It Pays for MSPs To Think in Lean Spending Times

A recent Computer Economics report says that while 60 percent of IT organizations the research firm surveyed are increasing IT operational spending, only 34 percent are increasing IT headcount. This means while companies might be willing to spend more money towards IT operations, they are not as willing to hire more people toward IT.

More spending is key, even if that means fewer new hires. Instead of headcount, companies will be spending more on upgrades to existing services and infrastructure, which is likely means more spending may also go towards application development, maintenance, storage and security -- some of the flagship service lines of many MSPs.

But before you boot up in bliss, consider that another Computer Economics survey also reports that outsourcing is off in 20ll. From IT Help Desk Outsourcing Trend and Customer Experience: "The decision to turn over the operation of an organization's IT help desk to a third-party service provider has had a long and varied history...It is, in fact, one of the original services that helped establish the contemporary IT outsourcing industry. Even so, help desk outsourcing is not as common as one might think:.

With this you may be wondering, "No one's hiring and the helpdesk staple isn't as common as one might have otherwise thought...," to which I'd preempt your question with this answer: "Specialize, specialize, specialize." The current shift to cloud computing and more nimble IT operations, particularly for SMBs, gives MSPs the opportunity to consider two things:

  • Growing industry verticals such as healthcare IT and government cloud programs.
  • Product and service specializations such as antivirus and security product and service reselling, Java, Windows Azure and mobile computing and storage.

In an era where IT staffs are shrinking and the break-fix-helpdesk reaction culture is waning, it's time for MSPs to put the brain before the storm.

Posted by Jabulani Leffall on December 12, 2011 at 11:57 AM0 comments


Working With the IT Services Ecosystem

The first thing a new ISV, reseller or MSP needs to know is what their target market is. The second thing they need to know is their exit strategy.

As for the third and fourth through 100 things in between, just ask Sandeep Bhanote, CEO of Global Bay Mobile who figured out those things early. He not only identified healthcare and retail as key verticals for his company, he also figured out a viable exit strategy when his company ceased going it alone and got scooped up by Verifone and he became general manager of VeriFone's Mobile Retail Systems business.

It's all about ecosystems, he said, when it comes to marketing channels and automated processes and reporting.

In a Managed Service Provider podcast that can be found here, Bhanote explained that his role is to recruit and build a world-class organization and look at how to make money for "everybody on the table." Frankly, it's exactly what MSPs, resellers and SMBs and enterprise clients they serve should be in business to do.

With more third-party operators working with SMBs from a mobile perspective and leveraging partners all the way across the ecosystem, Bhanote offers this advice: "You're not going to replace a system, you're going to go and be a part of a system. Figure out how you can play in that ecosystem and put together a solution, which compliments it and then market it with a channel and that's the best way to do this."

Posted by Jabulani Leffall on December 12, 2011 at 11:57 AM0 comments