When you’re considering working with an outsourced IT support team, you will find a lot of different options with regards to types of contracts and support agreements. You could plump to just work on a pay as you go (break/fix) basis, a block hours deal where you buy time up front, or a fixed price IT support contract which includes most or all of the items your business will need on a monthly basis.
Clearly, the major benefit of a fixed price IT support contract is the fact that you know what you’re support costs will be on a monthly basis, which makes your cash flow much more predictable. However, there are some other less obvious benefits that you may not have considered. Here are five of them for you to ponder!
1. Fixed price IT support can cost less than other contracts
If you have a contract that doesn’t include enough cover for your needs, or you’re paying for ad-hoc servicing when something breaks, then getting the right type of fixed price contract could save you money. This is because the pricing for ad-hoc servicing can mount up above the monthly cost for an all-inclusive service. The same is true of an incorrect contract, as often the ‘overs’ – the parts that aren’t covered in the monthly cost – can add up quickly.
2. Your provider will be working harder for you
Because your provider will be receiving a fixed amount of money per month, it’s in their best interest to keep your system working as smoothly as possible. This is because they don’t earn anything extra when they have to send an engineer on-site, so a good fixed price IT support provider will be performing a lot of preventative maintenance and monitoring. Which leads nicely onto:
3. Your systems should be more reliable
Due to the preventative maintenance mentioned above, your systems should be more reliable. A good service provider will also have excellent monitoring in place to report on things like disk space consumption, RAID errors, performance issues and software failures. This ensures they can react quickly to fix a small issue, before it becomes a major outage – which saves both the provider and you from losing time and money because the IT systems stay online.
4. There’s less paperwork to deal with
A fixed monthly support agreement means you receive a single invoice per month, which means there are less invoices for you or your accounts department to deal with. Many providers will offer payment via Direct Debit or credit card, which saves you sending cheques or making a bank payment as well.
5. You can build a plan that suits your business
A fixed price IT support contract doesn’t have to include everything you may ever need. You can build a contract that suits your business requirements. For example, if you rarely ever need an engineer on-site at your business then ask for a contract that covers unlimited remote and helpdesk support. Your monthly support costs will be fixed, and you’ll know that you can still call an engineer if required for an additional charge.
If you want a truly fixed cost, go for a contract that covers on-site, remote and helpdesk support. Then you’re covered for all eventualities, and know exactly what your spend will be for the month.
Either way, a good provider will give you a choice of plans that fit your requirements for support levels and budget.