CRN White Paper 4cornernetworks.indd

Assessing the needs of MSPs, integrators and other organisations and the challenges they face when sourcing quality third-party professional project and technical services for Cisco technologies

Managing relationships more effectively

Managed services businesses that provide project support and professional and technical services for Cisco technology solutions in the UK face significant challenges in meeting customer expectations, and at the same time, recruiting, training and retaining good quality Cisco-qualified personnel.

Many of these organisations will be focused managed services providers (MSP) and / or active Cisco systems integrator and value-added reseller partners. Others will be facilities management (FM) companies, or specialist third party organisations or consultants who get involved with project planning and delivery. The IT departments of end-user organisations may also be responsible for providing these services.

Whatever their exact position in the marketplace, these businesses and organisations share the same challenges with regard to Cisco technical services delivery, and frequently need to call on the services of third-party organisations to fill the gaps in their own resource and capabilities.

While this would seem to be an easy and sensible way to address the problem, using external suppliers also brings its own issues and MSPs, Cisco integrators and other organisations making use of third-party services will often find themselves frustrated because they can’t get the quality or levels of services they need, when they need them, and at a price they are happy to pay.

This report examines these needs and challenges and explores some of the potential responses MSPs, integrators, consultants, end-user organisations and other businesses might be able to take to improve satisfaction levels with external providers.