Leveraging Technical Support Specialists as a Competitive Advantage

Posted by Dan St. Hilaire  /  April 7, 2016  /  MSP   —   No Comments ↓

Technical support specialistAs a trusted partner, your MSP team leverages technology in such a way that it creates a long term competitive advantage for each customer.

So now let's consider how this plays into your company's strategic advantages. As a service provider, you are fundamentally in the business of supporting your customers' success. Which means that every team member who comes into contact with customers is an opportunity for a competitive advantage, from sales people to technical support specialists.

Using awesomeness as a competitive advantage

If you are looking for ways to differentiate yourself from seemingly similar competitors, the awesomeness of your staff is a great place to start.

Recruiting and retaining the highest caliber team ensures that your techs are capable of creating systems that your customers can rely upon to make their organizations more robust, agile and equipped for future shifts in the IT and global business world.

The benefits of a robust retention strategy

We've written before about the benefits of hiring for customer service skills, so this time let's dive more into key reasons for retention: why should you work hard to keep your technical support specialists and others around for the long haul?

Employee retention is smarter and cheaper than replacing team members, just as customer retention is smarter and cheaper than finding new ones. The cost of unwanted turnover is painfully high. Most estimates place the cost around 1.5 to 2 times an employee's annual salary. The cost of a well-aimed training initiative will be money much better spent.

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Research shows that it really matters how you invest in your entry level team members like your technical support specialists. Scientific study findings indicate a cause-and-effect relationship between the welfare of lower-level workers and an organization's bottom line.

In your case, the longer they work for you, the more value they can drive and the more they can help you lock in customer loyalty.

OK, so you're ready to make a commitment to hiring and keeping top-notch talent. How do you leverage that with your clients and make it work for you as a competitive advantage?

Articulate your values

Write 'em down, for both internal and external consumption. The Digital Marketing Resource Center offers a great piece on leveraging core values for competitive advantage. Let everybody know that hiring and keeping top tech talent is a priority for your company.

Walk the talk

This is the part where you put it into practice. What are the specific things you can do to recruit the best technical support specialists and keep them with you in the long run? Create policies and instill practices that make this second-nature throughout the organization.

Promote it

On your website, and in your sales and marketing materials, be sure to specifically mention the awesome team you have built. And more importantly, hammer home how that equals better value for your customers in the long run. Consider using quotes, case studies and other examples to make it real.

IT services vendors have always competed with traditional IT organizations for the best IT talent. As an MSP, you build your entire business around the talents of your in-house IT staff, so it’s a key competitive advantage when your team is full of the best and brightest people.

It can be difficult to find differentiators that also drive good margins. We get it, and we can help. Consider end-user training services for your clients: it's a valued-added differentiator that simultaneously builds a solid recurring revenue stream. Sound like a dream come true? It is. Learn more.
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Topics: MSP