In a previous blog post – “MSPs: What do you need to know about Chrome Desktop” – we looked at the withdrawal of the LogMeIn Free service that many MSPs used for client PC remote access, and how those same MSPs were now considering using the free Chrome Remote Desktop tool instead.
Although Chrome Desktop is a fit for some scenarios (the odd home PC, etc), the article summed up the situation by stating “professional MSPs really do need something a little more ‘business grade.’”
While tools like Chrome Desktop might appear to be “free”, they can actually cost your IT solution provider or managed service provider (MSP) business dearly.
Let me ask you this. When your customers use free or “cheap” tools to make up their IT infrastructure, how does it make you, as their IT provider, feel? Given the fact these tools are free or cheap for a reason – often that they are provided by Vendors as a solution for home users, not businesses – I’m going to assume that such tools often make you feel frustrated, irritated or in some case, despairing!
Think about those customers of yours who insist on using domestic-level broadband from cheap’n’cheerful Internet Service Providers (ISPs). The client justifies this by the monthly cost, but then complains when their broadband is too slow or, as is often the case, doesn’t work at all. You, as the MSP, get frustrated each and every time your client complains about the situation and ignores your requests to move to a more business-grade solution.
The situation is similar with “free” MSP tools. It’s no challenge at all to find an MSP that believes they have been “saving money” using free or cheap tools cobbled together for a “working” solution. But how much time do these MSPs waste using these solutions in a disjointed approach – opening multiple services, with multiple usernames and passwords?
Then there is the fact that these MSPs are building their businesses off the back of a service that has zero guarantees. Try complaining to the vendor whose free tool has just died with no ETA for a return of service. What is their response going to be? “We’ll give you a refund on the fee you paid?”.
A business-grade MSP tool will be a professional service provided by a professional vendor and backed by business-grade levels of service – and that level of service really doesn’t come for free.
All IT businesses are familiar with the frustrations inherent in dealing with a penny-pinching client – one which believes cheap or free tools will serve them best. These clients are being “penny wise and pound foolish.”
As a professional IT business, you don’t want to make that same mistake. Don’t try to cobble together solutions built from free or cheap tools. Business-grade MSP tools don’t have to cost the Earth, but they will save you more time and money than you realize.