What is a Dedicated Support Engineer? Top 3 qualities to find the best DSE
Running an online business can be hard.
You need innovate on your core business offerings, take care of sales, run marketing campaigns, update the site, and top of it all, take care of your servers and customers.
Tech support can take up more than 50% of your productive time and can be immensely distracting.
That is why many companies hire a Support Engineer to manage their servers and to help with tech support.
But hiring a person (or persons) in your office can quickly become a burden.
You suddenly go from a single room entrepreneur to an employer who should provide office infrastructure, foot additional utility bill, take care of statutory paper work, and more.
You can avoid all that hassle by outsourcing the maintenance to an external company, but then you’ll lose the customization or personal touch that comes from a hired engineer.
Is there a middle ground?
Can you have all the benefits of hiring an inhouse engineer, but none of the headaches?
Yes, you can. That’s what you get from a Dedicated Support Engineer.
What is a Dedicated Support Engineer?
A Dedicated Support Engineer is a highly skilled server expert who works exclusively for you, but works from a remote location.
The engineer will be an employee at another company (eg. an outsourced support provider). You get into a contract with THAT company for the services of the DSE.
Since you are paying for only the services, you are not required to fulfill statutory obligations of being an employer, take care of salary accounting, or any other administration hassles.
You pay the company a per hour service rate (as low as $12.99/hour), and you get that person to support your customers and manage your servers.
How to hire the best Dedicated Support Engineer (DSE)?
Finding a reliable and qualified expert can be quite a challenge.
You’ll need someone who knows your business technology, will show up for work regularly, and who will stick with you for quite some time.
Here’s a handy list of the top 3 qualities you need to look for:
Is it a person or a company?
Individuals (eg. freelancers) can be unpredictable. They might get sick, could become unreachable, or just vanish one day without a trace.
On the other hand, companies won’t vanish one fine day. Even if one person quits or is unavailable, they’ll have a backup option.
Companies have the manpower to offer 24/7 monitoring & support, which means you no longer need to sleep with one eye open. A tech company will have enough experts around (collective expertise) to quickly resolve complex issues that might come up.
When choosing a DSE,
- Check how long this company has been in existence. The longer a company has been in the industry, the more mature their systems will be to deliver 24/7 service.
- Look at their reviews in niche industry forums (eg. web hosting forums).
How experienced is the DSE’s company?
The benefits of contracting a company for DSE services goes beyond availability.
A DSE from a good outsourced support provider will be able to advice you on the best practices in the industry based on their experience in managing hundreds of other clients.
Which brings us to the question about experience.
If your DSE comes from a company with several years (or decades) of experience in your business, you’ll gain access to time-tested insights into how best to organize and run your business.
You no longer need to do trial and error on setting up new systems or implementing a new policy. The DSE will tell you what works best based on real world examples.
So, when choosing a DSE,
- Look at how long this company has been in existence.
- Look for a company that has specific expertise in your business technology (eg. Suse Linux, Windows 2016, etc.)
- Ask for a free consultation on how to resolve your business problems. If you get insightful, practical advice, you know you are in the right company.
What are the qualifications of the DSE?
These days vendors provide extensive documentation to resolve day-to-day server issues.
Suse Linux, Red Hat, Windows, IIS – all these have good docs, but no amount of documentation can cover all possible issues that can occur in real life.
Suggested fixes may not work. There won’t be a relevant doc for your specific issue. Or the doc could be too hard to understand.
That is why you need your DSE to be an expert who has more than a superficial knowledge about your business technology.
Your DSE should have a fundamental understanding of how computer systems work, how operating systems are built, the differences between them, and how to build one from scratch.
In short, you need your DSE to be a Computer Science Engineer, who can deep dive into a problem and resolve the issue with or without docs.
When choosing a DSE,
- Ask if the engineer is a Computer Science Engineering graduate.
- Ask for the work experience and resume.
- Request a free consultation to evaluate the knowledge of the DSE before you hire them.
Running an online business is hard. You need a competent server expert to keep your services fast, safe and stable. Today we’ve seen the top 3 qualities of a Dedicated Support Engineer that you should look for when hiring a support person.