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The Pundits’ Take on MSP 2.0

msp-2.0

 

MSP 2.0 is not exactly a new term, but it is really catching on to describe the current managed service provider market.

The Kaseya Take on MSP 2.0

As a vendor largely focused on MSPs, Kaseya has a deep commitment to help MSPs successfully navigate in an MSP 2.0 world.  Kaseya offers a comprehensive collection of solutions, from RMM to PSA, identity and access to cloud monitoring, and more, that are all MSP 2.0 ready.

In our analysis, MSP 2.0 is in part a manifestation of market growth. MSPs have matured from part-time operators and small 1-5 person technician-dominated companies five short years ago to larger process-centric organizations with strong technical capabilities combined with professional sales, support, marketing, finance, and management teams. Because of the larger clients, super-MSPs that could handle the scale evolved. These MSPs are 100% focused on growth and expansion and employ professional sales, marketing, and technical delivery organizations to acquire new accounts and often displace smaller less mature MSPs.

On the other side, small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), the prime targets for MSPs, are increasingly demanding and requiring the same technologies and processes that have been pioneered and used for years by enterprises.

This means SMBs are now Continue Reading…

Building a Serviceable Service Desk

service-desk

If there is a bread and butter aspect to a successful MSP, it has to be the service desk. Here is where the rubber meets the road, client IT problems addressed, and is the focal point for how clients interact with your company.

A mediocre or substandard service desk is a death knell. In contrast, a superb service desk creates customer loyalty, SLA compliance and great word of mouth. At the same time, such a desk is efficient, creating more revenue and profit opportunity.

Building an optimum service desk takes thought, planning and careful execution. Here are six areas to focus on, starting with staffing:
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What’s A Next Generation PSA And Why On Earth Do You Need One?

 

next-generation-psa

Professional Services Automation (PSA) software has been around for decades and, in too many cases, is getting long in the tooth.

Most of these tools were originally built for general-purpose business use.  Later, PSA tools were created especially for IT implementations. Because these focused on technical projects and tasks, it  was a big step forward but, for MSPs, it was not nearly enough. Solutions built for internal IT departments are not of optimal use for service providers. These IT tools are overly generic and are designed to be used by dozens of vertical markets. Serving this many masters dilutes these PSAs’ ability to serve MSPs’ unique needs.

There are many items that define an MSP-specific PSA, including the ability to work tightly with other key MSP software solutions and to directly manage MSP projects without a lot of tinkering or configuration.
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Finding the Right MSP Exit Strategy

exit-strategy2

MSPs organizations are businesses, and like most businesses have goals. One of those is usually making money. The biggest way to cash in could be when you sell the whole company.

Getting your company ready to sell takes a tremendous amount of discipline – and this rigor is of benefit whether you ultimately sell or not.

Rick Murphy, CEO of Cogent Growth Partners which helps MSPs find acquisitions, says it is never too early to get your company ready to sell. “Most business owners don’t think about their exit plan until it’s too late to do anything about it, and they unknowingly miss all of the benefits that can come from having the plan in place from day one. While it might seem outlandish to be contemplating an exit while your business is young, professional investors know you don’t invest unless you understand how you are going to exit, and small business owners can benefit from this thinking,” Murphy argues.
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Policy-driven Security Helps You Stay Ahead of the Bad Guys

policy-based-securityKaspersky Labs just published a new eBook, Cybercriminals: Unmasking the Villain, which provides insight into cybercriminals’ evolving strategies and tactics. There are three points in particular that I want to highlight:

  • “31% of all cyberattacks are directed at businesses with less than 250 employees”
  • “42% of confidential data loss is caused by employees” often due to well-meaning employees “opening unauthorized email attachments, forwarding sensitive information or storing data insecurely”
  • “Hacking a small business to get into a larger business is now standard operating procedure for cybercriminals.”

