What should IT Support look like in the modern era?

IT support is a critical function for any type and size of business, but the way in which service providers are appraised is no longer relevant. Companies will often tell us that they are happy with their existing IT provider, typically, as they are responsive when issues arise, and they understand the various applications that users rely on.  

Responsiveness is a valid measurement of good service, but the real question is how many of those issues could have been avoided in the first place?  And, is the provider proactive in other important aspects such as security, user productivity and compliance?

The traditional model of a reactive service desk and remote monitoring is no longer relevant. These are the foundational components of a support service, but a truly capable supplier will deliver a service that goes further.

It’s for this reason, we’ve taken the traditional reactive IT support model and transformed into something which reflects the modern needs of IT. We provide a fully managed support service which has been designed to improve security, increase network uptime, assist with compliance headaches, and boost user productivity. This is achieved by including innovative features and value-added components within our service as standard.

For example, our service includes routine security checks of your local network and Microsoft 365 secure score. What is Microsoft 365 Secure Score? This is a dynamic assessment provided by Microsoft for every 365 customer, it directly evaluates the security of various service settings and provides a score indicating overall performance. We often find issues as a result of incomplete or improper service configurations, most of which can be remediated using freely available tools.

We also check our customers domains for resilience against spoofing, in other words, the ability for someone to send an email using your domain name to commit fraud. 9 out of 10 domains we check are missing basic protection, and with email fraud growing at an exponential rate we view this as an essential component of an overall security stance.

An example of our productivity improvement features includes e-learning for Microsoft 365. Microsoft 365 includes some great apps such as Teams, Planner SharePoint, and Power BI. These have powerful features but are often underutilised, or worse still, not used at all. Product training is an obvious way to improve uptake, but traditional methods do not suit the modern workplace.   We want our customers get the most out of what Microsoft has to offer, so, we provide a 365 e-learning platform as standard. Users have access to short, self-service training videos via an online portal. This allows them to choose content as needed to perform specific tasks and is proven to be the most efficient, least obtrusive way to impart knowledge, while increasing productivity.

Improvements to security and user awareness lead to a tangible reduction in support needs and improvements in uptime, but we look to improve on this further by actively reviewing the tickets raised and types of service demand. Areas such as repeat requests, commonality between cases and specific user challenges are identified which leads to a more proactive function overall.  

These are just some of the features we include within our managed IT support service.

When thinking about your IT provider, ask yourself, are they managing you in an IT proactive manner? When did they last make a change following regular security checks? Is your domain one of those at risk from fraud? Are your staff getting the most out of the tools which are available?

We’ll provide an independent assessment of your current setup at no cost; we can usually perform this remotely with some security check results available in less than 30 seconds. Thank you for reading this quick article.

Miles Fisher
Head of IT Solutions