It all comes down to minimising customer churn and extending your product portfolio (with the right back-end billing solution to ensure no revenue leakage).
In a cloud market flooded by fierce competition and one dominated by Microsoft, Amazon and Google, resellers are competing in a ‘race to the bottom’ undercutting each other’s price points to a level of very low margin (if any). And selling on price alone is a dangerous game for Managed Service Provider’s (MSPs) hoping to secure and retain a slice market share as customers are left frustrated by transactional relationships that offer little in the way of after-sales assistance and technical support.
So why opt in to the race? The answer is simple: if you don’t, your competitor will and by doing so take your customers and 100% of the revenue.
Success is hinged on differentiation and value-added services to ensure customer retention. MSPs with a finger on the pulse and an eye for new product offerings that can be wrapped around enterprise software, such as Microsoft’s Office 365 product set, are well placed to win the trust and loyalty of customers.
Making sure your billing is accurate and appropriate is equally important in this rapid go-to-market strategy. Sydney billing specialists, Outworks has developed solutions for these unique situations, and is working with MSPs to deliver billing solutions that keep them securely ahead of the market.
According to Outworks Director Phillip Kidd, “Microsoft Teams is quickly becoming the next big product for the MSP partner channel. At Outworks, we know how to set up the billing for this product, consolidate Teams usage plans and rates together with other products, and implement the backend smarts to make sure resellers stay in control of uncapped plans and get to market faster.”
Global uplift in Microsoft Teams sales
Microsoft Teams, as part of the Office 365 suite, is rapidly becoming a program of choice for distributed work environments. Since its launch in 2017, Microsoft Teams has already been adopted by 500 000 companies, including 91 of the Fortune 500.
Many channel partners are drawn to Teams as a solution to replace disparate email or VOIP communication tools with a single cloud-based technology which is easily integrated with Microsoft Office 365 and legacy products still widely used in industry.
Recognising integration and customisation opportunities
One of the avenues for MSPs to grow their revenue and retain customers are through smart additions to their product portfolio.
APAC MSP CommsChoice has made its foray into this sector with the launch of its own voice calling solution for Microsoft Teams and Office 365: SIPConnect. The solution adds secure voice calling to Teams’ cloud productivity and collaboration which includes chat, video conferencing and meeting broadcast capabilities.
Launched in February 2019, SIPConnect had been trialled with over ten companies with more than 5000 users since November 2018, with more customers signing on for future proof of concepts.
CommsChoice intends to offer the product as a standalone solution that does not require customers to migrate their licensing away from their current provider.
Yet setting up an accurate billing model for this new product offering poses some challenges. Not only is SIPConnect itself purchasable via multiple models including pay-as-you-go or unlimited rates with an additional per user fee, the product overlays on a multiplicity of communication architectures. These can include internet providers, PABX systems and PSTN services, while CommsChoice remains carrier neutral.
De-risking your billing process
In a multi-vendor, multi-product environment, accurate license usage reporting, pricing and invoicing can be a source of pain for many MSPs. With speed being a priority and the possibilities that an offer such as the SIPConnect solution allows, end customers can quickly utilise the benefits of the service, particularly in unlimited usage models. Tracking usage and billing appropriately is essential to ensure these services remain revenue positive service for the reseller.
Outworks has consolidated its experience in ensuring cloud-based software providers are able to simplify complicated billing scenarios and ensure no revenue leakage.
With customers opting for an unlimited usage model as these products become essential to distributed workplaces, usage rates need to match demand. Outworks has developed a solution that includes automated alarm notifications to indicate when a customer is reaching a set threshold. Using the data collected, the MSP can then proactively offer end customers a more appropriate pricing plan in line with usage, or alternatively, approach carriers directly to negotiate a better rate.
At Outworks, we fit the bill
Contact us today to discover how we can help you boost customer satisfaction and stay ahead of the rest.