With today’s business landscape being more competitive and fast-paced than ever before, you need efficient and reliable application management. But how do you find and choose the right AMS partner? Here are some qualities and services the ideal partner will offer.
1. A holistic service and the ability to add business agility
Great partners will offer a standardised implementation and service delivery model based on the ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) standards. This will help you choose from their offerings according to your business needs and budgets.
These partners will also be able to handle issues, service requests, support and new developments. They should have a structured and comprehensive model to handle new releases, changes and events.
Tip: Some key things to keep in mind to ensure a fruitful relationship with your AMS partner include…How many releases do you want in a year? What is your budget? How much time and money have you planned for re-development?
2. Plenty of industry expertise
You may come across many great AMS partners but the ones that will be most ideal for your business are the ones with experience in your industry. They will have experience in areas most relevant to your needs - whether that’s navigating various industry-specific requirements (e.g. complying with regulations), incident management or app development.
Read their case studies, client testimonials and success stories. The right AMS partner will have managed services for businesses similar to yours - e.g. in terms of size, sector, challenges and choice of solution.
3. Understands what’s needed to drive your solution
Pick a partner who’s willing to take the time and effort to really understand your business needs. The right partner will want to understand what’s necessary to maintain and operate your solution.
Some topics you could cover to determine whether your potential AMS partner is well-versed in your solution are:
- How to navigate the solution deployed
- How the partner would recommend extending a well-structured and predictable service around a solution that involves new releases, patches, support, further development, functionality and interfaces, subsystems etc
4. Flexible and scalable
The best AMS partners will help you choose and achieve the level of service that your business needs, not what they think you need. They will adapt their services to meet your changing needs.
For example, you may require a lot of help with your AMS strategy at the start of your partnership to ensure your environment is as stable and predictable as possible. After go-live, you may not need as much support.
The right AMS partner will accommodate for this, offering a flexible staffing model that allows you to adjust the mix of resources over time as your business needs change. This maximises your AMS investment, ensuring you’re making full use of the resources you’re paying for.
5. Understands the complexity of your systems
Today’s businesses are striving for end-to-end visibility and connected systems. This often involves multiple systems integrated with a central one (e.g. an ERP system) so all that essential data feeds into a single location. This eliminates data siloes and boosts productivity.
But, these integrations may be complex and some of your systems may involve complicated modifications. So, considerable skills and resources may be required to manage them. The right AMS partner will understand this and will help you maximise the ROI of your technology investments.
6. Offers round-the-clock support
No matter how robust your AMS strategy is, problems can still occur. That’s why the best AMS partners will offer round-the-clock support. Through this single point-of-contact service desk, your ideal partner can provide support, answer questions and fix issues relating to your application-related incidents any time, any location quickly.
Even better if they can do this proactively - such as fixing incidents through 24/7 standby resources before you notice.
Tip: Also look for whether this partner can continuously reduce the number of incidents. Not only should they be resolving issues but they should also be examining patterns and performing root cause analysis.
7. Guarantees uptime of critical business solutions
The right AMS partner should be able to guarantee the uptime of your critical business solutions. In addition to their 24/7 365-day service desk, their highly skilled experts will also offer:
- Application monitoring
- Proactive application operation
- Continuous patching and security updates to keep your systems evergreen
8. Offers value-added services
As well as managing your AMS environment, your ideal partner should be able to provide value-added services. For example:
- Continuously reviewing your environment’s functionalities and comparing them against industry/market standards
- Continuously developing your business applications to help maximise your investment
- Analysing the features of new releases and making recommendations based on your specific business needs
9. The potential to act as a trusted advisor
A trusted advisor is a person, often within a business’ service delivery or operations team, who has developed a relationship with the customer beyond a project transaction. With AMS partners, that means your account manager has demonstrated they can go above and beyond to meet your needs that you can turn to them for advice beyond their skillset.
Purely because you value their advice/opinion.
It will take time for you to see your AMS partner as a trusted advisor but here are some traits that suggest your prospective consultancy could be one:
- They can back up their words with demonstrable knowledge and experience. They’re demonstrating their credibility
- They’re genuinely passionate and enthusiastic about the solution they’re selling
- They deliver on their promises and never underdeliver. They are reliable
- They put your business’s needs above their own, even if it means investing time and effort with no immediate short-term gain for them
There’s more to application management and here’s where to dive deeper…
AMS partners take the task of application management off your plate. Think healthy, evergreen applications, downtime at a minimum and productivity to the max. That frees up your internal IT and application development teams to focus on other tasks, the ones that can really drive your business forward, such as innovation to keep you ahead of the competition.
At Columbus, we can offer the complete application management service you’re looking for. From infrastructure management to round-the-clock solution support and proactive solution optimisation, we’ll ensure your business applications are stable and capable of keeping you competitive.
Learn more about our managed services and experience as an AMS partner in our brochure. Download it below.