Hiring the best talent is one of the most assured ways for a managed services provider (MSP) to deliver top-notch services and technology solutions to its customers. However, a talent shortage of millions of qualified IT staff and more experienced technicians is making it harder than ever for MSPs to find the talent they need at a price they can afford.
While the competition for good talent is stiff due to the talent shortage, another factor may be affecting an MSP’s ability to recruit: the bad reputation that working for MSPs has. While the MSP might know that working for an MSP is great, there is an unfortunate perception about working conditions and career paths at such companies. As the MSP looks to expand its talent, it must understand these reservations and work to overcome them to prevent them from being an obstacle in the hiring process.
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One negative perception is that MSP employees are overworked, constantly working long hours to close the next ticket faster and faster, without a minute to breathe in between. On top of that, there are complaints that some clients can be difficult to work with. This can be especially difficult to deal with in the absence of the camaraderie that comes from working for the same company as the people whose issues you’re trying to resolve.
Other categories of negative perceptions relate to how the MSP business is run. MSP business leaders are often stereotyped as micromanaging, especially when tracking or increasing billable hours, which can harm employees. Some may also complain about insufficient training or documentation, which can prevent employees from onboarding quickly or from handling issues in the correct way without proper guidance.
These are just a few examples of the negative perceptions facing MSPs. Using this knowledge, an MSP should work to counteract these perceptions where possible, as well as communicate to potential future employees that they don’t apply to this business. For instance, the MSP could overcome perceptions of excessive work and bad client interactions by implementing processes and procedures to ensure equitable hours and positive reinforcement of working conditions. Additionally, the MSP can institute leadership training to teach employees how to lead positively in order to counteract micromanagement and ensure that appropriate documentation and training is available to all employees.
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While it’s important to address these perceptions and potential challenges during hiring, the MSP should also take a hard look at how its own business operates, so as to ensure that none of these are true inside its own culture. For instance, the MSP could consider doing an anonymous company culture survey to gather thoughts on any potential challenging areas for employees. While it may be a difficult reflection to undertake, especially if some perceptions might prove true, by addressing any negative working conditions an MSP can ensure that those it has hired will stick around for the long haul.
As an MSP looks to expand its business and hire new employees to support its growth, it must create a desirable workplace with a strong company culture. This will help ensure that it is viewed as an attractive place to work not only by those it is looking to hire, but also by those already working at the company. In doing that, the MSP has a better chance of hiring the employees it needs and keeping them around for many years to come.