There are many proposed approaches to Application Performance Management – one approach is collecting performance data from the application itself while the other is collecting application data from packet data by sniffing on the network. Fetching metrics from the application process itself yields valuable data such as memory, buffers, cache and other such application data which cannot be obtained from the wire. On the other hand, performance metrics from the network itself gives a good breakdown of response times and delays from the different components of the entire service.
Way to go Kaseya MSPs! You’ve done it AGAIN!
It’s a new year, already filled with exciting changes and significant MSP opportunities. But for some of you, a few things remain the same, and selfishly, we are happy about that. The new MSPmentor Top 100 rankings for 2013 are out. In the table below, see how many MSPs running Kaseya were represented on the list:
Kaseya has always been at the front of the pack in terms of solutions that successful MSPs use to run their businesses. 2013 is no exception. Once again, we are honored and humbled by the fact that so many of the Kaseya MSPs continue to dominate the MSP Mentor 100 list for 2013. Additionally, just over 51% of all 485 survey respondents use Kaseya. Good for you! Congratulations from all of us.
Like proud parents, we are thrilled that our customers are seeing significant and sustainable growth in their own businesses. We are more excited that so many of you show up year after year on this list and with so many Kaseya customers ranked near the top, it’s a validation that MSPs CAN grow and DO grow with Kaseya. We applaud your hard work and we sincerely appreciate your partnership with us, both of which give us the information we need to continue to build – and support – the Kaseya Solution that powers your business. We remain committed to these areas because we know you count on us to do so.
No big surprise right? Not at all, and with so many Kaseya MSPs ranked on the list, it serves to highlight how our innovative customers are finding more and more IT task management work to be automated and how more work is being done centrally and remotely. The industry pundits still take notice, too. These accolades reinforce our belief that product innovation still matters and that robust and efficient vendor support is still important.
As our annual user conference approaches – Kaseya Connect is April 29th – we can’t wait to see you all in Las Vegas to congratulate you in person. And we are ready to engage with you so and gather your feedback, organize it into valuable solution requirements, prioritize it for your use on our product road map, so that we can further our commitment to building the right solution that works well for so many of you.
For those of you who are not yet Kaseya customers, I hope you are ready see Kaseya in action. We invite you to see how and why the top MSPs power their business with us and I encourage you to register for a live, weekly Kaseya product demonstration.
As the saying goes, seeing is believing, and I think you’ll be glad you gave us a look.
For businesses that rely on a service delivery model, it’s a widely known fact that sound pricing management is the most effective way to grow your business.
As a managed services provider (MSP), did you ever wonder how your pricing strategy – and its effectiveness – compares to your MSP peers around the world?
With access to thousands of MSP customers worldwide, Kaseya conducted our annual global pricing survey to gain insight into the best practices of MSP pricing management. In this 6 page MSP pricing report, see replies from hundreds of your peers when asked the following questions:
I had an interesting conversation with one of our IT managed services customers the other day.
We were discussing the journey he took as his IT managed services company grew from a one-man show to an 18-person managed services company with $3 million in revenue in just a few years. He said it was a tough transition, but it was worth it. However, what struck me was the motivation behind transforming the business.
Here is what he said: “I had been working for years in a break-fix model and was making enough money to be comfortable. Then it occurred to me. I had built a nice job for myself but it was far short of a business. And that’s what I really wanted. I wanted to build a business, and I knew that I had to get serious about managed services.”
It was the perfect light bulb moment. He had built a job but wanted a business.
Based on our work with thousands of MSPs worldwide, making the switch to MSP is worth the time and effort because MSPs are approximately 200-400% more profitable than non-MSPs. And MSPs are 3x to 10x more valuable than traditional VARs.
But as I’ve said before, its not easy. A successful managed service provider (MSP) business is reliant on a solid business strategy and service delivery model as well as finding the right technology for your needs. We can help you understand the steps you need to take in order to get started, all rolled into a 21-page IT managed services eBook that will will help you:
- Develop and execute on a solid business strategy for running a managed services company - Companies that get the business part right and flub the technology part won’t grow very fast but will chug along and survive. On the other hand, service providers that use the right technology but can’t handle growth or manage daily operations will most likely fail. However, it’s companies that get both the business right and choose the appropriate management solution for their needs that are wildly successful. Running the business the right way is that critical. Read our 6 tips that you can use to build a profitable business model.
