Autotask Execs Aim To Help MSPs Prosper With A Platform That Adds Value, Context To Business Data

Autotask's top leaders said advanced IT automation would help MSPs serve as true business technologists.

The East Greenbush, N.Y.-based IT service management vendor said its ability to provide professional service automation (PSA), remote monitoring and management (RMM), and other services helps solution providers focus on end users instead of internal business operations.

"We want to take care of all your little things so that you don't have to, so you can take full advantage of the opportunity that you have out there in digital transformation," according to President and CEO Mark Cattini during Autotask Community Live 2017.

[Related: President Clinton To Autotask MSPs: Tech Interdependence Creates Enormous Opportunity For IT Sector]

Sponsored post

Global spending among small and mid-sized customers in software is expected to exceed their hardware spend by 2018, with companies increasingly recognizing the value in linking their software investments to business processes, Cattini told 1,000 attendees at The Diplomat Beach Resort in Hollywood, Fla. By next year, Cattini expects most mid-market firms to be on the path to embracing digital transformation.

"This isn't just about enterprise," Cattini said. "It's about everybody now."

As a result, CEOs will expect their CIOs to more actively use technology to drive revenue, Cattini said. In the SMB space, solution providers traditionally filled the virtual CIO role, Cattini said, delivering core productivity tools and applications so that end users can enjoy a stable computing environment.

But going forward, Cattini believes SMB customers will expect more from their IT service provider.

"I think the demands are going to start changing, and many of you are going to have to think about being a business technologist," Cattini said. "There's keeping the lights on, and then there's transforming your customers' business."

Autotask can help with that, Cattini said, by enabling MSPs to seamless move data and reporting across applications. The company's database and interface-level integration allows MSPs to view information about devices, service activity, customer satisfaction, and revenue opportunities in a single pane of glass, according to Pat Burns, Autotask's vice president of product management.

This not only enhances convenience, Burns said, but also provides MSPs with added meaning and context around that data.

Automating the entire client lifecycle from customer acquisition to invoicing and reporting has made Autotask's MSP users more efficient, more profitable, and more productive and consistent in their service delivery.

The vendor has additionally amplified its analytics to let MSPs know how they're performing, Burns said, providing insight into if they're pricing correctly as well as which clients and services cost more to support.

"It's not enough to just know whether you're profitable," Burns said. "You have to know where and why."

Autotask has repurposed its analytics engine by bringing substantially more data from its RMM offering into its PSA offering, which Burns said has enabled solution providers to obtain more technical information about devices in a business context.

"Now that they [PSA and RMM] are together and unified, you can't imagine them differently," Burns said. "We feel these are very interdependent and interconnected and complementary."

The Brookfield Group takes advantage of the client-specific dashboards provided by Autotask to examine micro-trends and the theme of tickets coming in to determine what solutions the particular customer might need, according to Vice President of Operations Abby Warner. Brookfield account managers can also easily access this data during their business reviews with clients, Warner said.

The Chicago-based solution provider has used this information to show end users the age of their equipment and help them proactively plan their investments rather than falling into the trap of last-minute computer replacements, Warner said.

The Brookfield Group additionally uses the data to justify the value of their service by showing end users the numbers of potential issues that were thwarted thanks to Autotask's backup and remote monitoring offerings, according to Warner.

"Every business now is a technology business, no matter what the actual product or service is that they offer," Warner said.