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Are MSP Growth Predictions Skewed by Telco Equation?

Goodness gracious.

No, really. Eric Goodness, a vice president at renowned research firm Gartner, Inc. has some gracious news for MSPs. He's making the bold prediction that predicts that 90 percent of "all North American companies," -- that means Canada and Mexico too for you geography buffs -- will be using remote infrastructure managed services by 2014.

This follows a survey last year of 2,300 IT executives and technology decision-makers in North America and Europe by Forrester Research Forrester found that almost half -- 47 percent in fact -- of enterprise and 37 percent of SMB respondents had at that point already purchased managed or outsourced telecommunications services.

All this is good news for MSP's right? Well, the telephony factor can skew the numbers sometimes on true-to-form IT managed services, as telecom systems and outsourced call centers -- as well as third-party mobile device management -- are also defined as "managed services."

This, as some critics of overly positive number point out, is where the bullish survey results can be misleading.

Indeed, there are many MSPs that specialize in individual applications and hardware. There are Microsoft OS specialists, Linux experts etc. The truth of the matter is that predictions are just that: predictions, which are not set in stone.

But given the fact that telecom services seem to be driving numbers up, perhaps some traditional IT managed service practitioners might consider adding telephony to a fully integrated computing environment service line. As services such as VPN-enabled IP phones and teleconferencing ramp up, many who add telco tricks to the mix, so to speak, may be in a position to make those predictions come true.

Posted by Jabulani Leffall on September 15, 2010