For an MSP, the ability of Machine Learning (ML) based solutions to easily identify common patterns of problems and offer suggestions for the most effective remediation tactics allows them to create a strategy where the recurrent problems faced by businesses are identified promptly, even preemptively. Hence, repeatable units of remediation actions can be applied quickly to reduce the business impact of such recurrent problems significantly or even entirely.
In Part 1 of this blog series, I discussed the importance of understanding the latest in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and ML. In this post, we'll take it a step further with how to properly implement automation in your business.
How does AI/ML help me with my customers?
Whereas a single MSP technician in the pre-automated world would have spent his working day handling variations on somewhat similar problems across a certain number of customers, that same technician can now leverage the automation capabilities of an AI-driven solution to solve the repetitive/common problems across a much larger number of customers—and in a much more efficient manner. The time gained can now be used to better analyze the specific usage scenarios for each such customers and build customized solutions for those aspects of the business needs that cannot be covered by automation.
That leaves the MSP technicians to focus on understanding more deeply the usage patterns of their customers and build specialized solutions and offerings that comprehensively address the unique needs of each customer.
How do I manage my automation?
A natural concern from an MSP technician will be how to manage the automation capabilities of an AI-based solution. The most effective solutions must provide a layer of orchestration that allows human intelligence to use machine intelligence in a conscious, deliberate manner.
Let us consider the example of a security solution that uses anomaly detection technologies to identify potential threats as they arrive and propagate through networks.
The machine intelligence of an automation solution can rapidly analyze vast amount of data from all devices across all networks in all sites of a customer’s business and identify patterns that are anomalous enough to warrant a closer look, and can also recommend potential causes of those anomalies.
But it is only the MSP technician who will have the insight and the business awareness to determine which of these anomalies must be immediately addressed—high security events—and which can be grouped for further analysis. The best-of-breed automation solutions must provide the technician the ability to apply that insight by orchestrating the subsequent remediation actions, and also to apply that insight to further refine the anomaly detection process in future to improve its efficiency/accuracy.
What should I look forward to?
Beyond all the buzzwords, the excitement and the uncertainties that are inevitably going to pervade our collective imagination and discourses when it comes to Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning or Automation, as technologists we are singularly, and critically, placed to give more concrete meanings to these ideas and techniques and apply them in our own ways to create a more resilient, efficient, and prosperous ecosystem of businesses, consumers and technologies.
MSPs should be particularly excited about the possibilities of growth opened up by automation. The machine intelligence will allow an MSP to bring in a significantly higher number of businesses and support their unique business needs more efficiently and optimally.
As a result, more small to medium businesses will be encouraged and energized to fully digitize their business as they will be backed by a world of resilient, efficient, and affordable Managed IT solutions. And as more and more businesses learn to leverage all the benefits of 21st century technologies—from virtualization to Cloud to AI—they innovate more in their own business domains, requiring deeper and broader support to their IT platforms.
With the help of sophisticated, matured technology partners in the domains of remote monitoring and management, security, backup and cloud an MSP should look forward to supporting significantly larger number of businesses while ensuring high quality services customized to each of their business needs.
Want to explore the power of automation firsthand? Watch a demo of Continuum Command!
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