Datto Bolsters Autotask PSA for Co-Managed Services

Datto has enhanced the company’s Autotask PSA (professional services automation) software to help MSPs deliver co-managed services to end-customers, the MSP technology company says.

The move could position Datto to compete more effectively vs. ServiceNow in mid-market and enterprise MSP accounts, ChannelE2E believes. Indeed, ServiceNow’s ITSM (IT service management) software continues to emerge as a popular ticketing platform for integrating MSP service desks with customers’ internal IT support functions.

Amid that backdrop, Datto says Autotask PSA version 2021.2 supports co-managed workflows between MSPs and customers’ internal IT staff members. Key features to note, according to Datto, include:

  • The ability to manage visibility and hide tickets as well as internal costs and pricing from co-managed users;
  • the creation of Co-Managed Primary Resource and Co-Managed Teams per account to drive more efficient communications;
  • the addition of Co-Managed resource options to workflow rules automating the assigning of work and notifications to resources;
  • a Ticket Transfer option to indicate who is responsible for working on a ticket and transfer responsibilities if required; and
  • email processing updates that associate incoming tickets for the co-managed end user.

Co-Managed Services: Earlier MSP Software Developments

Admittedly, co-managed services (and associated software tools) aren’t new. Co-managed tools such as Autotask TaskFire and ConnectWise Streamline IT surfaced more than a decade ago, though they never quite lived up to the early hype.

More recently, Harmony Business Systems in 2019 introduced PSA (professional services automation) software that extends co-managed capabilities from MSPs to end-customers. But I don’t know if that feature is still a focus area, now that Ingram Micro owns Harmony PSA.

ServiceNow ITSM for Co-Managed Services: Among mid-market and enterprise-focused MSPs, ServiceNow appears to be emerging as an ITSM (IT service management) software standard for co-managed services.

The reason: Thousands of end-customers already run ServiceNow internally. Savvy to the trend, MSPs are launching their own ServiceNow instances and then building bridges to customers’ ServiceNow instances. Key MSPs riding the ServiceNow trend include Fully Managed and Thrive, among many others.

Top Datto MSPs Extend Their Reach

Still, Datto has its share of mid-market and enterprise-class MSPs. Indeed, roughly 1,250 MSPs each contribute over $100,000 ARR (annual recurring revenue) to Datto, according to an August 2021 earnings statement from the company. The figure suggests those MSPs have extended beyond traditional SMB engagements.

Clearly, Datto is eager to ensure Autotask PSA empowers those larger MSPs to deliver co-managed services.

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