What should MSPs expect from their cyber security provider?

Toby Nangle, global partnership and channel lead at Field Effect

There’s a lot riding on ensuring your customers have a positive experience. 95% of MSP customers report they switched providers because they were unhappy with the service they received. To meet these expectations, many MSPs are working with third-party cyber security providers to ensure they’re able to deliver the protection their customers expect. 

As an MSP, you need to make sure you’re aligned with your partners and vendors so you can manage and meet customer expectations. With that in mind, let’s talk about what MSPs should expect from their cyber security provider.  

Fast, reliable service when you need it

A fast, reliable service should be the very first thing you look for when vetting security vendors. Your customers count on you to be there when they need support, which means you should expect your cyber security provider to offer the same thing. 

When threats occur, you want peace of mind knowing you and your customers are protected, with speedy resolutions to cyber security incidents and appropriate, timely responses. Cyber security is time-consuming and challenging, and attackers know it. In fact, certain techniques like business email compromise (BEC) target busy and overworked IT teams by intentionally exploiting alert fatigue.

Yet MSPs like yours are already facing challenges because you only get one opportunity to prove your worth to customers. That’s why a trusted cyber security partner is so vital: they help ensure peace of mind for your clients. 

It may seem like a tall order to get the fast, effective service modern protection requires, but it’s far from impossible. Taking the time to vet your potential vendors and partners is absolutely vital. 

If you’re not sure where to start when assessing a partner and their solution, there are a few key elements to watch for:

  • Level of experience. How experienced is the security team backing up the technology? Look for a security service provider with deep expertise, including a background in the intelligence community.
  • Holistic solution. How comprehensive is the solution? The ideal security solution will cover everything from endpoints to cloud services and networks, making sure every aspect of your threat surface is covered. 
  • Time savings. Will the solution put time back in your team’s schedule? Any security provider that can deliver on a simplified, comprehensive solution should be able to save you time, only surfacing the most urgent threats facing you and your customers. 

A simplified solution

Cyber security is a complex field, which is why many organizations opt to outsource security operations to some extent. Unfortunately, not all third-party security providers can help simplify things. 

The reason complexity is such a concern is because many security vendors lack a truly holistic solution—that is, one that provides seamless, end-to-end protection of the entire threat surface. While some vendors tout that they own their entire tech stack, the truth of the matter is that many security solutions are built on different technologies that aren’t designed to work in tandem. 

As different tools and technology are added to enhance functionality and extend protection, they all need to communicate with each other—but because they weren’t designed and developed with such close interoperability in mind, they lack the visibility needed to provide valuable context about what’s going on within a modern IT environment. 

A simplified solution should be owned and developed entirely by one partner in order to provide the context needed to know when activity in the cloud is affecting endpoints, or something on the network is leading to issues with cloud-based services. This puts time back in your already busy schedule, saving your team from chasing reams of alert data to get to the bottom of the problem affecting your customers. 

Easy enablement

There is no true one-size-fits-all security solution, but the growth of your business depends on keeping pace with your customers’ needs. By providing flexible security offerings, you can tailor your service to match each organization individually, no matter what industry they operate in, their approach to doing business, or what they need from you as an MSP. 

This means that you need a partner that understands your customers’ needs as much as you do. At its most basic, this means selecting a vendor that offers the flexible, adaptable packages and purchase agreements to meet customer needs. 

Furthermore, you need to be able to reach your prospective customers with effective marketing materials that communicate the value of your chosen solution. 

The ideal security provider will provide a range of documentation and support materials to help set you up for success. They should host regular training sessions, make themselves available as thought leaders to support your sales efforts, or even provide you with leads. 

Consider a security provider with an emphasis on building self-sufficient partnerships. This approach means that a provider has done the legwork necessary to support the services they’re providing to you, making it that much easier to attract and onboard new customers on your end. 

A partnership built on mutual success

The true watermark of a good partnership is mutual success. As an MSP, you don’t want to be just another client or account in the eyes of your security provider—you want them to be there when you need them, and ideally to collaborate, cooperate, and communicate so you can both grow together. 

From your perspective, this partnership should allow you to influence and shape the development of their security solution based on your feedback (and that of your customers). A close working relationship allows you to better tailor your services to your clients, but it also gives security providers valuable insight into creating a better product and earn new business of their own. 

It’s a two-way street: you want to be able to approach customers with confidence, delivering flexible services to them at a price point that ensures healthy margins for you without eating into their budget. Your security provider wants a trusted partner to get their product in the hands of more businesses, building their reputation and letting them pursue additional opportunities as a leader in the field. 

If finding a partner focused on delivering all of the above sounds like a tall order, then you need to check out Field Effect. 

Field Effect makes adding security services to your offerings easy. When you partner with Field Effect, you get the industry’s most sophisticated threat detection and response technology, an entire team of the world’s best security analysts at your fingertips, and all the tools you need to successfully market, sell, and deliver cyber security.

Visit their website to learn how partnering with Field Effect simplifies security, reduces costs, and increases profits.