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Below the Surface – S1E5

Below the Surface – S1E5

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:02:18] Hello and welcome to this episode of Below the Surface. I’m your host, Darshana Kamani, and here is my co-host, Stephanie Cavigliano.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:02:27] Hello, everyone. Hello, Darshna. How are you today?

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:02:31] I’m very well, thank you, Stephanie. Quite “full”, it’s a bit cooler in the U.K. after our heatwave. How about you? How are you?

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:02:37] We’re in the middle of it here in California and we’re big babies. So any time it hits triple digits for us here, we just kind of throw in the towel.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:02:46] I think you have competition in the U.K.. We’re not far behind you. A bit of heat everyone’s melted.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:02:53] Yeah. Wild here we’ve had really, really high temps. And then also thunder and lightning, which is pretty rare here in the Bay Area. So this kind of a wild weekend.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:03:05] Sounds like very similar to the U.K.. Definitely got thunder and lightning and rain coming all the way back to normal for us.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:03:13] Exciting time.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:03:16] It is. So we can start the show without asking any sweet dishes, desserts for the week.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:03:22] Yes. Keeping with tradition here, I must say I did try my hand at making lemon bars this weekend for the very first time. And I sort of melded two recipes in my head. This was an accident, but they still came out pretty okay.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:03:37] Edible?

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:03:37] Yeah.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:03:37] That’s a success. So we, with my daughter, we try to make cakepops this weekend, it was my niece’s first birthday. They are harder than they look for sure. So both our hands gets dirty.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:03:52] Delicious.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:03:54] “Ït’s worth it”. So, shall we get on with today’s show?

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:03:58] All right.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:04:00] So we have some great guests to speak to, all of us. But before we bring them on. A quick reminder that you can ask questions in the comments section below or feel free to just say hello.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:04:11] All right, so so far on the show, we’ve covered a variety of topics from email attack, account takeover. We’ve shown how SD-WAN can support your move to the Cloud. Today, we’re gonna turn our attention to managed service providers.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:04:24] We are indeed. Every year, Barracuda celebrates MSP day in May. This is a day we have dedicated to acknowledging the work done by MSP to support businesses in a variety of ways. To talk to us more about this day, some of the research we have carried out on the trends we are seeing for MSPs. It gives me great pleasure to introduce NeaL Bradbury, VP, MSP Strategic Partnerships, and Jason Howells, our International Director for MSP.

JASON HOWELLS [00:04:53] Hello, ladies,.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:04:55] Welcome to the show, Jason and Niel. We’re glad to have you both on and we have to ask you favourite sweet treat. Let us know.

JASON HOWELLS [00:05:05] I guess “I’m…” I don’t have a hugely sweet tooth. Would you believe? But there’s probably a few that I like, so chocolate “eclair”  is what dreams are made of. But I can also go with a fairly simple, you know, ice cream raspberry ripple for me is a bit of the devil in there with a bit of the normal kind of ice cream as well. So, yeah, that’s probably sums me up a little bit here and there as well. Yeah. They’re probably my favourites.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:05:42] Sounds good. What about you Neal?

NEAL BRADBURY [00:05:43] I’ll probably go with the favourite, Let’s say the favourite of this weekend would be the family found “… eve” have found a new doughnut shop and this doughnut shop takes a pastry, your love “of..”, whether it be your lemon bar or whether it actually be a cannoli and they turn it into a doughnut. So I’d say probably the best doughnut I had this weekend was the connoli doughnut. And so everything you love about it a cannoli only you mix that with a doughnut. Wow. Amazing.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:06:14] I can’t even phathom. Two of my favourite thing for the whole world.

JASON HOWELLS [00:06:18] There’s difference between the U.K. and the US.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:06:24] We keep it simple, Jason. So let’s get started. Jason and Neal. Can you tell out audience a bit about yourself and about Barracuda, MSP?

