The future of IT Solution Providers (ITSP’s) and Managed Service Provider (MSP) is changing. While Small and Medium Sized Business (SMB) spending on outsourced IT services is expected to grow significantly over the next several years, many IT businesses are sadly not capitalising on the opportunities this provides to them. Why? Simply put, they are continuing to do what they’ve always done – being the “IT guy” and are ignorant to – or worse, aware of but ignoring the changing nature of the role of the MSP.
A focus on Consulting
With margins on hardware and software rapidly diminishing thanks to the surge in Cloud Computing, a large number of IT businesses are now focusing on providing consultative services to SMB clients. While it’s true that IT has changed with a much greater emphasis on consumer devices, it’s also true that SMB’s still want guidance from a trusted advisor – and that’s the role that MSP’s can focus on.
But with a an increased focus on providing consultative services, the time and effort associated with running essential IT business operations will need to evolve as well. MSP’s will need to adapt their business to meet the changing needs of the marketplace and deliver higher levels of service to their clients.
- If you are providing a flat-fee Managed Service contract to your clients – do you know where you are spending your time, and which client contracts are actually profitable?
- Do you know which of your engineers is most effective? The most effective engineer is often not the same to the engineer who logs the most time – do you know the difference?
The most effective way to answer these types of questions is through a concept becoming know as Service Intelligence. Put simply, Service Intelligence allows you to effectively measure your IT business performance, bring about efficiency, and as a result build an IT business that is both profitable and predictable in nature.
To help IT Solution Providers take advantage of these opportunities, I’m flattered to have been asked to co-author a Whitepaper with Autotask CEO, Mark Cattini titled “Understanding the Changing Landscape for IT Services – A Guide for SMB IT Managed Service Providers and IT Solution Providers”.
The Whitepaper clearly lays out some of the new opportunities your IT Solution Provider business should be focusing on, and outlines the advantages that Service Intelligence can bring to you and your SMB clients.
Webinar – the Changing Landscape for IT Services
To compliment the Whitepaper, Mark Cattini will also be hosting a free webinar on Thursday March 21st, 2013 at 3pm GMT (1100 EST) where he will be discussing the current global IT marketplace, primary influences affecting SMB technology consumption, and explaining the opportunity for ITSPs and MSPs.
If you’ve never seen Mark Cattini present before, then I strongly encourage you to register for the webinar – you’ll gain some invaluable free advice from one of the most experienced CEO’s in the business.
The role of IT Solution Providers is changing, and sadly, many companies are in danger of being left behind by these changes – finding it increasingly difficult to win new business due to a lack appreciation of SMB client requirements, and unable to compete with those businesses who are leveraging service intelligence to deliver better, more efficient and more profitable service.
As the former owner of an MSP, I know all too well how easy it is to get caught up in the day-to-day running of the business and neglect to keep an eye on the changing landscape of the IT industry.