“It’s Not You, It’s MSP”: How to Break Up with Your MSP

managed IT Services

Sometimes, you might find that a managed service provider (MSP) is no longer a good fit for your business. You may be trying to reduce costs, switch from temporary break-fix methods, or to find an outsourced IT support service that better suits your business goals.

For whatever reason, if you’re looking to switch MSPs, you should know what to expect in the transition.

Initially, your new outsourced IT manager will meet with you for a tech evaluation to determine if your business is a good fit long term. This is a great time to observe their business processes and customer service philosophy to aid your decision.

Choosing a new provider could prove to be cost-effective and rewarding as you find an IT partner that better fits your needs. However, you might feel intimidated by the impending conversation with the existing IT service you’ve been working with and become accustomed to. 

Here’s how to break up with your MSP, including how to approach difficult conversations that could arise.

Your Role When Breaking Up with Your MSP

When transitioning between MSPs, you may wonder what your role is in the process. Typically, you’ll be expected to do the following during the process:

  1. Send your current MSP a formal letter stating that you will not renew your contract.
  2. Communicate with your new provider to help them get in contact with your old MSP
  3. Work with your new MSP to tie up any loose ends with previous contracts, devices, licenses, etc
  4. Pay final invoices from your old MSP

These steps should involve clear and timely communication from your new MSP. A typical timeline to expect for a transition is around 30 days. This is a standard turnaround time for MSPs.

1. Formal Letter Sent to Your Current MSP From You

Ending your relationship with your MSP may feel uncomfortable, but you don't have to do it alone. The good news is, that most outsourced tech support companies will be understanding and helpful with the process of switching.

The first step in phasing them out is sending a notice. Your new technical support provider will sometimes draft the letter for you, but sending it is a step that you must complete.

This letter will state your decision to terminate your contract, provide a timeline for switching over to your new provider, and thank them for their cooperation. If you partner with a good outsourced IT service provider, they will have this drafted and ready to send to your current provider.

2. Give New MSP Contacts to Collaborate with Your Current MSP

To set you up, there will need to be communication between your current and new MSP. Most of the time, MSPs will be understanding and work with your new provider to aid in the switchover. First, you’ll need to provide your new MSP contact information so they can reach out an touch base with your old one.

This allows your new provider to prevent or mitigate any snags directly with the people who have been managing your IT day-to-day. These snags might have to do with late payments, licenses, fees, returning devices, and other logistical issues.  Overall, your new MSP should have your needs in mind as they facilitate the handoff.  

3. Transition Meetings & Credential Handoff Between MSPs

You shouldn’t go a single day without access to outsourced computer support. This means that your MSPs will need to exchange information such as login credentials, notes about your current framework and IT strategy, and other technical details for a smooth transition.

This handoff will occur over a series of communications between the MSPs. You should not have to mediate or take an active role in this step. It is your new provider’s responsibility to facilitate the transition of tools and administrative controls during the transition.

One important detail to keep in mind as you switch is who manages your domain registration. This might include Microsoft, Google, GoDaddy, ect. Make sure to let your new MSP know who hosts your website, as this will clarify things during the credentials handoff stage.

4. Determining End-Of-Contract Details

There can be a few snags in the process of switching MSPs. You might run into roadblocks if you have end-of-contract stipulations. These might include:

  • Early cancellation fees
  • Existing licenses
  • Tools leased out by your old MSP

It’s key to choose an IT provider that demonstrates excellent communication to assist you in effectively resolving these snags.

5. Mail Their Stuff Back

When you split from your current provider, it’s an important step to mail back any items they provided you with while working with them. This could include computers, routers, and other office equipment. Talk to your new MSP about a timeline for phasing out old devices to minimize any disruption to your normal business activities.

Who Owns Your Hardware and Software?

Before you do anything, make sure you know exactly what needs to be sent back to your old IT company, so you can have a plan to phase them out seamlessly. Your new provider should help you iron out these details. Either way, it’s helpful to be aware of the devices and tools you’re using through your old provider.

What Licenses Are You Paying For?

Licenses are another possible roadblock in switching. You might not be fully aware of the licenses you’re paying for. Make sure to read through your current contract and provide your new provider with those details to help ease the process of terminating them.

Do You Still Owe Them Payments?

In many instances, incumbent IT companies will make the transition easy and painless on your end. However, there might be unpaid invoices or fees incurred by your contract termination.

It’s fairly rare, but MSPs might issue termination fees or clauses to get you to pay through the end of your contract. This is why it’s crucial to partner with a new MSP that will support you through every step of the transition. They can help you smooth out any issues that can arise along the way, offering peace of mind during the process.  

5. Final Invoice Sent

After all is said and done, your old MSP will send you a final invoice to pay before the relationship ends. Many will see the possibility of “getting back together” with you as a strong motivation to make this process as easy as possible for you.

To learn more about how to switch MSPs, read more on our blog: How Do I Switch My Managed Service Provider?

Getting Started with Your New MSP

Once you’ve fully switched over to your new MSP, you will begin their client onboarding process. This can vary from provider to provider. Overall, it will be a continuation of the conversations you’ve been having with your sales representative every step of the way.

Your needs as a business will have already been thoroughly discussed during your initial tech evaluation, and with the right managed IT provider, you’ll be able to hit the ground running.  To get a tech evaluation, click the button below to speak to an experienced managed IT expert. 

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About Jada Sterling, Digital Content Manager

Jada Sterling is Usherwood's Content Manager. She is responsible for developing content that furthers the mission of Usherwood Office Technology by helping clients and prospective clients better understand how technology can help grow their business.