Michael Drobnis, president and CEO of Springfield, VA-based OptfinITy, shares three suggestions he'd apply if he were launching an MSP from scratch today.
1. Leverage cloud internally – From the business perspective, utilizing cloud-based PSA tools, RMM tools, virus-monitoring, backups, etc., the cloud is probably the best way with no or very minimal capital expenses to get started. And it's an operating expense. You can ramp up and pay as you need to. That gives you a lot more flexibility than in the past, where you had to acquire servers, acquire data center space, acquire everything else and pay for the licenses, which made it very difficult to start up.
2. Sell cloud – As you're dealing on the smaller business side, a business up to 200 employees, the cloud is providing a lot of benefits. From scalability and elasticity, to the ability to ramp up clients, you can do things that you couldn't have done in the past because they didn't have those capabilities, financial and otherwise. Understand the cloud and be able to offer cloud services.
3. Hire with service in mind – As a service provider, you're selling a service - a solution. Yes, you can productize it, but you're not selling a product. You're being judged by the services you provide. Hire people that are going to be personable; that are going to be able to help a customer get through a problem, whether it means knowing the answer right away or not. You can always teach the technical skills. You need to focus on hiring the right people internally that can do the projects that you need as well as focus on your core strengths. Outsource the rest: your human resources, your payroll. You can go as far as your sales.
Editor’s note: Comments are edited to improve readability.