Atera includes a network discovery system that will instantly spot all equipment connected to a client’s network. This creates a live record of the hardware inventory of the supported system. The opportunities that this service enables will help you to expand your MSP profitably.


Upselling provides a number of income channels. You can add fees for advice on capacity planning to your monthly bill. A basic contract to monitor a system and keep it running doesn’t necessarily give the client consultancy services for free.


System health checks


The network discovery tool doesn’t just spot devices on a client site, it also lists their attributes, including the make, model, capacity, and age. With the assistance of autodiscovery, you can spot the outdated equipment that is hampering the performance of the client’s system. This will enable you to recommend new equipment purchases and offer provisioning services.


Just as badly managed businesses don’t keep track of their equipment inventory, they don’t keep track of the age or the serviceable life of each device. The beginning of a service contract creates a particularly profitable point for the MSP to discover the age of each piece of equipment and recommend its retirement where applicable.


In some instances, replacing equipment isn’t just a matter of recognizing its normal service life. A deprecated operating system or other software versions might render older equipment unusable where newer versions of software require more modern hardware. A damaged device might prove to be cheaper to replace than to repair. Inefficient models could be dragging down the efficiency of the client’s system. Sometimes a replacement for existing equipment will pay for itself in better performance and increased productivity for the client.


Analysis of what equipment is a drag on performance and which purchases could reduce system downtime starts with the system discovery process. Fortunately, that network discovery routine is a constant action with the Atera platform.


Atera’s network discovery function operates all of the time, not just when Atera starts monitoring the system of a new client. This means that the service can keep track of device availability and continue to log efficiency as an ongoing task. The information gleaned from this process is a useful source of research for capacity planning and provision recommendations.


Service reviews


It is common practice to conduct a monthly review between the MSP and the client. This is actually a requirement of the ITIL systems management standards. The MSP client manager needs to have every piece of service analytical data available to him for that meeting. The monthly review is the moment the MSP should raise any systems shortfall and so introduce upselling opportunities.


A key source for the capacity issues to be discussed at the monthly review is the equipment inventory. This doesn’t necessarily need to be presented as a document. Shared access to the inventory by the two sides in the meeting would suffice. However, the data is presented, that equipment inventory will have been written automatically by the network discovery process of Atera.


No one is going to accept the word of a supplier, especially when the matter under discussion is going to end up costing the client money. This is why credible supporting documentation is so important. The presentation of the inventory and graphical illustrations of system performance helps justify sales opportunities.


Use the device inventory provided by the network discovery process to explain performance issues to the client. The device inventory can also help the MSP spot overprovision of equipment, helping clients to save money and earning their trust.


New technology


Identify new replacement technology that could improve the client’s system efficiency even where the existing equipment hasn’t completed its service life. Keep track of those advancements by knowing what equipment is currently operating on the client’s site.
Your clients aren’t IT experts and don’t keep up with developments in technology. As a managed service provider, you are the expert in the field and it is your responsibility to look out for new systems that can improve system performance on the client site, cut costs, and enhance profitability.


The network discovery process provides an equipment inventory and that gives a canny client manager an opportunity to keep an eye out for improvements. The introduction of new technology is not just an opportunity to make extra fees through consultancy, but it is also a way that the MSP can demonstrate its mastery of the subject field. The augmentation of reputation enhances trust and binds the client to the MSP.


Enhance reputation


An equipment inventory, created by the Atera network discovery tool is the launchpad for and MSP to demonstrate full competence both in monitoring and in understanding the state of the industry. In total, the network discovery gives you credibility and authority.


A trusting client is easier to sell to, so even if the inventory proves that the site is over-provisioned with equipment, the reputation that this revelation brings will pay off in the long run and provide future selling opportunities.


Given the intense competition in the MSP sector and the resulting thin margins for service contracts, upselling opportunities shouldn’t be overlooked. First of all, upselling enables the MSP to add on more technicians to manage the expanded network, resulting in more money from the contract.


The planning process that launches from a decision made in the monthly review is an extra service not normally included in a standard managed service contract. That creates more income opportunities. What’s more, analysts can be charged out at a higher rate than technicians.


Finally, the offer to manage the acquisition process is another money making opportunity. This task can be worked in two ways. Either, your MSP can charge for the time taken by experts to select, test, and buy the right equipment, or you could plan for this opportunity in advance and create a panel of suppliers who are willing to give you a commission. If you are really clever, you could even pursue both strategies simultaneously.


Atera’s support platform includes both RMM and PSA software. That package gives you all of the software you need to manage the networks of clients and run your business. The addition of the network discovery tool gives you insights that will improve both operations and sales.