Helping clients move to managed services – Part 2

How do we help clients move to managed services?

Many of our cybersecurity managed services clients have four things in common: they have too few staff, too little budget, face too many threats and must consider too many IT risk mediation products for purchase/licensing and implementation.

At Mazars, we offer a mature process to our managed services clients. We have well-established relationships with technology vendors, and our specialists have the broad and deep experience to conduct the due diligence needed to understand the right mix of products for each of our clients.

Thinking about challenges from a workforce perspective, one of the biggest is the lack of documentation of processes–particularly when organizations are growing, shrinking incrementally, or have had a large reduction in force. Sometimes when talent leaves, they leave a lot of knowledge with them.

A second issue that's a big challenge is lack of support. Companies usually undervalue these when they engage a managed services provider. It’s important that the culture of the provider you engage matches your culture as closely as possible. You must have the same goals and objectives in mind. Critical, too, is very open communication with your provider.

On top of that, you must have the right governance model. If you're looking at the way you manage escalations and issues, your IT change requests and everything else right down to the timing of when you might do something at 2a.m., whenever you make your configuration changes, those things must be very well aligned. Your provider will accomplish the things you want when you want them to–and in the same fashion you would yourself.

For many middle-market companies, probably one of the biggest challenges we see is a true shortage of talent. We’re often brought in when a business owner is at the end of his or her rope, and we start triage on an emergency basis.

To help mitigate that challenge, we not only tap into our employee base but also train a client’s work force to help ensure there's seamless coverage, with no gaps to a client, if there's a change in our workforce. One of the opportunities a managed services provider offers an organization is the ability to evaluate the talent it currently has in-house and evaluate what’s missing.

From a security perspective, as an organizational leader you should be asking yourself and your team, “How confident are we in our ability to respond to a ransomware attack?” Sadly, such attacks now seem inevitable; organizations are getting hit all the time. Every organization will have a user who clicks on a link they think may just open a clean Excel file, for example. But the file could be embedded with some sort of malware that might encrypt your business-critical data or exfiltrate it.

Evaluate your company’s cybersecurity maturity on a scale of one to 10, with one being immature and 10 being extremely mature. If you grade your organization at four or five, how do you get to a seven in your maturity? Or if you're at six, how can you get to eight or nine?

If you have any doubts about your organization’s ability to identify malicious or suspicious activity in your IT environment, reach out to a cybersecurity managed services provider about a possible engagement. The right provider will add value and help accelerate your cybersecurity maturation.

Hear from and connect with Rick Burtt, Director of Enterprise Managed Services to learn how Mazars can help your organization with the right talent and resources.