JASON HOWELLS [00:06:35] Yeah, let me start that off? I am Jason Howells and I run the MSP, dedicated MSP Business Unit for Barracuda internationally. So I’ve been in Barracuda for more years than I can “all..”, to remember. So approaching 10 years. So I’ve seen a huge amount of change “and that’s how in” Barracuda. Barracuda, MSP is a really exciting journey that I’ve been on now since we made of an acquisition back at the back end of 2015 to come into the MSP space and have a dedicated play into that market. Neil can come in and tell you a bit more about that. One of the founders of the businesses that we acquired at that time to make a really strong play into the MSP space. 2016 is when I kind of got involved on that journey and we started to head out and look for partners from an international perspective. And, you know, I guess Barracuda MSP, I like to say it’s the dedicated business unit focussed on many service providers. We’re here to try and help them be successful. Obviously, with nearly 20 years experience in security market and being experts in that field? That’s where our focus is. And that’s where we can help people manage service providers along the already existing security journey, or we can help them to jump on it and come for years. I’ve been doing that. We’ve certainly helped people to move along on that journey. Which is, as I say, which been super exciting. “Be might at Neal”, Neal tell me more about how we came about entry into the space. The requisition at the back end of 2015, over to you Neal.

NEAL BRADBURY [00:08:19] Yeah. Thanks, Jason. No, it’s for me this has been an awesome ride. I’ve got to do you know if any of you are MSPs are on. Well listening to us today, you know what it’s like to start a business from, you know, 1 guy all the way up to 200. Or you’re on that journey right now. And, you know, we wish you the best of luck and it’s exciting. For me right now, currently with Barracuda, you do strategic partnerships. Managed services world is all about partnerships, whether it’s alliance vendors or whether it’s looking for new opportunities to provide services to the MSP that we support. As Jason mentioned, those are one of the Co-Founders of Intronis which Barracuda picked up at the end of 2015. And, you know, back then we were a backup provider, right? We had a managed service provider, focussed backup solution. And what we’ve been able to do with Barracuda is hire Jason and go global, but then also take a lot of the security products and opportunities that those products afford, MSPs and put them as part of the Barracuda MSP portfolio. If you’re “riding” this, if you’re not, you know, you’re like, hey, why do you need a special division to do this? The way that you interact with small businesses, the way that the tools that you use are different, the billing models, it’s all monthly reoccurring, it’s different. And so, you know, Barracuda made the decision to make that a separate division so that we can actually focus on the needs of “our man or” service provider. Day in and day out, you work with MSP, only works with MSPs every day. And so it’s it’s been an exciting journey and I can’t wait to see where we take this. We even did another acquisition for Barracuda MSP in 2019 when we acquired an “arm and” application managed workplace. So a lot of fun here at Barracuda MSP.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:10:06] There have been a lot of news around MSP recently, especially round them being victims or potential targets of cyber attacks. So, guys, what are your thoughts on this? And how can MSPs protect themselves?

NEAL BRADBURY [00:10:20] So from my perspective, you know, you’re seeing even the government in the U.S. and I’m sure Jason come on the U.K. where they’re even putting alerts out that MSP is need to be on guard. You know, hackers are smart. You know, MSP hold the kingdoms to multiple businesses, credentials, multiple “ind…”. So these hackers knows they get at 50, 100 businesses versus actually getting at one. Right. Which is scary when you look at it from one side. And so my message is and we do this “at…”. So I serve on the Security Executive Council for “Kantia” you know, you’ve got to protect your own house first. Right. How can you go into a small business and say, hey, you know, you should really do this, this and this. If you’re an MSP and you’re not kind of protecting your own tools, protecting your own staff. And so a lot of it is. Drink your own Kool-Aid. Yes, and I won’t go through the tons and tons of check boxes or lists of what to be first or what to do second, because I think every MSP is in a different scenario. But I think you need to make security a focus for your business, because if somebody gets in, you know, your reputation’s ruined and you’ll end up losing everything that you’ve worked so hard over the past years to build. Jason, I don’t know if you have a some something to add.

JASON HOWELLS [00:11:36] Anything that comes, a lot of it enables to be totally honest with you. But I mean, you’re right. You know, there’s a many service provider working with somebody at Barracuda MSP is a  vendor. It’s the MSP that is going out and selling their services, using the tools and the products and the services that we can provide them to do that. But ultimately, their marketing themselves, it’s their reputation that’s on the line, selling themselves to go to do that. So, you know, if they don’t have their own house in order. If they haven’t thought about how they have to “write” security play in place to make sure that they are protecting the customers that they worked with, they have a responsibility to do that. And as you say, the cyber criminals are very smart. Right. They gonna hack one place with access to essentially hundreds and hundreds of end users, hundreds of customers. So, you know, I think it’s really important for many service provider to make sure that they choose the right partnerships, particularly in security. And working with somebody like Barracuda MSP would allow us to help them to go make sure they deploy the right kind of approach. I’m happy to work with any of our partners that have made the choice to come and work with us to help them use our products to make sure that they’re safe. So, yeah, you know, I think the biggest problem with that really is just to make sure that you choose the right partnerships, make sure you get access to good products and services. Make sure you deploy them first. I mean, that’s going to help you. I think we always try to encourage all of our partners to get an NFL kit from us to go and use it to get through it. You know, they get to know the ins and outs of it. They use it to protect their customers. It’s far easier for them to go out with a strategy and with the knowledge that they have behind that strategy to be able to go and recruit new customers and make sure that they’re secure in their existing. So, you know, it just kind of makes sense.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:13:26] So from that, Jason, obviously there’s a lot of pressure, I guess, for MSP to stay secure but also be able to provide that advice to their customers and with that in mind and to celebrate MSPs and be created MSP danger pivotal in that creation of this day. Can you tell us how this came about and its purpose?

