Total transformation: One MSP's story

Marc Thaler

LONDON – Stories don’t have to be elaborate to resonate. The tale Jason Parsons told on Tuesday proves the point.

After Wyvern Business Systems consolidated its services portfolio using MAX, Parsons said a customer called with concern clear in her voice. She had a virus on her computer. What should she do?

Everyone-has-a-storyTurned out she didn’t have to do anything.

“The technician was notified (of the virus) before she made the call, and deleted it from the quarantine,” Parsons, Wyvern’s technical lead, said during the MAX 2014 EU Customer Conference at the Hilton Heathrow Terminal 5 hotel.

Since Wyvern moved to a remote monitoring and management (RMM) solution, proactive support instantly became one of the benefits to the business. And there were many more.

“It might come across like we were doing some things terribly wrong,” Steve McGowan, Wyvern’s commercial manager, said of the company’s pre-RMM days.

Co-leading the breakout session, McGowan painted a picture of life before the company put the single-pain-of-glass approach to the test. He said Wyvern was using the “traditional approach to IT.”

The list of pains it caused the company included:

  • Missing income and confusing contracts
  • Uncertainty among clients and engineers alike about services covered
  • Lack of a set pricing structure for support
  • Complicated purchasing
  • Minimal reporting

A typical support call, as Parsons explained, was a lengthy and frustrating process for technicians and customers. Technicians were forced to bounce between multiple solutions to solve problems.

It was hardly a model of efficiency – to say nothing of the money that wasn’t collected.

“We never had a true record of whether (a service) had been charged for,” McGowan said.

Recognizing this gap and the need to bridge it was the first step. The second one, Parsons and McGowan said, was pushing MAX to all client servers and workstations.

Technicians immediately had a host of tools at their disposal: Patch management, remote background, system tray, online backup, mail protection and managed antivirus.

“It’s not just about consolidating,” Parsons said. “It’s that we’re getting better products as well.”

Integrating better solutions also enabled Wyvern to eliminate the “guess work” when it came to deciding the cost of specific services. The company moved to a monthly model. It was easy for staff and customers to understand, and it created better cash flow, McGowan said.

Customers were pleased to have a single point of contact for their problems, a considerable reduction in downtime, better security and more powerful system performance, McGowan added.

Wyvern, in turn, strengthened its relationship with customers. The company’s actions spoke volumes.

“We want to be proactive,” Parsons said. “We want to solve the customer’s problem before it shows up.”