Control the Complex: How MSPs Can Streamline IT Management

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In today's digital landscape, managing IT and security services has become increasingly complex. Data is scattered across a variety of platforms, workforces are widely dispersed geographically and each new tool you adopt must be configured and managed on an ongoing basis.

All this complexity poses significant challenges for managed service providers. Patchwork infrastructure opens many protection gaps for cybercriminals to exploit. Training your team to use a complicated mesh of solutions is expensive and time-consuming, and it’s difficult for even trained professionals to monitor mismatched tools and make sense of the data they receive.

Let’s explore how you can better control your increasingly complex IT environment. To do this, we will summarize the key takeaways from an Acronis webinar held on March 23, 2023 in which Forrester Senior Analyst, Brent Ellis, was a guest speaker.

Modern service delivery is complex

There are a variety of reasons for this complexity in delivering IT and security services:

Data is everywhere — in SaaS applications, IaaS databases, on-premises, at the edge and on mobile devices. The volume of core business data has grown exponentially, and continues to do so: according to Statista, global data volumes reached 64.2 zettabytes in 2020 and will skyrocket to more than 180 zettabytes by 2025.

Workloads are diverse. Business data is processed on physical servers and virtual machines, in containers and in serverless environments. And to protect that data (as well as maintain in compliance with applicable privacy regulations), you must be able to track its location at all times.

Customers and employees are widely distributed geographically, especially in an era of remote-first work. Gone are the days when you could simply stick each employee behind a firewall and back up the endpoints on your office network. Instead, you must protect the devices you’ve sent home with people, (and sometimes even their own personal devices) and all the data that traverses those networks.

Scalable architecture complicates resilience. New tools and integrations enable you to do much more, but they can inadvertently leave data out of your control. If you have an API integration with a SaaS platform, does your data across that integration get backed up as well? Imagine that you’ve integrated DocuSign with SalesFirst. Your SalesFirst backup utility may back up the fact that you have this connection to DocuSign, perhaps the fact that some action was performed with a document, but it probably isn’t actually backing up the material within that document.

During the webinar, Brent cites Forrester’s Infrastructure Cloud Survey 2022 in which it was revealed that an overwhelming majority of cloud decision-makers are planning to adopt multiple cloud-based platforms. He goes on to say, “The idea of having a single infrastructure to protect just doesn’t exist in the modern business.”

Complexity presents unique, often unexpected challenges

The proliferation of data and diverse workloads has presented MSPs with a complex IT and security management landscape. The same tools they adopt to make life easier can just as easily have the opposite effect.

“A lot of the technology that’s being implemented now to simplify the IT environment actually adds to complexity when you deal with security and resilience,” says Mr. Ellis. “As IT leaders, as MSPs in the space … you really have to start thinking, ‘how do I architect my systems to be resilient?’—especially all the new workloads that you’re putting in place in order to transform your business.”

Exposure to threats is far greater in a complicated IT environment, necessitating a new approach to workload and data security. Traditional approaches, where different services are sourced from multiple vendors, often lead to disjointed systems and security gaps — and training employees on multiple interfaces from different providers can be challenging and inefficient.

Cloud-based automation is fast and saves a lot of manual effort, but by the same token, any errors made can propagate quickly. Look no further than the AWS US-EAST-1 outage in December 2021, when a scaled error from a non-production network consumed so many resources, so quickly, that humans couldn’t shut things down manually; many businesses lost operability for 8–10 hours. In the event of cloud failure, finding workarounds can be difficult.

How integrated platforms solve the complexity puzzle

Complex environments present more potential points of failure for cybercriminals to exploit. Ensuring that the solutions you deliver are purpose-built to integrate together smoothly eliminates dangerous security gaps, which can be particularly hard to identify when using a mish-mash of disparate software from different vendors.

Integrated service delivery platforms, like Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud, offer a way for MSPs to streamline IT and security management. These platforms combine data backup, cybersecurity, disaster recovery, and other critical solutions into a unified and cohesive system — all while working smoothly alongside popular RMMs/PSAs and other tools that you already use and trust.

“As a partner, what we find is that the Partner Portal … itself really puts everything together for us,” says Esteban Delgado, CTO at Miami-based MSP Bizitss, who was able to replace multiple vendors’ software by moving to the Acronis platform — while still using their preferred PSA. Of note, Mr. Delgado did not participate in the webinar, but his comments reinforce those made by Dave Millier of Quick Intelligence who shared his story.

By centrally monitoring and managing everything through a single pane of glass, service providers can deliver solutions more efficiently and limit the need for expensive, time-consuming training — a particularly significant benefit for MSPs with growth goals. One dashboard provides complete visibility into clients’ data backup and cybersecurity status as well as disaster recovery readiness, making it easy to identify and address issues. A unified support system simplifies the process of seeking assistance and ensures prompt resolution of any questions that may arise.

As technology continues to evolve at a rapid pace, MSPs must future-proof their IT and security services. Integrated platforms are designed to adapt and incorporate emerging technologies seamlessly. They are equipped to handle new data sources, support evolving workloads, and integrate with emerging cloud and edge computing environments. MSPs can confidently rely on integrated platforms to stay ahead of technological advancements and deliver cutting-edge services to their clients.


The complexities of managing IT and security services in today's distributed and data-rich landscape are undeniable. However, integrated platforms like Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud offer a viable solution to streamline operations, enhance security, and improve efficiency for MSPs.

By consolidating data backup, cybersecurity, disaster recovery, and other essential services into a unified platform, MSPs can simplify their operations, eliminate security gaps, and optimize resource utilization. The centralized management, scalability, and training benefits of integrated platforms further empower you to deliver superior services to your clients.

“As an MSP, thinking of the technicians and how this makes our work more efficient,” says Delgado, “the definitely very successful at doing what intends to do.”

As the IT and security landscape continues to evolve, embracing integrated platforms is a strategic move that positions MSPs for long-term success in a rapidly changing industry.

To watch a replay of the entire webinar, click here.

This guest blog is courtesy of Acronis. Read more Acronis guest blogs here. Regularly contributed guest blogs are part of ChannelE2E’s sponsorship program.