The MSP to MSSP Pipeline: How to Make the Transition and Expand Your Business

July 18, 2023

MSPs play a vital role in supporting business operations across industries, but they often face limitations in their offerings if cybersecurity services are not available. Because of this, transitioning from a managed service provider (MSP) to a managed security service provider (MSSP) allows the potential for significant growth opportunities.  

Why Make the Transition? 

The goal of an MSP is to ensure that a business’s IT operations run smoothly and productively. An MSSP’s goal, on the other hand, is to make sure that companies are safe from cyber risks, malicious threats, and regulatory compliance entanglements while also protecting productivity in the day-to-day of the business.  

This one extra “S” in the title allows consultants to stay competitive in an increasingly saturated market. By upgrading their service offerings and transitioning to an MSSP, consultants gain access to new opportunities to optimize profitability and significantly expand their range of services and customer base. But it's often easier said than done.  

From MSP to MSSP 

The benefits of becoming an MSSP are clear, but it’s easy to get lost in the weeds when trying to actually make the transition.  

To effectively evolve from an MSP to an MSSP and set the stage for success, follow these steps: 

  • Acquire the Right Gear: Invest in tools and platforms that align with your clients' specific security needs. A strong GRC platform will serve as the foundation of your security solutions, safeguarding your clients' data and systems effectively and tracking program compliance. (Looking for a suggestion? Try out Apptega.
  • Build a Skilled Team: Hire experienced staff and technicians who possess expertise in configuring security tools, continuously monitoring logs, analyzing threats, identifying anomalies, escalating issues, remediating active threats, and executing appropriate responses during a breach. Acquiring new skill sets in incident response, penetration testing, forensics, and threat mitigation is also crucial for delivering comprehensive security services. 
  • Establish a Security Operations Center (SOC): Create a high-availability Security Operations Center (SOC) to provide comprehensive security for your clients' IT devices, systems, and infrastructure. A SOC serves as the central hub for protecting networks, data centers, servers, applications, and other critical technologies. 
  • Update Procedures and Protocols: Ensure that your operational protocols reflect your strong focus on security. Offer compliance services, audit preparation, evidence gathering, and other essential procedures to meet your clients' regulatory requirements. By optimizing your entire business model to emphasize your role as an MSSP, you reinforce your value proposition and enhance your credibility. 

Overall, transitioning from an MSP to an MSSP requires investing in standardizing operations, acquiring the right tools, and building a skilled team. By embracing this shift, you can unlock significant value and growth opportunities. Offering cybersecurity services positions you at the forefront of an ever-growing industry, enabling you to meet the increasing demand for robust protection.  

It may just be a one-letter shift in your title, but the changes that come with this transition are anything but small.