Indeed, the longer-term future of managed services looks as good to Weller as it did before the crisis. “You won’t be surprised to hear I’m incredibly bullish,” he says. “I think all the underlying trends were already there, and I think the crisis accelerates those trends.”
In particular, he continues, the unexpected success many SMBs have had with remote work arrangements is likely to speed the ongoing shift toward cloud computing, a phenomenon that inspired much of Datto’s strategic pre-coronavirus plans for the future.
“The thinking about what next-gen Datto looks like has basically already occurred,” Weller says. “The roadmap for the next three years for us has been set really for the better part of six to nine months.”
Weller won’t say much about that roadmap, except that the cloud figures prominently in it. “As the year goes on and we start launching new technology, I think it’ll become more clear to people,” he says. “It won’t be surprising to you, though. It will fit sort of broader industry trends.”
One trend that won’t reflected on the roadmap, however, is the growth of the security market. As before, and unlike some of its top competitors, Datto continues to view security as a need best left for others to fill. “We haven’t really believed so strongly in selling security as much as embedding it deeply in every single product,” Weller says. “That’s probably our highest overall level of spend.”
Partners hoping to get a glimpse of Datto’s product plans at the company’s DattoCon partner event next month will have to wait a little longer, however. Weller expects to announce the postponement of that conference shortly.
“I don’t personally see how we can responsibly bring 4,000 people together in one place, given the current state of affairs,” he says. “We’re not going to put employees, partners, [and] vendors at risk in large gatherings until the right kinds of experts—and not politicians, experts, health side—tell us that it’s safe to do.”
That day will come in time though, he adds, along with a return to growth for Datto, MSPs, and their customers. “Let’s get ready,” Weller says.