How to Choose a Managed Services Provider

Managed Services in the context of computers and technology are IT services delivered in a defined manner with predictable expense. Organizations, like ECR, that provide these services are called Managed Services Providers (MSPs for short).  For a set fee, they provide a set level of support for you and your company, reducing hassle, headache and confusion.

Sounds simple, but beware, it’s not always. The provider you choose is very important, as they’re not all created equal.

Here’s what to look for in your MSP:

  • Custom Plans that Fit Your Needs. Do you need just some block hours? How about network monitoring. Maybe you want everything handled for one low fee. The best MSP will be able to customize your service plan to meet your needs. ECR’s flexible plans, from TechBlock, TechWatch and TechManage to fit the bill perfectly.
  • Customized 24x7x365 Monitoring. Full fledged MSPs invest in all the tools necessary to keep constant vigil on your network and identify problems before you have them. ECR has implemented such a system that allows us to know to a great deal of granularity the health and status of everything on your network, including servers, backups, workstations, switches, internet connectivity and more. Beware MSPs that use the built in notification features of your systems – they’re not getting the detailed information needed to be proactive with your network.
  • Full Support Options. Does your MSP come onsite? Do they also have remote support tools? What about after-hours support? All are absolutely necessary to provide the best level of service. ECR has mobile technicians and a fully staffed Service Center ready to serve you remotely or in person. We even have 24×7 technician access available when those middle-of-the-night problems occur.
  • Customized Health Reporting. MSPs worth their weight will provide to you monthly reports on the health of your network. This is a feature ECR provides with every TechWatch and higher support agreement.
  • Periodic Meetings. Your MSP should be working to pave the highway in front of you instead of patching potholes after you’ve hit them. This is why periodic IT overview and planning meetings are important. ECR gives every MSP client this level of service, acting as your Chief Technology Officer to ensure you can put the pedal to the metal!

Remember: when you want to hire a Managed Service Provider, it means that you value uptime – keeping your systems working – as much as possible.  This means a commitment from your MSP to spend the time necessary to ensure everything works smoothly for you, and a financial commitment from you to ensure that your MSP can provide that service in a mutually beneficial way. That’s what ECR is all about, keeping your systems running just as if you had your own IT department for substantially less cost.

Check out our Managed Services Offerings, and contact us if you would like to discuss how ECR can help you and your business grow and succeed!

Joe is the Director of IT Sales and Service for ECR Computers and has worked with ECR since 1999 • Joe loves making solutions for clients utilizing technology in a cost effective way • He is a big fan of technology, science, Star Trek, and other geek things • You can contact Joe by phone at 740-399-3522 or by email at

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