Tracking Customer Profitability with BrightGauge
As the Network Operations Manager for BlackPoint IT, some of Andrew Hutchison’s main responsibilities are systems monitoring & remediation, managing business continuity services, and automated system patching, to name a few.
As BlackPoint’s client list has grown steadily over the years, so has their need for a fleet management solution, as they found themselves responsible for managing 4,000 systems and trying to keep up with where patches were missing.
“There was no easy way to track missing patches in LabTech. I could get help from my LabTech Admin, but I really needed a way to consolidate and aggregate the data between LabTech and ConnectWise,” says Andrew.
Choosing & Adopting BrightGauge
Knowing there had to be a way to better manage his data, Andrew set out looking for a solution for his team. He briefly considered some reporting options within SQL, but when the BlackPoint team found BrightGauge at the ConnectWise IT Nation conference, the decision was quickly made to move forward because of the dual integration with ConnectWise and LabTech.
As Andrew reports, the BlackPoint team had a few support tickets in the beginning, but it was never hard for his staff to use BrightGauge, as he goes on to say “everyone caught on quickly.”
Results with BrightGauge
After getting started with BrightGauge, the BlackPoint team was instantly able to show everything in one report and be much more efficient in their messaging delivery, while also maintaining their fleet.
“With the fleet management aspect in LabTech, it really helped us cut down on patch issues and helped us with our warranty reporting. It also helped us when it comes time for the Technical Business Review, to report on things that come from different sources,” says Andrew.
More than just another tool in the toolkit, BrightGauge’s commitment towards developing a product that fits the wants and needs of the MSP community has been another reason Andrew is confident that he’s made the right choice.
It has been exciting for Andrew to have BrightGauge at his fingertips, because he can easily customize or build upon his data in the platform. With a substantial-sized fleet of over 200 appliances and 800 backups, Andrew reports that he wasn’t always able to see the information that he needed within the Datto portal, so he created a ‘MBC (managed business continuity) Backup Issues’ dashboard to solve the challenge.
“We used a SQL datasource and populated the Datto data into SQL tables and assigned thresholds to things. So now we’re using what BrightGauge offers, but with a second SQL table that checks for backup failures every 24 hours for particular backup agents or synchronization issues and they only show up if the threshold is exceeded,” explains Andrew. He goes on to say “for me, the most useful gauges are the Datto gauges.”
Benefits Beyond Reporting
Although he originally went looking for a reporting tool, Andrew notes that the BlackPoint team quickly came to appreciate how BrightGauge solved other problems in ways they hadn’t anticipated.
For example, utilizing BrightGauge reports before putting together their Technical Business Reviews (more commonly known as Quarterly Business Reviews) allowed the BlackPoint team to be proactive on certain issues.
“Before, we wouldn’t have a ticket on an issue like patches missing because a machine wasn’t turned on or the Windows version not up to date,” explains Andrew. “What we’re doing is a check and balance aspect of our fleet... and reporting on this to the customer is a huge deal. Before we report on this data, we now have a dashboard and can figure out what needs to be resolved.”
He goes on to explain, “The dashboard helps with overall Customer Success. It allows you to know everything about your customers in an aggregated way, so you don’t get blindsided. It’s quality assurance.”
Additionally, Andrew reports that BlackPoint has more clarity into the customer side of the business than ever before. Since introducing the Technical Business Reviews that are created from BrightGauge data, customer satisfaction is up and so are retention rates. Plus, the TBRs have also highlighted which customers are not an ideal match for BlackPoint because of issues such as machines that weren’t being updated - a sure conflict towards SLAs and potential red flag for customer profitability.
“If you’re an MSP, I haven’t seen any other tool with the amount of integrations and flexibility to do things your way, than BrightGauge. It’s all packaged there, and it’s all available.”