We’ve been talking a lot about the rapidly evolving relationship between MSPs and their clients. And one of the things that comes up again and again is the need for a Managed Service Provider to enhance his relationship with clients by engaging more effectively in the role of consultant.
One area where this new consultant’s role can be of particular value is in the realm of cloud-based computing.
It’s no secret that more and more business is done on the cloud every day – that’s the inescapable reality and there’s no turning back – but there is still a lot of confusion within your client base about how this happens and what it all means.
And what a great opportunity for you to enhance your service relationship by bringing them up to speed and helping to smooth out the entire process as more and more of their services become remotely managed.
Points for cloud-based computing
With that in mind, here are three areas of focus that you should be sure to cover with your clients as you start moving them to the cloud:
Security – This is a great chance for you act as a consultant as you help your clients manage and secure their data. A lot gets written about this, but you can never stress the need for password protection, two-factor authentication, etc. enough. This is also a good time to talk about backing up using a variety of sources. Ideas like this might be commonplace for you, but your customers may never have considered them.
Cost of in-house network vs. remote server – If your customer decides to stay in-house, it is important to help him understand about its diminishing capabilities over time. Yes, storing data remotely will require that they’ll need to pay for the service, but all of the upgrades in the constantly changing market will be someone else’s responsibility.
Cloud use requires wider band width – It’s surprising to consider but, for more casual users, this is not always common knowledge. As more and more of your client’s business migrates to the cloud, be sure to be clear about what this is going to mean to their band width. Customers need to know that they’ll need to have max capacity in their upload and download speeds, or their “normal” functions like internet streaming and email will be impaired. This would be a great time to have a conversation about scalability in order to best accommodate heavier traffic periods, something that could be huge for your clients.
When you think about the evolving relationship between the MSP and his customers, the bottom line is really all about communication.
The more of these conversations that you have with your customers up front, the more trust you can build in the relationship, and the more at ease they are going to be with your work.
And that will help build longevity.