TubbTalk 130: Wearing all the Hats: How to Succeed When You Run a Solo MSP Business

TubbTalk 130: Wearing all the Hats: How to Succeed When You Run a Solo MSP Business

TubbTalk 130: Wearing all the Hats: How to Succeed When You Run a Solo MSP Business image

An Interview With Jack Graysolo MSP

Jack Gray is the founder and Managing Director of FOMO Technology Limited, which he runs as a solo MSP. Jack recently won the “Solo MSP of the Year” award in the recent SuperOps MSP awards.

It’s a Northern Ireland-based IT support and services company and Jack has over two decades of experience in the industry. He’s committed to providing businesses in the region with affordable, customised, and personal IT support.

The SuperOps Awards Process

Jack says FOMO Technologies has a streamlined IT system in place . He’s thorough with every project he works on, making sure it’s completed properly and to the client’s satisfaction. He works hard to build a good rapport with clients: “Communication is really key.”

He found out about the awards by accident: “I’m in a ‘pod group’ with some like-minded MSPs I met in The Tech Tribe. We have regular calls, and someone mentioned the awards. And he shared the link, I filled in the form and sent it off. It was fairly easy to do.” 

What the Win Means for a Solo MSP Business

Jack admits that the win came as a bit of a shock, but he’s very grateful for it. “It’s immense, and highlights what we like doing on a daily basis in terms of providing the best possible IT service that our clients deserve.”

Another benefit of the win is reaching a new audience, and having an accolade to put front and centre on social media. When you’re a solo MSP, your marketing budget is small. So this is a great piece of PR to share everywhere. 

The Challenges and Successes in Running a Solo MSP

As with many other service-based industries, there are only so many hours an MSP can work in a day. “So to grow, you need to hire more staff and work more hours as a business as a whole.

“Another big challenge is standardising a set of services when your clients have different requirements and budgets. That happens often with cybersecurity support. I feel like we’re constantly re-evaluating our stack. Finding suitable staff is an ongoing problem at the moment, too.”

But on the positive side, the variety of the work makes running an MSP enjoyable. “One day is not the same as the next. And because I wear multiple hats, I cover lots of different roles.” 

What’s Next for the IT Industry

Firstly, Jack says that the fight against cybercrime and staying ahead of ever-more sophisticated techniques is a focus. Second, educating clients about the risk they face, and helping them understand that it’s when, not if, you’re attacked.

“I think that cloud growth will continue to grow, so clients will need support with that. And with so many distributed workforces, remote working is here to stay.” Forward-thinking MSPs should bear all of those in mind! 

The Obstacles to Business Growth as a Solo MSP 

One of the biggest obstacles to growth and expansion is the need to get into the mindset of being a business owner. Because it’s much easier to have a lifestyle business. And to do that you need to let go of things and delegate more.

“Finding the right staff and keeping them busy and incentivised is always a problem. For the most part, we’ve outsourced our NOC and SOC, which has been great. But we need people onsite too. That’s the big step that will take us to growth.”

Jack’s Advice to New Solo MSP Owners

“Some days you feel like you’re the statue and your clients are the pigeons!” says Jack! “But remember that your clients don’t understand what it is you do for them. Many of them don’t really know what IT is in their business.

“Try to add value wherever possible. Educate your clients as best you can in a language that they can understand, and they will appreciate your time and effort as a result. Just stick at it.”

How to Connect With Jack Gray

How to Connect With Me

Mentioned in This Episode

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RICHARD TUBB

Richard Tubb is one of the best-known experts within the global IT Managed Service Provider (MSP) community. He launched and sold his own MSP business before creating a leading MSP media and consultancy practice. Richard helps IT business owner’s take back control by freeing up their time and building a business that can run without them. He’s the author of the book “The IT Business Owner’s Survival Guide” and writer of the award-winning blog www.tubblog.co.uk

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