All posts written by miguellopez

The Path to Next-Gen PSA Starts with Dispelling Migration Myths

Professional services automation (PSA) poses a bit of a dilemma for many MSPs. While the functionality that a PSA tool provides may not contribute directly to revenue generation, it is vital to your business’ success. If you cannot accomplish back-office tasks like billing, project management, and CRM, your organization cannot grow or even remain a going concern.

The value of having a PSA tool is understood. However, having a PSA tool that “just works” will not cut it in today’s ever-competitive MSP market. Think of it like a car: Cars have been on the road for over 100 years, but the car you are driving today is vastly different from the first Ford Model T that rolled off the assembly line. Not only can you buy it in a color other than black, but the models on the market are also faster, bigger, safer, and more efficient than their early 20th century predecessors. Continue Reading…

Why You Need the Right Cloud Monitoring Solution

mspmentor-march-blog-big

When a Microsoft outage in early March took down a host of cloud-based services, including Office 365, Skype, OneDrive, and Outlook, the impact on users ranged from the inconvenience of being unable to Skype customers and friends to hampered productivity from being unable to access email or mission-critical documents. For many managed service providers (MSPs), the outage meant fielding calls from customers unsure why they were suddenly unable to access the applications they rely on to operate their businesses.

Although the outage lasted only a few hours, it came on the heels of AWS’s S3 facility’s multi-hour outage the week before and was followed by an eight-hour Azure outage less than 10 days later – all of which affected businesses to varying degrees. Continue Reading…

Delivering Security Services Now Critical to MSP Success

mspmentor-feb-blog-big

MSPs have largely leveled the playing field for SMBs, enabling these organizations to deliver an optimal customer experience and service users as handily as their larger counterparts. But underpinning this success is a plethora of customer data that must be securely captured, stored and accessed.

This presents an array of challenges for the majority of SMBs that are not well-versed in IT security. For SMBs already relying on an MSP, shifting the security burden is an easy and straightforward decision.

But the buck stops at the MSP. You must ensure your customers (and your business) are protected from data breaches, 63 percent of which, according to Verizon’s 2016 Data Breach Investigations Report, are due to weak, default or stolen passwords. Continue Reading…

2017 Strategic Plan Checklist: Make Sure You Do This ASAP

2017-checklist-big

Now that you’re back from the holiday season, it’s important to take a breath before you dive into your 2017 to-do list.  Take some time to look back on what worked and what didn’t work last year then, using that insight, develop a 2017 strategic plan or blueprint.

Of course, you should be doing this type of reflection throughout the year (say on a quarterly basis).  But it’s easy to let urgent tasks crowd out the equally critical tasks that don’t call out for your attention so insistently. Continue Reading…

PSAs and Strategic Growth for MSPs: Top 5 Myths Debunked

switching-psa-5-top-myths-big

Many new MSPs start their business with an accounting product, a calendaring tool and a prayer, but they soon realize that they can do more – much more – in terms of managing the health of their business with a solution that gives them control over and visibility into their entire business process from prospect to invoice.

Unfortunately, many MSPs feel that once they select their PSA tool that they are then locked in with that selection for all eternity.  But like any technology decision made 5, 10, or even 15 years ago, it should be routinely re-visited in light of developments in technology, your business needs, and the MSP market dynamics as a whole. Continue Reading…

Protect Your Clients’ Data―and Your MSP―with Layered Security

layered-security-big

As an MSP, you have been long aware that your clients need to increase and standardize their IT security defenses to decrease the risk of cyberattacks and possible regulatory fines.  However, did you know that new regulations could extend this risk to your own business?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (Regulation (EU) 2016/679), which starts to roll out in 2017 and goes into full effect in May 2018, Continue Reading…

Building and Tuning a High-powered Sales Engine

sales-engine-big

Probably the single most important aspect of running a business is sales. Sales are the life-blood of the business:  without sales you don’t have customers; without customers, you don’t have a business.

And it doesn’t matter if you’re talking about a small MSP where the owner wears the sales hat or global MSP with a large international sales team: selling well depends on having the fundamentals right. Before you pick up the phone and make your first prospecting call, you need to prepare.  This means more than going to the prospects’ website and finding out the name of the IT person.
Continue Reading…

Best of Breed vs. Closed, Integrated Solutions: The 1990s Called and Want Their Debate Back

third-option-big

In a recent blog, I explored how it’s no longer enough for MSPs to have RMM solutions that enable ‘automation.’ Today’s MSP 2.0 world requires powerful, easily customized policy-based automation.

In this blog, I want to discuss another long-held assumption about technology that no longer holds true ─namely, the idea that an MSP has to choose between selecting a series of best-of-breed solutions or committing to a closed, integrated solution set.

On the one hand, the old story goes, you invest in point solutions that are the best fit for your business’ particular needs, but then pay the price with suboptimal integration and interoperability between and among these technologies.  Or, on the other hand, you bite the bullet and commit to one vendor’s offerings.  That way, you sacrifice the ‘best fit’ but can be confident that the systems all work together seamlessly.
Continue Reading…

5 Steps You Should Take to Optimize Your Cloud Services Offerings

msp-mentor-cloud-transition.big

Small- and medium-sized companies are increasingly following their enterprise-class peers in leveraging cloud services to improve business performance.  Their internal IT groups view the cloud as a strategic enabler, allowing them to offload routine, repetitive tasks, scale at will, and focus their efforts on innovative IT projects to improve customer and end-user experience.

Kaseya’s recent IT Operations Survey underscores this transition – with cloud services being the most popular services either currently in use or being considered by small and medium-sized business (SMBs) over the next twelve months. Companies of all sizes – from less than 50 employees to up to 5,000 – are leveraging cloud services.
Continue Reading…

How To Turbocharge Profits with Policy-based Automation

turbocharge blog

The case for automation to enable efficient, effective and proactive IT management seems unassailable.

By applying IT automation to core IT functions, you can save a significant amount of time and money. Did you know that 40% of the time spent fixing a problem is analyzing and isolating the root cause? At the same time, 75% of most IT budgets simply go towards maintaining the status quo and keeping existing systems running.

What is automation, you may ask.  It is really anything that allows an MSP technicians to be more productive by, for example, being able to repair a problem in a fraction of the time it took before. In addition, since many issues are fixed quickly, Mean Time to Recovery (MTTR) improves and many problems are cut off at the pass and resolved before they impact end users.

Enterprise Management Associates’ (EMA) primary research has determined that MSPs and IT groups that implement automation reap many benefits, Continue Reading…

Page 1 of 3123»
-->