pearson-kelly technology blog

Outsourced IT Companies Provide Access to Technology Tools

MSPs include licenses to some of the biggest enterprise technology tools in their flat-fee agreements. Learn more...

When you have a small IT team, many locations, remote teams, or all of the above, you must rely on enterprise technology tools to manage all aspects of your IT infrastructure.

But those are far too often way outside the budget.

So, MSPs created a loophole. They purchase the enterprise technology tools their clients need and include licenses as part of their flat monthly cost.

Remote Monitoring Management (RMM) Tools

Cost: $$$

Remote monitoring management tools do three things:

  • Let you manage remote workstations
  • Easily implement security patches
  • Ensure systems are up-to-date

This tool is a must-have if you have multiple locations or remote employees. But the good ones tend to come with a heavy price tag.

Open-Source v. The Enterprise Technology Tool

You’ve got two options for RMM tools: open-source or enterprise.

Many businesses think open-source technology is great because it’s cheap or free. But because it is an open-source product, everyone can see how it’s built. Which means it’s easier to hack than an enterprise technology tool. There are times and places where open-source technology may work for your business. But not in the tool that manages your systems' support and security.

But the enterprise technology tools don’t make it easy to switch. Oftentimes, these companies offer the “core” application at a relatively low cost. But they don’t always tell you how many modules you’ll have to purchase to make it work the way you need. And each module is another cost.

You need the enterprise tool, but many small businesses can’t afford the overhead cost.

Documentation Tools

Cost: $$

Documentation tools do four things:

  • Securely store your network and system documentation
  • Generate secure passwords
  • Let you manage vendor agreements
  • Maintain updated warranty tracking information

This is an absolute must for every business. Centralizing all documentation saves you headaches by letting the enterprise technology tool act as your personal IT secretary. They know where everything is, when it needs to be updated, and how to save you time and money from outdated equipment.

DIY the Enterprise Tool

Technically, it’s possible to DIY a solution that resembles an enterprise documentation tool. You could get a password management tool and just use Excel documents to track warranty and vendor agreements. We don’t recommend it, but you could.

When you DIY an enterprise technology solution like this, you create unnecessary risk for your business. Outside of the documents' security, you have no guarantee your data is backed up. Who owns the file if you use Excel documents to track vendor and warranty agreements? Do you have edit permissions? What happens if the person who created the file leaves your company?

Enterprise documentation tools ensure you always have access to critical infrastructure information and make it easier to share with a team.

Security Tools

Cost: $$$

Types of security tools:

  • Antivirus
  • Anti-phishing
  • Anti-spam
  • EDR and SOC
  • Backup
  • Disaster Recovery

With businesses moving cloud-based, you have more cyber risk than ever before. So it would be best if you had the right tools to protect your business and your buyers.

Proactive and Reactive Tools

Unlike documentation tools, where everything comes in one solution, you need several security tools to build a security solution.

On the proactive side, antivirus, anti-phishing, and anti-spam tools protect your systems from malware. They block as many malicious links, suspicious emails, and unassuming downloadables as possible from reaching your users. So, you limit a user’s opportunity to click something that could infect your network.

But proactive tools don’t catch everything. So, you want to implement regular, automated backups with a disaster recovery tool. If you get locked out of your systems, you can roll them back and still access your business data.

One of these tools won’t set you back too much. But when you calculate the overhead for 5-10 different security tools, that number starts to add up.

Strategic Planning Tools

Cost: $

Strategic Planning Tools help you do two things:

  • Manage projects
  • Communicate value to leadership

It’s one thing to know the technology initiatives you need to implement. It’s a whole other beast to convince your leadership team to buy in, too.

Making Use of Integrations

The number one reason to use an enterprise technology tool for strategic planning is the integration capabilities. Strategic planning tools pull data together and make it easy for your leadership to understand your plans and the outcomes.

When you use an enterprise tool for this, you can integrate it with your RMM tool. That means it’s easier to build out projects, set budgets, manage timelines, and pull reports because there’s little to no manual data entry.

There are free tools that build beautiful and easy-to-understand dashboards for your leadership team. The ones that integrate with your other enterprise technology tools, though, will run you somewhere between $3-$4K/year.

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