JASON HOWELLS [00:13:47] Yeah, I would love to. So, yeah, this has been in the works for for a number of years now. I think I said earlier, you know, I came into this business at the start of 2016 really excited. My background is working with end users through the channel. Barracuda has always been a channel led company and worked with the channel and everything that we do. And, you know, the MSP world at that point was kind of “reasonably loosing it”. So, yeah, it was fairly quickly into learning about the MSP communities that, you know, I kind of felt like that. It’s a different world. You know, they kind of there’s a lot of collaboration, there’s a lot of working together. There’s a lot of trying to help each other out. So even though, you know, this kind of competition, as you would see in a normal kind of channel with reseller distribution and stuff, you know, these guys are absolutely sharing their wins, their losses. What’s “worked”, what’s not worked. What’s all that sort of stuff was. It was just mind blowing to kind of see it. And I kind of thought quite quickly that I want to try and create something that allowed, you know, us as a serious player in this market. Fairly new into the MSP market space. I wanted to create something that we could celebrate the amazing work that the managed service providers do. You know, we wanted to recognise it. We wanted to try and have some fun with it. And then we want to try to give something back. And through, you know, a few of us being involved in those communications and trying to work out what would be what would be good for us to do. And particularly those boxes we kind of came up with, I got to make sure, “we’re trying to… it’s between us all”. So we came up with the idea of actually creating this MSP today. There was no MSP day. So there was National Coffee Day, National Pizza Day, Beer Day, all these amazing kind of days of people just trying, you know, mark those great things as well. And yeah, we put the stake in the ground. We decided that we would create MSP Day, and it would be a day for us to kind of share with the whole of the MSP community to have a bit of fun with it like I say, to try and share and cooperate as much as possible. But also as well to give something back. So, you know, we would create a whole bunch of content and interest in tools and things that the community could use. And that’s actually evolved. 2018 is the first time that we did that. We did that in the U.K. to start with. And as I say, it evolved into a pan-European. And then this year in 2020, it’s gone global. So it’s been super exciting to me. It’s been awesome that we’ve been able to create it. It’s gained real momentum as we go. I think our customers and our partners have really enjoyed it. And I think more and more people might be involved every year. It’s been a really cool thing on social media. You know, it just kind of felt like people continue to build momentum. We’ll continue to get more people involved. You mentioned the you know, Chair of the “Cocktail”. We were fortunate this year to have continue as a global partner for us. I’m sure “we’ll to touch on that” a little bit more detail. But, yes, I mean, it’s been awesome. I think it’s been very well received that we will continue to invest in it because I think it’s really cool. I love the atmosphere community.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:17:05] Parts of MSP Days, Basrracuda creates an annual report that looks at the state of the nation for MSP, right? Can you tell us a little bit about this research and some of the key findings in it?

