The simple answer is “no.” Until your IT Vendor becomes an IT Partner, the safety and security of your IT systems will never be their primary concern.

As a longtime technologist with a passion for showing customers the value technology can offer, it perplexes me when I see IT companies fall short. It is the mission of an IT Partner to provide customer-centric service and dedication to YOU as the customer so you can WIN in business. An IT vendor, on the other hand, provides limited value and is not looking out for your needs, nor are they educating you on the right technology direction for your business. They just send bill after bill, month after month.

Your IT Partner is legally bound to notify you of any suspicious activity on your servers or network that could result in a data breach. By law, they must protect the ePHI of your customers day in and day out. If they don’t deliver, it is their responsibility to pay the fines and help you remediate the breach. Period.

HIPAA compliance and cyber security cannot fall short. Your practice cannot risk a data breach or mishandling of PHI or ePHI in the hands of a company that you hired to help protect you and your patients.

Ask yourself these 5 questions to determine whether you have an IT Vendor or an IT Partner:

  1. Does my IT guy meet with me on a weekly or monthly basis to review my needs, security status, and performance? Do they even answer their phone when I call?
  2. Does my IT guy LISTEN to me and provide solutions and education on new technologies?
  3. Does my IT service degrade if I do not have a contract with them? Do they make me feel like I’m being held hostage and cannot get out of a bad relationship?
  4. How about SLAs? Does my IT guy exceed every SLA I have in my contract?
  5. As the business owner, do I call them my IT Vendor or an IT Partner that is helping me WIN at IT in my business?

An IT Vendor will not meet with you and does not really care or listen to you. And you can forget about service if you don’t have a contract with them. SLAs to an IT Vendor are worth nothing! If you struggle to call them a partner, then it’s either time to move on or have a heart-to-heart to resolve any issues and crank up the service.

In the end, having a great IT Partner is critical for you to WIN at your business. Maybe it’s time to reevaluate your IT Vendor and search for a great IT Partner!

If you know a great IT Partner that you have personally worked with or hired, let us know in the comment field below. We love to promote great IT companies!