MME: IT Transitions | How to Switch Your IT Company without the Headache | Reuben Kamp

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Show Notes

What happens when you need to cut ties with your current IT company? This week's episode delves into that critical, but often overlooked aspect of business - offboarding from an IT company. Our returning guest, Reuben Kamp, shares unique insights on the importance of maintaining clear ownership of your data and domain names. He explains how things can get messy when organizations fail to plan for IT offboarding properly, and how non-compliance, especially with HIPAA regulations, can lead to colossal pitfalls, and ultimately, hefty penalties.

In this episode, Reuben rallies in-depth on the potential security risks during transitions, intricate details on termination clauses and contract renewals, and how mergers impact service continuity. He sheds light on the need for professionalism at every step during IT transitions and serves up some strategic advice on ensuring smooth transitions. The episode concludes on a high note, emphasizing trust maintenance with IT firms, and highlighting the critical need for integrated cybersecurity measures in practices.

What You'll Learn in This Episode:

  • The vital importance of data and domain name ownerships
  • The repercussions of not following HIPAA regulations
  • The potential security risks during IT offboarding
  • How to deal with termination clauses and contract renewals
  • The effect of mergers on service continuity
  • The necessity of cybersecurity in dental practices

Curious yet? Dive right into this week's episode to make sure your offboarding process is smooth and secure!

For DSO integrations, startup solutions, and all your dental IT needs, let our sponsors, Darkhorse Tech, help out so you can focus on providing the amazing care that you do. For 1 month of FREE service, visit their link today!

You can reach out to Reuben Kamp here:



Phone: 800-868-4504


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Episode Transcript (Auto-Generated - Please Excuse Errors)

Michael: Hey, Reuben. So talk to us. What's one piece of advice you can give us this Monday morning.

Reuben: We're going to talk about off boardings today, right? It is, uh, something that doesn't come up until, well, you need to find a new it company. And I know there's a lot of anxiety around, my it guy, he's got access to everything.

What's going to happen when I sent him the email saying like, ah, I don't want, sorry, man, I'm going in a different direction. today I thought it would be really useful to just, you know, hear from someone you know, like me, who's been in dental it now for 17, 18 years. Uh, I've been running Dark Horse Tech, you know, it for Dentist now for, 12 is uh, today is actually our 12th anniversary.

It's crazy. Oh, happy anniversary,

Michael: man,

Reuben: and thank you man. Yeah, I think it's just one of those things that like no one really talks about and I'd like to kind of demystify the whole process.

Michael: Interesting. Okay, so then what can we expect or what should we expect if somebody's transitioning or offboarding from an IT company?

Reuben: The most important thing to keep in mind is it's all your stuff. Right. No matter how they word the response to you, no matter what they say, just always have in your mind, I own the server. I own my email address. I own my domain name. I'm just bringing up some things that usually are a part of transitioning from an it company, right?

Maybe they have your domain name, right? Which is like, you know, dark horse tech, the dental marketer. com. Let's say they have that stored. You need to get that back. So, number one. You own it all, right? So you get to make the decisions. Now, compliance environment of dental, we all know, HIPAA, right?

That also has to be kept in mind. So let's assume in this example, Michael, that it's a, it's an it company that does care about HIPAA, right? Because if they don't, it's going to be a rough go of it. so we have to know, let's talk about liability, right? If you say, Hey, you know, Acme dental it, I'm sorry, we don't need your services any longer.

you can't have two I. T. Companies in the system at the same time. there's HIPAA compliance obligations there. There's also just personally as a business owner. If something happened during that, let's let's call it a 30 day transition period. The I. T. Comes here and point their fingers at each other and you're going to be left in the lurch.

What can happen

Michael: in those 30 days though, like that's, that you've seen?

Reuben: So, you know, when you're switching companies, you're, you know, maybe they're, they're removing software that could be the removing security software, leaving those computers vulnerable. So in the time it takes for the software to be removed and the new IT company to install it, that's an area, where you can have security issues.

But same thing with backups, right? Let's say it company stopped performing backups when you sent the email and a, you know, dark horse is ready to take over 30 days from now, but something happens in that time. Now you don't have backups. Right. So it's, it's really important to sketch out, um, responsibilities.

Now we have a, you know, work for over a thousands, 1077 dental practices. So my process is pretty locked in, but you have to direct the it company on what they need to do, right. Per their, their agreement, you sign an agreement with them. They need to uphold it through the end of. The term that you're paying them.

