Hybrid automobiles aren’t the only type of hybrid technology gaining favor these days. As demonstrated by results of a recent survey from Infonetics Research, an increasing number of businesses of all sizes are using some form of hosted/SaaS security solution, and 58 percent believe they will always operate a mix of on-premise and hosted/SaaS solutions. But just what does that mean for managed service providers? Read on to find out.
This hybrid security trend should make MSPs feel secure, because Infonetics data indicates user preferences show a clear place for MSPs in the hybrid security equation, especially as they move more of their infrastructure into the cloud and operate hybrid IT environments as well. Within the next three years, Infonetics predicts businesses will expect a single source for hybrid security solutions. That means they will either seek to provide their own hosted services, which in most cases is not likely, or look to a hosted security services provider (a category prominently including, but not limited to, MSPs).
Beating the CompetitionWhile MSPs are in a good position to obtain a large chunk of the hybrid security market, they by no means should assume hybrid security business will simply come their way. Several significant competitors exist. Fortunately, there are strategies MSPs can use to win business when facing each one.
Self-Providers – Most companies are not in a position to host their own hybrid security solution, but even for those that are, it is an expensive and time-consuming process to set up and maintain this type of IT environment. Especially considering Infonetics data shows cost as the top barrier affecting new security deployments, MSPs can offer companies considering “going it alone” substantial savings in development, deployment and operation/maintenance.
Vendors – More and more vendors are directly offering hosted IT services themselves. The survey named Cisco, Microsoft, McAfee, and Symantec as the top vendors for every leadership criterion (technology, security, solution breadth, etc.), although no vendor stood out as the clear leader. These are huge companies that have the resources to undercut any MSP on price. However, MSPs should stress to potential clients the higher level of personal attention and detail they can provide. In addition, many vendors offers MSP partnership programs that are worth investigating.
Outsourcers – Offshore outsourcing services providers continue to expand the types of services they provide, and more and more developing (and even developed) nations are attempting to build up their outsourcing industries. MSPs offer a simpler business model, easier resolution of any potential problems in US courts, and a generally easier means of doing business as they avoid issues such as time zone differences, language/cultural differences, etc. Also there may be legal and tax disadvantages to sending work offshore.
For the survey, Infonetics Research interviewed security purchase-decision makers at 101 small, medium, and large organizations.