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Is It Time To Call A Managed Services Provider? (Questions/Answers)

Orthodontists focus on teeth, not the support of their technology. Partner with a managed IT services provider to keep your technology in tip-top shape.

Whether you’re just getting your practice off the ground or your office is well-established with a solid patient base, your back-office should run like a well-oiled machine. Rather than have a schedule filled by setting up or workstations or investigating slow-downs of older machines, installing software updates, or maintaining network connections for access to patient records, dentists need to focus on patient care and skip this part of the process. Ready to get to work?

When should an orthodontist office partner with a managed IT services provider (MSP)?

The short answer: the sooner, the better!

Can an MSP really take on the entire technical infrastructure of a dental office, allowing dentists and office staff to focus on patient care? You bet! In fact, in the case of new offices, MSPs are an incredible resource, helping with set-up and answering technical questions early in the process. Imagine the impact of a partnership where the provider knows what to do when to do what, and how to tie everything together. Add to that the ability to help you strategize for growth and expansion, offer advice, and help you make the most cost-effective decisions for your dental practice, and you’ve got the checklist for success!

How can a managed service provider that specializes in Orthodontists help you?Whether you’re a new office just starting out, an established office that might need to make a few updates or anything in between, MSPs can make suggestions that can improve back-office layout, like:

  • Are your network drops in the best locations?
  • Does your telecommunications plan make the most sense for your staff?
  • Are your AV systems in the right spots – and using the proper hardware?

Are you curious about more ways an MSP can help you? Here are more benefits:

#1 – The Need for Speed

Which Internet package did you choose from your telecommunications provider? Quite often, Internet providers will offer businesses a pre-determined package without much focus on true need or best fit. Next thing you know, you’re in a 2-year contract for a service that isn’t compatible with your office demands.

A major consideration is the Internet speed. There are several factors that impact the Internet speed an office needs to avoid bandwidth frustration:

  • Does your office have multiple locations that need to communicate with each other?
  • How many exam rooms or provider offices are there?
  • How many workstations will users need?
  • Do your providers utilize electronic health records (EHRs) accessed through an online portal?

These are just a few of the questions that impact the Internet speeds you’ll need, and you can see how your answers can alter your requirements. A single provider with few devices and limited Internet use will differ vastly in Internet requirements from the demands of an office with 10 providers!

Speed and bandwidth are different, but one directly impacts the other, especially if you have a lot of users trying to access large data points or download large files, like EHRs. If your Internet bandwidth becomes limited by multiple users at the same time, each user will experience slower Internet speeds in the process. Choosing the proper Internet package is key, and most providers base packages on speed.

#2 – Avoid Network Headaches

As more patient care migrates into heavier technology reliance, providers look to resources that can help identify the best roadmap for the journey. Established offices looking to upgrade systems and new offices planning initial infrastructure design face the same decisions:

  • Choosing between a legacy PBX telephony or VoIP system
  • On-site or cloud-based servers
    • This decision also impacts patient records, data storage, and other factors
  • Wired or wireless network

Working with an MSP to choose the right network infrastructure can avoid frustrations that come with the wrong decisions. MSPs will also help make sure all systems are compatible to work together, preventing costly redundancies.

Bonus: An MSP can advise the right Internet speed for the right network design, compounding the benefits of #1 and #2.

#3 – Better Safe Than Sorry

Network security and cyber security are at the forefront of every business decision today, from network design all the way down to check your email!

To better break it down:

  • Network security focuses on keeping what’s in your network, in your network.
  • Cybersecurity focuses on keeping outside threats out of your network.

Both are equally important and require a different toolset for the best levels of protection. Much of your office technology requires both efforts, including your software, your hardware and devices, and your Internet, email, and equipment.

Partnering with an MSP will give your dental practice top-notch security, protecting your system from external threats, and giving your network the added security of web and email filtering, for protection from internal operator error. Added security from remote 24/7 monitoring makes your systems safeguarded like they have their own personal bodyguard – because they do with an MSP!

#4 – Housekeeping

As technology evolves, anything using technology requires ongoing maintenance.

Everyone has experienced those pop-up messages on a computer that tell users a software update is waiting. It’s just as easy for users to click “Cancel” and know that the installation would have otherwise made one task or another wait while the update installed. While sometimes inconvenient, more often than not those updates include security updates!

From operating system vulnerabilities that have recently been discovered to software and application updates that protect individual programs, security update notifications tell users that their system can become compromised and to install the manufacturer-recommended update.

What makes working with an MSP even more convenient is the services provider can remotely take care of installing these updates during off-peak hours, so they don’t impact your workday or cause any downtime. It’s like a housekeeper that picks up after your office technology after your practice is all done for the day!

When is the wrong time to call an MSP?

Is there a wrong time to call an MSP for help? The clear answer is NO. From office set-up to office upgrades, and the daily needs for everything in between, an MSP has your back! Streamline your support, modernize your processes, and protect your systems by working with an MSP and make the technology decisions that are right for your dental practice.

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