Richard Tubb, IT Business Growth Expert, and Scott Riley, Founder of Cloud Nexus, talk about the most powerful cloud tools for MSPs.
Today’s MSP scene is all about cloud this, cloud that. New managed service providers are jumping on the built-for-the-cloud-on-the-cloud bandwagon, while the established ones scramble to rebrand their products as adapted-for-the-cloud.
As cloud software providers become an important piece in the IT services puzzle with a focus on automation and scale, let’s see what cloud tools can do for your business.
Top cloud tools that can take the chaos out of your business
Scott Riley, the founder of the fastest-growing MSP in the UK, is all for automation. It’s befitting that, as a very lean MSP, automation gives the best headstart they need to catch up in an established space. They need to keep moving, do more with less, and tie different things together—cloud-driven automation tools are the one-stop solutions for all of these.
My most important mission right now is to make myself useless in my own company. Because a lot of people who start an MSP end up just getting embroiled in the day-to-day work, and they just can't escape from it.
- Scott Riley
Because there are always things that depend on you. Automation reduces dependency and ensures things are on even if you’re off. When asked about his top cloud tool picks, Scott Riley points to his proposal automation software. Without automation, proposal writing can be tedious. And it always falls on the one who has access to the finance system, and in the case of Cloud Nexus, it’s Scott Riley. He invested in a tool called Proposify, a proposal management software. That’s where his inclination towards cloud-powered MSP tools started.
Proposal writing and quoting was one of the first tasks they got out of the habit of just doing things in Word documents, PowerPoint presentations, printing to PDF, and emailing them off to people. The templated projects helped them automate many time-consuming tasks like 365 migration and endpoint manager deployment and any others that have fixed scopes of work that are repeated often. The same blocks, but with a different customer name. As easy as that.
Some other tools that make an MSP’s life easier are integrated finance tools.
MSPs usually struggle to get paid on time. They use multiple tools to do that, making the process more hands-on and demanding. Some tools like GoCardless and Xero make invoicing and getting paid incredibly easier and accounted for.
Typically, you collect the direct debit payments, send the invoice, collect the direct debits, reconcile the direct debits with the invoice, and marry all that up in the banking system. You don’t need to do that anymore. Manual reconciliation of payments should be a thing of the past. Cloud Nexus uses ThriveCart, which is integrated into Stripe, which is integrated into Xero. In this case, the whole process takes care of itself - no one has to do any manual reconciliations.
The secret to scaling right
Scaling your business can be fun. Longer desks, bigger workspaces, and of course more desk toys. That is, of course, if you scale right. Scale wrong, and you might invite yourself some serious consequences:
- Your-costs-are-growing-faster-than-your-revenue serious.
- Your-most-efficient-employees-are-struggling-to-perform-now serious.
You have to be prepared for the chaos and uncertainty that come with expanding your business or else you’re left to pick up the pieces and that's not easy.
Cloud adoption is one of the key secrets to scaling right. When it comes to the on-premise model, your resources are limited and finite. With the cloud model, it’s a matter of increasing your capacity to meet the needs of your newly expanded resources.
Consider this. You run a candy shop and have more requests coming around Halloween. Run it on-premise and you have to install additional shops or space. Run it on the cloud and you just increase your infrastructure capacity to handle the additional influx of leads. Totally unrelated. But it makes sense, right?
The future is cloud and it is right here
It’s time everyone paid attention to the cloud, not just those born-in-the-cloud and the early adopters. Adopting the right tools is the first step to setting your business up for success in a cloud-driven environment. If you like what you read, let us say this is just a glimpse.
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