Recorded on August 4, 2015
This week the CCP Team are joined by Richard Winfield and Jason Harrison. The topic is focused on Managed Services and general business practices.
Jason Harrison, President of Harrison Technology Consulting of Nashville, NC
"We've been doing a Managed Service business model since the late 1990's, so we’ve been blazing the trail a bit ahead of the curve. From an Apple Mac perspective there are good opportunities there. We've migrated a number of client systems from Windows SBS Server / Windows desktops to Mac OS X Server / Mac desktops in the last several years.
We are more in the MSP 3.0 area now, where we're deeply involved with each of our clients helping them in ways that go far beyond the typical MSP relationship. We are truly extensions of our clients businesses and while doing some of the day to day management and problem solving, are more set in strategy and implementation of more advanced utilization of technology in their businesses. Spending more time on helping them on the what and how they use tech in their day to day operations rather than just being the support role.
Solutions to consider for operations management: MaxFocus Service Desk, MaxFocus RMM, Autotask & Cisco Meraki Systems Manager. MaxFocus ServiceDesk or AutoTask allow you to define a contract and track your time against that contract and easily report or export that to an accounting app. Easily define a flat fee contract that covers the usual controllable type services then bill for "extras and special projects" that consume too much time. Maxfocus RMM can do some basic Apple device monitoring and management that goes beyond other tools. - https://www.maxfocus.com "
Richard B. Wingfield - Head Geek, Envision Design, LLC of Houston Texas:"I have been using Mac's in business since original Macintosh in '84 and Envision, as a consulting firm, has been around since 1993. Started part time as sole proprietor and 20+ years later we are now a firm of 5 full time consultants here in Houston.
I tell people I am a "recovering architect" as I got my start in technology practicing architecture and being the "tech guy" in every firm I ever worked for. I even helped manage a DEC vax/vms system for a firm in Austin soon after graduating from The University of Texas with a degree in Architecture.
I also had a brief stint working as a business development executive for Apple. We basically were marketing and support for the field sales guys back when Apple did things like have remote offices and did presentations. I was part of the team that did the "Road Shows" presentations in a number of cities in our region when Apple accounted the "Next" acquisition and what that meant for transition in the operating system.
I was at Apple during the Jobs re-orgs and the Science Engineering Design group I was in was part of the big layoff just after the intro of the original candy colored iMacs.
After that layoff, I really decided to grow Envision beyond just me as an hourly consultant. I began with some contract folks, then slowly starting hiring full time staff. We have been at 4-5 people for the last 6 years or so.
In the last 18 months or so we have completely reversed our business model and customer profile. Used to be 80% of our business was hourly / break fix work. Now we are 90%+ managed services. We had tried pre-paid discounts and schedule monthly work etc. Now we just offer to options.
1= As Needed Service (this includes fixed price work if we decide to quote as a project)
2= Partner Plan Services (this is our version of managed services)"