Understanding what RMM is and how to use it effectively can help managed service providers (MSPs) maximize their efficiency. RMM is a critical technology for MSPs, as it enables them to effectively protect and manage the IT systems of their clients. In this article, we explore the ins and outs of RMM and how it can help MSPs better serve their clients and grow their businesses.
What is remote monitoring and management (RMM)?
Managed IT service providers (MSPs) can monitor client endpoints, networks, and PCs remotely and proactively using the remote monitoring and management (RMM) method. It may also be referred to as remote IT management or network management. A small footprint, often referred to as an “agent,” is installed on client workstations, servers, mobile devices, and other endpoints to deploy the RMM. These agents then send information about the machine’s health and status back to the MSP.
The capabilities of RMM technology are invaluable to MSP providers. By using this agent, MSPs can gain insight into their clients’ networks, keep machines maintained and up-to-date, and proactively stay ahead of any issues. MSPs can also resolve these issues remotely – without needing to go out to a client’s office.
When one of the agents detects a problem on the machine it is monitoring, an alert (or “ticket”) is created and sent to the MSP, prompting them to take the necessary steps to resolve the problem. These tickets are often classified based on severity and problem type, which helps the MSP prioritize and identify critical vs. non-critical issues. In ideal scenarios, MSPs can identify and solve issues before the client even realizes there is a problem.
RMM technology also enables IT service providers to manage a greater number of clients than conventional break/fix IT providers while doing it more effectively. Technicians can remotely administer patches, install software and updates, and more through remote monitoring and management. A single dashboard can be used to perform all of these functions. Technicians no longer need to travel to offices to carry out basic maintenance because they may administer tasks on multiple computers simultaneously.
Most Essential Utilities of RMM Software
1. RMM can help MSPs save time and focus on higher-level IT tasks
2. Gathering information about client software, hardware, and networks 3. Providing MSPs with activity reports and data
4. Creating alerts and tickets when problems arise
5. Tracking network and device health
6. Monitoring multiple endpoints and clients simultaneously
7. Automating scheduled maintenance tasks
8. Leverage RMM to keep an ever-vigilant eye on system metrics
9. Use newfound freedom to consult clients on business growth and expansion
History How RMM Software Evolved
In the 1950s, computers were developed, but it wasn’t until the early 1990s that the first standard network management tools were adopted alongside the Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP). Prior to this, whenever something went wrong, the clients had to call their IT technician to physically go to the server or computer to troubleshoot the issue. Support technicians then began visiting the clients’ on-site environments to check the health and status of IT equipment, but this was still not enough to gain a complete picture of the network.
The first managed IT solution tools used along with SNMP provided IT technicians with feedback, but these complex systems were difficult to manage and only large companies with huge networks could afford them. Many Managed Service Providers (MSPs) invested heavily in developing their own service delivery platforms with their own infrastructure and Network Operations Centre (NOC). However, this made venturing into managed IT services too expensive for small businesses and MSPs.
In 2005, the systems matured and allowed smaller companies to benefit from the same managed services as larger corporations. This is when Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) began to take shape, allowing expert MSP staff to service the Small and Medium-sized Business (SMB) market. This marked the start of the modern managed services movement.
Break-Fix Model and It’s Limitations
10 Reasons Why the Break-Fix Model Had Its Limits for Early-Stage IT Professionals:
1. Inconsistent workflow for the IT provider made staffing and maintenance scheduling a challenge.
2. With no recurring revenue model, MSPS receives inconsistent and unstable income.
3. Clients can become unhappy after experiencing multiple problems.
4. IT service providers need more clients to keep busy and reach financial goals.
5. When problems occur, clients can lose their trust in their IT systems and provider.
6. Clients may defer updates or maintenance to avoid associated costs.
7. Minor issues that go unchecked can cause grow into bigger problems.
8. Systems can become outdated without regular updates and upgrades, making them more susceptible to breaches and other disastrous events.
