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5 things your MSP should be doing for you to secure, protect, and grow your business.

Brian Holder – GM for Sales and Marketing at Tecala shares his insights regarding the role of the MSP through an event like COVID-19.

The bottom line is: A capable MSP won’t be waiting for a problem to drive improvements in your workplace and help grow your business. They will be doing it anyway.

Whenever problems arise, your IT support functions are immediately put to the test. As a business leader, I want my Managed Services Provider to be working with me in partnership to secure, protect and grow my business. Fortunately that’s easy for me to say, because my business is an MSP!

During the COVID crisis I’ve listened to our clients and I’ve learned a lot. And in these rapidly changing times am now convinced that there are five things your MSP should constantly be on top of – at the absolute minimum.

The workplace is rapidly modernising with cloud and mobile productivity tools. Recent events have served to accelerate this evolution even more. As a result, the modern workplace must include the ability to extend existing remote solutions to all staff and be ready to mitigate unforeseen losses of revenue.

The new distributed workplace demands modern client management and architectures; an updated approach to security configuration management (including awareness training); better user experience management; and tighter application deployment management.

If your MSP is struggling to deliver on your rapidly changing workplace, it’s a sign of a business-as-usual engagement without much foresight or strategy.

5 steps to getting modernisation and growth right

Now is the perfect time to capitalise on some key learnings and accelerate implementation of your modern workplace, and with various government mandates now in place, it’s become a necessity.

Mobile and remote working has been promised for years and most organisations have already started elements of this, but our Accelerated Modern Workplace Solution takes your existing services and solutions to create a robust, holistic and iterative long-term approach.

Tecala has the IT infrastructure, services and solutions our clients need to enable a Modern Workplace in the office, in the home, and everywhere in between.

At the National Breast Cancer Foundation (NCBF), IT Solutions Manager, Peter Brooks says Tecala stepped up quickly during the COVID crisis to enable a modern remote working environment in a matter of days.

I’m going to quote him directly here, because he puts it better than I could:

“Tecala’s Service Delivery Manager has consistently been on top of things and continues to be proactive. We now have 93% positive employee feedback on the services they’re providing. Our team are also experiencing much better profile loading times, so they are more productive.”

“I now realise, that our previous MSP had either left us behind, outgrown us, or for some other reason, had decided we were no longer a priority. With Tecala we know we have a close partnership that will continue to grow as our needs evolve,” he says. “More broadly, the systems and platforms Tecala have put in place enable us to focus on our new patient-facing application and pursue more innovative ideas and projects. It’s always a challenge to match the right patient with the right research project, so this new application will allow us to link patients to relevant research projects.”

Hearing this, I took Peter’s feedback to the Senior Solutions Consultants at Tecala and asked them what our recommendations would be for all organisations post COVID. This is what they came back with: the top 5 things we all need to get right for a truly modern workplace.

  1. Scalable remote solutions. End-user devices need to be protected at all times and extending VPNs to more users is only a temporary solution. Your MSP needs to deliver secure remote working solutions that are scalable to support your growth. This includes architectural changes to facilitate remote working like residential Internet access considerations, corporate Firewall considerations, accommodating BYOD and application performance insights.

  2. Modern management and architecture. A modern management service takes control of all the technology components to make remote working seamless. Log in and get working with preconfigured devices with security and network settings, services and application configurations. New devices can be deployed in an easy, efficient and secure way by automated enrolment and configuration, using one login, using Mobile Device Management (MDM).

  3. Security management and awareness. How is your MSP’s cloud security configuration management? The modern workplace needs secure platform access in a multi-cloud environment, including Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) solutions, and improving and upgrading firewalls. Clearly there is a new shadow IT challenge which demands visibility and control of user activity outside the corporate network. This includes identity and access management and data loss prevention. Also, by giving your team the education and training they need your MSP will help security awareness to minimise loss.

  4. User experience management. The new workplace will rely on user experience more than ever. Frustrated staff are unproductive staff, so your MSP should have a focus on the end-user experience. Identify common pitfalls when deployment is rushed and provide tools for effective communication and collaboration. For example, contactless deployment and configuration of devices to facilitate productivity allows IT managers to become remote coordinators – saving their time and highly improving user experiences.

  5. Application deployment management. In a modern workplace, applications and devices need to be managed in a highly orchestrated way, including their lifecycle and configuration. Your MSP must have a handle on application deployment management, including delivery of ubiquitous endpoint management tooling. In the case of Microsoft 365 there are options to extend the adoption of services and applications among staff maximising license investments.

So that’s one man’s view of the basic requisites – but underpinning this there needs to be an ICT Strategic Roadmap that is inextricably linked to your business strategy. And it needs to be developed, reviewed and revised regularly and collaboratively. We could call that Point 6!

I think the outcome we all want to get from the COVID experience (so we don’t waste a good crisis) is to arrive back at work and experience a dynamic, successful modern workplace. And you’re only going to get there with confidence and certainty if you’re talking, right now, to an experienced MSP that practices remote working and collaboration every day.

At Tecala, we offer a free Discovery Session to help identify the things you need to get right in the post-COVID workplace, including a high-level plan to accelerate your modern architecture by leveraging cloud to deliver the services and applications your teams need.

If you don’t currently engage an MSP or recent events have caused you to question your incumbent, we’d be delighted to provide you with a free initial consultation.

LET’S CREATE A PLAN THAT GIVEs YOU THE OUTCOME YOU NEED.

Register for an initial online discussion over Zoom, phone, or in person. And let’s find out where your business most needs our award-winning services and support.

By analysing your specific needs and priorities, we’ll give you a realistic and practical recommendation on what’s required to accelerate your modern architecture.

Our Senior Consultants will help you evaluate and understand your options, so you can make decisions that benefit both your business and your employees, while mitigating unnecessary risk.​

Combining Strategy, Transformation, Management and Optimisation, we identify and remove the obstacles to a successful outcome, before you even know they’re there.​

The session will cover:

Step 1: Recap and review

Together we’ll examine the steps you’ve already taken in adapting to COVID-19, and review the parameters for the architecture planning you’ll need in place going forward.

Step 2: Shape the
plan

Future-Planning for optimal performance, focusing on effective communication and collaboration, device lifecycle and configuration management and security.

Step 3: Identify your requirements

This is where we clearly identify the steps you need to have in place to develop your Strategic Technology Roadmap to create a Modern Dynamic Workplace. 

Step 4: Get the
report

You’ll receive a high-level report with our recommendations to accelerate your modern architecture, and the next steps for delivering your Strategic Technology Roadmap.

We’ll get you there. Faster.

With a high-level plan in place, you’ll have a clear understanding on the business case, benefits and high-level budget considerations for your technology platform to accelerate your modern architecture. And you’ll be ready to leverage the Cloud to deliver the services and applications your teams need.

CASE STUDY

Find out what a great MSP relationship should be delivering.

How successful was your business transition to a remote workforce during the COVID crisis?. Read how the National Breast Cancer Foundation was able to transition to a remote workforce environment almost overnight with 93% employee satisfaction.

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