10 Ways MSPs Can Level Up from Backup to Business Continuity

Let’s dig into the ten concrete steps MSPs can take to transform their business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) offerings. An evolved approach to BCDR better serves clients by positioning your MSP ahead of ransomware attacks, prepared for rapid recovery, and stacked efficiently for margin and profit growth.

One: Protect Everything

Today, clients are highly distributed with more endpoints than ever for MSPs to protect. By and large, remote work is here to stay and clients are now more highly distributed, with more endpoints to protect. At the same time, traditional server business continuity is evolving, with the shift to SaaS deployment models and public cloud infrastructure. And with the growth in SaaS productivity applications like Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace, business data now lives in more places. Lastly, the cybersecurity challenges from ransomware, data exfiltration, and more sophisticated attacks are never-ending.

SMB endpoints have traditionally been under-protected, with only file-level backup or in many cases nothing at all. And when it comes to SaaS data, many MSPs and their clients are well behind the curve on delivering BCDR for cloud data and SaaS applications.

In today’s world, MSPs should protect client data no matter where it resides. All client infrastructure needs business continuity, whether we are talking endpoints, on-premises servers, SaaS apps, or cloud-based servers. In short, MSPs should protect everything. The question is, how do you cover all the bases, ensure rapid recovery, guard against ransomware, and do it profitably?

Two: Consider Deployment Options

Data security needs vary from client to client. For smaller, cost-conscious clients, an on-site BDR appliance can be overkill. Larger clients, however, often need, value, and will pay for the ability to do on-site recovery and server virtualization.

With x360Recover, MSPs can choose from a variety of deployment options to satisfy most business use cases:

ɚ Endpoint backup
ɚ Hardware-free BDR
ɚ Full-service BDR
ɚ Public cloud backup
ɚ Private cloud backup

Deployment Option #1: x360Recover Direct-to-Cloud without an Appliance

Hardware-free backup protects remote endpoints, including Microsoft Azure data, without the expense, hassle, maintenance, on-site visits, and limitations of appliances. Perfect for dispersed workforces and cost-conscious clients.

Deployment Option #2: x360Recover with an Appliance

Traditional BDR that gives clients BYOD and BYOC choice and flexibility: Bring Your Own Device or purchase or lease from Axcient – or Bring Your Own Cloud or data center or replicate to the Axcient Cloud. Ideal for clients that want an on-premise infrastructure for local failover.

>>Explore the Options: Cloud vs. Appliance-Based BCDR: When to Deploy What?

“BCDR has become a critical aspect of business, but we still approach our clients trying to save them as much money as possible. We need a dependable business continuity solution that ends with our client saving money. We still make recurring monthly profits – it feels good to find a win-win situation.”

Three: Get Agile

Flexibility is key to designing a BCDR solution that fits an MSP’s unique business requirements. Axcient enables partners to purchase or lease Axcient brand BDR appliances or bring their own devices (“BYOD”). BYOD helps MSPs standardize their client deployments, manage hardware costs, and leverage their preferred OEM vendor relationships.

This flexibility also extends to the cloud. Partners can either leverage the Axcient Cloud for off-site replication, storage, and cloud recovery, or they can build their own private cloud environment. Axcient licensing is designed to support the needs of MSPs that excel in delivering private cloud services to their clients. Axcient makes it easy for partners to deliver uninterrupted business continuity and rapid and reliable recovery with their own preferred business and deployment model.

Four: No More Chains

Most image-based backup solutions on the market today rely on chain-based technology to perform backups. With these solutions, if there is ever a corruption or deletion of one of the recovery points in the chain, the backup chain is essentially rendered inoperable. Corrupted backups often prevent a successful system recovery, and storing large chains causes
storage bloat.

Chain-Free backup technology eliminates one of the greatest risks facing an MSP, namely, a corrupted backup job which prevents the rapid and complete recovery of a client’s environment. What’s more, Axcient’s patented Chain-Free backup technology is inherently more flexible and solves for data bloat when it comes to storage utilization on the local BDR appliance. With Chain-Free, MSPs reduce the risks of failed recoveries, while benefiting from better storage utilization and lower overall labor and maintenance costs.

What is Chain-Free Backup technology?

Axcient x360Recover leverages ChainFree Backup technology. With ChainFree technology, data is stored in a native virtualized state with a pointer-based array algorithm so each and every recovery point is independent. There are no chain dependencies. A particular recovery point can either be deleted or corrupted and recovery points before or
after are unaffected.

Five: Protect Endpoints

Today, SMBs must protect not only their data, but their system configurations for laptops and workstations. Human error remains the number one cause of data loss and dispersed workers are at a higher risk on at-home and public Wi-Fi connections. It’s up to MSPs to keep businesses running – no matter what happens or where clients are located.

x360Recover empowers MSPs with a proactive rather than reactive approach to data security. With built-in critical capabilities like near-instant virtualization, anti-ransomware and data loss technology, automatic backup integrity testing, and a local cache recovery acceleration layer for hardware-free BCDR. MSPs have exactly what they need to protect a variety of client use cases with just one vendor and one solution.