So you have to say, we expect that backups are going to be performed and services through X date. And if you don't do that, then they can really just pull their software whenever they want. So number one thing is at that moment, when you're, you're like, yes, I want to move forward with this other it company, I'm kicking the incumbent out.

It's a really great time to think about, minimizing the gap between security products being installed and removed, that's the window for the hackers to get into your system and, and wreak havoc.

Michael: if it ever goes longer than 30 days, what's the reasons for that?

Reuben: they could have a 60 day termination clause, uh, if it goes even longer than that, you know, we've had scenarios where clients are ready to sign up and then they go and they read their contract with whatever I, you know, we're all month to month, so this is not something that happens in our world.

But, uh, you know, I. T. Sometimes there's 135 year contracts. I don't think I've ever really see seen anything longer than five. You know, but you're like, you're motivated to switch and then you forgot that you signed a contract. And then, you know, the guys are usually pretty sneaky about it. And it auto renews, right?

So it's like, Oh, Oh, it's up in a month. Oh, nope. It auto renewed another year. You have to wait another year or two. So, that's something also, you know, before you, uh, start interviewing it companies, just make sure that you're not locked into some longterm commitment. but that kind of, you Segways us into what if the company is not providing services, right?

Let's say. Brought me into the office. I'm like, wow, your backups haven't ran for three months, And you're in a year long contract with that. That is your way out of it, right? So they breached their contract. That is a way you can terminate early. Um, if they're not living up to that, some, some companies have response time metrics.

That's another way out. some companies, uh, there's a lot of merger and acquisition activity. Just like in, in dental and the DSO space, it is the same way. I'm kind of unique in that, like, I own 100 percent of the company and I have no plans on selling it and we're a hundred percent, we have no debt and like, we're all, you know, this is a private company.

but you might be in a situation where, uh, you signed a contract with a company, but they sold to another firm. And that company you signed on with no longer exists. So you don't have. There's nothing to hold you to because that company doesn't exist any longer. So there, you know, me and Michael, I can get creative.

You know, if you're really unhappy with your IT company, I'm sure, feel free to reach out, even if you're not going with us, I'm probably, I'm sure I can probably help you out.

Michael: What have been the biggest headaches that you've experienced and you've seen? When it comes to this op boarding,

Reuben: it's professionalism is the number one thing, right?

You have all ranges of, characters in this space. You have the 18 year old IT guy, you have the 70 year old IT guy, right? The one man show. Then you have, like, Henry Schein. And then you have everything in between. So, you know, I think the most, Hectic thing is when they take it personally, You know, you submit that cancellation letter and they either, it's usually that they, not that they don't reply, but they be, they kind of shut down and get mad and are not very helpful in the transition.

Right. So been through just about every single kind of transition. I've been through the one where the it guy passed away. So we have no passwords. And we just have to figure it out. you know, on another episode, we talked about hackers. Well, there's the black hat, the bad guys, and there's the white hat.

Sometimes you got to put on the white hat, you know. Put on the white hat and get into the system so the client can use it. Um, yeah.

Michael: Interesting.

Reuben: You know, we got, it guys that, uh, left the industry and just like, I don't care. I'm not responding anymore. just about every scenario you know, exists out there, but how it should happen, dear Acme Dental, it, thank you for your years of service.

we're making a decision to go in another direction. Attached, uh, to this email is our new IT company. I authorize them to have all of our passwords. We call them run books in this industry, but like all of the information on our account, uh, please initiate this transition in the next 30 days. Sincerely, Dr.


Michael: Yeah. Gotcha. Okay. Interesting. So that's how it should go. It should be smooth, easy transition.

Reuben: the doctor, that's your job. That's it. You've done, you've completed it. You've sent the message and now it company talks to it company, things happen, and now you have a new it company, that's how it should go in a normal realm is your responsibility is crafting and sending that message and then the two professional organizations should.


Michael: you charge for off boarding like extra? Like if we were to be with an IT company and then, you know what I mean? Like I want to go with Dark Horse, but I haven't even reached out to my current IT company because my contract is going to end in like in a month.

Reuben: no, I mean, we don't charge for off boarding, right?

