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Managed Services Awards Finalists - winners announced on Wednesday

Managed services projects are getting more innovative and moving beyond basic services. The judges’ report from the inaugural Managed Services Awards 2018 which has just reported the finalists in each of the categories shows a wide cross-section of types of entry. A strong showing in security is expected, but a variety of solutions shows perhaps the widening nature of the threats. The innovation categories proved most popular with a large number of entries and this shows how new thinking in a competitive marketplace is a strong sales point, says John Garratt, Editor of IT Europa, who is one of the judges.

The winners will be announced at the UK Managed Services and Hosting Summit 2018 on 19 September in London. The summit aims to cover the main issues and challenges facing the MSPs in 2018 and how they have moved on from earlier years in their maturity and scale. For example, Gartner’s Mark Paine (pictured) will cover the changing nature of the customer’s requirements in his keynote. Speakers have also been added on the marketing aspects which MSPs now see as key if they are to get their message out to potential customers. Building value with an eye on the merger and acquisition area will be addressed by technology M&A experts Hampleton Partners. Further details if the conference programme can be viewed at: http://mshsummit.com/agenda.php .

“The entry quality level is very high and this is perhaps not surprising, given the level of new thinking that is a feature of the sector,” says John Garratt, “We want to use these awards to help publicise the tremendous work going on in the managed services sector and build understanding among customers and potential customers.” Further information about the awards can be viewed at: http://www.mshsummit.com/awards/home .

 

The finalists: 

Best Public Sector MSP Project

Atlas Cloud Ltd
This project involved hosting the mission-critical design costing and project management software for the HS2 project in the cloud using NVIDIA vGPU technology. Rapid scale-up and down, security and compliance issues were just some of the challenges.
Carelink
A NHS Foundation Trust needed an IT managed service provided to deliver a safe, secure and comfortable environment for service users, relatives and carers communication and support. A robust, mission-critical and secure platform is hosted on high availability virtual servers.
Capita IT Services
Workspace Agility is based on cloud technologies from Microsoft and Citrix with enhanced user experience and a managed service wrap from Capita. It enables digital channels, self-service, self-heal, automation and increased flexibility for local government  users that need access to a Windows 10 environment from any device or browser.

Best Enterprise MSP Project

Advatek UK
Advatek has deployed a managed services solution to one of the biggest engineered steel providers in the UK with offices all over the globe, offering an infrastructure covering Security, Network, Storage, DR and virtualisation
CSI (nominated by IBM)
CSI were selected by a wealth management company as the partner to deliver the Managed Services IBM Power Cloud environment, together with Windows and Linux operations. Using the tools as a SaaS offering means it can outsource IT and focus on their clients, business operations and management
Maintel (nominated by Highlight (SLM))
Automation of applications and services alongside performance monitoring and supervision is critical for Maintel. Maintel embeds Highlight into all the services it builds and delivers to customers to provide clear and simple visibility into how, where and by whom critical business services and applications are being consumed.
Gamma (nominated by Highlight (SLM))
Gamma has helped customer Berendsen to upgrade from a basic DSL network to a more robust fibre network to cope with expanding business. Highlight has been set up and proactive monitoring and alerting mean Berendsen can now fix issues before they impact users or end customers.
Infinity IT Solutions
Infinity provides Tyrrells Crisps with a 24/7/365 fully outsourced managed service around the world supporting locations in Germany, Australia, United States and the UK. The Service Desk resolved an impressive 7,137 incidents in 2017, 100% of which were fulfilled within their respective SLA
Six Degrees
An international supplier of liquefied petroleum gases worked with Six Degrees on implementing a multi-cloud platform which delivers security, hosting, and voice and data services to streamline delivery operations in the UK, and is currently being rolled out across Europe
Spirit Data Capture Ltd
Spirit Data Capture specialises in sourcing, developing and deploying mobile enterprise solutions for a wide range of markets aiming at “one-stop-shop” where Spirit does all of the management, from initial logging through to resolution

