Virtualization Technology News and Information
MSPs Are Your Eyes and Ears on Technological Advancements

By Ben Martin, VP of Managed Services at InterVision

Most small and midsized IT enterprises do not have the staff necessary to create a functioning resource pool, according to research from Gartner. That stat is no surprise for IT leaders attempting to improve their organization's workflow, as IT teams have suffered staffing shortages since the onset of the pandemic. And now, The Great Resignation and recession concerns have aggravated the problem, leaving IT teams to struggle with repetitive, daily tasks. IT professionals are hard-pressed in this environment to create a cohesive plan for critical IT functions, including data hosting needs, communications services and cybersecurity.

To remedy this, Gartner suggests prioritizing enhanced versatility in the workplace. Generalized knowledge and skillsets will prove crucial for sustained IT operations, which explains why Statista predicts the global Managed Service Provider (MSP) market will exceed $300 billion by 2027.

MSPs enable IT teams to execute long-term strategy successfully by handling fundamental, repetitive tasks like incident management, firmware patches and communications software upkeep. During this process, the right MSP will suggest areas of improvement relevant to an IT team's organizational culture and budget. As a result, internal IT teams can focus on the future and adopt new technologies that fit their organizational needs - without the inflated costs.

Organizational benefits provided by an MSP

IT professionals should consider the upfront benefits of adoption when deciding whether an MSP is suitable for their enterprise. The right provider will guarantee peace of mind through three crucial, immediate improvements.

  • Risk mitigation - MSPs alleviate security risks and the associated financial risks of lost customer loyalty. By adding an MSP with deep technical expertise and global, around-the-clock staff to a cybersecurity program, IT professionals can safeguard their organization's assets more efficiently. This also transfers the responsibility of cyberthreats from an internal team to a trusted partner with a reputation on the line. To ensure security, IT professionals should review MSP offerings carefully and select a provider whose track record indicates best practices.
  • Operational cost improvements - MSP payment plans are often highly customizable, leaving IT professionals the option to employ (and pay for) only those services they need. Additionally, once an MSP creates an organizational roadmap for improvement, businesses will likely identify cost areas that can be eradicated or refined. That leaves IT teams with advanced tools they frequently use instead of hemorrhaging funds for outdated or less valuable integrations.
  • Access to top tech talent - Small or midsized IT teams may lack the expertise to be technologically competitive or compliant. With an MSP, IT teams call upon professionals with strong procedural knowledge and technical acumen. An MSP brings evolutionary viewpoints to a business' IT processes and can lead to quicker maturation, particularly as it applies to cutting-edge adoptions like AI, automation and machine learning (ML).

The advantages of an MSP may seem more apparent for small or mid-sized companies. But the benefits of managed services extend to large organizations as well.

Operationalizing an MSP for businesses - big and small

Small and midsized enterprises are more likely to be hindered by improper staffing than larger, well-established organizations. As a result, small IT teams often become bogged down by daily tasks like incident reports, bug fixes and general troubleshooting. In this problematic scenario, an IT team never has insight into - or time for - answering the essential question: "What's next?"

MSPs enter this scenario naturally. By handling manual, day-to-day tasks, an MSP frees time for internal team members to focus on an organization's high-impact IT initiatives. Those initiatives could include infrastructure modernization, such as transferring from an on-prem data center to the cloud. Or, they might involve research into which automated processes can further streamline an organization's workflow. In both cases, the result is faster, more efficient operations.

Large teams, on the other hand, may find the daily tasks of IT upkeep manageable. IT professionals on large teams may even find they have mild success with new programs and security protocols. However, more likely than not, these same teams find themselves behind the curve in terms of modernization. In 2020, two-thirds of organizations surveyed by McKinsey had started fully automating at least one business process. Using this data, McKinsey researchers suggest the top priority for organizations moving forward will be to rethink current operating models and create a roadmap for further modernization via automation, AI and ML.

The right MSP will act as a guide during the process of digital transformation. Instead of recommending tools with one use case, good MSPs evaluate all organizational practices and make cost-effective suggestions for optimization by reducing current tools, suggesting SaaS offerings and reassessing various internal processes. In a best-case scenario, this roadmap will be drafted before an MSP even commits to an account.

Despite an IT team's size or workload, MSPs adapt and provide value by granting insight into a breadth of IT services. The suite of MSP-provided offerings may include managed network services, server and storage services, IT monitoring services and operating system patching. Acting as a consultant and partner, MSPs provide a crucial extension of an organization's IT team, allowing internal team members - the most crucial element of any IT strategy - to thrive and focus on profit-generating, workflow-improving initiatives.




Ben Martin, is the VP of Managed Services at InterVision, a leading IT strategic service provider and Premier Consulting Partner in the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Partner Network (APN).

Published Monday, August 01, 2022 7:34 AM by David Marshall
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