Techs+Together is a new community for managed service providers offering free onboarding and learning, plus access to a technology buying group and SaaS-based billing. Launched earlier this year in Raleigh, N.C., it is the brainchild of Mark Shaw, President of MSP StoredTech, headquartered in Queensbury, N.Y., with an office in Youngsville, N.C.
Free to join, the goal of Techs+Together is to provide not only tools for MSPs, but knowledge, development, and insight into ways to improve their business. The Techs+Learning Center offers training, videos, and product webinars. In addition, MSPs can buy Kaseya, BMS by Kaseya, Acronis, and Veeam products through the community without contracts or minimums.
Shaw says StoredTech always had an open-door, collaborative approach with other MSPs. As managed service providers, “we do a lot of things right, but we can also do things better,” he says. “We can also learn new things from each other. I think the best part about having one seasoned MSP talk to another is just the sharing of knowledge and information.”
Active on social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Slack channels, Shaw often shared advice with fellow MSPs or those looking to start an IT business. “You talk to 100 different MSPs and everybody’s got a book of magic or their own secret sauce,” he says.
Shaw saw an opportunity to develop a community, and worked with one of his senior engineers to launch Techs+Together as a side project. Initially, they made extra licenses of the platforms and software that StoredTech was using available to other MSPs with no contract. Before they knew it, 50-plus MSPs were engaging with them and Shaw realized they were “doing something that people like and we decided to formalize it.”
Particularly for small or new MSPs, Shaw says purchasing the tools can be daunting. He explains that they struggle with, “I can't sign a contract. I can't come up with thousands of dollars up front. I don't know if I want to follow this stack, and if I do everything everybody else is doing, what sets me apart?” Techs+Together is able to provide the tools as a subscription with no monthly minimum, so MSPs don’t get over their heads financially. “It's like a little bit of an incubator for them,” Shaw says.
The SaaS billing model and the ability for community members to pick and choose which pieces of the offering they buy is what sets Techs+Together apart, says Chip Bieler, Director of Customer Success. “We're very passionate about offering SaaS monthly billing. Not only do we not have contracts, they only pay for what they use at the end of the month.”
The community effort is really about building velocity, Shaw says. “If you're a brand-new MSP, it is tough enough to buy an RMM and try to learn it. It's tougher to buy an RMM and a PSA and try to learn it. If we can help add velocity to a brand-new MSP, it benefits them and obviously as they grow, we grow.”
He calls this a win-win scenario. “We are all better off if everybody is selling more endpoints and supporting more clients and gaining business.”