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RMM or PSA: Which is Best for an MSP?April 25, 2017


If you are starting an MSP, this is one question that you need to ask yourself- PSA or RMM? PSA (Professional Services Automation) and RMM (Remote Monitoring and Management) are basically related to MSP business and also concern people going in for a shift from break/fix to MSP or transitioning from being a sole practitioner to hiring a first employee. When business is thus evolving, it has to be decided whether to go for PSA or RMM. Let's explore both PSA and RMM in detail...

PSA (Professional Services Automation)

The PSA tool, which is integral to MSP business, helps an MSP keep track of customer information and also keep track of the work, generating invoices from that work. We can also say that PSA software helps greatly in project management and resource management.

RMM (Remote Monitoring and Management)

The usual definition of RMM is this- it refers to the emerging technology of developing software or IT tools that help MSPs do remote monitoring of client systems & networks and manage/monitor the endpoints on the clients' side. Thus we could also say that if PSA tools help track work, RMM tools help do that work, because RMM software automates tasks, gives remote access to work on devices controlled remotely and monitor all activities.

How to choose?

Well, before making a choice, ask yourself some questions, like...
  • Am I experiencing cash-flow problems because I am able to invoice only once a month?
  • Do I find it difficult to invoice large amounts of time and material just because they are not being recorded properly?
  • Am I able to track sales opportunities properly or are they slipping through the cracks without being tracked?
  • Is it that recurring revenue items are not being billed properly since auto-updation doesn't happen when new devices or services are added?
  • Do I have to deal with emergency-like situations, which arise from little problems which are not noticed since I don't have an RMM tool that alerts me of such issues?
  • Do I have to carry out repetitive tasks, which could have been dealt with using automation rather than manually?
  • Do I have to set aside lots of time for manually checking and ensuring that my security options are updated and compliant?

Based on what answers you get, you can make a choice. If there are fewer clients and you can learn both the platforms, it would be a great option. Always go for the tools that don't have a long deployment schedule. Go for the ones with easy deployment and minimal training needed to get started. Moreover when you don't have the time to learn using both the platforms, then the decision should be business-based. For example, if the issue pertains to cash-flow and is on account of not having the system to capture and invoice, then PSA would be the ideal choice. At the same time, RMM would be the best option if you have trouble servicing clients due to lack of remote tools.

So, based on the factors and the nature of your business plus your needs, make the choice.

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