GFI Gives MSPs a Remote Management Preview

GFI’s Alistair Forbes offers a sneak peak at forthcoming improvements and offerings during the U.S. Conference 2013 event in Las Vegas. By Joel Zaidspiner

Remote management, backup, and security innovator GFI MAX shared with 300 MSP attendees last month not only a full program of peer networking and applied training, but also three key pieces of company news.

Indeed, the GFI MAX U.S. Conference 2013 event at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas during the last week in September provided the forum for GFI to “keep MSPs up to date,” according to the Dr. Alistair Forbes, the company’s general manager based in Scotland.

ChannelPro-SMB got the opportunity to speak exclusively with Dr. Forbes about the event and, specifically, about the GFI MAX news attendees came to learn.

Worldwide Events

GFI MAX is holding peer- and partner-centered events throughout the world. This year’s U.S. conference in Vegas represents the third of its kind. It is also one of several international shows.

“This is the third U.S. conference like this that we’ve run,” Forbes explains. “It is an opportunity for us to get much more direct interaction with customers, get their feedback, and make sure we can keep them up to date with what we’re doing. We’re also doing a number of these around the world.”

GFI MAX has held events in such places as Australia, London, and Berlin, according to Forbes. “The events are very important for us because they give us the opportunity to have deep engagement with customers on a personal level.”

Three GFI MAX Announcements

According to Forbes, GFI MAX had three main pieces of news to share with event attendees in September, all of them pertaining to enhancements, products, or service offerings from GFI MAX. Each improvement, Forbes explains, was designed to enable MSPs to better monitor and manage SMB systems.

  1. Remote Command Line—Remote access with the Take Control and Remote Background Management tool enables MSPs to provide SMBs with a secure maintenance experience. It provides single-click access to any SMB server or workstation via the GFI MAX RemoteManagement dashboard.

    “Adoption rate has been very strong,” Forbes reports. “It is a feature that is widely appreciated by customers.”

  2. Mobile Device Management—The acquisition of the VizualMobile technology will add MDM (mobile device management) capability to the GFI MAX RemoteManagement platform.

    “We are in the Beta phase of our MDM offering,” Forbes says. “Currently in Beta was only an Android platform, but we’re about to add iOS support to that very shortly.”

    Forbes continues, “How MSPs cope with both the company-owned mobile device and the bring-your-own-device scenario is something that a lot of MSPs are still having to work out. We will be looking to expand to give MSPs more ways to broaden these services.”

  3. Integration & Vendor Support—For a number of years, GFI MAX has partnered with professional services automation (PSA) software developers Autotask and ConnectWise. Now, GFI MAX enables MSPs to integrate various PSA, help desk, and ticketing software tools.

    “We’re not looking to provide a PSA solutions,” Forbes clarifies. “We see from our own base that only half are using a PSA solution at the moment. We want to give them something that helps them to run the service side of their business as well as the technical side of the business.”

24/7 Support

In another bit of news, Forbes told ChannelPro-SMB that GFI MAX would likely be expanding its support capabilities in Q4 2013. “We do have service organizations around the world,” Forbes says. “So, we are in the process of hooking all of those up to provide a ‘follow-the-sun’ kind of support capability.”

During core business hours, he explains, callers would be getting support from someone in the region. Calls outside those hours would receive support from someone in a different region. “Increasingly, MSPs are being expected to deliver extended hours of service to their customers,” Forbes says. “So, MSPs need support from us as well.”

GEOFFREY OLDMIXON contributed to this report.