Many organizations reach a point where they can’t support all of their information technology (IT) needs in house. Whether it’s because the needs have outgrown the single individual or team handling IT, or because they need specialized IT expertise, this is when organizations often turn to an IT managed service provider (MSP) team.

One major area where organizations often seek support iscybersecurity. With ransomware, phishing, and malware threatening every company on a daily basis, having a security failsafe has become necessary. And that’s where managed cybersecurity solutions through an MSP cybersecurity partner come into play.

With the average cost of a data breach reaching$4.35 million in 2022 (a 12.7% increase since 2020), and cybersecurity insurance rates on the rise, having a strong cybersecurity infrastructure is crucial. And when you need to turn to outside help, the right partner will help you defend yourself and your team against these ever-evolving threats.

But how can you find the MSP that works best for your organization’s needs? This is an important decision to make. That’s why we’ve put together this article to help you ask the right questions and gauge whether a shortlisted MSP is the right fit for your needs.

1. Do They Have a Strong Security Posture?

Because an MSP will have access to your network, your systems, your data, and your staff’s personal information, you need to know if they have a strong security posture.

In other words, do they practice what they preach? Keep these factors in mind for your potential MSP IT:

  • Does their own staff undergo end user cybersecurity awareness training?
  • Have they completed any audits?
  • Can you look at their cybersecurity policies?
  • How do they stay up to date on security trends?
  • Do they have clear case studies where they’ve successfully helped other firms with their cybersecurity?

MSP Cybersecurity team knowledge

Is your MSP Cybersecurity team knowledgeable about the latest cybersecurity trends?
Image Source: TechTarget

Security-related questions are some of the most important questions you will ask a potential MSP partner. If their own foundation is solid, you can have confidence that yours will be as well.

2. Do They Have a Relevant Industry Focus?

A crucial element in an MSP partnership is industry alignment, because this will indicate if they truly understand your business or not. Manufacturing, financial services, healthcare, education - how can they offer top of the line managed cybersecurity solutions for you if they don’t understand your business needs?

Ask questions about the conferences they attend, associations they’re involved in, and their regular client base.

3. How Long Will Onboarding Take?

Onboarding can be very different depending on which MSP you partner with. Will you launch services within a few days, weeks, or months? What types of resources will they provide during onboarding? Who leads the process on their side, and who will be involved on your side?

Understanding onboarding expectations will set you up for success in choosing a new MSP.

4. How Qualified Are Their IT Resources?

Before you engage with an IT MSP team, you want to be confident in the technical resources that will provide your managed IT services.

What types of certifications do their IT specialists have? Will you be able to speak directly to their engineers? How many years of experience does the average IT resource have?

Understanding who you will be working with, from a technical angle, will help you determine if this MSP can help you meet your IT goals.

5. How Do They Earn Your Long-term Trust and Business?

Many MSPs will want to lock you into long-term contracts with costly monthly retainers. While that reliable revenue stream is great for the MSP, it doesn’t really incentivize them to work hard to earn and keep your business.

Instead, look for a partner who structures their compensation model around your success. Do they incentivize their engineers and team members to provide amazing service? Do they make it easy for you to walk away if you’re unhappy? If the answers to both of these questions are yes, you can be much more confident that your potential MSP partner is invested in your success – and not just your money.

Red Flags During Your Discovery

If you feel pushed by an MSP cybersecurity team to make a decision that you don’t agree with, consider it a red flag.

Are they considering what you actually need, or pushing an out-of-the-box solution? If you get the sense that they’re going to push you to change too much of your current technology too quickly or way out of your budget, trust that red flag instinct. If you consistently notice that suggestions seem too strong without any reasoning, that’s something to pay attention to.

Before you enter an agreement, consider if the MSP is trying to:

  • Thoughtfully understand what you do and how you get your job done
  • Offers you resources throughout the sales process and not just during onboarding
  • Provides IT solution customization based on your needs and current technology

Choose the MSP Cybersecurity Partner You Can Trust

Because there are many cybersecurity threats on the horizon, MSPs are one of the strongest shields that can protect your organization. That’s why finding the right MSP to handle your IT needs is a necessary task.

Are you ready to feel confident about your final MSP cybersecurity team?

Then consider why 94% of our clients continue to choose to renew with our IT experts. It may be because we sell blocks of time for ongoing support, as opposed to long-term commitments. It may be because our clients always get an expert solution, rather than just getting rushed off the phone. It may be because we employ the best in-house engineers.

Ultimately, it’s because of the Ceeva difference. Our values of transparency, accountability, and confidence could be your steel armor against looming cyber attacks. As you’re makingMSP cybersecurity vendor decisions, we invite you to ask us these questions. We’ll be excited to talk through them with you.

At Ceeva, we are the MSP cybersecurity pros that you want with you in the server room, the boardroom, and even the lunchroom.

We want to be your trusted partner and provide absolute confidence in your IT. Get started by learning more about ourmanaged IT solution offerings.

Free Cybersecurity Essentials Handbook for Small Organizations