Even amid the COVID-19 global pandemic, businesses still need to continue to operate; however, they need to take precautions to protect their cash flows and focus on their core competencies. Now more than ever, Managed IT Services providers (MSPs) are an essential partner for small businesses. They have been going the extra mile — by empowering their newly created remote workforces and helping small businesses leverage technology to keep operating despite the myriad technical and cybersecurity challenges.
In today’s digital work landscape, MSPs keep their noses to the grindstone to fulfill customer demands and help keep businesses running. While many small companies have taken the first step of transitioning to remote work, they still need help managing the logistics.
Right now, MSPs are providing customers with IT infrastructures and taking on a host of network tasks, including configuring hardware, establishing remote connections, and managing backup and storage options, among other activities. These all help to ensure that company networks are reliable enough to facilitate a remote workforce.
MSPs are also offering service desk capabilities, providing companies with a centralized resource for employees, customers, and business partners to answer questions, troubleshoot problems, and facilitate solutions. Appropriate and timely support is crucial, especially in times of great uncertainty.
Cloud solutions are ideal if IT environments must be quickly modified to meet changing demands or difficulties, which is why MSPs are now helping businesses leverage various cloud technologies and even move their data and applications online.
And because cloud migration can get complex, many MSPs are also offering managed migration plans that help companies transition key workflows and processes to the cloud safely and efficiently.
The current travel restrictions and social distancing measures make work-related travel difficult and risky. And with highly distributed workforces, many companies would rather source local service technicians for Break/Fix assistance, cabling, and other IT solutions.
Partnering with MSPs ensures that systems and networks are protected all the time, and critical support is provided within 24 hours. What’s even better is that some providers have technicians in different locations, making it easy to provide tools, resources, and support even in hard-to-reach areas.
As business needs continue to shift, MSPs must move in lockstep and provide support wherever they can. Here are some other ways MSPs are helping their clients navigate these trying times:
Assisting with IT projects
Because of how broad and challenging IT projects can be, it’s not uncommon for companies to lack the right skills and resources to handle them. MSPs help them by providing the expertise and technologies needed to pursue these projects, allowing companies to keep moving forward.
Foregoing long-term contracts
Some companies need IT support and services but can’t afford to commit to long-term contracts. Similarly, some want to augment their IT only for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic. What's great is many MSPs are providing flexible IT solutions, giving customers all the services and support they need when they need them.
Offering faster response times
Especially now that downtime could likely spell the end of a business, companies seek quick turnaround times. Since MSPs typically offer 24/7 support and tout specialists with a wide range of experience and knowledge, they can proactively address issues and ensure that IT infrastructures work as efficiently as possible.
As many businesses are still adjusting to the new normal, providing positive customer experiences will go a long way to earning trust and ensuring customer loyalty post-crisis. By being compassionate and empathetic to their customers' situations, MSPs are showing companies that they're navigating these trying times together.