Planning new software developments for your business is exciting, but the software you own today is in many ways much more important. Is it getting the job done? Or are your software applications struggling to keep up with your business as it grows?
Keeping your application suite running and up to date is the job of managed services. Having the right managed service provider keeps your business operational, and can also provide significant advantages over your competition.
Those advantages stem from too many companies treating managed services like an afterthought. Managed service contracts are often given a lot less consideration than the software they are brought in to support, even though investing in quality support is always in a company’s medium to long-term interest.
Here are five questions all CIOs and CTOs should ask to evaluate their current managed services needs, and to decide whether they need to make a change.
Does your current managed services offer value for money?
A managed services contract is an unavoidable expense. Having the wrong provider will lead to significant, avoidable costs in the long run – just ask anyone who has had a bad managed service experience.
All managed service contracts come with a service level agreement (or SLA) which stipulates exactly what the service provider will do each month, and how many support hours the client is paying for on retainer. If the SLA is met in less time than the retainer allows, most providers will simply bank that time and redeploy their team to support another client. This means that managed service customers almost always overpay for what they are getting, month after month.
Amdaris takes a different approach. We use all extra support time to enhance and improve your software. If our team spots a problem which is recurring several times a week, we will allocate any unused time to find a permanent solution so that the problem stops. Over time, as recurring problems are eliminated, Amdaris customers have the option to reduce the number of monthly hours they need, or make further investments in system upgrades.
Making Amdaris your managed services partner means never worrying about unused time at the end of the month. At Amdaris, every penny counts.
How can managed services partners best avoid single points of failure?
One of the biggest operational risks facing companies everywhere is an overconcentration of software expertise in a single employee. If Jack built your business-critical, bespoke application and is the only person in the company who understands it, your business is in serious trouble if Jack gets hit by a bus.
In the UK alone there are hundreds of companies in even riskier positions, where the only person who understands a critical app is a contractor. Contractors are great for short-term projects, but relying on them to stick around indefinitely is not a good business strategy.
Managed service providers eliminate the danger of overconcentration of expertise by deploying a team to offer support, but most managed service providers create a new problem in the process.
When providers have thousands of support staff serving hundreds of clients with hundreds of applications each, no one ever develops expertise in any one system. Without experience and expertise, no one is in a position to identify systemic problems in your applications as they develop. Support staff at larger providers often work from manuals on applications they have never seen before and will likely never see again. Support focuses on finding the quickest, easiest solution instead of implementing long-term solutions.
Amdaris provides managed services in a different way. We build teams of dedicated support workers we call “pods.” Each pod will be large enough to avoid single points of failure, but small enough to provide continuity of support. As a pod develops expertise in your applications, it becomes well placed to identify enhancements to work on with unused time each month.
How can managed services be used to extend the life of applications?
Without regular enhancements, the average business application needs replacing every five to ten years. Investing in a managed service partner which keeps your apps running efficiently for longer can shave millions off your annual IT budget.
Regular enhancements which prolong the productive life of an application require genuine expertise with the application itself. Providers with vast teams of constantly rotating developers never develop any depth of knowledge in your systems. Instead of working to prolong the usefulness of apps, large providers will typically just ask their clients to pay for the development of a new app.
At Amdaris we work with our partners to extend the life of applications for as long as needed. Instead of being forced into a purchase by an app which is no longer fit for purpose, our customers invest in new software when they are ready to invest.
Eliminating transition risk when changing managed service providers
Finding the right managed service partner is essential, but actually changing to a new provider is a step many companies are unwilling to take.
No matter how unsatisfied a company is with its current managed service provider, at least its shortcomings are well known and understood. The process of switching over might not go smoothly, and then there is always the worry that the new provider will be just as bad or worse than the first one. Put it all together and you have a classic case of fear, uncertainty, and doubt.
Amdaris has a proven track record of managing transitions with new partners smoothly and efficiently. Our experts will work with your existing providers to make sure there are no gaps in service when our team assumes responsibility. We will also take a fresh look at your existing application estate, and eliminate the major risks associated with transition.
How will your managed service provision scale as you grow?
A company’s software needs changes as it grows, but this does not mean companies should have to constantly fund new applications. With the right managed service partner, regularly paying for new applications is avoidable.
Because Amdaris reinvests unused time into enhancing your existing application suite every month, we are able to extend the value of your apps as your needs expand and change.
This is only possible thanks to the expertise in our partners’ systems we build up in each managed service pod. Because we get to know your apps, and how your company uses them, we are in a perfect position to see what enhancements will drive efficiencies best.
Amdaris also has the capacity to react to your changing needs as a business. As your company grows, we can expand the size of your pod to keep up with your growing service needs quickly and easily.
How Amdaris has a different approach to managed services
Keeping your software running is the core of any managed service contract, but at Amdaris we are not content just to meet the terms of an SLA every month. Instead of seeing your SLA as a target to hit, we see it as a threshold to reach before we start enhancing and streamlining your systems.
We do this while eliminating single point of failure risks, and without spreading our expertise too thinly. We will be there as your company grows, and as its needs change over time, keeping your applications relevant and useful for as long as possible.
Amdaris is your managed service partner, not provider. Use the form below to get in touch.