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Bringing clients into the digital revolution via Atera’s App Center

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In the highly competitive Managed Service Provider (MSP) industry, providers are constantly striving to stand out and gain an edge over their rivals. With many slashing their prices to attract customers, it’s crucial for MSPs to differentiate themselves and stay ahead of the competition. That’s why Layer3 was determined to find a powerful, cost-effective solution to help them optimize their processes and expand their services. By becoming trusted advisors to their clients on cyber security best practices and leveraging the Atera App Center marketplace, Layer3 was able to easily find the right solutions to achieve their goals.

“It was easy to onboard, implement, and understand the entire Atera interface with next to no training. Through Atera, our technicians set up alerts that notify them when there’s an error with Emsisoft or when a new update needs to be patched. These alerts are just one of the many tools that enable us to be transparent and proactive, and keep our clients happy.”

Amir Zehtab-Jadid President, Layer3

Meet Layer3

Layer3 is an MSP that manages the IT services of small to medium-sized businesses in Saskatchewan, Canada. Their goal is to cover every small business from end to end on the technical side. Although their most significant focus is on backup management for client data, they also help with computer deployments, servers, email services, website management, hosting services, and antivirus software.

Amir Zehtab-Jadid, President of Layer3, described the company’s aim: “We noticed that in our industry, a lot of the time, there is a disconnect between the end users and the service provider. So, I decided to ensure that the end users could be in touch with us. So, everyone who works here always ensures that all our clients are a hundred percent aware, that we are aware of their situation – not that their call or email just goes into limbo.”

The Golden Opportunities: Supply & Demand, Covid-19

Layer3’s great word-of-mouth marketing comes from their impeccable service, and their philosophy of why being a good MSP is essential; For Amir, it’s about the entire economy of the talented IT professional.

“Right now, the focus in schools is the coding and the backend elements of delivering software. But there are still a lot of the hardware components that are left unsecured, or that need upgrades, that need maintenance, and that need support,” he said, emphasizing that the small amount of people interested in IT hardware and maintenance is what is driving costs up for the acquisition of full-time, in-house IT employees.

Time also contributes to decreasing the supply by aging out skilled hardware IT professionals. In addition, the younger generations’ indifference toward hardware tech leaves the smaller companies behind and out of a cost-effective digital revolution.

The lack of talented IT professionals motivates Layer3; for Amir, it’s an opportunity for business because “You are able to maintain and develop that [IT] skillset. You can then provide the broader services to these various smaller organizations.” And they do it at a lower price point, too. Outsourcing their IT services allows companies to spend more on talent contributing to their immediate business goals.

The waning IT talent supply is just one of many opportunities that Layer3 took advantage of. Covid-19 also gave them more options for expansion in terms of service. “Our side of the industry has grown even more significantly because of [Covid-19]. The requirements for the remote user and all the extra software needed to set users up remotely and securely has gone up.”

Fascinatingly, Layer3 manages to take advantage of these vital opportunities and service several satisfied clients in various ways with just four employees and one administrator. Moreover, with IT MSP software advancing quickly, their mission of bringing smaller companies the benefit of digital transformation becomes more competitive. One of the most impactful ways that Layer3 stays ahead of the game is by taking advantage of Atera’s partnerships, specifically the one with Emsisoft – a multilayered suite of cyber security products found in Atera’s App Center.

Fueling digital transformation with Atera’s App Center

To help small businesses get equitable access to digital transformation, Layer3 ensures that its suite of services includes antivirus protection. The aforementioned Emsisoft solution is one of many integrations that Atera’s app center provides – they also offer essential integrations to various tools for security, network monitoring, backups, remote access, and more. These integrations are also billed via Atera, so finance teams don’t have the headache of invoices from additional vendors.

The app center provides a massive advantage to MSPs like Layer3 since they can mass-deploy the integrated software to devices managed with Atera, saving manual installment and patching hours. Such an edge allows nimble MSPs to offer much more robust solutions while keeping precious time resources to a minimum.

These integrations also allow MSPs to monitor every aspect of their client’s devices and networks, including the activity of Emsisoft. “We have to monitor what’s happening, have oversight over everything: the hardware the customers use, the type of software they use. Does the software need updates? Is the software outdated? Is the antivirus reporting appropriately? Are the backups completed for that day?”

Through Atera, Layer3 technicians can set up alerts that notify them when there’s an error with Emsisoft or when a new update needs to be patched. These alerts are just one of the many tools that enable Layer3 to be transparent and proactive, and that keeps them happy with Emsisoft and Atera.

Now MSPs get complete visibility into how everything is working and what issues they can foresee and take care of before it becomes the customer’s problem. “Our phones don’t ring off the hook because we are constantly just being proactive, proactive, proactive, proactive.”

Implementing Atera and Emsisoft: An easy choice

Affordable. Dependable. Superior. These are just a few adjectives online reviewers used to describe Layer3’s contributions through their services, which Layer3 partially attributes to Atera.

Opposed to other solutions that Amir investigated, Atera was straightforward. “It was easy to onboard, implement, and understand the entire interface with next to no training. One of the employees here has a lot of familiarity with scripting, and he showed us that its power was incomparable to others in implementation and use.”

Atera’s all-in-one IT platform offers unlimited device monitoring and chargers per IT user. So it was also the best choice concerning cost-effectiveness, helping Layer3 reasonably price their services. Another advantage of going with Atera was the time to onboard itself: “I think I would say the basic learning curve to be able to use it, I would say maybe two days tops. So it was an easy, easy pick over the rest.”

Implementing Emsisoft was also a win for Layer3 – their MSP console enables them to save time by managing all their clients from a single console. This is how Layer3’s team of 4 technicians can provide high-quality support with an agile team. Additionally, Emsisoft’s co-branding feature – which enables MSPs to display their own names and logos in the software – has helped Layer3 maintain and reinforce their brand in the eyes of their clients.

When Amir looks toward the future of digital transformation and Layer3, he considers scaling up the company to continue meeting the needs of small businesses. For now, he is satisfied with where they are but is confident that expanding to more physical areas is nothing that their agile and transparent team can’t handle when the time comes.

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