N-able Bids for Wider AdoptionBy John Hazard | Posted 2006-07-05 Email Print
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The managed services vendor has a new pricing scheme and operational tool it hopes will entice more partners to its platform.N-able Technologies has changed the pricing of its Velocity System to a per-seat structure with an eye to enticing more VARs and integrators to its managed services platform.
The Velocity System, introduced in December, offers channel companies making the transition to MSPs (managed services providers) a menu of services designed to speed adoption of the Ottawa-based vendor's N-central platform.
"Our Velocity System resolves the business, marketing, sales and technical challenges solution providers face in becoming MSPs and brings us closer to realizing our vision of enabling the world's most successful MSPs," said N-able Chairman and CEO Gavin Garbutt.
The new per-seat pricing structure gives MSPs a better view of how much it costs to manage and monitor their customers' computing environments.
"We've simplified the way we do business to make it easier for our customers to develop, grow and support a successful managed service practice," said Garbutt.
The Velocity System, according to Garbutt, addresses the six most common obstacles that get in the way of VARs and integrators getting into managed services. Those barriers include the lack of remote monitoring and management technology, manual or inefficient service management, the inability to sell customers on the managed service model, and ineffective marketing.
Making the transition can prove challenging for solution providers of any size, said Tiffani Bova, research director of IT Channel Sales for Gartner. So providers must find a way to get around the obstacles and "keep their focus on the people, processes and technology that account for a profitable managed services practice," she said.
The change in pricing structure comes on the heels of a deal between N-able and Autotask, a software vendor based in Rensselaer, N.Y., that develops technology to help channel companies run their business.
N-able integrated Autotask's solution into its platform, branding it N-Power, to perform scheduling, CRM, time capture, project management, call center, and billing and reporting tasks, all in a uniform program. The integration with N-able's N-central platform allows for the automatic capture of network activity to generate alerts and reports.
Many MSPs, including N-able partners, have tied Autotask onto their operations to improve efficiency. The program allows them to drive efficiency and thus higher margins on flat, monthly service fees by identifying gaps in coverage, redundant services and wasted resources.
Adjusting resources could be as simple as scheduling calls to adjacent clients on the same day to dropping clients with excessive requests, said Bill Stewart, N-able's vice president of marketing.
"To do fixed-fee managed service, you have to understand down to the penny where your resources are going," Stewart said. "To make money on a fixed fee, you had better have everything prioritized and manage those resources to drive out any wasted expense."