Throughout the past year, I’ve emphasized the significant role automation will play in redefining managed service providers (MSPs) and their business models. Considering these imminent changes, the recurring question I encounter in our industry is, “What should I do now?”
The answer is different for everyone. Your scale, profitability, and operational maturity determine your starting point. But here are a couple of things you can start doing today.
The first is essential: be aware of what’s happening in the marketplace. Join a peer group, attend industry events, and talk to people. More importantly, and more specifically, look for MSPs that are more mature than you are. When you find them and they’re at scale, ask them about their strategy, their goals, and where they are today related to automation. How did they get started? And what have they learned?
Now, this last thing is the most important. Remember that you can only automate a task or a process that’s defined and documented, so look at every area of your business: sales, finance, administration, HR, and of course, each service delivery area. Look at the key metrics that drive efficiency. Then, ask yourself, what are the essential tasks and processes with the most impact? Begin to define, document, and refine them.
This will immediately impact your business and lead you to adopt automation using remote monitoring and management (RMM), artificial intelligence (AI), robotic process automation (RPA), and all the currently available and emerging technologies.
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