Best SMB MSP Project

Cognition Foundry (nominated by IBM)
Cognition Foundry have created a service for start-ups to run innovative solutions. Using IBM LinuxONE running on an IBM z Systems mainframe and already using blockchain, it is now adding AI capabilities to this system
Frontline Consultancy
Frontline has implemented, hosted and supports a mobile device management (MDM) solution for field agents. The MDM solution (dWatch) enables companies to keep track of their business data anywhere, anytime whilst allowing employees to remain productive and work securely across all their devices
Infinity IT Solutions
Infinity's Monitoring & Management is a cloud-based agent that allows it to monitor the health of client's devices remotely – anywhere and anytime. It is suitable for a range of assets and platforms – Microsoft, OSX and Linux included
METCloud
METCloud is a cyber-secure hybrid cloud platform designed specifically for small and medium sized businesses aims to be not just a technical response but also offers support services to assist businesses in achieving and maintaining standards such as ISO27001, ISO9001, ISO22301, Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials PLUS
OryxAlign
A property management company needed a managed service partner to provide support, maintenance, and management of their IT infrastructure, with an extensive and critical Cisco network infrastructure. OryxAlign also offers full life-cycle analysis of the infrastructure installed across the portfolio sites to ensure the continued resilience and performance of the building applications and security
Symatrix
Symatrix Managed Services offers value by encompassing Oracle in the Cloud management including the continual improvement message of benefiting from the regularly released new functionality all under a single fixed price contract.
The PC Support Group
The project moved a charity’s email and file sharing systems to Microsoft Office 365, all in the cloud, removing the need for investment in local servers and reducing operating costs. Microsoft Azure was also added to the mix to manage user logins, removing the need for a new, on premise server, and the client discontinued its in-house IT support function, moving to The PC Support Group's fully managed, outsourced service

Most Innovative MSP

Annodata
Annodata’s work as an MSP derives from its roots as a provider of managed print services; rather than lead with technical solutions, Annodata works as a trusted advisor, identifying its clients’ risks, challenges and aims. This enables it to transform relatively basic deals into more significant and wide-reaching ones, and align workloads to where they will be best placed, whether that’s in a public cloud environment, private cloud or on-premises. 
BlueChip
Overseeing at least 700 businesses worldwide, Blue Chip saw how enterprises had a hunger for creating data-driven opportunities at a low and flexible cost. Speed, efficiency and flexibility are crucial factors for their client base and for picking up new business. With this in mind, Blue Chip established a software-defined data centre where it achieved  an “astounding reduction” in on-boarding time, from three months to just 1-2 days.
Gamma (nominated by Highlight (SLM))
Gamma has helped customer Berendsen to upgrade from a basic DSL network to a more robust fibre network to cope with expanding business. Highlight has been set up and proactive monitoring and alerting mean Berendsen can now fix issues before they impact users or end customers.
Kaseya
With anything less than 100% availability seen as a failure, today's MSPs are under mounting pressure to deliver superior management across the entire IT environment including workstations, servers, mobile devices and network infrastructure. The in-product automation platform provides users with a continuously expanding library of in-product automation produced by a crowdsourced army of over 100,000 Kaseya users on a daily basis.
METCloud
METCloud is a cyber-secure hybrid cloud platform designed specifically for small and medium sized businesses aims to be not just a technical response but also offers support services to assist businesses in achieving and maintaining standards such as ISO27001, ISO9001, ISO22301, Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials PLUS
Mirus IT Solutions
Mirus’ Apprentice Accelerator Scheme is a new initiative aiming to create over 20 apprentice roles across all departments, in the next two years. It also created a brand-new role with the sole purpose to mentor and develop apprentices.
NTT Com Managed Services
NTT Com Manages Services’ implementation of automation is a key differentiator. All aspects of service delivery including service ops, tech ops, and integration ops are included. The idea is not to just automate human tasks, but enable engineers to avoid doing non-automatable tasks, and provide them with timely information and insight so that they can make better and faster decisions.
Symatrix
Symatrix Managed Services offers value by encompassing Oracle in the Cloud management including the continual improvement message of benefiting from the regularly released new functionality all under a single fixed price contract.

Most Innovative Managed Service Solution (General)