JASON HOWELLS [00:17:16] Yeah, let me go there as well. So, yeah, it’s been it’s been interesting. Every year  we’ve produced the report. The report looks at the state of the landscape for MSPs. As I say, we kind of started in the U.K. and we’ve been trying to look at how the landscape has been evolving and how MSP businesses can kind of learn from a whole bunch of MSP coming together and sharing that feedback to take in their business to be successful. We obviously, as I said earlier, in 20 years or most of us security expertise. So, you know, it’s been interesting for us to get a whole bunch of security questions. And I think the overall key thing that’s come out of this is for every “service providers out there”. No matter where you are in being able to help your customers with security. There is still a huge amount of opportunity for you to grow your business if you can get some serious focus around on security. You know, nearly all of the respondents to our question in the shoot produced in our report, nearly 90% of those guys said that the demand for the security services were significantly increasing right now. We’re kinda see that for the rest of 2020. So that was really cool. And some of the things that are driving that came out “a bit old” and lack of in-house skills” in end user levels. So many, many service providers look after a lot of smaller SME, SMB kind of businesses. Starting to sound “…have”. That’s gonna set in-house, particularly around security to help with the sophistication the cyber criminals are now have within that armoury. So, you know, again, 80% almost kind of felt that security concerns would be an ongoing area for them to focus on. And 72% also said that there is a lack of in-house skills that is creating opportunities to do more for their customers around that. Security services was also quite interesting. So every year this report we’re going to more details with it. We look at the top five services. Security is now playing in more of those top five slots than it was in last year. Security touched it last year. This year in 2020, we three out of five were security place. That’s quite interesting for us to see as well. But, yeah, I think just you know, I think just overall, the opportunity for MSPs is huge, will now sort of than ever. I think the “resellers”, the community are absolutely looking to invest and looking to offer manage services as part of their portfolio. And, you know, security is right there, right on top of the agenda, front and centre stage, as it were, for end users to be looking for help. So, you know that many service providers are looking at their businesses, being able to think about how they can do more for their customers and the ones that I think will continue to be successful going forward. So yeah really interesting. Lots and lots of focus around security for 2020 for sure.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:20:37] Okay. So some really good findings. So let’s dive a little bit deeper into the research. One of the key findings was the fact that a significant 91% of partners said that “they plan” to increase the breadth and depth of their service capacity in the next 12 months. What do you think is currently the most popular managed service and why?

NEAL BRADBURY [00:21:02] So I know “know of there’s” a more popular service, I would say, though, I agree with the finding of MSP Days study, which basically is I look at it as almost MSP are telling us, look, it’s hybrid approach. There’s multiple different services happening. At the end of the day, those are requests from their end users. Right? Like the end users, are really driving the demand that hits the MSP like what are they being asked for? And so when I look at it as security is so popular because end users are concern about security. Right? And I think from my perspective, if you are in a service provider and you haven’t evaluated your managed service portfolio in the last six or twelve months, you’re behind. You need to basically do a security assessment of that portfolio and understand what services you can you can add to it or what services you could even remove from it. You know, with what’s happened as of late, with a pandemic, you know, I think on this call, when three different time zones to different countries like we’re putting this on, right? How it’s affected us all a global threat, but the needs of us all working remote has changed. And a managed service provider kind of needs to be able to adapt to that themselves personally. But then also for the businesses that they support. And so, you know, we’re starting to see a lot of end point security focus on the end point, maybe remote solutions on how someone gets access to stuff as being kind of popular or some options that MSP or adding. But I think maybe I’m painting too big of a rush. But security is the focus. And then I think it depends on the end users that you support, kind of what you need to look at when you add it to your portfolio.

JASON HOWELLS [00:22:40] Yeah, I mean, let me jump in there as well. So, yeah, you’re absolutely right, Neal. So I’ve just been checking my notes to make sure I don’t get it wrong. “But yeah just kind… Yeah.” I enjoy not paying too much attention to you whenever possible. But 2019 that was, you know, network monitoring and managing was kind of number one in terms of topflight services offered, e-mail security was number two and kind of one that was quite interesting to me was a backup business continuity deals was number three. So that was thing, that was kind of quite interesting. That’ a long-stay, that’s all mangaed service providers are offering a backup service in some way, shape or form. In 2020. You know, that’s changed. So the backup contributing the is now number one, which doesn’t surprise me too much as particularly with Kobe Bryant. We’ve not mentioned Napa’s as things have changed this year and we’ve moved to that more remote kind of working environment, making sure things are getting backed up and there is a good service around that, has come to the fore. When you go number two, airport security number three minutes from the march or the number for e-mail security. So, you know, there’s been a huge shift in the focus of making sure that there is multiple layers, I guess is probably a good way of saying it around security. And I was reading some stuff last week and there were some interesting comments that were coming out. So comments from managed service providers and one of the guys who was a business owner, managed service provider owner. He said he said that there’s one thing that’s for sure. Nothing else matters if you get the security wrong. Right. And that kind of stuck with me. So, you know, we all know that, you know, managed service providers do an array of different services. Right. And sometimes they look after all of somebody’s infrastructure. Sometimes they knock off the parts of it. Sometimes that just in security, sometimes they just “in end point”. The other interesting thing that came out of this conversation was that even if you’re not providing security services to these people, to your customers, you don’t think that you don’t have a responsibility for it. Don’t thinks that it won’t affect you in some way, shape or form. If you’re touching the customer. That end user, that company and they have a security breach or something happens from a security perspective. It will affect you. So get involved. Be involved. And if you’re going to have to be involved, it is going to affect you. Then want to build a service so that you can actually go and try to look after yourself and manage it, charge for it, build for it, and help grow your business, which I thought was, you know, it was really cool. And it’d be good to get your kind of comments on that in a second as well. But yeah I kind of felt that whole kind of philosophy of, you know, making sure that you’re involved in it, I guess kind of led back to a realisation of, you know, if if you’re not doing their security, somebody else probably is. And again, going back to the skills shortage, that they’re probably gonna have to go and try and outsource it from somewhere. And if you’re allowing somebody else to go into that customer, look after their security, which are available, as I said earlier, front and centre stage. Right. What’s the route what’s the risk there for you as an MSP? Well, the risk is that somebody else is gonna start looking at other sites and they can offer beforeyou know it, your services “… will” determine…” as they consolidate into that one in this case. Right. So I think we’re kind of seeing let’s start from this era. We get just stuck with me. You know, I don’t think it’s important that we realise that. And you know, have you seen there? With people that you’re speaking to?

