More than 35 percent of SMBs have used professional technical support for server issues, the survey found.
The tech support market for
small and midsize businesses will exceed $20 billion by 2015, according to
Parks Associates, which notes that the 2008 launch of AT&T's Tech Support
360 is a significant milestone in this market because this service was the
first to integrate communications, data services and technical support on a
Written in cooperation with
PlumChoice, a provider of remote technical services in the next-generation
Service 2.0 model, the white paper, "The Opportunity for National
Brands in SMB Technical Support Services," draws on data from "SMB Demand
for Technical Support Services," which is based on a survey of owners,
managers and IT support decision makers from U.S. SMBs.
needs are getting increasingly complex, with mobile devices creating new
challenges and the cost-benefit ratio tilting toward professional technical
support," said Kurt Scherf, vice president and principal analyst with
Parks Associates. "The cloud, virtualization and greater flexibility via
remote access are all key trends driving this market. National service
providers, with their existing footprint, are in a prime position to seize this
Parks Associates' research
found that more than 35 percent of SMBs have used professional technical
support for server issues, the most problematic area for SMBs. However, new
mobile technologies are starting to command more support attention. SMBs lose
approximately 3.2 hours per month troubleshooting mobile phone issues, while
they lose 3.4 hours to server issues. As a result, more than 30 percent of SMBs
desire remote technical support for their companies' mobile phones.
such as smartphones and tablets are becoming part of the SMB technology
landscape in an irreversible way. As a result, SMB support requirements have
changed remarkably from just a few years ago, as Parks Associates research
indicates," said Josh Clifford, vice president and general manager of
business services for PlumChoice.
The report noted that among
SMBs that have used professional technical support services previously, they
are highly satisfied with the courtesy and professionalism of the tech support
agents who provided the assistance. Where SMB technical support services can
improve are areas such as the initial response time, complete resolution of the
problem and the time it took to resolve the issue. Leveraging remote-access
solutions will allow SMB support providers to raise customer satisfaction with
faster response times and more convenience to the business, which will not have
to wait for a technician to arrive on-site or have to ship its IT equipment to
a depot or repair center, the report said.