Now, MSPs can reduce vendor management by consolidating on x360Recover in order to increase recovery speed and lower recurring costs and total cost of ownership.

Six: Upgrade Legacy Deployments

Many MSPs are challenged by a smattering of different BDR vendors deployed in the field. Traditionally, switching out legacy BDR solutions was costly and time-consuming.

Using x360Recover’s hardware-free deployment option, Directto-Cloud (D2C), MSPs can easily migrate off legacy solutions and standardize on the x360Recover platform. For clients that no longer need an on-premises BDR appliance, Axcient designed D2C to simplify the process of standardizing deployments and upgrading to Axcient’s patented Chain-Free platform. x360Recover D2C enables MSPs to silently deploy the Axcient agent through an RMM tool, configure the backup schedule, and then let it do its thing. With no rip and replace required, once D2C is up and running, the MSP can then easily remove other backup agents and decommission the legacy BDR appliance.

Seven: Standardize and Save

x360Recover gives MSPs the best of both worlds so they can deliver uninterrupted business continuity while simultaneously reaping the benefits of a single, consolidated, and efficient BCDR stack.

Axcient delivers on our consolidation promises by covering most use cases. Axcient partners are less burdened by billing nightmares and the complexities of vendor management. Instead, owners and their technicians are empowered to master one solution that does almost everything you need to deliver on business continuity SLAs, including faster and more reliable recovery. Sales and marketing can focus on optimizing one product sales funnel rather than getting confused with various one-trick-pony solutions. And, ultimately, by lowering overhead costs, MSPs are primed to grow profits. focus on optimizing one product sales funnel rather than getting confused with various one-trick-pony solutions. And, ultimately, by lowering overhead costs, MSPs are primed to grow profits.

Eight: Harness Automation

No matter what happens in an IT environment, most MSPs position themselves as the first and last line of defense for the client. Therefore, MSPs have traditionally invested a lot of labor into manually checking and verifying the integrity of backups.

Axcient automates this process, improving employee productivity and dramatically reducing labor costs. Axcient AutoVerify automates vital integrity checks on a nightly basis and consolidates backup health reporting in the Axcient Global Management Portal. This enables an MSP to conserve labor, manage by exception, and proactively intervene only when problems are detected. With less time spent on manual operations, MSP techs can focus on higher-value tasks or conserve labor expenses to save on the bottom line.

Axcient is automating reporting for our partners, too. We launched new capabilities in automation, reporting, and usability, and there’s still more to come!

Nine: Never Pay Ransoms

One of the greatest threats to businesses today is the plague of ransomware. In recent years, attackers have exploited longer dwell times and meticulously planned their ransomware attacks, often deleting the on-site and cloud-based backups of their victims.

An MSP’s reputation is one of its most valuable assets. If a client suffers a ransomware infection and their backups are also compromised, incalculable damage can occur to the brand and reputation of an MSP. Axcient AirGap is yet another feature that increases the reliability of an MSP’s backups and reduces risk, both for the client and the MSP’s reputation.

The Threat Report by BrightCloud showed 85% of MSPs have reported ransomware attacks against their SMB customers. These aren’t cheap, ransom demands typically start at $50,000 and can cost more than $800 per hour to resolve. In this current threat climate, it makes sense to invest in the right tech MSPs can meet competitive SLAs and keep businesses moving. Those risks can in fact be an existential threat to an SMB. In this current threat climate, it makes sense to invest in the right tech so an MSP can keep its promises and keep its clients safe.

Ten: Add Up the Profits

Business continuity and disaster recovery shouldn’t be complex and expensive. It should be foundational for MSPs and a reliable source of recurring revenue and profits. In this article, we have explored how the Axcient x360Recover platform enables MSPs to thwart ransomware attack, ensure rapid recovery, and deliver a more profitable BCDR service to their clients.

For MSPs switching to Axcient, they benefit from a highly reliable and lower-cost solution, which is flexible to their business needs. After making the switch, most partners cut their monthly recurring costs in half while gaining exceptional data security and the ability to do fast restores. Simplified licensing, modernized Chain-Free backups, hardware-free deployments, and lower labor costs all combine to make Axcient the right choice for the most dependable and profitable BCDR services.

Ready to level up to BCDR and cut your monthly costs?

Get full disaster recovery and comprehensive business continuity at up to 50% less than what you are paying for backup alone. Start a no-cost trial today!

We had about 25 different backup vendors and we were spread too thin. You can’t focus on any one vendor or product. There’s different training plans, different product support, compression is different, retention is different, and they all do different things. …With Axcient we have a complete backup solution. Everything from cloud backup to on-prem servers, and servers in the cloud. It gives us the flexibility to say, ‘we use one tool to protect everything’.”


About the Author: Carissa Johnson // Product Marketing Manager, Axcient

Carissa Kohn Johnson AxcientCarissa Kohn-Johnson has a background in healthcare technology and information technology, and is now the Product Marketing Manager for Axcient. She has a lot of MSP Channel experience from planning and attending hundreds of conferences and tradeshows, and found her passion in IT. Carissa is also an elected official in Cary NC, a town chock full of technology-forward people. Connect with her on LinkedIn – perhaps you can contribute to the Axcient blog?

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