- Choose the right IT systems management solution to help enable your vision – The managed services business model is enabled by the technology you use to deliver IT services to your customers. However, there are dozens of solutions. How do you choose the right one for your unique needs? IT systems management solutions come in several flavors based on the software’s architecture and we provide a summary – including feature and cost comparison – of the 5 common types of tools available.
- Price your managed services fairly, competitively, and profitably - How do I price my managed services effectively? It’s the most common topic among our thousands of MSP partners worldwide. Using data from real MSPs, we provide you an insider’s look and a data-rich analysis of pricing scenarios used by a variety of service providers in various stages of the MSP development track. We give you step-by-step calculations to help you understand how to determine your operating cost and we provide you with a few pricing scenarios to help you understand business impacts and profitability analysis. Once you understand these data, you can leapfrog your peers (and truly deliver value to you clients) because you will gain a better understanding of cost, profit, and MRR/project/T&M portfolio calculations and analysis.
- Avoid some common pitfalls – Do you need a crystal ball on your MSP journey? Learn from your peers as they share 4 common MSP traps to avoid so you can fast-track your success.
- Understand the benefits that come with implementing managed services correctly – Read a case study to understand how an IT service provider successfully rolled out managed services for its customers and transformed into one of the largest MSPs in the country.
So, take a walk with us. Read this free eBook Starter Guide to IT Managed Services and learn more. Turn your job into a business. You won’t be disappointed.
Back in 2006, VAR Business suggested “98 Percent of Managed Services Is Chaotic.” At that time, they painted a bleak picture of the common pitfalls that break-fix VARs and other IT solution providers encountered as they attempted to transition to a managed services business model.
In the 2006 VAR Business report, they found that 31% of the companies surveyed felt that their managed service efforts had fallen short of their expectations and only 11% said that managed services had exceeded expectations.
My how far we’ve come.
In a recent Kaseya survey of nearly 2,000 MSP customers worldwide, we found that upwards of 85% generate recurring revenue for 12 months per year. More than 50% improved the profitability and productivity of their technicians by 100% within 90 days of completing an onboarding process. Their average client retention rate was high (very high).
The findings are compelling.
MSP Service Delivery Best Practices – Using IT Strategic Plans to Win More – And Better – Managed Services Contracts (originally aired May 2012)
Led by services architect and service delivery expert John Kilian of AntFarm, Inc, this webinar presented MSP service delivery best practices for using IT strategic plans to win more – and better – MSP contracts.
As a sneak peak of the session, John’s presentation on MSP service delivery best practices:
- How to create an IT Strategic Plan that aligns with MSP client business needs
- How to protect your managed services revenue from poachers
- How to synchronize clients’ technology lifecycle to changes in their business
- How to “own” the plan
WEBINAR REPLAY: MSP Pricing Tips – Determining Optimal Margins for Your Service Offerings (originally aired March 2012)
As a sneak peak of the session, Erick’s presentation on determining optimal IT managed service margins covered:
- An introduction to key pricing factors
- How to define – and calculate – labor cost
- How to define – and calculate – overhead cost
- How to use these data to optimize profits
- How to use these data to grow your business
Yep, I know I promised you a few common pricing tools as a starting point for your MSP pricing analysis. But after reading an article from Business Solutions Magazine recently, where we were asked to reply to a discussion of VARs overcoming MSP fears, it got me thinking.
Why aren’t more MSPs more successful more quickly?
Its no surprise that successful MSPs automate quite a bit of their delivered services. I don’t want to be to be confrontational (or sound too naive), but the movement to automation isn’t new to IT. And its been around a for a long time in other industries (see Henry Ford and Ransom Olds). Heck, even we’ve been talking about it for a while, when we first presented this curve more than 5 years ago.
