For companies of all sizes and industries, managed services providers (MSPs) have become a vital part of their business strategy. At last count, 64 percent of organizations reported working with an MSP for at least one IT function.
Yet within the MSP market, there are important distinctions between “traditional” MSPs and “next-gen” MSPs that are better prepared to help their customers meet the business challenges of tomorrow.
In particular, the move from on-premises to the cloud and the growth of DevOps as a software development philosophy have opened new doors for MSPs and their customers. MSPs can break free from the stereotype of being glorified tech support, making their clients more efficient and productive and becoming trusted advisors to their business.
Below, we’ll discuss three of the most important roles that next-gen MSPs can play for their clients: designing new environments, architecting applications, and automating as much of their workflow as possible.
Traditionally, MSPs have focused on running and operating their customers’ existing environments. As enterprises migrate more of their workflow into the public cloud, however, MSPs are increasingly expected to become full strategic partners who can provide service that’s tailor-made to their individual circumstances.
In order to better meet their clients’ needs, next-gen MSPs need to design data centers, networks, and environments that are capable of high levels of availability, reliability, and speed.
Building environments for public cloud services such as Amazon Web Services is a delicate art. The environment should be scalable, maintaining its level of performance even as the number of users and traffic increases.
Related: 4 public cloud trends to watch for
Beyond simply designing cloud environments, next-gen MSPs also have to be familiar with all aspects of their clients’ cloud strategy. This includes everything from planning future implementations to ensuring compliance with the appropriate laws and regulations.
Architecting your cloud program involves three main responsibilities: making your company culture more “cloud-friendly,” developing cloud infrastructures, and formulating a long-term strategy for migrating to and using the cloud.
The move from on-premises to the cloud, while beneficial in many different respects, also means an explosion in the complexity of your enterprise environments. Deploying and operating these environments requires a great deal of time-consuming work, from sizing and provisioning virtual machines to managing performance issues.
Dealing with this complexity practically requires MSPs to be well-versed in best practices for cloud automation. In order to automate cloud environments, businesses use strategies such as robotic process automation (RPA): the use of robotic software agents that can handle a wide variety of manual, repetitive tasks.
Public cloud services such as AWS include a variety of built-in cloud automation tools that MSPs can apply to the benefit of their customers. For example, Amazon CloudWatch alarms can alert you when your Amazon EC2 instances go down and automatically recover from failure.
As the traditional MSP becomes increasingly outmoded, the opportunity is ripe for next-gen MSPs to step in and offer valuable services to their customers. Designing cloud environments, architecting your cloud computing program, and automating your cloud workflow are all crucial roles that next-gen MSPs must be prepared to provide.
MSPs such as Eplexity have the knowledge and experience that today’s companies need to benefit from the cloud options available to them. If you’re interested to learn what a next-gen MSP can do for your business, reach out to us today for a free consultation.