Knowing where to shift your business isn’t easy. There are many external factors in play, and we’re usually too busy operating in our businesses to identify when and where we need to pivot to stay ahead of things. However, there is already a path to follow if you look closely enough.
The enterprise is usually further down the road than we are in the managed service provider (MSP) space. There are more resources, money and talent dedicated to enterprise businesses. It’s nearly impossible for MSPs to get ahead when the focus is directed elsewhere. However, when you are trying to figure out where to shift your business, turn to how things are being done in the enterprise, and you will be surprised at what you can learn.
Think to yourself: What is the enterprise doing I am not?
What type of technologies is the enterprise using? What about artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), robotic process automation (RPA) and ChatGPT? How are enterprise businesses using these technologies to streamline processes, automate workflows and deliver exceptional customer service?
We are already seeing the impact these technologies are starting to have on society. (Articles on ChatGPT are popping up everywhere, aren’t they?) While it may have taken a while, these technologies are here to stay, and they’re making their way down to our space and elsewhere.
For instance, consider how AI, ML, RPA and other types of technologies are changing support in the enterprise. This means our support role will be different in several years. These technologies have evolved far enough now that they are changing our space, too. These technologies are complete game changers for technicians. (Think about how much of our time we spend on closing tickets.)
Another core part of our business is projects. Even here, we see automation changing how we operate and do business. For example, Microsoft will continue to automate server and endpoint deployments.
Also, if you want to know where the MSP space is heading, it’s not a bad idea to follow the money in the enterprise. Where are investors investing in the enterprise? What types of tools and software are they writing checks for? While investing in automation, they are also throwing money at security. The enterprise is really far ahead of where we are in this space, which means our role in security will not be the same in the future as it is today.
We can learn much about where our industry is heading by paying attention to what’s happening in the enterprise. While the changes won’t happen immediately, they are inevitable. The more we keep an eye on what’s happening above, the better off we will be as an industry.