IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

8 Must-Haves for a Remote Support Solution

Use this list to help you choose a remote support solution that will keep your business on the path to success now and in the future. By Jeff Bishop

The right remote support solution gives technology solution providers the power to connect to computers quickly and securely, and to support every one of their clients—no matter where those clients are located.

With so many options and similar-sounding features, choosing the right solution for today’s always-on environment can feel overwhelming. To help make the selection easier, here are eight must-haves for a solution that is ready to support businesses today and into the future.

  1. Data protection: Remote support is another inroad into business data, so make sure the tool keeps security risks to a minimum and protects your information and that of your customers. Look for an option that includes brute-force protection, two-factor authentication, SSL, role-based security, password management, alerts, and audit reports.
  2. A price that makes sense: Opt for a remote support tool that’s fully functional for your specific needs, fits your budget, and has the ability to grow with you. Popular licensing methods include user based, concurrent, and agent based—each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Keep in mind that the most expensive solution is not necessarily the best one.
  3. Plays well with others: Make sure you have a clear understanding of all the software, tools, operating systems, and hardware that you and your customers depend on, and choose a remote support solution that will easily integrate with these systems and tools to keep your company running efficiently.
  4. Ease of use/compatibility: If a simple connection is all you need for monitoring or fixes, and you’re not worried about compatibility, then take your pick. If you’re hoping for more, find a solution that lets you avoid complicated software installs or over-the-phone walkthroughs for your clients. Also, look for something that supports not just Windows, but Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Chrome OS, and Windows mobile. End users are changing and so are these products; therefore, your solution needs full compatibility to stay scalable.
  5. Steady support: Eliminate frustration and wasted time by choosing a solution that provides the consistent support, ready answers, and comprehensive resources required for you to keep providing excellent customer service to clients.
  6. Teamwork: If your remote support solution doesn’t also offer remote meeting capabilities, you’re missing out on an easy way to promote team collaboration and to share information quickly with customers. The right solution allows techs to help each other or to request help easily, and gives them the capability to chat with end users, share screens with customers, and set up meetings to help explain issues quickly and directly.
  7. Compliance: Customers count on service providers to get compliance right, so make sure the remote control solution you choose makes compliance easier, not harder. For example, a solution with recording capabilities as a regular part of the interface gives you the ability to maintain compliance even for customers in highly regulated industries such as healthcare.
  8. Lightning-fast connectivity: Last, but certainly not least, make sure the speed of your remote support connection keeps up with fast-paced business needs. Connections should take seconds at best because you don’t want customers to wait an extended period of time for assistance. Look for a tool that connects on the fly, receives help requests directly from customers, allows for temporary software installs for nonmanaged machines or break/fix scenarios, and includes options for permanent agents.

In the end, a remote support solution is meant to make solution providers’ jobs easier while advancing their efficiency, productivity, and customer service. If you are in the market for a remote support tool, or if your current one isn’t making the grade, start with this list to guarantee you get the solution you need to keep your business on the path to success.

JEFF BISHOP, general manager of ScreenConnect by ConnectWise, has extensive experience in product management, sales, marketing, engineering, and documentation. He began working with ScreenConnect when it launched in 2009 and took on the role of general manager when it was acquired by ConnectWise in 2015.

ChannelPro SMB Magazine

Get an edge on the competition

With each issue packed full of powerful news, reviews, analysis, and advice targeting IT channel professionals, ChannelPro-SMB will help you cultivate your SMB customers and run your business more profitably.