The Basic Services of an MSP
Your peers are finding new technology innovations like virtualization and the cloud as a way to save money. Virtualization and cloud computing are a cost-effective means to move the contents of entire servers into one offsite virtual server or software bundle – this includes all applications, data, operating systems and patches. The need for fewer physical servers reduces hardware and energy costs, data size requirements and makes overall IT management and backup/recovery easier.
According to series of studies compiled by VMWare (a US-based cloud and virtualization software and services company), businesses that have implemented virtualization have reduced total cost of ownership in IT operations by up to 67%.
While there has been much attention called to the positives of these new innovations, SMBs owners and managers have little to no visibility to the new set of risks and the incremental costs that accompany this new technology.
This new technology, while highly productive, also has the potential to be disruptive given the increased risk for security breaches in the cloud and the learning curve of team members adapting to new technology and software applications. The life of a system administrator also becomes more complex given the demands of always-on employees/customers and the greater need to backup data and recover immediately in the event of an unplanned outage.
The reality is many of the headaches that come with new technology aren’t fully realized until months, if not years, into their implementation – and this may be too late.
Management today needs more visibility to the real risks at hand, along with new solutions and methodologies. Partnering with a managed services provider (MSP) is one new approach being used by many of your peers today. Experienced MSPs have access to newer tools that reduce costs by automating many routine in-house labor intensive processes. Break-fix is labor intensive, and labor is one of the most expensive operating costs within your IT infrastructure. These innovative tools generate real productivity increases and mitigate the risk of network failure, downtime or data loss from human error.
MSPs deliver a trusted foundation for your team and your customers – some of the services and tasks offered include:
- Remote Desktop Management and Support
- Predictable Management of Critical Patches and Software Updates
- Fractional Resource Availability of Best-In-Class Expertise – scaled to your needs
- Implementing and Testing Backup and Disaster Recovery Processes
- Performance of Inventory and Audits of Computer/Network/Software
- Enforcement of Network/Security Policy
- Mobile Data Management and Monitoring
- Monitoring of Network/Operating System and Alerts
- Updating Anti-Virus Software and Detecting Spyware
Alert Monitoring – MSP automation of this task has led to an 80% reduction of in-house monitoring that delivers visibility to risks that were previously unidentifiable.
Service Tasks/Help Desk Requests or Ticketing – MSP automation of these tasks have led to a 30% reduction of in-house support ticket- related efforts – saving countless hours of paying for employees and team members to stand idle
Reporting – MSP service-level management tools and dynamic dashboards have led to complete automation of reporting and business communication efforts. Network trust increased and fear of unknown risks reduced so management can sleep at night?
Erase any misconception that MSPs are nothing more than “outsourced” tech help priced to displace your in-house IT technician or team. The new MSP has defined effective processes; methodologies and technology partnerships to offer valuable preventive services that proactively identify and eliminate threats before a bigger problem arises.
Whether an MSP assumes full responsibility for IT operations or acts as an ally to an in-house IT technician or team, the toolsets and education they provide to SMBs are invaluable. An MSP’s expertise and availability is what sets them apart from the “fireman-like” break-fix provider.
In an increasingly competitive environment where technology evolves at a rapid pace, businesses must fully leverage innovation to better meet the needs of their employees and the expectations of their customers. Much of this hinges on an organization’s ability to increase system reliability for their business continuity, team productivity and customer satisfaction.
CLICK HERE for a free network assessment, and choose Cognoscape as your trusted MSP.