Retail- and hospitality-focused VARs looking to get into the "as a Service" model, take note. As you transition your business to this model, one of the first things you're going to want to do is implement a PSA (professional services automation) tool for yourself.
Many of you are probably using pieces of a PSA tool -- CRM, time tracking, marketing, billing, resource allocation and analysis, and reporting come to mind. Or, you're using a watered down PSA-like application. However, a true PSA is purpose-built for IT services, takes all those capabilities, packages them up neatly, and helps streamline your business in impressive fashion.
Also, and very importantly, PSA tools integrate into RMM (remote monitoring and management) platforms. As a new services provider, selecting an RMM will be another important decision (and my next blog post) for you to make as you ramp up your "as a Service" model.
So, where to begin? There are quite a few options out there. Our Best Channel Vendor survey results show that three companies get good scores -- Autotask, ConnectWise, and Tigerpaw. In fact, the first two were named Best Channel Vendors due to their high marks.
I should also point out that Autotask has shown an interest in the retail channel by exhibiting at RetailNOW in the past and last year Tigerpaw walked the event and met with people about the retail vertical.
Additionally, our upcoming June issue will include a review/comparison of the above-mentioned products to make the evaluation process easier. Keep an eye on your mailbox and/or www.bsminfo.com.
Finally, if you have any feedback on any PSA platforms, please share!