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Digital transformation of business: What's the MSP's role?

Managed IT services firms can help clients inject technology innovation into each area of business as they digitally transform, writes Paul Parisi, president of SaviorLabs.

The digital transformation of business has become a major focus in the world of IT. The concept challenges organizations to reinvent themselves, pursuing a combination of process change and technology adoption to dramatically improve the customer experience and create entirely new digital lines of business.

Channel partners, as trusted advisors, have a stake in helping customers through this shift. In this ask the expert, Paul Parisi discusses the role of managed service providers (MSPs) in digital transformation. Parisi is the president and founder of SaviorLabs, a managed IT services company based in Beverly, Mass., and a member of The ASCII Group since 2016.

In the early 1990s, a popular marketing campaign presented a cool notion of what technology can do for us. However, what we have learned since then is that technology usually just sits there. Companies need a little push to apply it and change the way they do business. They need consistent help and expert guidance on how they can better use technology.

Businesses face the staggering task of just getting their work done, and they have very little luxury time to improve their operation practices. Process innovation needs to be woven into the fabric of daily commercial pursuits, and MSPs are helping to initiate and empower these changes.

Digital transformation is the ultimate destination for all that MSPs do. As we have been participating in the evolving paradigm that we term managed services, it's leading to the application of cutting-edge technology to all areas of life. The point of thinking differently about how MSPs provide IT and related services to a company is to take care of all their technology problems before they occur. But that is only the starting point.

Digital transformation is the ultimate destination for all that MSPs do.

We need to understand that, just as break-fix to MSP was a transition, we need to be prepared to facilitate digital transformation of business. MSPs provide the proactive momentum to help customers better leverage technology and improve their bottom line.

For example, if we saw a client using an old laptop, we would recommend an upgrade. Digital transformation is taking the next step: injecting expert technology innovation into each area of a business to transform it into something better, whereby it can achieve its goals.

While MSPs are in the midst of making what we do more obvious to our clients, we often do this in the background. We observe, identify an opportunity and guide clients to a solution, not only by employing computers or software, but by identifying a change in process. This takes time and understanding, and currently results in project work.

But we are transitioning digital transformation to be a core part of our MSP offering, where the client is explicitly aware of our valuable role and our all-in-one price offering. Promoting digital transformation ultimately provides a real, tangible benefit that enables businesses to be more successful, make more money and free people to more effectively focus on their areas of expertise.

Any thoughts on the digital transformation of business? If you're a managed IT services partner with a view on that subject, contact site editor John Moore at [email protected].

Next Steps

Read how MSPs can help customers through the BI aspects of the digital transformation of business

Learn about the consultancies supporting Microsoft's digital transformation initiative

Find out how managed services tools can free up time for customers' digital transformation projects 

Dig Deeper on MSP business model transformation