CEO Preface: While discussing and planning the migration and support services you found out during our last webinar, many of our partners were at the same time concerned and excited about what they could do with the time that would be freed up with someone else taking care of support and migration. Aside from the fact that the migration project is done on your behalf and you can (and should and will!) still bill for it, here are some things to think about as we get suggestions from our partners that are on board with this project already.

For many MSP’s and IT solution providers, Exchange migrations have been a long, sometimes frustrating, and tedious task. At times, when things go awry, the migration can lead to upset customers and cause rifts in a fragile relationship, leaving little opportunity to pursue additional sales. This has some IT companies instead, cleaning up, apologizing, and heading for the hills. But, what if you didn’t have to worry about doing a migration? Then what?

ExchangeDefender recently announced a new migration service for partners selling the XD Hosted Exchange platform. This exciting new service will free up tech time and sales cleanup by handling all aspects of the migration from beginning to end, providing immediate revenues and additional opportunities.

It should be no surprise that happy customers buy more. Keeping customers happy through the initial phases of a transition, cutover, installation, or rip and rebuild can be difficult. But, when you don’t have a migration project to worry about, the focus can shift to the customer and less on the work.

This is important, especially for new customers, but even for long time customers where you have built trust. The reason is that often time’s customers can feel uninformed or left out of the process when a project is underway. This is not, by any means on purpose by the provider; instead it is the byproduct of the need to stay within the job-costing model without eating into to revenues when a project goes beyond its initial scope.

So some things to do when you don’t have to worry about a migration are:

1. Focus on The Customer – This can be things like providing regular updates, visiting the site, bringing by lunch or donuts for the office, or just giving that extra bit of attention you may not have otherwise been able to provide.

2. Provide Additional Recommendations- When you aren’t focused on the project at hand, you can take more time to look around and see what else needs attention. Revisit your initial walkthrough and discuss any further products or services the customer may require.

3. Talk with Individual Employees- If there is one surefire way to learn and understand what is really going on with the network, it is to ask an employee. Spend some time talking to employees and asking questions regarding the computers and network to get a better idea of what types of solutions may be needed.

4. Find your next Customer- With all of the time saved not having to deal with a migration project; you surely have time to go find your next cloud customer. Work on your marketing plan, cold calling, or revisit previous customers that couldn’t afford server options.

The one thing that all of these examples have in common is the fact that they all revolve around creating additional revenues. Far too often, IT companies get beat up during a project, leaving little opportunity to drive more sales. One of the many advantages to having the migration process handled by the vendor is that there will be more time for the customer. Beyond this, most IT companies charge for the migration, which creates immediate revenue for the provider.

Building a good relationship foundation with the customer is the key to selling additional services. When projects are handled with a concise, thought out, and well executed process; they are more likely to leave the customer with a desire to continue improvement.

Frank Gurnee