NEAL BRADBURY [00:26:15] Absolutely. I mean, if someone doesn’t think they’re accountable for security and managed services, they’re doing something wrong. Right? Security is touching all of us. It’s the reason why customers are buying stuff. The reason why I muskies are having conversations with us. And I think there’s an accountability thing, we can’t finger at the other guy. Well, they were going to do the security, not me. It just doesn’t work. Everyone’s getting fired at that point. The one cautionary tale I tell him, Estess, if you don’t know what to do in a security opportunity, don’t make it up. Find a partner or find someone that can help you, because if you do it wrong, it’s probably just as bad as not doing it. So make sure that you are actually doing your due diligence in your investigations to make sure that you do it right. But I agree with you, Jason. We’re hearing that as well. And you know the partner conversations that I have.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:27:04] Really interesting, guys. So security is really just a baseline, whether or not you’re providing that as a service to your customers or not. It’s your responsibility to make sure that you are extending some level of security. Makes a lot of sense given today’s environment. You talked about the different dynamics and sort of facets of security. You’ve got data protection, email security. Now, access control becoming increasingly popular. These are all cited as areas that MSP are now focussing on. What do you think is going to be the next big trend in managed services?

NEAL BRADBURY [00:27:42] So now we’re now we’re predicting the future. This is a good one, Jason, I like these LinkedIn live. This is great. Let me see if I can do this. This is how powerful this will be from my perspective. I think a lot of what’s happened to 2020, “small operate betting” differently, hybrid workforces. They have a lot more remote employees, and if I look at kind of the past, small businesses did not operate that way. Most small business owners did not want employees operating from home. They feel like they’re not going to work. Why are? No way. Like, I have no trust that that’s gonna happen. And I think what this year is proving is that they are open to the idea of someone working remotely. More than half the time or half the time. But the solutions that they had didn’t really exist. So MSP have truly had to compensate and help these users or businesses in that in that regard. So, you know, prior to it, imagine that you had someone that wanted to transfer a file. They maybe would take a USB stick and walk around the office and they had an exchange serve. Well now, you know, they’re all going Office 365 subscription services, Cloud based. Right. They can work from anywhere. Now, you got to figure out on the identity side. How do you protect all those Cloud differences Cloud services? Right. And so from my perspective, where the Barracuda offers these solutions are not, you know, MSP is really heading into I think identity is really going to be a big one. And then also end points because you don’t know where someone’s going to work from. And we need to make sure that that end point that has that, you know, business data is protected. And so those are kind of those two categories where I see opportunities for MSPs, if they don’t have something in their current stack or in their current portfolio. They should look at it. You know, for arracudas perspective, you know, are sensible with business email compromise protection. Right? I mean, that’s how we’re attacking that. Right? Seeing if someone has stolen your credentials and if someone’s getting access to your email, you know, that’s how we fit into that. But really, MSP should be looking at how does someone access stuff on the identity side and and really protecting those end points because you just don’t know where users are going to be working now a days.

