Is your managed service just managing?
- Posted on June 1, 2023
- Estimated reading time 4 minutes
If you think managed IT services are just about keeping the “lights on” across your technology landscape, think again.
Sure, keeping your IT landscape running reliably is essential and, if you outsource that function to a Managed Services Provider (MSP), you free up time and resources to do what matters: make your business exceptional. But that traditional view of managed services is no longer enough when you need to drive business growth and market advantage in everything you do. Because change is continual, you need managed services that continually adapt – both to new business goals and to new technologies.
That’s right. Managed services aren’t just about technology anymore and if your KPIs are limited to throughputs and uptimes, you’re missing an important factor. IDC said as much in a recent report: "Managed service providers must consistently deliver business value while ensuring agility….Managed cloud services should enable continuous evolution of IT that incorporates modernization and delivers against business goals.”
More than a “managed service”
That’s such a change from traditional “managed services” that we think the term needs an update. At Avanade, we call this new approach “Manage & Evolve.” The “manage” part is what you might expect, including user support, maintenance, and break/fix activities. But the “evolve” part is something new for a managed service, focused on continuously driving value using a proactive approach.
“Evolve” uses our experience, best practices and insight to understand where your technology needs to go to meet your business goals – and how best to get it there. It’s provided by a broad team including not just traditional support technicians but also advisory, application developers, solution architects, and experience-design professionals.
Traditional managed services focus on just a slice of the product lifecycle for your technology – the slice focused on stability of your production landscape. In contrast, the seamless blend of Manage & Evolve has a product-centric focus on the entire lifecycle, from the business case and roadmap, design and development to deployment, production use, upgrades, expansion and extension, through to eventual migration and/or retirement.
Our Service Experience Portal enables us to measure the success of our service through business metrics alongside the traditional SLAs and KPIs. We’ve seen how this tangibly benefits a client during their critical business periods where they can see the impact of system delays or failures on the business process and outcomes.
Where Manage & Evolve is making a difference right now
Manage & Evolve can help you reduce costs and optimise operations, so you can make the best use of available budgets. Every organization’s experience will vary, of course, but we’ve seen clients use this approach to boost revenue by 5% and more, operational efficiency by 30%, and ROI by 350%. That’s right: a “managed service” that provides a net revenue gain rather than a revenue drain.
For example, consider Centrica PLC, a British-based multinational energy and services company. Its principal activity is supplying electricity and natural gas to businesses and consumers in the UK, Ireland and North America. One of its fastest growing segments is its Energy Marketing and Trading (EM&T) business, which depends on both stability and agility. Our Manage & Evolve approach started with the basics: helping to stabilize the EM&T platform by onboarding our Application Maintenance and Application Development service and building trust with the business.
With the applications stable, our next step was to help Centrica with more transformative activities, including adopting Agile and DevOps practices and moving all applications to the cloud. As a result, the trading platform was able to handle twice the trading volume without an increase in traders – and support Centrica’s business growth, rather than impede it.
Phase three in our continuing work with Centrica was to introduce a product-centric focus with Avanade taking on end-to-end responsibility for the full technology stack, with a business-value first approach. We introduced our Smart Operations Framework to drive more business-oriented automation and service insights.
Other companies have also benefitted from Manage & Evolve. We’ve helped an automobile manufacturer to increase sales by 7% and helped an airline to future-proof its technology estate, supporting it while it tripled its growth to more than 22 million passengers. The list goes on.
Manage & Evolve could be right for you, if…
How do you know if Manage & Evolve could be right for your business? If you’re experiencing any of these pain points, Manage & Evolve could be part of your cure:
- Slower response to customers
- Inability to keep up with market trends
- Finding yourself on the wrong end of digital disruption
- Trouble attracting and retaining top talent