Since early 2000, we’ve helped 12,000 MSPs customers worldwide become more proactive with IT automation, yet our customer base still represents a small fraction of the multi-billion dollar IT services industry (according to Frost & Sullivan). Its clear to us that many corporate IT departments still outsource and they seek local expertise best-provided by an MSP.
However, its also clear that not every IT solution provider wants to convert from break fix IT support to IT managed service; yet, for those who that do convert, some are more successful than their peers in how quickly they achieve monthly recurring revenue. A big question we hear all the time is “how can I grow faster?” What holds back MSP growth?
And what can be done about it?
For those MSPs who are slow out of the gate, I’ve seen 3 common barriers to speedy MSP growth:
1. Ineffective pricing. Too many leave profit on the table by charging solely by cost plus pricing; they don’t know their true cost or willingness of their customers to pay, so they are undercharging. I wrote a 3 part blog on this.
2. Failure to specialize/verticalize. Too many are generalists; the most successful MSPs are gurus (w/ certs and vertical credentials) and sell by vertical (banks, such as Safe Systems) or by competency (business continuity, such as Data Balance). Read case studies about your MSP peers here.
3. Failure to accelerate AWAY from break-fix. Read the BSM article here. Need I say more? If ANY of them want to exit, they will have suboptimal valuations UNTIL they move to managed services.
As an MSP who faces one of these 3 barriers, how should you respond? Heres a few focus areas, in no particular order:
- Tighten up your business practice so that your IT service delivery is more efficient.
- Monitor the market and talk with your customers (ie, use a business review).
- Reassess your MSP practice/business plan, the viability of your MSP software platform, the strength of your PSA tool, and the bench strength of your technicians.
- Specialize, get a few extra certs, and start publishing content as a guru (especially in areas where your clients are).
- Commit to value-based pricing.
- And plan effectively for the future, whether its to achieve 20% growth with 30% margins or to cash out at a 3x multiplier.
Want to jump start the improvements to your business and read more about effective IT managed services? Register and download our How to Achieve Breakout Success in IT Managed Services whitepaper and read how other MSPs are growing – and making more money – using business practices unique the managed services industry.
For my next MSP pricing blog post, Ill get back to the plan and provide a few common pricing tools as a starting point for pricing analysis. If you want to register early, please subscribe to our blog and receive the post via email.
As a sneak peak of the session, Robin’s presentation on creating an MSP marketing plan covered:
- How to start your marketing plan if you’ve never created one before
- What is the single most important question you need to answer about your business
- What are the critical numbers and percentages you’ll need to know
- How to draft a marketing budget and what – and where – to spend
- How to use blended media to attract more clients (including web, social media, e-mail, direct mail, telemarketing and more)
- What are the secrets to IMPLEMENTATION – and keeping your campaigns on track
In a further peak, the following is a short summary of a few of Robin’s MSP marketing tips:
- Strategy – Robin describes why research is so important to select the right market in defining your strategy, how to develop a message that reinforces your competitive advantage, why a financial model is necessary, and how to implement your strategy and build the outline of your tactical plan
- Market – Hear how to define specifically (in 7 steps) who you want to attract as a customer, why it’s important, and why it’s so often misunderstood
- Message – Robins shares the importance of a unique selling proposition and why it is the #1 question you must be able to answer when someone asks, “why should I choose you?”
- Process & Tactics – Robin gives several examples of effective campaigns – both online and offline – and discusses how to use social channels. She also describes how to manage the myriad of performance data and marketing information throughout your MSP organization
To hear the entire session, register and listen to the recording at you own pace, on your own time. By the end of the webinar, you’ll know how to create a more effective MSP marketing plan that helps you win more customers.
Know the Risks and the Payoff!
If there wasn’t any risk, there would be no payoff. If there’s no payoff, why take a risk? Last time I checked, there weren’t too many pro-bono MSPs. The key to business success is managing risk to maximize the payoff. So, the old-fashioned return on investment analysis needs to become part of the decision-making process when it comes to setting prices. Once you have a sense of your client’s price and your potential margins, then you can assess risk and weigh your decision to proceed.