These evolving cybercriminal practices underscore the reality that proper, up-to-date security practices are more vital than ever to the health and well-being of every company, no matter its size.  The risks are too high, and the incidence of exposure and breaches is only increasing.
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The Ten Most Important MSP Business Metrics – How Do You Measure Up?

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In the MSP world, there are tens of dozens of possible metrics you can adapt. Try and do so, though, and you’ll spend all your time measuring and precious little driving growth. The trick is to choose those metrics that work for your business and management style.

MSP consultancy Taylor Business Group (TBG) is focused on helping clients drive profit, and it has 10 metrics it says are the most important metrics to keep MSPs on track to achieve their goals.
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How to Thrive in an MSP 2.0 World: Increasing Growth, Margins, and Customer Loyalty

up-arrow-made-of-people

In last month’s blog, I outlined how rapidly changing SMB client requirements are reshaping the MSP Market.  These demands to broaden MSPs’ service portfolio, combined with downward pricing pressure from increased competition, are squeezing operating margins and reducing the overall profitability of an MSP’s business.

The MSP world is changing fast, with new technologies, new competition and ever-changing market forces, pushing MSPs towards their next phase of evolution. Kaseya calls this next phase MSP 2.0, since it is a natural extension of the MSP 1.0 phase that emerged after the Break/Fix era.

New MSP Growth Opportunities and New Challenges

The new MSP 2.0 environment creates both new growth opportunities and new challenges for MSPs.

Overall, the rate of consumption of MSP services by SMBs is expected to grow annually over 45% year over year for the next several years, representing a global market opportunity approaching $75 BILLION USD per year by 2020.

However, while the opportunities are clear and overwhelming for the MSP market as a whole, individual MSPs must each adapt to these changing market dynamics or risk falling behind.

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Repair a Dead Machine Remotely – Without Driving Onsite

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IT techs – whether working at MSPs or in internal IT Ops groups – have long faced a miserable task:  physically visiting PCs and other devices that are dead by hard drive failure. In these cases, you must pack up your kit, head out to the site and see what can be done.  Depending on where you work, this can be called a truck roll, man-in-the-van work, or just plain wasted time that you would rather spend doing other work.

Each of these visits can take hours, and often technicians find themselves going back and forth from the site location and the main office to gets parts or new bits of software to solve the problem.

What if you could sit at your console in a comfortable chair with a cup of coffee, and repair that hard drive right then and there – in minutes?  What if this wasn’t just an edge use case, but you could essentially eliminate going on site to fix laptops, kiosks and PCs that are no longer responsive?  What if you could say goodbye to what MSPs sarcastically refer as “windshield time”?

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Stand Out From the MSP Crowd by Building a Brand

stand-out-from-crowd
There are well over 40,000 MSPs in North America, and thousands of VARS every year are moving to service fattening those numbers further.

In some geographies, MSPs are stepping on each other’s toes. Branding for MSPs has always been important, but there wasn’t always great different ion between providers. Now, however, providers are evolving to adapt to an MSP 2.0 environment and looking to attain Trusted Advisor status. If you play these two cards right, there is plenty of differentiation to crow about.

When managed services were more a commodity, many deals were won by price alone. You could get away without a strong distinctive brand. At the same time, players with known names got more sales meetings and came away with more deals.
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The No-Fail Guide to Becoming a Trusted Advisor

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You may think Trusted Advisor is a trite phrase. In fact, some think we should retire the term altogether. But as an MSP there is nothing wrong with being trusted or engaged as an advisor. So forget about whether you love or hate the term and just embrace the concept.

In a blog last month we talked about why you should think about being a Trusted Advisor. Now we’ll talk a bit about how you do it.

You can start this transition, if you haven’t already made it, with existing clients. Dig deeper into their technical affairs. Go the extra mile in managing and monitoring devices and their network, and proactively offer new ways of gaining efficiency and supporting innovation. They’ll feel the benefits and pass the word along.
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