Do More with Less: Optimize Your Stack

BY IT GLUE | May 04, 2020

When’s the last time you took a critical eye to your MSP’s toolbox? Is it filled with outdated tools and deadweight?

When your MSP is going through a period of growth, it’s natural to rapidly add to your toolbox. You’re investing in new platforms, services and employees to support this growth. Maybe you saw an increase in the number of clients you serve, or perhaps you decided to add a new security service offering to the suite of services you offer—whatever the case, you secured the resources to support this growth. During times of rapid change, it’s easy for sub-par or unnecessary tools to sneak into the toolbox, and so it’s good practice to routinely reassess what’s in your MSP toolbox. Here’s what to look out for.

Tech Stack

The tools in your tech stack are mission critical. While an evaluation process was likely executed prior to adding each tool to your stack, it’s impossible to judge the quality of a given platform or service without actually using it. There’s no time like the present to do your second round of evaluations. Do the parts of your stack have deep workflow integrations, or are the integrations merely cosmetic? Are the workflow efficiency gains something you can quantify? Are there any spaces in between your tools, in terms of how they integrate? If so, can you script or automate ways to fill the spaces between?

IT Glue’s PSA integrations (CW, AT, BMS) are fairly rich, for example, and when you see what Kaseya’s IT Complete concept entails, it’s tying together multiple tools with deep integrations. Integration maturity is a phrase you’ll be hearing more of going forward, because the MSP space hasn’t had it before, but it’s going to be essential in the coming years.

Capital

Financial tools are a resource at your disposal when short-term cash flow won’t cut it. Injections of capital allow you to reach lofty growth goals, whether you’re adding new services or expanding into another market. Best practice is to make sure you have an understanding of your options before you need them, so that when you do need them you can move quickly.

Industry Resources

No one has all the answers. You need to get your intel from the right sources. This can be conferences, industry groups, the media, webinars or training courses. The bottom line is that things change quickly, so you need to keep up, if not stay ahead of the curve.

People

Your employees are your biggest asset, but they can also be your biggest liability. Have your hiring practices worked to the benefit of your MSP? How’s the service level delivered? Are employees playing well together? Is everyone pulling their weight? Annual or biannual employee reviews are a great opportunity for taking an in depth look at the people within your MSP.

Culture

Your company culture is what binds your workforce together. It’s a powerful tool at your disposal, with implications on quality of work, and the interpersonal relationships between team members. The best thing about it? It’s free.

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