Frequently

Asked

Questions

We realise that IT support is a long-term partnership in which we can grow together. Before you enter into a serious relationship, you’ve got to ask the right questions and be sure we won’t make off with the dog and the CD collection. Here are some questions that we are often asked.
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You IT guys, you’re all the same. What makes Network Deployments different?

The difference is in the approach. When you’re guided by a set of values, decisions are much easier. We (and our clients) love our guarantee. If we lose any data or have any unplanned downtime on any project, we’ll refund our engineer costs. Putting our money where our reputation is focuses us to make sure that project plans are made and everyone knows what they are – including backups and roll back plans.
We also document the relationship to help get off to a good start. We have a Service Level Agreement, of course, but we also sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement so you know that we will be the soul of discretion regarding all aspects of your business.
And we’re nicer. Remember the joke about the extroverted IT guy that stares at your shoes rather than his own? Talk to us, you’ll find we’re a couple of notches up from that

What size businesses do you support?

For dyed-in-the-wool IT-professionals like ourselves, it’s not about the size. For us, it’s the type of problem you have. You may be a start-up with two or three people in separate home offices. Your problem is how to collaborate effectively. We have the answers for that kind of thing. Similarly, you might have your own in-house or out-sourced IT function that you have a specific problem with. For instance, you may consider the IT function merely as a cost-centre. We’d like to use it as a goldmine for managerial information so that you can run your business more intelligently. You may consider that IT has laws unto itself. We’d like to think that it should be controlled and managed like any other department. Now wouldn’t that be nice – fully understanding its role and function and being able to control the costs and output?

Which IT vendors do you support?
We’re hardware and software agnostic. We do work with some bits of kit more often than others, but we try not to base your purchasing decisions on the courses we have been on. It is far more important to get the kit that fits your requirements, rather than make what we like fit. It’s a far more efficient approach, and if we need a specialist to make it work, we’ll find one for you. And they’ll be covered by the same guarantee and ethos that governs all we do.
Moving IT supplier is a risky business. How can we make it easier?

Changing IT supplier can be hard work. You’re putting a vital part of your business in the hands of others, and you’re not sure you really know them. Here are some ways to reduce the risk of changing IT supplier

  • Ask to talk to previous customers. They should have some testimonials
  • Ask to see their project plan on how they will take over
  • What are their backup policies? Where is the off-site data kept?
  • Do they have a guarantee regarding data loss or unexpected downtime?
  • Keep to a short contract and don’t sign up for longer than six months.
  • Always make sure that the guy who you are developing the relationship with is the guy you will be working with. This avoids the problem of being landed with an account manager you can’t stand.
How much downtime will there be when moving providers?
There should be a very short time with out your system. This will usually be over a weekend and will be fully planned and documented in any takeover plan.
I need my IT support to be a partner, not just a supplier. How can I ensure that’s the case?
Always make sure that the person selling you the plan is the person that’s going to be in charge of executing it. Ensure that there are clear opportunities throughout the year where you will talk to him about progress at least on a quarterly basis. You should also ask them if they have a vision for how the IT department should be run. This can give away whether they are thinking long-term or not.
What if we find that it isn’t what we expected?

Always get to see a few providers, and try to keep the contracts short. This isn’t always possible if resources need to be brought in, but for most situations you can expect to fit in with the IT providers current resource levels. It is easy to jump from the frying pan into the fire, and a short contract will make it easier to remove yourself from the flames. With Network Deployments we very often start with a single month rolling contract. This way, both sides can leave if things aren’t what they thought.

Can you provide a clear roadmap for moving IT support?

We will always provide a clear project plan, including Gantt charts so that you can measure progress, ensuring that you are in control. Naturally, a lot depends on the out-going support company, but the project plan will point out where these problems may arise and allows us to deal with them together.

Can you help me run the IT department?
We’d love to. Again, this isn’t usually an open-ended thing. More often, we are brought in to control the costs, or perhaps to set up systems and procedures to make the IT department more responsible. It’s usually problem specific, so give us a ring and have a chat about it. You’ll probably be surprised at the hidden potential within a properly controlled IT department.
I have no idea what those expensive boxes with the flashing lights do. Will you simplify and demystify my IT for me?

This is another thing we love to do! Mystified and intimidated by those expensive whirring boxes? Frustrated that your IT support won’t tell you what it is, but love charging you for it? Let us come in and document all your kit. That way, when you talk to your IT provider, you can do so from a position of knowledge. It should be able to save you some money too.

Why is my IT support costing so much?
We like to think that the old days of pricing things up by adding the cost of something plus the margin are still in vogue. We’ve heard, though, that some unscrupulous companies will charge what they feel they can get away with. They know that moving can be a bit frightening so they use that to maximise their profits. Everyone’s got to make a living, but that’s not sporting. Network Deployments much prefers sticking to the agreements and hoping you’ll buy us cupcakes or perhaps recommend us to your friends. Or maybe even both.
IT management is changing constantly. How do I know the kit I have is appropriate for what I want?

With the best will in the world, your IT provider can’t change your kit all the time to the latest and greatest. It is always a question of whether it justifies the expense and returns its investment. That is why it is easier to deal with Network Deployments. Not only do you get the costs, but you’ll also get to see how it changes your income, saves other costs or differentiates you from the competition too.

How do we know that your company’s culture is the same as ours?
We like to think that our culture is compatible with many companies, but to make sure we feel that the best thing to do is talk. Give us a ring and get one of our consultants in to chat about it over a tea and a custard cream. We think you’ll find that you like our business-orientated, consultative approach to business.

“I would rather have questions that can’t be answered than answers that can’t be questioned.”

Richard Feynman

Ask Us A Question

Network Deployments

Sentinel House
31 Old Road
Old Harlow
Essex
CM17 0HD

BUSINESS ADDRESS

Sentinel House
31 Old Road
Old Harlow
Essex
CM17 0HD

CONTACT US

01279 886 360