The Convergence of Managed Services and Telecom

Managed Services Providers

A managed service provider (MSP) delivers services, such as network, application, infrastructure, and security, via ongoing support and active administration at customer locations. Traditionally, managed service agreements have included some or all of the following:
  • IT Support Solutions — This support may be on-site or remote, but technicians generally respond quickly to help solve the ongoing technical issue.
  • Managed Networks — Service providers who manage networks can monitor them remotely for connection problems and download speed.
  • Print Management — Print management is a managed service that will help reduce printing costs by offering device support, printer upgrades, and maintenance, printer repair to minimize hidden costs.
  • Cloud Back-up — These providers implement cloud servers that act as a data center for backup and disaster recovery.
  • Cybersecurity — Cybersecurity services offered by MSPs can include antivirus, anti-spam, and anti-phishing software. They also monitor systems and prevent hacking or intrusions.

Convergence of Managed Services & Telecom
MSPs serve as a trusted advisor to their clients who rely on them for guidance. A successful MSP helps businesses find the right tools to connect and grow with their customers. With this relationship, MSPs are in a position to recommend connectivity and telecommunications vendors.

Telecom Providers

Telecom providers are companies that enable the transmission of data in words, voice, audio, or video across the globe.  A telecom provider makes communication possible via landlines, cellular, internet and more.

The Convergence of Managed Services and Telecom

Over the past few years, there has been incredible growth in managed and cloud based communications services. More MSPs are moving outside their core offerings to embrace new technologies, revenue streams, and service models. The convergence between IT and telecommunications is driving more MSPs to modify their business models to include telecom solutions such as:
  • Software as a Service (SaaS) — With this type of service, providers offer a software platform, typically subscription-based, for businesses. A few examples include Office 365, and more increasingly "unified communication" software (i.e., Zoom).
  • Unified Communications (UC) — Managed UC may include Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), video calling, messaging software, or email services.
Customers now expect their MSP to manage ALL of their technology needs, including connectivity and telecommunications.  If MSPs can offer these services themselves, it enables them to provide a more seamless customer experience.

The Challenge of Billing for Communications Services

Billing for telecom services can be a significant barrier for traditional IT-based MSPs. The transition from simple monthly retainers to usage-driven telco billing can be very complex. Product catalog organization, handling telecom taxes, or charging for usage can quickly become unmanageable.

TimelyBill's telecom billing automation can enable MSPs to grow by incorporating UC into their service offerings. As a subscription billing platform, TimelyBill is purpose-built to help companies launch and support both telecom and managed IT services.

MSPs with exceptional customer management, convergent product catalogs, and automated billing can both endure and thrive.

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