If a client were to say, Hey, I sold my practice. I don't need your services anymore. We're going with this, you know, DSO as internal IT. We don't have any, I guess the, what the example would be almost like a chart. Transfer fee, like a patient of this doctor wants to go to another practice. You're like, ah, 10 bucks to get your chart over there.

it seems as silly as that to charge somebody. And like, you know, I do care about my reputation. so it's like, what is the right thing to do is to just be as professional as possible, during that transition.

Michael: Okay. Gotcha. And then how can we tell. IT company doesn't care about HIPAA during their offboarding period.

Reuben: Well, I mean, if they stop their services, right, they have, incredible to think about when you give a quote to a dental office, HIPAA is involved in that. What I mean by that is, you've, let's say I go into an office, identify that a backup is not running. The office went out, contacted me. And got a quote for that service.

I'm covered. Right. Cause I went in, I did my job. I gave, uh, the office the quote to fix the problem, uh, the compliance hold that they were facing. But in the same token, you're canceling with this company, but they still need to be providing services to the end of the term. for them to say, we have you covered, you're secure, you're HIPAA compliant, we're And if they pull that early, that's a problem.

Sometimes it's really hard to know if they do that, right. Cause the software is just like, you know, we look, if we're using a windows computer, our times in the bottom, right. And next that's called the system tray icon. That's kind of where all the little shortcuts live for these, these software programs, if it just, one of those little icons disappears because they deactivated it, you have no idea.

So it's really important, though, uh, to make sure that two I. T. Companies they're not in the system at the same time, right? You might want to maybe you hate this I. T. Company so much. You want to get him out of there as soon as possible. The right way to do that is for the new I. T. Company to come on site and remove all of that I.

T. Company software and then let that I. T. Company No. Yeah, we're gonna pay you to the end of the term, but you're no longer responsible for protecting us. So that's like the, you got some bile in the back of your throat, just thinking about your it company and you just need to get them out of there.

That's probably the way to do it.

Michael: If the it company, the one that you're just like, Oh, I hate them fights back or not fights back, but says like, sorry, we can't, is there a reason for them to do that or no?

Reuben: It's usually about term. right. They have a contract term. We can't do that because. You're in a contract with a client for a year.

You could say, I don't care. I'm going to pay you for the year, but I'm still using this other company. you could still remove their software. any other way they could say now, well, if you hired one of their employees, and they had a clause in their contract that non solicitation clause that might not make them very happy.

that usually happens, uh, only at the DSO level, right? Who's going to steal an internal it guide.

Michael: Oh, I get you. Right. You said, Oh, and we love

Reuben: that technician. We're going to start our own internal it, and we're going to take that guy with us. That happens. Yeah, it does. That's bad business. That is bad business.

Uh, please don't do the only other reason they could say no is just, again, we went to the emotional component earlier about being, uh, upset, having an emotional reaction to a client's business decision. And they're just saying no because they're just trying to be obstructionist, right? Yeah, just trying to that's their way.

They don't have any other tools to fight back besides just being like, No, I'm not going to help you with this.

Michael: Yeah. Okay. Interesting. Awesome. Reuben, I appreciate your time and giving us more insight on offboarding. Now, you mentioned that you guys do this, for free. Well, obviously there's no charge, right?

Or anything like that, especially if they want to transition from their IT company to you. Any other advice you want to give us on this?

Reuben: you're working with your it company right now, I know we're in this, like, it seems like the era of the big hack, right? If you're happy with your service to your it company, that's awesome. You're in a great position. You should try to keep them, you want a dental office to be happy with their it company, but you also want to subscribe to the trust, but verify, right?

They're providing great service, but are they providing the necessary products in your dental office to keep you HIPAA compliant and away from fines in the news and breaches and having to give all your patients, credit monitoring for two years. I mean, take your patient count times nine times two.

some of you might not like that number. So if you can pair those two things together, great service and a company that cares about this dental market, cybersecurity, HIPAA compliance, then you're in an awesome position.

Michael: Wonderful, man. Awesome. Reuben. I appreciate your time. And if anyone has further questions, where can they find you?

Reuben: I'm all over. You can find me on Facebook. I'm always in the, in and out of all those groups. Everyone else's, uh, admin at dark horse tech. com is my direct email. Dark horse tech. com is our website. Of course. Uh, no, I appreciate you bringing me on Michael.

Michael: No, yeah. And that's going to be in the show notes below, along with, if you go on the first link in the show notes below, you're going to see an exclusive deal that dark horse tech as for you.

So make sure you go check that out. And Reuben, thank you so much for being with me on this Monday morning episode.