JASON HOWELLS [00:29:49] And that’s a fair comment, Neal. Yeah. It’s hard to predict the future. We’re good, but I’m not sure we’re that good. But, you know, one thing is essential is that, you know, I don’t know what the next big thing is right now. This security is a big thing and it’s not going away anytime soon. Right. Attacks are becoming much more sophisticated. The number of attacks that we’ve seen, particularly as we’ve gone into this sort of a different world that we’ve all been living in for the past four or five months. You know, there’s this different vulnerabilities, these different threat vectors. So the whole thing’s kind of moving around a little bit and everybody’s having to be very smart and pay attention to what’s going on. You know, I don’t think it’s I think it’s key. I think that, you know, if you’re not focussing your business on how you can help your customers fix paying points around security, because it’s not if, it’s when. And they will need help. And you want to get yourself in a situation where so many service provider, you know, you’re at the forefront of them coming to you as a trusted adviser and asking for help. So, yeah, you know, I still think there’s a there’s a lot for many service providers to do to make sure they’re maximising helping their customers around security. And I hope that we can help “today that for sure”.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:31:16] So we’re going to carry on with the theme of looking into your crystal ball of what is coming in the future with the ability to provide monthly recurring costs. And in these uncertain times, do you feel that transactional revenue will ever completely disappear in the future?

JASON HOWELLS [00:31:33] That’s a good question, Neal.

NEAL BRADBURY [00:31:39] So this is you know, I love life shows, but my audio flaked a little bit. So, you know, you’ve got to love technology, you got to love the Internet. So I’m assuming you’re asking about reoccurring subscription revenue versus one time revenue just to confirm Darshna?

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:31:54] Correct. Yes. Do you think that transactional revenue will disappear in the future “… monthly”?

NEAL BRADBURY [00:32:01] I don’t actually think it disappears completely. And I’ll give you an example. You know, MSP did quite well in this new world. So what will happen when the pandemic? But I know I keep going back to it, but it’s as we’re all living it, right. A lot of businesses killed all their project work. And so what happened is MSP that had reoccurring revenue were okay. They were still supporting their cost because they were still had a revenue stream. The operational expense businesses didn’t get rid of. But they started to look at their project work. Then we got through it a little bit of realising, hey, we need to do some project work. So the MSP is that really have both the project team and the merged managed services team that really set up for success. And they basically business really ping pongs between those two businesses. Right. If you’re doing a reoccurring type model, maybe your own only doing security, maybe you’re only managing email, but someone wants to do a project of migrating to Office 365. That’s a one time project. You have a team that can do that. That’ll then feed into your reoccurring. The other is also true. You might just get a one time job from somebody that says, hey, I want upgrades, my computers, and you’ll do it. But then they have no one to maintain it month over month and that feeds your reoccurring. And so from my perspective, I think every MSPs needs to have the ability to do both. And I think if you look at it as I’m gonna be transactional only “on a lump” everything in charge one monthly fee. You might actually be leaving some opportunity and some revenue on the table and it might hurt your profit a little bit. Jason, what you’re seeing in the U.K., but I truly think you need both, and I don’t think it disappears at all completely on the project work.

JASON HOWELLS [00:33:35] You know, I, agree with you, and we’re certainly seeing that, so I think that we do still live in a very hybrid world on many, many levels. Neil, you know, we’re certainly seeing that. You know, I think that there are MSPs that are fully dedicated MSPs and most of the stuff they will do is managed service, but not 100% of their businesses understand the majority of them. I think the report touches on it. More than almost 50% of the MSP that we spoke to, more than 50% of that business history, that kind of monster kind of model that they have. But we’re seeing that increase as well. I think that the law often cited that the opportunity for them going forward particularly in 2020 was to go and focus on generating more of that kind of business for themselves. So, yeah, I mean, that’s kind of interesting. But yeah, you know, I don’t think it’ll go away. There are many there are many driving forces to move into a monthly subscription model, not necessarily just around managed services, but the way that people are consuming us generally is kind of moving, moving in that way. I think it’s important for many service providers to have a reasonably vast portfolio, but a portfolio that they can kind of specialise in. And that will help them to go get more monthly recurring revenue. You’re always gonna have end users that will have their own resource. You’re always going to have end users, whether it be for compliance reasons or for some other reasons, that to own and manage and look after their own security and have it in-house, you know, that will happen. We certainly see more MSP needs help in finding larger users that need some help with security. So maybe that look out for a lot of security or peace and security. “I wouldn’t… again.” I don’t think it goes away anytime soon. I think “Harvard’s” kind of stays with us. I think it’s very careful that you make sure that you qualify through the end user and you set the Y expectations. You make sure that you’re delivering against those expectations and you make sure that you maintain a level of trust. I think we’ll probably come back to that at some point. This is where the trust play played a large part in the survey. They come back to us as a reason why it’s actually taken, might go down a managed service path. So the more that we can make sure we set those expectations, we can deliver what we say we can deliver in the MSP world. The more will someone through “carry”  in revenues. And I also think as well, just coming back to the pandemic, you know, it has been those partners that are able to go and speak to their customers to perhaps come forward, you know, 15, 20, 30, 50 thousand panels to go punch, drop a whole bunch of infrastructure and the changes, but offer, you know, “you have a full” solutions on a monthly recurring kind of fee. I think that’s helping small businesses which will come out of this. And I think that’s been that’s really key as well in helping many service providers grow that business that will once reoccuring.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:36:38] Really interesting prediction, guys. And and to touch again on what you started to allude to, Jason, and, you know, security is definitely at the top of mind for end users and should be at the top of mind for all MSP. Of course, as well. So we saw that 72% of those that were surveyed said that a lack of in-house security skills at their customers is a really big driver. So how can MSPs really help with that skills gap?

