When you’re picking a new IT support partner, of course you want to know they’ll react quickly when something goes wrong. The faster a problem is fixed, the less downtime you have, and the less expensive it is.
But how would you feel if you knew that many of the problems you’ve suffered recently could have been avoided entirely? If your current IT support company had a more proactive approach to technology?
Pretty annoyed, right?
These days most veterinary practices prefer an IT partner who proactively prevents problems. Not only can you prevent your practice from grinding to a halt, but you can also save a lot of money.
Back in the day, purely reactive support was popular. It was the way tech support did things: A problem happened, so we fixed it. But in recent years things have changed, for the better. Vets are realising that fewer unplanned calls to an IT helpdesk is a very good thing.
You need a proactive partner who’s working away in the background to monitor, maintain and update your entire network.
We’ve worked this way for a long time and much prefer it. Because it means we can spot and deal with problems before they happen (often, without our clients needing to know there’s been an issue). Plus we can anticipate when our clients need to look at changing or upgrading their devices, software or security, reducing unexpected spend and encouraging better budgeting.
The old cliché rings true: prevention is better than cure.
We call this Proactive Problem Prevention. And the benefits are huge…
Benefit: Less downtime
Downtime is a serious drain on your practice. Even 10 minutes downtime can cause chaos as people can’t complete appointments or contact clients. It’s demotivating and damages your team’s productivity and your practice reputation.
Then it can be a real slog to get people back on track again. And if you’re experiencing regular periods of downtime this will be frustrating for everyone. Your people will be sick of it, and you will lose money and potentially some great clients along the way.
Benefit: Massive cost savings
Every second your system is down or underperforming it costs you money.
A recent survey found that 78% of small and medium sized businesses reported costs of more than £7,000 for each hour of downtime they suffered. 10% of businesses said that figure was over £36,000.
And that figure rises hour after hour.
Benefit: Better for your budget
While you will already be saving money on downtime and callouts, when your IT support works proactively, you’ll be able to budget better.
Part of Proactive Problem Prevention is anticipating where issues are going to arise in the future. You can then work strategically with your IT partner to plan future IT investment, and even put together a technology roadmap where appropriate.
Your budget will go further because you know you’ll have fewer surprise costs along the way. In turn, this should allow you to grow your team, put in place infrastructure, and ultimately reach your goals faster,
Benefit: Increased security
Using a proactive IT support partner is like having a bouncer on the door of your practice. They make it very difficult for uninvited guests to enter.
Proactive partners are always keeping an eye on their clients’ networks using sophisticated monitoring and analysis tools:
- Looking for security holes
- Monitoring for anything amiss
- Updating operating systems and software
This allows partners to spot potential issues before they happen, keeping your data safe and everything working well.
And the best part is, this happens every day without you even being aware of it.
Benefit: Better motivation
Your staff hate it when their day is interrupted. Downtime disrupts their plans, puts them behind on consultations, and is really demotivating (as is dealing with angry clients).
It can be even more frustrating when the downtime is caused by something they’ve complained about before.
It’s a huge boost to morale and productivity when your IT support partner stops problems from happening and just makes everything easier. Your people feel heard. And that goes a long way to giving them greater job satisfaction.
Benefit: Allows for better disaster recovery planning
A quick reality check – even with a highly proactive IT partner (like us), it’s unrealistic to expect 100% of all technology problems to be prevented. IT is incredibly complex, and there are always new ways for things to fall over.
In particular, big disasters can happen. When you pick the right partner you can work together to create a flawless disaster recovery plan.
That includes what would happen if you were to suffer a cyber-attack, as well as disasters such as a practice fire or flood.
A proactive partner will ensure all your important data is backed-up – and crucially, check daily that your back-up is working.
They’ll also make sure you have access to everything you need to keep your veterinary practice running if disaster strikes.
So how do you find an IT partner who Proactively Prevents Problems?
There’s a very informative question you can ask:
“What proportion of your revenue comes from fixing problems, and what proportion from preventing them?”
A truly proactive partner will only have a small proportion of revenue from fixing problems. They’ll readily agree that it’s more profitable and less stressful to stops things from going wrong in the first place.
Everyone wins in a partnership like this.
If you don’t have one, let’s talk on a no obligation basis. Here’s where you can learn more about us and book a 15 minute exploratory video call.