4 Reasons MSPs Include Recurring Contract Reviews

Flexibility is imperative to your business’s success.

And when it comes to technology – a field that is constantly evolving – if you resist changes, your business could get left behind.

The more flexible your organization is, the quicker you can grow because you’re always looking for process and methods to improve your operations, including IT solutions to allow remote collaboration or increased productivity.  

If you’re a prospective managed IT services customer, this reality might be daunting. Just as you start to warm up to the idea of handing over control of your IT environment, you’re tempted to hold on even tighter.

However, managed IT service providers (MSPs) live and breathe in this world of always-changing technology, and they account for it with every customer. Because, let’s be honest, it’s almost certain there will be a new solution you could benefit from over the course of your contract.

At The KR Group, this is something we’ve seen highlighted with customers, including those who are signed up for managed IT services. We know that over the course of your agreement, your IT needs will change which is why reputable MSPs schedule regular contract reviews.

Here are a few things you should expect to accomplish during that meeting:

  1. Review metrics on past services requests
  2. Discuss service quality
  3. Plan and budget for projects
  4. Set goals for the next quarter

Depending on your MSP, this meeting may take place in-person or virtually, but either way, they should allot enough time for you to discuss the above points.


Review Managed IT Services Metrics

During your quarterly review, you’ll have a chance to review service metrics with your MSP. This gives you the chance to double-check you and your MSP engineer are on the same page about what is happening with your technology.

You’ll hear a review of data about the number and type of problems your MSP responded to, and your MSP can also highlight what problems they helped you avoid.

When you see the information laid out instead of thinking of it when it is an urgent issue, you can pick out patterns or troublesome areas of your IT environment. With that information, you can then work with your MSP to brainstorm solutions for those problems.

Along with the general overview of what has happened since the last meeting, this meeting gives you the benefit of seeing what your MSP is doing behind the scenes to keep your organization running.


Overview of Last Quarter’s Service Quality

Along with reviewing the data about past service, you’ll discuss service quality with your MSP. You can highlight any times an engineer went above and beyond, or you can discuss and problem-solve issues you had.

This meeting typically is held with the NOC manager — the person supervises the engineers, so you can express any frustrations in this space about an engineer.

Your MSP will also ask for some general feedback on the quality of service you’ve received over the last few months. Some questions they might ask include:

  • Are you satisfied with how MSP handles your service tickets?
  • Do you feel like your problems are being solved promptly?
  • Have you had any problems with the process your MSP uses to notify, schedule, and resolve your service requests?

This part of the meeting gives your MSP a chance to know what they should keep doing and how they can improve.


Help Planning and Budgeting for Projects

This meeting isn’t just about looking at the past, though. It’s also a chance for you to look ahead at what goals you can set with your MSP.

For example, if you are working on updating your IT environment. This regular cadence will serve as a chance to see what devices are next on the list to replace, how much it’ll cost, and how much time you and your MSP need to schedule to switch the devices.

Let your MSP know what business goals you have set for the next quarter, and they can help you understand ways technology can help you reach them.

Or, if you’re unhappy with the way a specific solution is working, talk with your MSP about it and see if there is training or an alternative option you could implement.

Your MSP isn’t just there to fix broken solutions, but they also can help you think of ways to use technology to make your business more profitable.

By discussing this during your quarterly business review with them, you can unlock the full capabilities of managed IT services.

However, you’ll want to keep in mind that not all projects and plans will be covered by you managed IT services contract. So, you’ll want to reserve 10% per year of your annual managed services contract price for technology upgrades or replacement.


Set Goals with Your Managed Service Provider

Once you go through all the information above, your MSP will work with you and set goals for the next quarter.

They can set goals for reducing the number of problems you experience. This might require user training or new solutions. All of which, of course, require planning on both of your sides.

They can set goals for the quality of service. This is something all MSPs should do for their customers, but if this is an area of concern for you, it is something your MSP will keep top of mind while working with your service requests.

They can set goals for the changes you want to make to your environment. This goal will include a timeline, so you and your MSP can get it on your schedules.

Most importantly, by having this discussion you can work with your MSP to ensure the goals they’re helping you reach align with the rest of your business.



What to Expect During a Contract Review

Each MSP has its own way to tackle recurring reviews, but many – including The KR Group – schedule these events quarterly.

During these meetings, your main point of contact (generally a member of your leadership team) will meet with the NOC manager for a half-hour to an hour and discuss topics, including:

  • Service metrics
  • Service quality
  • Upcoming plans
  • Goals for the next quarter

However, beyond reviewing the past quarter and looking ahead to the next, this cadence allows an opportunity for your MSP to sit down and meet with you, which builds rapport and understanding.

The quarterly review is only a small portion of your MSP contract. If you’re looking for more information, we encourage you to review our free guide on everything on managed IT services.

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