Defining a MSP
A Managed Service Provider (MSP) offers a series of IT solutions to small and large business houses. They assign specific servers and components to their clients and manage their IT solutions such as ensuring that the hardware is up and running, applying patches and updates, monitoring their systems and solutions and stocking on their historical data trend. With the advent of cloud computing, the services of MSPs, if not diminished, are challenged to a great extent. The need to prioritize services rendered and ensure competitiveness that would yield in monetization is the key to stay ahead in the league of managed Service Providers (MSP).
While cloud computing is the latest trend in todays it world, there is a lot of variation in its definition based on the services it renders. While most of them are now supported by Managed service providers (MSP), there are still a majority that are not incorporated within the purview of MSPs. Defining Cloud Computing in simple words, it is an arrangement in the form of a subscription model to make use of a tool made available. it allows clients to set up data in a remote cloud based (internet based) software that can be used and managed as per the client needs.
The invalidity of the ‘Safe Harbor Agreement’ – a rise in cloud computing – A boon in disguise to the MSP?
The Safe Harbor Agreement, negotiated between the US and the European Union in the year 2000 that provided data protection directive in favor of the European Union, prohibited the transfer of personal information outside the European Economic area unless the receiving country provided adequate data protection. With this agreement being null and void, there is a rise in the in house data companies in the European Union. This decision aided the set up and flourishing of large data centers in Europe that were inculcated to store and transfer their citizen data within the country.
With this in the rise, there is seen a simultaneous rise in the cloud computing segment. This has had a direct implication upon the working trends of Managed Service Providers (MSPs).
Since there is a bottleneck at the transfer of data within and from other countries into the European Union, Managed Service Providers who earlier expanded their scope of working through data centers settled in other countries, now have to withdraw those services and render them themselves within their in-house data centers located in Europe.
Although this change seems beneficial in the larger picture towards MSPs, there is more inflow of capitalization and lesser monetization compared to the earlier scenario. Arranging a methodology of extracting the best from this trend in the cloud computing segment, MSPs will have to cater to only one region.
With cloud computing, a public cloud environment or the ability to share application and data among multiple users is one major technology leverage rendered that democratize high end computing, something that is MSPs must take adequate benefit of. MSPs will need to ensure a highly secure and isolated Public cloud environment although require a lot of security and isolation. Monetization and cost benefits are specific advantages over the managed services model.
While a Managed service provider would need to duplicate every in-house service platform to ensure high availability, a public cloud environment would involve data management technology to provide monetization and cost effectively.
When Cloud Computing and MSPs Work Together
With this being the scenario with the advancement of national cloud computing, there is a significant impact on the wording of the MSP. Complimentary to the cloud strategy in many ways, they let you outsource most or all of your enterprise IT operations allowing you to retain direct control over application services as compared to a hosted data center as on the cloud it is a shared infrastructure. MSPs can provide cloud integration services that allow IT deploy assets in a merger or combination of cloud services and managed services that go through a single MSP. Basically, MSPs manage the enterprise’s public cloud.
MSPs need to be client ready and stay industry focused allowing them to cater to the specific needs of the client.
Concluding it, national cloud computing is rising in a mammoth wave, but what MSPs really need to focus on is how to bridge the gap between effective target service and collective service as is the scenario with cloud services. It is about the right mix – between Managed Service Providers and Cloud Computing.