9. As computers and networks grew more complex, IT challenges did as well.
10. In an information economy, data management and cybersecurity became pivotal to almost all businesses.
Benefits of Using RMM Software
• Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) offers SMBs the advantage of enterprise-level automation and monitoring, enabling them to detect issues before they become major problems and avoid system failure.
• MSPs and their clients can gain from transitioning to RMM by reducing site visits and associated costs and paying a fixed monthly fee to keep their IT up and running, resulting in optimal network stability.
• End-users can benefit from RMM as they enjoy increased uptime without disruption during servicing, and their devices are extended in life with improved performance and scheduled maintenance.
• High-valued techs can be focused on preventative maintenance rather than break-fix issues, increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty, as well as technician and end-user productivity.
• Issues are often resolved before clients experience them in their environment, allowing MSPs to scale and reach more clients.
• Remote monitoring and management offers MSPs and their clients an efficient way to maximize uptime and get the most out of their IT resources.
Many MSP clients may have reservations when it comes to managed IT services. They may worry that they will have to spend a lot of money on servers, network, cybersecurity, or managed IT solutions. Fortunately, most MSPs nowadays are pricing Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) services using a flat-rate, monthly recurring revenue model. This pricing is usually based on the number of devices and services included with the package, with different levels of service and cost. Additionally, businesses can choose specific offerings that fit their needs for an additional cost, such as on-site customer support.
When it comes to choosing a pricing model, MSPs must decide between a “per-device” or “per-user” structure. With a per-device model, clients are charged a fixed price for managed services based on the number of devices in the environment. With a per-user model, clients are charged based on the number of users. Each approach has its own advantages and disadvantages.
Modern managed IT services are playing an increasingly important role in today’s Small and Medium Business (SMB) market. SMBs need IT to stay competitive, and MSPs should consider adopting a pricing model that allows them to grow and scale.
1. Find a provider who offers centralized leadership, training, and expertise to support your business.
2. Choose a platform that can support both virtualized and hybrid cloud environments.
3. Leverage remote monitoring management and connected tools via a single interface to simplify daily operations and reduce the need for multiple dashboards.
4. Automate tasks such as patch management, antivirus definition updates, and script scheduling to maximize operational efficiency and business growth.
5. Look for a solution backed by a strong network operations center (NOC) to ensure that the most talented technicians can work on the most important projects.
By implementing these tips and tricks, your MSP can offer the best products and services and unleash the true potential of RMM to scale your business.
Expected Growth of RMM and PSA
• The IT industry has seen revolutionary changes due to the advent of Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) – Small and Medium Businesses (SMBs) now have access to IT services that used to be the dream of system administrators 25-30 years ago.
• The future of RMM is looking even brighter, there is an expected 100% growth in MSPs using fully integrated PSA and RMM software in the next three years, as well as a 94% increase in the number of MSPs implementing RMS platforms in the next 36 months.
• Business executives surveyed by the Wall Street Journal plan to increase spending on cloud-based services by 48% in the coming year. Global spending on IT services is projected to reach $4.5 trillion in 2022, and 52% of SMB owners feel they are spending too little on IT and IT services.
• Modern MSPs are currently enjoying a 90% average client retention rate, and SMB spending on managed IT services from 2021-2026 is estimated to grow at a 14% CAGR compared to a 6% CAGR for total IT spending.
With so many businesses taking advantage of MSP services and society becoming increasingly reliant on technology, RMM stands to gain even more ground in the years to come.
Modern MSPs rely on RMM to do their job properly. The break-fix approach used to be successful in the past, but complex and extensive IT infrastructures have made it obsolete. Fortunately, RMM allows MSPs to keep up with the rate of IT growth and expand their managed IT services to higher levels of success. If you are looking for a way to switch from the break-fix model or improve the remote monitoring of your IT services, you may want to read our article on selecting the best RMM solution for your MSP business.