2020 was a rough start for most businesses around the world. Thanks to digitalisation efforts, many were able to adapt to the new normal and bounced back up quickly. IT service providers have seen rising demands for cloud-based services which drive the need for greater network access and bandwidth.
Now that things are normalising, managed service providers (MSP) have learned a thing or two about being able to thrive in undesirable market climates. They need to be agile, knowledgeable, consistent, and reliable to retain their customers and win new ones.
These elements are critical in all aspects of an MSP’s offering. This includes having a robust infrastructure and agile networking to deliver services to customers.
Instead of traditional networking, MSPs should rely on Network as a Service (NaaS) for connectivity in their business model. The network should not slow down the way MSPs deliver services to their customers no matter where they are.
What resources will need strengthening if an even larger crisis occurs next year? An MSP’s limitation in connectivity can turn into a strength with NaaS. Three takeaway lessons are immediately obvious:
- Business differentiation
To stand out from the crowd, MSPs need to stay attractive and unique in a competitive environment. It is now made even more vital and lucrative in a rapidly changing world. Studies have already shown that the greatest area of concern for MSPs is commodisation. Some may have already been stretched to the limit serving existing customers. How will they serve new customers equally well or better in future?
- On-demand scalability and reliability
The worldwide championing of digitalisation is set to create highly demanding customers looking for alternative solutions that will not fail them. This expectation in turn falls on MSPs to ensure that their network partners are up to the task.
- Zero-tolerance security
Increasingly, MSPs will need to be secure-by-design in the new normal. There will be zero-tolerance of downtime and security mishaps. Again, internal housekeeping and tight control across all vendors will be needed. Even the quality of data centres engaged can affect uptime, threat intelligence and mitigation capabilities during the worst cybersecurity disasters.
NETWORK AS A SERVICE (NAAS) IN THE LIMELIGHT
Notice that all three critical factors are linked strongly to the capabilities of the network service providers. With the right NaaS partner, MSPs stand to future-proof their current infrastructure in each of the three areas:
- Getting new customers with NaaS platform
By tapping on a feature-rich NaaS partner, MSPs can self-disrupt and transform quickly. They can deliver global reach and monetise network services through white labelling or the use of application programme interface (API). MSP can attract prospects as well as retain existing customers with a broader range of high-demand, low-risk service offering.
- On-demand interconnection
Most NaaS partners can offer scalability and reliability, but are they agile and flexible enough? An on-demand connectivity platform allows MSPs to have full control over their network services. Furthermore, giving them immediate access to an ecosystem of interconnected data centres with cloud and internet exchange on-ramps. It is the answer to the urgent growth and differentiation needs that MSPs must include in their service offerings.
- Carrier-grade Ethernet network
To be future-proof, MSPs need network partners that are invested in their backbone. A NaaS partner with strong telco roots and carrier-grade infrastructure will ensure greater levels of reliability, security and performance. This is essential for an MSP’s continual growth and gaining the trust of their customers.
MSPs are leveraging on their unique value propositions to jostle for explosive growth opportunities. They can do better by partnering with service providers that complement their existing business model. There is no limit to how they can serve their customers regardless of the kind of services they are building.
MSPs can now thrive in a crowded market and continue to deliver excellence in the future. And these are made possible by delivering software-defined networking (SDN) through a recognised NaaS platform like Infiny.