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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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Smart-Source Tasks, Don’t Fire Techs

Posted November 20, 2014by Ben Barker

Outsource 


The word “outsourcing” seems to make those in the managed IT services industry cringe. It can be hard to fire technicians that you’ve grown to know and trust. So, don’t do it. It can be scary to relinquish control over your practice, shipping off important business functions to an unknown party. So, don’t do it. It can be extremely difficult to rely solely on others to build rapport and strong relationships with your clients. So please, we’re begging you, DON’T GET RID OF YOUR TECHS!

Your techs are your techs for a reason. You found them, you interviewed them, you hired them and you trust them to take on important projects for your biggest clients. But when it’s Monday morning and your valuable technicians are being stretched thin by menial tasks like changing passwords or configuring email, it can be hard for them to fully focus on the important projects; the projects that can go a long way toward the growth of your business.

Of course, you could hire more technicians to help cut down the clutter, but hiring technicians costs money and takes time. Take a minute to think about the actual cost of expanding your team from, say, 15 to 20 technicians. Not to mention, when things die down on a Wednesday afternoon, you’ll have extra bodies sitting around the office with nothing to do. Bodies that you’re paying for.

That’s where smart-sourcing comes in.


The Smart-Sourcing Advantage

What if your techs didn’t have to worry about the small stuff? What if the people that you hired to help grow your business could always be working on projects that help your MSP business trend in the right direction? What if you could increase your profit margins without ever having to make another hire? Those “what if?” questions should actually be “why not?” questions. The fantasy of having your techs focus only on the projects that you hired them to work on can be a reality.

How?

Take advantage of a smart-sourced help desk. There are services available right here in the United States that will allow your techs to clear their schedule of rote, mindless tasks.

A highly skilled team of technicians will answer the phone in your company's name, and will do so without you having to interview, hire, or develop the space and resources for them. Not to mention you’re not paying their salaries. This team of off-site technicians can take care of all of the “noise” that is preventing your in-house techs from focusing on higher value projects.

Think of a smart sourced help desk as an extension of your team.

Grow Your Business Without Growing Your Staff

Every MSP wants to grow. In order to grow, you’ll need to take on more clients to help increase your revenue. When handling everything in-house, as your network of clients expands, so will the IT demands, and eventually, so will your staff. You’ll need to staff technicians overnight in order to offer full, 24x7x365 service.

When you smart-source a help desk, you can increase monthly recurring revenue (MRR) without ever having to increase your staff or in-house resources. Instead of making multiple new hires, explore this more scalable option.

One MSP who has seen the positive effects of smart-sourcing is Scott Spiro, Founder and President of Computer Solutions Group, Inc. Scott recently talked about his experience at the IT Nation 2014 Conference in Orlando, Florida.


The bottom line is, being able to retain and generate new business without hiring more staff is going to severely increase your profit margins. Is it impossible to do everything in-house? Of course not! Does it mean you’re fighting an up-hill battle? Absolutely it does. There are services out there that will allow you to access a super-team of highly skilled technicians without having to hire a single one. Why not take advantage of this more scalable solution?


Considering smartsourcing a help desk solution, but not sure what to look for?

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Ben is a member of Continuum's marketing team. He specializes in blog content as well as video production. Ben is a graduate of Emerson College and a huge Boston sports fan.

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