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May 12, 2014

Must-Have Automation Tools for MSP Success

Kevin Gibson
Director, Transformational Services
ConnectWise, Inc.
Must Have Automation Tools for MSP Success

For many IT companies that are making the transition to becoming a managed service provider (MSP), the same question often arises, “Are there any specific business tools that I’ll need as an MSP?”

The answer is a resounding YES!!!!!

There are numerous automation tools available to help an MSP carry out its day-to-day operations. Nowadays, an MSP’s toolbox may include everything from items that simplify system management to solutions that improve efficiency at the support desk. Which tools are indispensable enough to warrant a “must-have” label?

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Based on my experience in running my own MSP, as well as working with countless other MSPs as a consultant, these are the ones I deem as must-have tools:

Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM)

Continually managing and monitoring an IT infrastructure can be challenging even for an established vendor. RMM solutions centralize and streamline both, powering critical functions such as server and application monitoring, database administration and virtual machine management. MSPs use RMM tools to make sure they can deliver effective, secure and reliable service from any environment, as well as connect to their client systems remotely to minimize the need for on-site visits.

Applying patch updates is also vital for the efficiency and integrity of IT systems. MSPs can benefit tremendously from RMM tools that allow them to centralize and automate patch deployment and management. These are crucial, yet time-consuming tasks when done manually, so automation becomes a perk of luxury status.

Professional Services Automation (PSA)

Professional services automation technology is a core component in several professional environments, but is particularly useful in the IT setting. In addition to providing structure, PSA software gives MSPs the functionality they need to run their businesses smoothly and efficiently. A well-rounded solution will drive a broad range of functions, including:

  • Ticket management
  • Business processes and workflows
  • Help desk and service management
  • Sales, marketing and account management
  • Project management
  • Billing and reporting
  • And more

By automating these tasks and others, a good PSA tool helps MSPs save loads of time and boost productivity.

Sales Quoting and Proposal Automation Tool

We lost the deal? What happened? This sounds all too familiar. What’s worse is that business owners and sales professionals oftentimes don’t realize that it’s not about the money, but the proposal itself.

A proposal is a reflection of your business. From a prospect’s perspective, a poorly written proposal translates to poor service quality. Instead, a proposal should clearly identify the prospect’s problems, document the solutions that you can provide, and illustrate how you can provide them better than anyone else, regardless of price. A sales quoting and proposal tool will help transform your proposals into professional documents, so you stand out against the competition and win more deals.

Packing the MSP Toolbox for Success

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Kevin Gibson Director, Transformational Services
ConnectWise, Inc.

Kevin is an avid racer whose need for speed carries over into his role at LabTech Software. As co-creator of LabTech Ignite®, he’s always thinking of ways LabTech can work faster, so you don’t have to.


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Packing the MSP Toolbox for Success

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