IT management

PSA Becomes Services Resource Planning

Back around 2013, I suggested that the standalone markets for PSA (professional services automation) and RMM (remote monitoring and management) software had ended. The market, I theorized, was transforming into a total business management (TBM) play. I think I was at least half-right. The part I missed? PSA has also evolved toward so-called Services Resource Planning.

Generally speaking, IT service providers leverage PSA software (on premises or in the cloud) to run their businesses. According to TechVentive Inc. and Vital Analysis, most PSA platforms have modules that support:

  • Resource Management
  • Integration with Microsoft Excel and Project
  • Client Billing
  • Time Tracking
  • Project Entry
  • Project Tracking
  • Mobile Support
  • Expense Management
  • Collaboration (across clients, contractors and other third-parties)

The Shift From PSA to SRP

But in the past few years, TechVentive and Vital Analysis assert, many PSA systems have evolved into so-called Services Resource Planning (SRP) offerings. The additional features (beyond the base PSA modules) typically include:

  • Accounts Payable
  • Fixed Assets
  • General Ledger
  • Accounts Receivable
  • Credit Collections
  • Purchasing
  • Payroll
  • Human Resources (HR) Compliance
  • Recruiting/Talent Acquisition
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
  • Sales Force Automation

Less Is More

Take a closer look, TechVentive says, and a full-blown PSA/SRP system can typically replace a hodgepodge of platforms -- including:

  • Packaged financial accounting software
  • A mix of package and custom HR software
  • PC-based project estimating and tracking tools
  • Collaboration tools
  • Expense-management packages
  • CRM
  • Thousands of spreadsheets scattered across a company and partner networks
  • Custom-built staffing and resource management

Whether you call it PSA, SRP or total business management (TBM), the message is pretty clear: IT service providers can't scale their companies without a complete business management platform...

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.