As a longtime veteran of the IT services industry, Tony Hayden has led Sabre Networks through plenty of changes. Founded in 1996 as a traditional break/fix shop, Sabre today has successfully made the transition to a managed services provider. With five employees, and a solid base of recurring monthly revenue, the Youngsville, North Carolina-based company prides itself on providing proactive service to clients — a concept made possible thanks to Sabre's use of GFI MAX RemoteManagement,™ a hosted RMM tool from GFI Software.
"Before GFI MAX, we were purely reactionary," says Hayden, who is Sabre's president. "Now we know what's going on in real time so we can be proactive and deal with issues before they become problems for the customer."
It is such a proactive stance that has allowed Sabre to steadily grow its managed services business in the two years since Hayden answered a phone call from a GFI sales rep and decided to give GFI MAX a try. Already familiar with some GFI Software products, Hayden didn't realize the company offered remote management tools for MSPs until he got the call.
At the time, Sabre was utilizing an RMM tool from another vendor, but Hayden wasn't happy with the experience. "What interested me about GFI MAX was that it was hosted so I didn't have to run my own hardware," Hayden recalls. An added plus, says Hayden was the pricing structure that allowed Sabre to pay only for the services the company used when it used them. "I didn't have to make a huge capital outlay upfront," Hayden adds. "I could try it, and if I didn't like it, I could shut it down and just walk away."
That initial experience with GFI MAX was in 2011, and Sabre has never looked back. At first, Hayden says the basic remote monitoring capabilities of the platform proved most beneficial; the ability to tell clients that their servers were running out of disk space prior to that occurring, for example, was something that Sabre didn't have the means to do prior to GFI MAX.
As GFI has added features such as integrated AV, cloud-based backup and patch management to the platform, Hayden says the tool has become valuable for growing the managed services aspect of Sabre's business. In particular, integrated AV allows Sabre to show many clients who are not under management the value of managed services. Hayden says he's been able to convert many clients once they have the integrated AV agent on their machines.
Today, Sabre has nearly 500 workstations and 50 servers under management through the GFI MAX platform. Recurring revenues prior to GFI MAX were negligible, and are now approximately $25,000 per month, Hayden says. The predictable nature of the managed services model has enabled Sabre to focus on delivering superior customer service even during the traditionally slower weeks around the holidays. "We no longer worry when the phone isn't ringing," Hayden says. "With each new feature added to GFI MAX, we are that much stickier to our clients," he says.
For more information on GFI MAX RemoteManagement, visit www.gfimax.com