April 14, 2022
CHANNEL PARTNERS CONFERENCE & EXPO, LAS VEGAS — CompTIA’s annual research on the managed services market looks at the future of the MSP and explores the latest trends in business models and services offerings, cybersecurity, cloud and customer experience.
It has been a very strange couple of years. Massive changes have shaken up the industry, giving companies the chance to do some serious introspective thinking. Are they running their businesses efficiently? Are they doing everything they can to support their customers?
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CompTIA’s Carolyn April
“Change is a big, big factor, as we look ahead into the next couple of years,” said April. “We wanted to get a sense of sentiment that’s going on among MSPs in the industry today. So we released a study, which we put out in the field before the Ukraine-Russia crisis happened. From this, we got a good pulse on what partners think about the macro economy, what the sentiment is about the next two years ahead, and the market in general.”
So what are the biggest concerns for MSPs over the next two years? The study revealed the following stats in terms of levels of concern:
Macroeconomic crises: 44%
Supply chain/logistics disruption: 43%
Access to credit/adequate cash flow: 42%
Customers taking business direct: 36%
Advancing skills needs: 31%
Breaking into new markets: 29%
Desire to sell or merge the business: 27%
“For the most part, we’re seeing optimism compared to what we saw two years ago,” said April. “When we did our study in 2020, pessimism levels were really high. Some MSPs were either nervous about the future or just unhappy. This year, there is certainly more optimism – people are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. There is still some pessimism, but I think some partners are just gun-shy because of the pandemic, they’re not sure what to expect in the future. But, by and large, the bounce back is very real.”
So what do partners see as the change drivers? The needs and new offerings that will prompt such change?
Customer experience expectations
Growing sophistication of cybersecurity
Changes in customer procurement
“One of the behaviors that is driving MSPs to change today are the different demographics of customers that they work with,” said April. “It’s worth mentioning, though, that their preferred habits are all very different. Gone are the days where the way that you communicate with your customers is monolithic; no one communicates to everyone the same way. It’s not like that anymore. You need to have an omni channel approach to communicate with your customers, and how you provide them support,
Other takeaways were that customers are going to start really demanding robust cybersecurity; you should be selling cloud solutions; and partners can orchestrate all of this change. The managed services market is in an excellent position to do this.
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