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5 Ways to Improve Your MSP Service Level Agreement (SLA)

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5 Ways to Improve Your MSP Service Level Agreements (SLAs)

SLAs are the foundation of your MSP business. They are essential to building strong client relationships and must be clear, reasonable and well-constructed.

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10 Ways to Compare PSA Systems

Posted September 20, 2016by Linda Brotherton

There are a lot of PSA software choices on the market. It can be confusing to know what to look for and which option is best for your company. Here are 10 key considerations when picking out a new PSA platform:


1. Real-Time Monitoring 

One of the main reasons companies implement a professional services automation (PSA) system is to access reports and monitoring features—helping them keep tabs on key performance indicators. Real-time monitoring means that small productivity issues can be resolved before they become larger ones. Managers can quickly identify how their teams are performing and who is a top performer.

 

2. Robust Features 

With so many PSA software programs on the market, it’s imperative to choose a platform that offers a wide range of useful features. You don’t want to be forced to use several different platforms to gain functionality. Popular PSA features you should look for include: billing, time tracking, agreement management, client management, project management, and dashboards & reports.

 

3. Your Unique Requirements 

Before signing up with any PSA solution, you need to first know what your company, projects, or team needs in a PSA. Not all PSAs work for all types of businesses, so you’ll want to know what types of functionality to prioritize for your specific business needs. For example, some PSA solutions only run on certain operating systems. If your workforce uses only Windows computers, this may not be a problem. Some PSA’s don’t offer CRM or project functionality. If you don’t run projects and are not aggressively, looking for new clients, a PSA with less functionality might get you the most bang for your buck. The first step is to classify your requirements between your Must-Haves and your Nice-to-Haves.

 

4. Intuitive UI 

When shopping for a PSA, consider how easy or intuitive the interface is. We’re not simply talking about being aesthetically pleasing, but are the steps a user need to take to get to a certain action intuitive? (or as we like to call it, is it “brain-friendly”)? Ask yourself whether or not the end users in your organization would have an easy time understanding and adapting to the new system. Training is also essential, so make sure the PSA vendor you choose can offer you robust training program for onboarding and user adoption. The last thing you want to do is spend your hard earned dollars on a system your employees won’t adopt.

 

5. Third-Party Integration

Without a doubt, there are third-party applications outside of the PSA that you’ll want to keep using, either out of company preference or because a different solution is not available.

Verify how any potential PSA system interacts with your third-party platforms before you commit to a new system. Ask about what integrations are currently supported and if the company is looking to add more in the future.

 

6. Industry-Leading Brand

To avoid stress and poor performance, opt for an industry-leading brand over a newly established one. It makes a lot of sense to try out new technology, especially if it’s less expensive. However, a PSA system will become a core technology asset in your business. You don’t want to waste time or face frustration while a new PSA company figures out glitches.

 

7. Client Education & Support

Transitioning to a new PSA program is a big decision. You’ll possibly have to migrate information over from your old system and train end users. Find a PSA with solid client education and support, so that you don’t have to waste any time developing your own training materials. 

Also, make sure there’s 24/7 support that’s easy to access when you need it. You don’t want a situation to arise where you need an answer to a question and can’t get it.

 

8. Established Best Practices 

Most large PSA platforms incorporate industry best practices into the functionality and security of the platform. You want a PSA that improves the operation of your business seamlessly with built-in industry best practices—such as forcing end-users to choose complex passwords that improve IT security.

 

9. Strong Community

If possible, always choose technology platforms that focus on partnership and community over platforms that don’t. Any time that you get the chance to further network your business or share industry best practices, you should take it. Some PSA vendors host conferences, events, and activities where you can do just that.

 

10. Scalability 

Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) tools are critical to any MSP or IT Solution Provider looking to create new recurring revenue opportunities and take their business to the next level. To help you achieve success and scalability, ConnectWise has partnered with Continuum to seamlessly integrate and simplify your workflow. From synchronizing managed asset information to ticket resolution, the integration between ConnectWise and Continuum’s RMM platform helps you keep your clients up and running.

ConnectWise is sponsoring Continuum's upcoming user conference and SOLD-OUT industry event, Navigate 2016, taking place in Boston, MA from September 28-30. Stop by booth #106 to learn more!

RMM-Software-Download-eBook-for-IT-Management-Solution-Must-Haves

Linda Catrett Brotherton is ConnectWise’s Chief Technology Officer responsible for ConnectWise development. She brings more than 25 years of technical expertise to this key organizational position, which also oversees the creation of practical design methods critical to product enhancements.

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