What is Remote Staff Augmentation?
IT By Design’s Remote Staff Augmentation service (RSA) is a back office solution which provides you with certified and experienced engineer(s) fully trained on your MSP tools. They are an extension of your Helpdesk or project team, able to handle support calls during US-based hours or after-hours, utilizing the escalation procedures and processes defined by you.
How is your service unique?
You and your staff hand pick the remote resource you want as an extension of your team, utilizing our thorough interviewing process. We will provide you with our current bench resources based on your specific requirements, and you decide who you would like to speak with further. Interview dates and times are flexible as they revolve around your availability.
What is the cost for the service, and how does it compare with US-based salaries for engineers?
Please contact us to learn more about our pricing structure.
How long is the term of the contract?
The contract term is 12 months.
How do the full-time and part time hours work? Let’s say I have a customer escalation at 9:00am-10:00am, and then another one at 4:00pm-5:00pm CST, and the resource works both hours to resolve, do they log 2 hours? Or are the hours shift-based?
All engineer’s hours are shift-based. The hours will be determined before or during the on-boarding process for either the full-time or part-time resource.
How is PTO determined? Is there a policy?
The PTO policy is outlined in the contract. Each engineer’s PTO is specific; as it depends on the length of time they have been an employee of IT By Design. In order for an engineer to take any PTO time, they must request it in writing two weeks in advance to you and their ITBD manager. Also, the engineer cannot request time-off within the first 30 days of engagement. The PTO policy will be discussed during the on-boarding process, and prior to start date.
What holidays are observed by the engineer?
In the PTO policy, there are a total of 8 days (IT By Design utilizes the NY Stock Exchange schedule):
- New Years Day – January 1
- Independence Day – July 4
- Diwali – Indian Holiday – Observed in October each year
- Day After Thanksgiving
- Memorial Day
- Labor Day
NOTE: For NON-INDIAN holidays, customer may ask engineer to switch the holiday for a comp off with another day, but it must be mutually agreed upon by the engineer and the client.
What recourse do I have if the service / support needs are not being met after a few days/weeks?
You can interview another resource for replacement. If we cannot find a comparable replacement, then we will discuss, and agree on a next course of action (i.e. contract, credit, etc.).
How about if there is idle time, will the engineer be able to help me with internal projects like small email migrations, credential documentation, etc.?
Yes, you set the projects/tasks to be completed by the engineer. The only requirement is that it must fall within the shift hours that were agreed upon during the on-boarding process.
Will I get weekly reports on activity? How do I know that progress is being made?
The engineer will be utilizing your system to enter their time, info, etc. Therefore you will have complete control of their daily tasks and progress of those tasks.
For Service Process Docs and Training: Do you abide by similar best practices? I have my own internal SLA for resolution, documentation, etc.
Yes, utilizing your own SLAs is perfectly fine. IT By Design can share our KPIs with you so you can compare.
We are usually 60% remediation, 20% administration and 20% install/setup. We have a lot of needs from ConnectWise / Kaseya setup and configuration, plus a number of other infrastructure needs. Can the engineer handle this?
The remote engineer can assist in Kaseya to setup monitoring and automatic patching for desktops, but ConnectWise is different and is specific to each customer. Having a ConnectWise administrator who is dedicated to your specific needs may be something for you to consider. Most of our engineers are not experts specifically in Kaseya or ConnectWise setups, but you can chose to train the engineer in these tasks if it is critical to your business needs.
What will be discussed during the on-boarding meeting? Will I know what tasks I need to perform?
An on-boarding document will be sent to you with the tasks you are required to handle on your end. The document will outline the following items to be discussed / addressed:
- Tentative start date
- Shift timings
- Resource Reporting Manager (client side)
- Internal Technical Manager (ITBD side)
- Client Success Manager (ITBD side)
- Training Period
- Training Materials / Links (i.e. one-on-one training via conference bridge, video training, manual documentation, etc).
- Tools and technology: Remote Computer Access / software access
- Phone system / direct extension
- AD Account / Email ID
- PTO policy: (NOTE: PTO policy is included in the contract)
- KPIs to be defined by client side reporting manager
- Regularly scheduled called
How does the phone extension process work? Does the engineer have a direct phone line?
We currently have 2 scenarios in our India office.
It by design phone systems:
1. We setup a direct phone # (with 646 area code), and a 4 digit extension.
Client-Specific phone systems:
1. Client mails a phone to the India office (approximately 20-25 days for phone to arrive). IT By Design manager configures within 1 day of receiving phone; Client and client’s customers can dial directly to engineer via 4-digit dialing.
I have federal clients, so I will have to restrict access to some of my accounts. Can we assign specific clients and/or access to the remote engineer so that I remain in compliance?
Yes, through ConnectWise these setups can be followed to achieve this option:
- Create user.
- Create user class and assign required permissions.
- Under Groups and Clients add required clients.
I work 100% from ticket / service requests (and escalations) but through ConnectWise ticketing system. How will the engineer be able to perform the tasks I require?
IT By Design also utilizes ConnectWise, therefore all engineers have complete training and knowledge in its functionality. Engineers are also versed in other PSA / RMM systems like Autotask, Tigerpaw, Labtech, Kaseya, just to name a few.
What tool is used to queue up tasks? I can help on the ConnectWise side, but is there any other tool that you use to help if one night I want to list out a ton of tasks for processing?
Using a virtual desktop logged into your system, the engineer will access the tickets and follow-your processes, not IT By Design’s. This engineer is an extension of your team, therefore will require access to your system to perform their daily tasks.
I store most of my information via a cloud (Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.), and not on a server, therefore I do not have a virtual desktop. Is a virtual desktop necessary for the remote engineer?
No, a virtual desktop is not necessary. You can setup your applications / processes via the cloud and give access to the remote engineer.
AD account and email on client’s domain: Will I be able to issue an email from Google Apps and not Windows/Exchange based? Will this work?
Yes. We would discuss this further during the on-boarding meeting.
Software, licenses, etc.: Does the remote engineer have MS Office 2007 or 2010? All tools that I use are cloud based and I will have credentials / licenses ready to use. Will this work?
Yes, it will work fine.
Will the remote engineer be able to use Windows-based RDP to access servers that we manage?
Yes, they will.
Will the remote engineer have an anti-virus program to ensure that we do not pickup any viruses on their work?
Yes, they will. IT By Design utilizes ESET.