JASON HOWELLS [00:37:07] Yes, so, I mean, that is that is definitely a reason is driving end users to focus on managed service providers. So, you know, I think it’s a bunch of stuff that MSPs need to be able to do. They need to be fairly agile. You know, they need to spend the time wisely to make sure that they are, again, skilled in the right places. You know, I need to mentioned that helping the customers and listening to them, to the pipelines. I mean, ultimately, what they have to do is they have to understand what the pain is and then they have to go fix it. So I think it’s key that many service providers understand what the customer’s needs are. Make sure, that got really, really relevant services that are going to fix those problems. I spend times to talk through it, set the right expectations, deliver against those expectations and do a good job. That’s how they become trusted advisor. So I think a lot of the MSP community works and “experience” and gets bigger. Because of the trust that it builds at end users level. So, yeah. You know, I think it’s really important for them to focus on this crisis “until you see” the same sort of the same kind of stuff. We lost Neal.

NEAL BRADBURY [00:38:31] Oh, sorry. It was the audio thing again. Well, you would think that I’d have good “into that”.I kind of “what end users…” you know, I’ll focus that question on an MSP is in training. I would say they need to make sure they’re partnering with their vendors, getting as much free training as they can. If they’re  have people on staff that are looking for security training, how do they facilitate that? You know, how do they build up their staff or build up their employees so that they can have those security conversations? And so I think it’s a two pronged approach. Yes, there’s SMBs that lack security expertise and are looking at MSP for help. But then at the same time, the MSP needs to make sure that they’re training their staff, partnering with the right people and being able to provide the right knowledge and assistance to the business so that they support it. And so, you know, I think the business owners of MSPs need to be answered kind of both of those questions.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:39:34] Okay. Carry on with that. And we just touched on some of this already. But what do you think the future holds in terms of managed service offerings? “Carrying out of” the crystal ball.

JASON HOWELLS [00:39:47] Crystal ball. If only we had a crystal ball. Right? A completely different world. Well, so I think I, you know, from my perspective, you know, I would want to be in anywhere else other than MSP, well rignt now. I think our world is moving towards managed service providers and service providers continue to offer the right things to do, what things have the right partnerships. Then, you know, I think it’s an awesome place to be. I think if we can carry on with good collaboration, communication, you know, I also think, you know, from a vendor perspective, you know, when have a responsibility to try and make sure that we continue to help managed service providers to be able to do those things. To be able responsibility to try to make sure that we do have products that integrate with other products “of a” vendor. And certainly I think it’s for Barracuda, MSP and try to do those things. You know, and ultimately, you want to try and like everybody’s off since we want to make sure that the world is safe as we can possibly make it. You know, we want to make it as easy as we possibly can for people to buy the products and use the products. You know, manage service providers for us is a really important part of our business to be able to try and show that we play our part and say those sports continue to be successful. So I think the future’s bright. I think the report that’s come from MSP day shows that, you know, it’s tough and we need to be realistic as well. Probably not all manage service providers completely through the pain of the last few months and that’s the reality of consolidation. I think that we think you will have to take a good, hard look at what they’re offering to their customersthat they have going forward. You know, my advice would be to start with security, focus there and build out, I guess you can say “I’m completely” bias. And I think that’s the reality of it. You know, if going back to what we said earlier, you know, if you get the security wrong, nothing else matters. As well as, you know, even if it’s not your problem, it is your problem. Trust me. So, yeah, you know, I think imagination beauty is an awesome community. I think everybody does a fantastic job on the whole. Very proud to be part of it. And I think if everybody continues in the same vein, then that we certainly seen in the last four or five years, it’s a great place to be with still huge huge masive opportunity. Neil has been involved in it “for fun with me”. So, you know, you’ve seen lots and lots of change going on. Do you agree with those comments?

