Becoming a Managed Service Provider
One of the things I dreamt of doing as an IT Service provider is to get away from the “Break-Fix” model and move to become a professional Managed Service Provider (MSP). I knew the time and effort that would take, and I just did not have the time.
Then along came the Corona Virus – in a short amount of time I lost a lot of work and my days became less busy. I had become the perfect opportunity to do these things I never had time to do. My brother in law came to the party with a generous business loan to enable me to purchase the software licensing. Without his sage advice and help, I would not be where I am today, and I am genuinely appreciative. So, a big thanks – he knows who I am talking about 😊
The beginning of my MSP journey
So off and to the races it was. I jumped on the Internet, did some research and looked at the many software applications that were out there that could help me reach my goal.
I settled on the RMM (Remote Monitoring and Management) offering provided by Datto. Along with the RMM applications, I purchased the PSA (Professional Services Automation) application they offer called Autotask. This all links together and gives me the ability to service my clients more efficiently and professionally.
A massive shoutout as well to my Channel Sales Executive, Ashur Homa who from the get go has been invaluable with assistance and help to get the process rolling. He’s always there to answer my questions – of which there have been many.
I sat down with my three biggest clients, talked about my decision, and asked if they would move from their current arrangements to the new monthly managed service fee. They all were on board. For the first time, I was able to change a monthly contract fee, rather than invoice when I was required. It was the first step to growing my business and getting guaranteed monthly income so to be able to improve cash flow.
The end game
The end game is to be able to hire some technicians to help with supporting my clients. More staff will enable me to work on my business to provide better support to my clients.
It has taken me six weeks to learn the basics of the application, and I still only know about 25% of what it can do. However, I can see the benefits. I now can give them full visibility of the amount of support I provide to them. They also have more professional management of their IT systems.
I have more visibility of their systems and how I can improve service to them.
The past six weeks have been an exciting journey. I’ve been a bit overwhelmed by the sheer scope of the application. But it’s been the right decision, and I am looking forward to the future when things get back to normal. I’ll be ready to roll when people start heading back to work.
I’m going to start blogging about my journey in the hope I can help other small IT businesses like mine make the transition.