, it might be time to ask questions about how your account is resourced.

  1. Have your change management processes improved?

A good managed help desk can help support change initiatives for new or existing IT processes, practices or policies.

Having a dedicated resource should lessen the workload internally and ensure you have all the technical expertise you need to deliver change on time and on budget.

  1. Is there more freedom?

Day-to-day IT issues can swallow internal resources whole and stop employees doing what they’re supposed to. Time saving should be marked, stress around tech issues should be eliminated and IT should take on more of a business development role in the hands of what should be akin to a Virtual CIO.

  1. Is there open dialogue?

You’re paying for knowledge, skills and expertise, so you want a partner who shares it all, resolving everyday issues but also offering advice, making recommendations where technology can work harder you and educating the business on how your IT infrastructure should evolve over time to help your business keep pace.

Getting the answers to these questions will give you an insight into whether your IT support desk is meeting expectations and driving your business forward. If you answer ‘no’ to more than a couple of these, you need to start looking for another service provider.

Cover the basics of what you need to know to ensure your IT is helping your business to grow by downloading the first part of our IT 101 eBook:


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