Business growth and scalability is the ultimate goal for any business owner but getting there is hardly ever linear.
The right mix of strategy, execution, timing, and luck is often necessary and it’s important to truly understand the landscape of your industry and what your customers need.
For managed service providers (MSPs), having high margins is typically a great sign of success and growth.
High margins are desirable because they:
- Provide significant profitability
- Allow MSPs to allocate their resources efficiently (for example, by maintaining high margins, MSPs can hire high-quality talent, invest in training, and use state-of-the-art technology)
- Make it easier to invest in innovative solutions that will benefit clients
- Help MSPs maintain a financial cushion that protects against cybersecurity and other risks
- Give MSPs the means to invest in marketing and customer support that differentiate them from competitors
A typical margin range for MSPs can vary depending on several factors, including the size of the MSP, the services they provide, and where they’re located. According to MSP360, MSPs should aim for a margin range of 8%-18%.
So, how can MSPs achieve the higher margins they want? There are many, many ways, and one of those ways is to sell automation solutions.
This article will explore why automation solutions are in demand and how MSPs can include automation in the services they provide.
Automation is a mainstay
Anyone who came of age in the era of the internet or who was already gainfully employed at the time will remember the transition well. There were companies who were apprehensive about learning how to use the internet and the implications of implementing it and there were those who quickly understood that use of the internet was going to become a necessity and would transform the way we work.
What we are seeing with automation is very similar.
Automation, artificial intelligence, and machine learning will undoubtedly change the way we work. It’s already happening at a rapid pace.
While some fear that automation and AI will take jobs away from us, it’s far more likely that these smart solutions will augment our work and take our productivity to new heights.
It would be more detrimental to ignore the power of automation than to start incorporating it into our day-to-day, especially as the demand for more automation rises.
McKinsey’s Global Survey recently revealed that more than 70% of respondents reported that their companies were, at minimum, piloting automation technology.
That should tell MSPs that automation is important and that there’s a great opportunity to help clients get on board.
Selling automation to MSP clients
It’s clear that automation solutions are a hot commodity. But why does it make sense for MSPs to sell automation to their clients?
As their trusted advisor, clients turn to MSPs for advice on anything technologically related and anything that may improve their operational efficiency. If a client is interested in trying a new tool, more than likely they will vet it through their MSP first. Likewise, if their MSP partner makes a recommendation to them, they’re probably going to take that advice.
By presenting clients with innovative solutions, an MSP will add significant value to the services they already provide.
Once an MSP introduces automation into their client’s tech stack – for example, via an eSignature solution or a document workflow automation tool – that client can expect to:
- Increase efficiency and productivity. By automating repetitive tasks, clients can save time, reduce errors, and optimize resource utilization while shifting focus to more strategic and revenue-driving activities.
- Reduce costs. Clunky processes, manual tasks, and human error can be costly. Automation streamlines processes and decreases costs associated with overstaffing, correcting mistakes, or spending too much time on a task. This frees up a client’s budget for additional investments in technology or services offered by an MSP.
- Plan for scalability and growth. The increased efficiency and cost-savings associated with automation makes room for an MSP to support their client’s expansion plans. Automation can adapt to a client’s business needs as they scale and grow, allowing MSPs to lend high-quality expertise along the way.
- Have more reliability and consistency. Because automation significantly reduces costly errors, clients can enjoy greater confidence in their operations, ultimately leading to higher client satisfaction.
- Be more secure. Automation solutions often have strict security and compliance protocols built into them, which strengthens a client’s security posture and protects their data and systems from threats.
Better client relationships lead to higher margins
For an MSP’s client, the benefits of adopting automation are significant and will have a positive impact on the client-MSP relationship. And the benefits flow both ways.
By providing value-added services and driving operational excellence, both the client and the MSP improve efficiency, reduce costs, enhance reliability, and foster a collaborative and trusting partnership.
Higher margins result from this improved client relationship and are achieved through:
- Lower labor costs and improved resource utilization
- Revenue growth opportunities while maintaining fixed costs
- Less delays and less errors, leading to increased productivity and time and cost savings
- Increased diversification, allowing MSPs to offer additional services and tap into new revenue streams
- Increased value proposition, allowing MSPs to raise their prices as clients are willing to pay for high-quality services
Partnering with airSlate to sell automation
airSlate is a document workflow automation platform that empowers anyone to create powerful documents and automate their workflows within one single platform. From editing PDFs to creating custom forms and eSigning documents, airSlate is changing the way organizations automate their processes.
A significant advantage of using airSlate is that it is a no-code solution, which means that deep technical skills are not required to use it and the learning curve is minimal, especially when compared with traditional automation tools.
While clients are demanding automation solutions, they may lack the knowledge or resources to source and implement the right tool. That’s where their MSP can come in handy.
An MSP selling automation via airSlate can expect to make thousands of dollars in additional revenue per year. Plus, they’ll be helping their clients reap the benefits as well. A win-win situation all around.
airSlate partners work with a dedicated partner account manager and solution architect who will act as a guide through a sales enablement process and build confidence around selling airSlate. airSlate also invests in partners by offering market development funds to those who successfully complete a selection program.