Tag Archive - MSP

The Essential Guide to Successful Cross Selling and Upselling

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Many MSPs grow by constantly acquiring new clients. But when these are one-off engagements based on a single service or break/fix contract, clients can leave as fast as they arrive. That’s the kind of churn that keeps MSP execs up at night.

A better way to go is selling sets of services, all managed by your firm. This is the whole idea behind service bundles. Often, MSPs package their services into two or three sets of bundled services.

But how do you increase the number of services a client outsources to you after a sale? There are two mains ways: cross selling and upselling.

Defining Terms

These two techniques are distinctly difference but share essential common element.
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Making Statements of Work, Work For You

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A Statement of Work (SOW) is sometimes confused with a Master Services Contract (MSA), and indeed some use the terms interchangeably.

On the other hand, an SOW is an ideal way to scope out a project, especially a complex project, as opposed to an MSA, that details a long-standing services arrangement.  (You can read a recent blog of mine on how to craft contracts, SLAs and MSAs.)

Many times a client will specifically require an SOW, so you should be prepared to craft one that suits both parties.

If you already have a contract or MSA with a client, your SOW can encompass some of the same issues and reinforce those bonds.

SOW General Overview

An SOW, being most often project-based, focuses on defining what the deliverables are and when they should arrive.

Just as important, the SOW defines all the milestones that are behind the deliverables and who does what. This requires timetables, a way to review progress, and a means of tying payment to project progress. In addition, all resources critical to the project are defined in the SOW, as well as which parties bear which costs.
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MSPs: Making Sure the Price is Right

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Pricing is never easy. Set a price too low and you leave money on the table. Too high and the competition will eat you for lunch. Not only that, but as the technology and services market moves forward, there are an array of pricing approaches to choose from.  This blog will review the basic analysis you should do to make sure the prices you set for your services will support your business goals and objectives.

First Determine Your Target’s Needs

Before pricing any service it’s important to determine the needs of your target market. Smaller companies have lower revenues in general and are constrained in their ability to fund expensive services. They look for low-priced offerings providing basic levels of support. Nevertheless, all businesses are interested in getting the best value for their investments (read largest ROI) and most will favor higher value, versus a lower price, if the value price fits within their budgetary constraints.

While a la carte pricing options may sound like they give the client the most choice, this type of pricing structure can quickly lead to problems.  First, it can quickly become a service delivery nightmare to for your technicians to manage and support a growing number of unique customer engagements.  Second, most customers prefer to select from among a small number of service bundles/tiers with increasing levels of capability. SMB customers want more comprehensive services and see strong value in attractively priced bundled managed services.
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Automation Exchange — MSPs’ Secret RMM Weapon

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When you buy a car you might ask your auto enthusiast friends for advice. When it comes to maximizing the use of your RMM, wouldn’t you want the same kind of expertise from your MSP peers?

That help and insight can come from a community of trusted MSPs that are willing to share real world automation solutions they’ve come up with.

Automation is the name of the RMM game, but it can take come clever scripting and templating to apply automation to more than just common routine tasks. And out-of-the-ordinary tasks often benefit the most from automation. Continue Reading…

How to Craft Contracts, SLAs and Master Services Agreements for MSPs

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You might think the root of MSP revenue is services, and that is true. But it is contracts that define these revenues and, properly written, ensure the money you earn keeps rolling in on a regular basis.
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5 Steps You Should Take to Optimize Your Cloud Services Offerings

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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.
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Tackling Top Retail IT Concerns

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Retailers are a huge cybercriminal target. That’s because there is so much valuable data help in retailers’ IT coffers.

For larger retailers, there are myriad systems to protect, which could add up to hundreds, sometimes thousands, of locations with all the related end point devices. These include PCs and laptops, kiosks, Point of Sale (POS) and electronic POS (ePOS) systems, tablets, and even smart phones.
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Cloud Gobbly-Gook: Making Sense of IaaS, PaaS and SaaS

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The cloud is supposed to be simple. After all, it’s just a massive computing utility that can do nearly anything, isn’t it?

The deeper you look, though, the more intricate it all becomes.

There are three major cloud service platforms which adds to this confusion. You can think of these services as comprising a stack. Let’s work our way up, starting with the lowest level.

IaaS – Infrastructure as a Service sounds pretty straightforward. Customers don’t have to have servers, storage and related network infrastructure on-premises. Instead, this is all hosted by a cloud provider and you essentially pay a rental fee. In the beginning, these were raw services based on bare-metal servers and unconfigured storage. It was up to the customer to set the infrastructure up with operating systems, apps and the like. Continue Reading…

How to Manage Change for Success: 7 Principles for MSPs

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There is constant pressure on Managed Service Providers (MSPs) to continually respond and evolve their offerings to ensure they remain competitive. Caught in an ever changing IT landscape with new service providers and the inexorable migration to SaaS, an MSP’s offerings need to continually evolve and new service offerings added, to remain relevant to their customers’ needs.

In such a volatile and rapidly evolving market, it can be difficult for organisations to plan and communicate changes effectively to their staff.  For any change, be it organization-wide or smaller business groups, it is critical to success to ensure staff understand what the business is intending to ultimately achieve, and that they buy in and support the change. Planning an organisation-wide, large-scale change can be quite daunting with its potential impact on the organization, especially on how to juggle multiple priorities not only daily but long-term strategically; so the larger the change, the more critical it is that the change is successful. Continue Reading…

Top Reasons MSPs Should Offer vCIO Services

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While enterprises have had CIOs for some three decades, it is only recently that Virtual CIOs (vCIOs) have emerged. Invented by MSPs, vCIO offer SMBs top-level IT strategy.

As an MSP, you provide much of this insight and guidance already to your clients.. Who knows your clients’ IT operations better than you and your staff? You can kick this informal advising up a few notches by offering higher level, truly strategic CIO advice and guidance. Of course, you can’t be on site every day – so as a vCIO you’ll do this virtually. Continue Reading…

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