The MSP Zone

Weekly discussion of news, events, and topics of interest to the global managed services professional community. Series will have the latest and most relevant discussions in managed services and cloud computing, featuring special guests and notable figures in the profession.

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Episodes

5 days ago

If you have ever considered or called yourself a "trusted advisor" then you may want to pay attention to this. The trusted advisor designation is under attack and is being threatened with the worst possible outcome, irrelevance.   The thing you have to understand is as trusted advisors, this naming designation is like a knife's edge, it must always be sharpened or else it will become dull and cease to have value. MSPs are facing this same threat but from a new direction, the cybersecurity vendor. Not the software or hardware companies, but the cyber consulting firms sprouting up like weeds all over the world. These firms are proliferating at an alarming rate and they have their sights firmly set on the managed service provider.

Thursday Sep 15, 2022

Documentation is not a new topic amongst the MSP community, but it is something that most MSPs could be doing better. Today's discussion focuses on why documentation is important in an MSP practice, the benefits is brings to the MSP, the problems lack of documentation can produce, and last, we will offer some helpful tips on ways you can improve your MSP documentation using common tools you already have.   Highlights: Current state of MSP documentation Benefits of documentation in an MSP practiceSecurity Scalability Ways to immediately improve your service delivery documentationDocumentation platforms Areas of immediate focus Documentation as an ongoing practice

Monday Sep 12, 2022

Weaver Outrage Meter (WOM): Low Are you looking for MSP acquisitions? Do you think you are ready? I come across a lot of MSPs who think they are ready do to acquisitions. In reality, few have given much thought to what is involved in the process and what it will really do to their MSP practice.   This episode will examine both sides of the M&A process (buyer and seller) and discuss some facts about the M&A world which may be new to many of you. These tips will be very helpful for you, regardless of whether you are a buyer or a seller.   Highlights: Buyside best practicesFunding Integration Motive Sellside best practicesFinancials Process documentation metrics M&A best practicesWhat are your company goals? Do you have people to run the process? Cost Outcome measurement

Tuesday Sep 06, 2022

Weaver Outrage Meter (WOM): Low   Most people think of the IT channel as just some vast thoroughfare of companies all moving in the same general direction, all doing pretty much the same thing. Nothing could be further from the truth.   If you want to sell to MSPs, you should listen to this podcast. You will learn about the various types of channel companies, what makes them each unique, and most importantly how the MSP business model stands apart from all other IT channel companies.   Highlights: Overview of the IT channel What makes MSPs different? Why you would want an MSP compared to a reseller MSP channel best practices

Wednesday Aug 31, 2022

What is a managed service provider? It's a question I have been getting asked for decades. In fairness, it is an important question, as well as a difficult one to answer.   In this episode we will address the question from a variety of perspectives, attempting to create a workable definition everyone can use.   Highlights: Who is asking the question? Why do they want to know? What is an MSP?

Monday Aug 22, 2022

Now that you have your business plan and the right tools, it is time to create your service catalog. Some of you may be wondering what the purpose of a service catalog is, but do not worry. We will explain everything.   The service catalog is an important, some say vital, component of your managed services practice and will help you improve efficiency, reduce risk, and close more deals, as much as it will decrease manual steps, avoid costly sales missteps, and align customer and MSP goals. Highlights: Service catalog explained How to create your service catalog Benefits of service catalog: legal sales/marketing service delivery

Tuesday Aug 16, 2022

When cybersecurity consultants attack. Just kidding. Well, sort of. Today, we address the issue of cybersecurity consultants and the impact (not always good) on managed services customers. These consultants, who are not in any way knowledgeable about managed services, or have  limited exposure about security issues and best practices, are actively inserting themselves into managed service client relationships with a goal towards helping the client improve their interaction with the MSP, including their cybersecurity posture. This would be a fantastic thing if it were true. Unfortunately, this scenario is far from the truth. Cybersecurity consultants, when evaluated on the basis of their actual interactions with end-users, often create conflicting and harmful results, typically cleaned up by the MSP. Highlights: Primary care MSPs Identifying scope of cyber consultants Coordinating with MSPs

Thursday Aug 11, 2022

MSP channel veteran Stephan Tallent, Stellar Cyber, drops into the MSP Zone to discuss a wide range of topics. We cover trends in hiring security analysts, bridging the MSP talent gap, adoption rates of XDR amongst MSPs and customers, and more.   Highlights: Good time to be an MSP? XDR or SASE Talent Gap   MSP Zone Guest: Stephan Tallent, Stellar Cyber

Tuesday Aug 09, 2022

Is saving money a legitimate objective when engaging an MSP? Justin Current of Sirvis enters the MSP Zone to discuss the age old question, can MSPs save their clients money through managed services. This question has actually been around since the early days of managed services. You may be surprised but there are ways that MSPs can save their clients money, particularly when it comes to infrastructure costs related to data centers. No, this isn't your typical move everything to the cloud discussion. We will discuss server and data center consolidation tactics that can have real cost saving benefits to customers.   Highlights: Cost cutting for data centers Sustainability Threat footprint reduction (by having fewer servers) The role of the MSP in helping clients reduce their power footprint   MSP Zone Guest: Justin Current, Sirvis

Thursday Aug 04, 2022

While we may accept that remote work is here to stay (at least in some capacity), we must have a discussion around how remote workers should be working. Most of the discussion to date has been around securing the remote worker but little has been spent talking about productivity and communications. Corey Jones from NUSO joins the MSP Zone for an important discussion around changes which must occur in order for remote workers to become fully equipped and enabled to remain productivity within their organizations. Highlights: Expanding your workforce Business/operational continuity Maintaining and growing productivity in remote work environments SMS and similar tools for communication  MSP Zone Guest: Corey Jones, NUSO

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