Contact centers have come a long way since the days of legacy ACD and PBX systems. As customer service experiences have become more important to consumers and the Cloud has enabled new functionality, contact centers are receiving more investment and attention than ever before—and that means a whole suite of new technologies to manage.
Today, a competitive contact center might operate as part of a strategic customer service solution that includes:
Keeping all of these systems up and running is a complex task, and taking it on in-house could be risky. Downtime in the contact center could cost you more than a few angry customers. According to a global survey from PwC, 32% of customers say they will walk away from a brand they love after just one negative experience. What are a few hours of downtime worth in customer lifetime value?
For this reason, many leading companies rely on managed IT service providers to handle their day-to-day contact center technology needs.
If Cisco contact center solutions are an essential part of your IT landscape, it’s important to choose an MSP with deep expertise in this area. A comprehensive solutions provider will be able to manage and maintain systems in the Cisco contact center and beyond, ensuring all business units receive the same level of exemplary service.
Let’s Define Managed IT Security Services
MSSPs use cloud-enabled security platforms to remotely protect your network and valuable data from intruders. Providers routinely update their software, perform threat management, and more—all performed hands-off and off-site.
Standard managed IT security services will cover procedures related to:
Managed IT security is an important piece of your overall managed IT services. It calls for a dedicated MSP focus because of the level of sophistication and numerous certifications required.
Implementing effective security policies is a challenging undertaking. Now, with the explosion of the internet of things (IoT), it can seem like an impossible task.
What to Look for in a Provider:
Not all managed IT security service providers offer the same suite of features and services. What should you keep an eye out for?
Security systems produce an incredible amount of data as part of day-to-day operations. A provider should have a security platform that can automatically source data from throughout your network and analyze it to locate potential threat scenarios.
Dashboards and reports are essential for getting necessary visibility into your network and cybersecurity status. When choosing a provider, be sure to request a demo so you can compare platforms and service portal resources.
Security concerns and potential vulnerabilities will vary by business and industry. You need a service model that can meet your specific needs and adjust to provide the necessary coverage for a quickly evolving security landscape.
In addition, there are a number of technical certifications that a provider and their staff should have. Some common examples include:
Depending on specifics associated with your network environment, other certifications may be beneficial. An MSSP that performs an IT environment assessment as part of onboarding will have a better understanding of your current environment, as well as the kind of expert knowledge needed to protect it.
For full and robust protection, your security services team should offer a proven deployment model, insight into infrastructural support and upgrades, and 24/7 oversight from a security operation center (SOC).
The ShorePatrol® Managed Security Service is ShoreGroup’s set of robust interconnected services proven to protect your network from unwanted intruders.
Unified communications platforms are critically important—they connect co-workers (both remote and in-office) with each other, organizations to vendors and partners, and customers with support teams.
As a result, many companies choose to have their unified communications (UC) systems supported by trusted partners. But how does that service fit into the managed IT services ecosystem?
What Is a Unified Communications Platform?
72% of business leaders say “effective team communication” has become more important in recent years. Unified communications platforms make this process seamless by enabling multichannel communication between team members, departments, external partners, and customers.
In other words, a unified communications platform does exactly what its name implies—it provides a central location where users can communicate using voice, video, or chat.
How Do Unified Communications Platforms Fit into Managed IT Services?
Because UC platforms are critical to business success, downtime and other service issues can cause major disruptions.
Supporting unified communications platforms involves deploying advanced monitoring to detect issues before they create downtime, as well as automating the identification of root causes for faster issue resolution.
Because the availability and performance of unified communications platforms rely on wired and wireless networks and servers, it’s important that your managed IT service provider has in-depth knowledge in those areas as well. Managed IT service providers that monitor UC platforms together with all supporting systems and infrastructure are equipped to support your environment more effectively.
Making sure your tools foster true collaboration and are actually helpful to the people who use them every day is an essential part of improving your team’s performance.
Whether you exclusively use an on-premise data center or you rely on a hybrid solution, keeping your servers running smoothly is essential for most other IT services. As a result, data center managed services are a critical part of the overall managed IT services landscape.
If your data center isn't operating properly, then other elements will be adversely impacted; you can't have effective contact center solutions, IT security services, unified communications, or other business services with a data center that isn't pulling its weight.
Data center managed services are generally considered part of a comprehensive managed IT services package. However, data centers are unique from other operations in many ways, and a provider with no expertise in data center systems may not be equipped to deal with critical issues.
Protecting Your Data Center
Keeping physical infrastructure running can take up a lot of your IT team’s time. In many instances, your team won’t have the knowledge and experience needed to tackle bigger issues and may rely on short-term fixes to keep the network running.
That’s where an experienced managed IT services provider comes in. Data center monitoring and managed services may include:
Data center managed services are often more cost-effective than DIY alternatives. In addition, your team is freed from managing your data center, so they can focus on more value-generating activities.
Managed network services are a critical component of an overall managed IT strategy. By outsourcing network management to a managed service provider, IT leaders can free up their internal teams to work on strategic projects.
What Are Managed Network Services?
Simply put, managed network services are network monitoring, maintenance, and upgrade tasks conducted by a third-party provider.
In addition to taking the burden off internal IT teams, many MSPs can help make proactive improvements to cut downtime and speed up performance at your organization. Managed network services facilitate the network strength you need to work efficiently, adhere to cybersecurity best practices, and deliver dependable customer service.
ShoreGroup Keeps Your Network Running
ShorePatrol by ShoreGroup can support your network with turnkey, scalable, cost-effective managed services. ShoreGroup delivers industry-leading solutions and a team of highly certified engineers that work across vendors and technologies.
Since we also handle data center, contact center, security, unified communications, and other parts of your IT ecosystem, you can be confident that you have a cohesive managed IT services strategy.