MSP Day of all days

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MSPs should be aware there is another May Day and it's just for them



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24 May 2019 | 0

I would like to take this opportunity to offer my sincere apologies. I understand that for many of you, this may not be enough. The callous disregard that I have shown, the shocking thoughtlessness, is unforgivable. “Not even a card,” I hear you complain. Of all the days to forget, did it have to be this one?

Sadly, yes it did. But no longer. From this day forth, I promise, things will change. 23 May will be forever seared into my consciousness from now on. Never again, will I forget MSP day!

In my defence, 23 May 2019 was only the second annual MSP day. And there’s always next year. And however many years after that until someone clever comes up with a different acronym to describe whatever evolution occurs when a MSP transforms into something different, just as we now observe the evolution from VAR to MSP taking place in the industry (thanks for leaving me with a pile of Happy VAR Day cards, guys). Until then, let us mark this day – sorry, not this day, yesterday but this day next year, I promise – with some news about the MSP trend.

Luckily, two separate organisations have commissioned research on the subject of MSPs to mark MSP day and the findings make for interesting reading.

First up, we have The Evolving Landscape of the MSP Business Report 2019, commissioned by Barracuda MSP and conducted by IT Europa Media & Intelligence, which has a number of positive results. For example, two-thirds of respondents revealed they made more than 30% of their revenue from managed services and 47% expect to make more than half their revenue from managed services in 2019. Up to 54% said managed services provided their greatest potential revenue opportunity (this compares to 12% for cloud computing services and 13% for professional services).

The key drivers for customers to adopt managed services are internal skills shortages (69%) and the adoption of cloud migration principles (61%). As for why customers might cancel contracts, acquisition by another company was the prime culprit (55%), followed by price (51%) and budget cuts (45%). But ongoing customer relationships are still seen as key to selling managed services (86), followed by ‘overall security concerns’ and ‘lack of in-house IT skills’.

Commenting on the findings, Jason Howells, EMEA director, Barracuda MSP, said there was “much to celebrate”. “MSPs are showing a sustainable, dependable growth forecast with further opportunities on the horizon. I’m aware that not all in the IT channel market can make such a statement,” he noted.

Howells added that the biggest hindrance to the adoption of managed services was “a basic lack of understanding from customers, resulting in ill-informed expectations…It’s clearly up to us as an industry to do more to inform, educate and reassure those in the dark about our offering”.

Separately, Datto issued the 2019 State of the MSP Report, which found that the top business pain points for MSPs were marketing and sales (44%), mainly due to a lack of in-house resources, work/life balance (38%), revenue growth (33%) and ransomware/cybersecurity (30%).

Top products and services ranged from help desk (87%) to networking (84%), productivity software (79%) and BC & DR (75%).

Over a half (56%) specialised their services for a particular industry, with the most popular verticals being healthcare, finance and legal.

But perhaps the most compelling finding of all was that “nearly 100% of MSPs surveyed say that now is as good a time as ever to be in their industry”. How good is that?

It seems that for most MSPs, every day is MSP day. Even the 24th of May.

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