IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

MSPs Can Scale and Boost Customer Experience with Artificial Intelligence

Adding AI-powered tools to network monitoring and management pays dividends for growing service providers. By Karen Falcone

The most critical responsibility of an MSP or solution provider is to keep customers’ businesses running smoothly. As providers grow and take on additional customers, this bottom-line responsibility doesn’t change, no matter how large they become. Connectivity, uptime, and the ability to be productive are what customers care most about.

For the solution provider, half the battle is recognizing the need to measure their own success by the experience they deliver customers, and the other half is finding ways to scale effectively while not experiencing any drop-off in the quantity and quality of services provided. Both halves are key to being a successful service provider with long-term, happy customers.

Adding artificial intelligence-powered tools to network monitoring and management enables managed service providers to both scale and improve customer experience.

The Experience Matters

Many service providers are used to measuring success the way they always have—by delivering certain service levels, such as network speed, responsiveness, or download times. These all have their place, but to truly service customers in the modern working environment, service providers need to change the way they approach customer engagements and think like their customers do.

With a mix of employees at home, in the office, and working in remote locations, it’s safe to say that the working environment has changed forever as a result of the pandemic. While this makes it more difficult to measure success in terms of traditional service levels, it also paves the way for an updated approach to measuring success. Employees care about whether they can do their jobs successfully. Can they access their documents and applications quickly and easily? Are their video calls glitch- and drop-free?

Once service providers focus on delivering what customers care about, it becomes much easier to measure themselves against that.

The Need to Scale

In addition to employees being physically spread out, the rise of cloud-based services and applications plus the sheer number of devices connecting to a network increase the management complexity tenfold.

To be successful in scaling the business while providing the services they’ve come to be known for, service providers need to embrace innovative technologies and automation tools. Dashboards that provide a single-pane-of-glass view into all customer engagements are just the starting point to maintaining an excellent experience.

Even with a dashboard, it’s difficult to monitor all customer environments at all times. AI tools can be that difference maker for many service providers struggling to scale effectively without sacrificing user experience. AI can help identify problems, speed troubleshooting, and assist in repairs, decreasing customer downtime. For service providers under pressure to stretch budgets and do more with less, AI can be the difference between a happy customer and lost revenue.

There are three main ways that AI can be a game changer:

1. Network Monitoring and Management - A growing number of customers means an ever-expanding number of networks to view, manage, and maintain. AI can serve as the “extra technician” who constantly monitors each environment and alerts to potential issues that need to be addressed. With AI, service providers can maintain an excellent user experience while technicians work on higher-value tasks and responsibilities.

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