Mobility growth, bring-your-own device trends and consumer adoption of file sync tools are driving fundamental changes in how business users sync and share files and collaborate in the workplace. These trends have opened up a tremendous business opportunity for the sale of file sync and sharing tools, with analysts at Osterman Research predicting a rise in the market from $79.8 billion in 2012 to $106 billion by 2017.
It’s an opportunity that managed service providers can hardly avoid, but one for which they should carefully evaluate their vendor partnering options, including the potential profitability of various choices. While managed services providers (MSPs) may be tempted to resell big, brand-name business-grade file sync solutions, these services may not be the best fit. Unfortunately, most business-grade file sync services are designed for enterprise users—not MSPs. Most of these services lack a true multi-tenant management portal, preventing MSPs from scaling client deployments, controlling labor costs, providing excellent service and driving profitable growth. Here are five reasons why it pays for MSPs to think twice about the type of cloud file sync solution they deploy to their clients:
Reason No. 1: Multi-tenant Management Allows MSPs to Easily Scale
Cloud file sync services such as Box are geared for individual enterprises and lack the infrastructure to track and manage users across multiple businesses or organizations. Even a task as simple as managing login credentials for users across multiple clients becomes quickly onerous for MSPs trying to resell these cloud services. Resellers utilizing a cloud file sync tool with a built-in multi-tenant management portal can simplify the process of scaling out a solution across all of their clients. This kind of purpose-built portal, designed with MSPs in mind, makes it much easier for service providers to simply add value through management without a lot of custom development or manual work on the back end. In turn, partners with access to multi-tenant management can not only scale up the number of clients added to that MSP’s managed cloud file sync client roster, but they can also scale according to individual client growth.
This allows the MSP to sell and scale growth without worrying about investing in a lot of front-end infrastructure to support early growth. A purpose-built tool designed for MSPs gives them greater visibility and control at the user and organizational levels. It helps them identify technical or security problems at either level, and can be used by any type of user or company. This provides a significant amount of elasticity and flexibility in how MSPs choose to sell these services and accept new customers, making it easier to take on customers who have difficult situations, such as distributed branch management models, without a lot of added expense from the MSP for on-site engineers and unnecessary in-person visits.
Reason No. 2: Multi-tenant Management Portals Provide Better
Consumer-grade file sync solutions may be very handy for users, but they’ve proven a security nightmare for many organizations. Without enough visibility into what users are doing with these programs, organizations face problems with the loss or theft of sensitive corporate data and compliance issues with data synced to personal devices. Without oversight, these solutions are also mixing personal data such as family photos with corporate data such as research and development documents.
Business-grade solutions return a measure of security and control while maintaining user-friendly functionality. More importantly, a business-grade solution with multi-tenant management allows MSPs to set different types of security controls depending.