Information Technology (I.T.) plays a critical role in every entrepreneur’s success — at every stage of business growth.
That’s why for BusinessCast Podcast # 109 — I.T. Support for Entrepreneurs, we sat down with ThinkQuick’s Michael Donovan. Michael brings a rare combination of strategic and hands-on experience solving I.T. issues — in hardware, software and systems.
Michael also has an uncanny way of getting to the crux of I.T. problems and describing them clearly without technical jargon. So, we focused on one of the most basic I.T. issues: I.T. support. In short, when should you get I.T. support? And, who should provide it?
After listening to BusinessCast Podcast # 109 — I.T. Support for Entrepreneurs you will have a much better idea of what you should do in order to find and secure the kind of I.T. support that will keep your computers, and therefore your business, up-and-running.
BTW, here are 15 key questions you should ask when choosing your I.T. support — whether that is to solve an immediate problem or to head-off issues before they interrupt your business:
1. What steps will you take to ensure that my data is safe/recovered?
2. How are you going to diagnose my technical issue(s)?
3. What guarantee will you give me on the work that you do?
4. On what basis do you charge (i.e. hourly/per project/retainer)? Do you charge for estimates?
5. What kind of computers/software/systems have you worked on in the last 2 to 3 years?
6. How do you keep current on the latest I.T. challenges/technologies?
7. What do you see as the single most important thing in resolving/anticipating my business’ technology issues?
8. What is your troubleshooting timetable (i.e. how often do you look for ways to avoid problems before they arise)?
9. What is your method for delivering I.T. support (i.e. on the phone, on the web, via email, via Twitter, via Instant Messenger, in person)? Can I, as a client, choose what support method I want?
10. What are your hours of operation? Do you charge differently for “off hours”? Do you charge differently based on how quickly technology issues need to be resolved?
11. Can you give me the name of three entrepreneurs that you have helped overcome similar issues or are providing ongoing support?
12. How big is your operation? On average, how many calls does each member of your Support Team handle per day? What’s the average turnaround time that I can expect before I receive a call and/or service?
13. Do you support PC/MAC/LINUX or mobile technologies like Blackberry and iPhone?
14. What’s the range of support services you offer (i.e. from individual workstations to servers and networks)?
15. Do you sell hardware/software if I need something replaced or installed? What sort of additional markup do you add on top of retail (or discount do you take off)?
You can reach our I.T. expert Michael Donovan by email at: Donovan@ThinkQuick.com.
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