NEAL BRADBURY [00:42:33] I mean, nothing I would add is, you know, back in the day, MSD managed devices. Now, the question is, do you manage devices or users or do you manage both? As everything goes to the Cloud, users become more important than devices. And how does your managed service offering take advantage of that? Or that dynamic collaboration platform. And so now does your MSP offering have a collaboration platform built in? Are you offering? I won’t mention, you know, a third party video conferencing tool or on a video conference today. But, you know, I think MSP needs to evaluate where they add value to the businesses that they support so that the business owner looks at it and goes, wow, look at the value I’m getting from this MSP. Less so just being the guy that makes sure I can print or the guy that I can basically go and get email right. I think there’s a whole lot more value, you know, that the MSP does offer today. Most do. And I think if they focus on what makes them different to their end users and they’ll be in a fantastic spot.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:43:38] We’re just about time here. But given your extensive experience in the field, can you leave our viewers with maybe a top tip, something that you learnt over the years for MSP, our partners were just starting to get their toes into na manage services world?

JASON HOWELLS [00:43:57] And even then “they couldn’t the half”. So I think that’s a view of what’s happened in the last few months. If can move it into the MSP space, the seventieth piece things for sure. You don’t know necessarily what’s around the corner. So, you know, you need to be agile. For sure. You need to be flexible. You need to be wise to make sure that you get yourselves educated. And a situation where you are ready to help when it’s a hostile view and you need to choose the right partnerships. I think it’s really very important if you’re starting to come into a managed service space, you work with people that can help you dip your toe in it by building the right kind of services, by being focussed in the right kind of areas, making the right kind of introductions. That’s what the people that’s have been there and done it. And have a community to help me to do that. And, yeah, you know, I think probably out of all of that with having the right partnerships is the biggest thing I can say with people that are dedicated to the MSP space. And they’ll help you get onto your journey and help that journey to be a successful one.

NEAL BRADBURY [00:45:10] And I would say, you know, as you’re just starting out and you’re moving forward. You know, I had a CEO that both Jason and I have worked for. But, you know, be first or be different. And I think as a managed service provider, there are so many out there. There’s so many that can support your end users. What makes you different? Or and why is that business paying you? Focus on that and excel at that and make sure that you really market to all the other customers you have. What makes you the best at that? It could be a vertical. It could be some speciality collaboration. I mean, you pick. I’m going to tell you what that is. But, you know, make sure you don’t lose that as you scale your business or as your, you know, the tough times of starting a business that you focus on that. And I would also just echo in the spirit of MSP day in which Jason Howells said, ask for help. There are so many MSP globally that are all been helping you with any challenge. There’s probably no challenge you’re having in your business. Someone else hasn’t encountered. So don’t be shy. Don’t be like, how am I going to fix this? Really reach out. Get involved in the MSP community. Reach out to one of your vendors, could you? Barracuda, we’re happy to help or could be someone else and say, hey, look, I got this challenge. Can you point me in the right direction? And I guarantee you, if you’re part of the MSP community, someone to help you. It’s a great community to be part of. Awesome, awesome community.

STEPHANIE CAVIGLIANO [00:46:28] Excellent guidance, you guys. Thank you so much. Unfortunately, that’s all the time that we have for today. Now, if you want to dwelve deeper into the report and you can download the report at barracuda.msp.com and there’s details to download that report in the comments as well. Thank you, Neal. Thank you, Jason, so much for joining us today. It’s been an absolute pleasure. And we’ve learnt so much.

JASON HOWELLS [00:46:52] Appreicate it. Really enjoyed it. Thanks very much.

DARSHNA KAMANI [00:46:56] Thank you. Also, don’t forget to follow Barracuda on LinkedIn to see our previous shows, as well as to find out what’s coming next on below the surface. I guess that just leaves us to say it until next time. Have a safe journey.