Choosing an IT Partner for your business
When it comes to choosing an IT partner, finding the right fit can pay huge dividends in the long-term. The significant benefits span the entire organisation - from enhanced productivity and strengthened security to reduced costs and improved reputation. Conversely, choosing the wrong partner could be a huge missed opportunity.
Common similarities we have identified across successful businesses.
There are a number of common similarities that we identified across successful businesses.
1. They do not get distracted. They focus on their core business only.
2. They invest time and effort into finding strategic partners for non-core aspects of their business and then trust those partners to deliver.
How do they select and choose strategic partners for their business?
When choosing a partner for any aspect of your business you should focus how they can add value to your business. Avoid focusing on your immediate need only. Consider their skills and experience and how that might benefit your business in the future.
Asking the right questions
It’s crucial to ask the right questions when deciding on which IT company to work with. Limiting yourself to asking who can implement predetermined solutions for the cheapest cost could actually prove detrimental to your business.
Finding the best option means asking meaningful questions like:
How proactive is the company in identifying new threats and proposing new solutions?
What level of support is in place if something goes wrong?
How many resources is the company investing in researching new technology and solutions?
Does the company offer regular strategic consultations and long-term IT planning?
How does the company identify and prevent risks?
What do their existing customers say about the company?
Avoid the wrong approach
Far too many businesses get the approach all wrong. They often select and choose their IT provider in terms of their ability to provide support for the lowest cost.
This approach often means that a much better partner is not given the opportunity to demonstrate their value to your business. It’s a bit like shopping around for the cheapest doctor and then telling the doctor what he or she needs to do for your ailment. There is clearly no value in that approach.
Before you engage
Before you engage with any perspective partner consider what you want from the partner to help you achieve your business goals. Avoid focusing on the past or doing what you always done.
What if I dont know what questions to ask
If you don’t know what questions to ask or if you are unsure of how the partner can help your business why not ask them to present their capabilities and explain how they have helped other businesses.
IT is a key business function not just support
Remember that IT should not just be about support. For your business to be successful you should choose and select partners that you can trust with a key function of your business.
Once you identify and select your strategic business partners you should challenge but trust their advice and their ability to help you achieve your business goals.