BluJay Solutions
Among the managed services offered by BluJay are Logistics as a Service (LaaS) and Integration as a Service (IaaS). MessageBroker is a fully managed, best-practice B2B integration that cuts complexity and cost out of e-commerce trading
Capita IT Services
Workspace Agility is based on cloud technologies from Microsoft and Citrix with enhanced user experience and a managed service wrap from Capita. It enables digital channels, self-service, self-heal, automation and increased flexibility for users that need access to a Windows 10 environment from any device or browser.
CA Technologies
CA Unified Infrastructure Management (CA UIM) offers the differentiated features that help MSPs shrink this gap so they deliver the service innovations that yield more customer value, market share and profits. CA UIM provides a single, analytics-driven solution for proactively and efficiently managing modern, cloud and hybrid IT infrastructures
Continuum
Good talent is very scarce and by outsourcing to Continuum, businesses are able to fulfill client requirements. NOC technicians will troubleshoot and proactively address issues on monitored servers, and independently resolve alerts and tickets – further minimising downtime
Dynamify
Dynamify has created Twelve by Sodexo: an app-based canteen with no cash, no checkouts, and no queues. The app covers any need for office catering through novel features none of which are currently available in a traditional canteen set-up
Highlight
Highlight is a multi-tenanted, cloud-based network monitoring and reporting tool designed for sales, service management and operations teams to see clearly all IT services through a single pane of glass dashboard, rendered in near real time, enabling Managed Service Providers (MSP) to provide clear, transparent customer service and true business partnership through an easy-to-use graphical interface.
Hyve Managed Services
Through partnership with Equinix, Hyve offers a range of hosting, managed cloud, colocation and connectivity services backed by a locally based 24/7 service and support team; it has made its first transition to the US market with a data connectivity project between the US and LATAM.
IT Glue
A typical IT worker spends around 20% of their time searching for information, IT Glue reduces this number, improves efficiency and boosts bottom line profits. The solution aims to provide a solid foundation whilst improving customer satisfaction and perceived value as service desk operators are able to efficiently and accurately solve issues.
Jola
Jola offers an M2M management portal to allow resellers and their customers to manage 4G data SIMs globally. No other portal allows MSPs to order and manage data SIMs from all the networks, in the way Mobile Manager does with a managed 4G router as a satellite broadband replacement service.
Keepabl 
Keepabl's Privacy-as-a-Service solution solves GDPR headaches for organisations. The innovation is in the product philosophy, and the resulting value delivered to both MSP and customer. 
Node4
Originally providing infrastructure as a Cisco partner, Node4 now offers a range of products and services, including colocation, managed hosting, cloud infrastructure, and hosted unified communications. Node4 owns three UK data centres, with wholly owned infrastructure and operating systems so is therefore able to manage every service from beginning to end, all from the security of its own data centres.
Redstor
Redstor's unified data-management solution is built from the ground up as the perfect solution for Managed Service Providers, with multi-tenancy and centralised reporting. The solution combines cloud backup and recovery, disaster recovery, archiving and search, helping organisations to comply with data management and protection regulations

Most Innovative Managed Service Solution (Security)

Datto, Inc
Datto SIRIS is a Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR) solution built specifically for managed service providers (MSPs) to keep their clients' businesses running in the wake of a disaster. Advanced Backup Verification enables MSPs to run verification when the backup is taken, eliminating the need to scramble during recovery time
Mirus IT Solutions
Mirus’ Management System uses bespoke scripts and user defined fields (UDF's) inside our management system to help with automatic checking of devices and ticket logging. The installation of the Cryptoblocker application can be done without any manual intervention
ServiceControl Inc - Identity Maestro
Identity Maestro helps MSPs overcome the complexity of managing hybrid identities across multiple Cloud-based services and on-premises environments. Identity Maestro's key innovation is how it simplifies the provisioning, management, and licensing of digital identities for multiple customers – from a single pane of glass
WatchGuard Technologies
WatchGuard Total Security Suite for MSSPs empowers MSSPS to do more – through one partnership when faced with the same threats as large enterprises but without the same budgets or in-house expertise
Webroot
Webroot protects against cyberattacks across multiple threat vectors with purpose-built solutions for. In the past 12 months Webroot has empowered channels with the products and services that address the most common challenges they and their clients are faced with

Best Vertical Market Managed Service Solution

Flexera
Flexera's Software License Optimization solution assesses the current state of asset management maturity, builds the justification for a SAM and license optimization program, and develops best practice SAM processes and roadmaps for program implementation.
Plan-Net
Plan-Net's Shared Service says it is the only third party solution available that can claim to be completely aligned to the Legal industry and supporting only legal firms. It aims at allowing legal firms to cost-effectively augment the capacity and availability of their IT support service in a sustainable, seamless manner
ra Information Systems
ibcs has become a leading software management solution for the comprehensive management of flexible space providers. The system is developed completely in-house and is modular by design so it can be tailored to the specific needs of any business and budget, including Contract Management, Meetings, Conferencing & Events, Facilities Management, Digital Signage, Finance & Direct Debits and Management Reporting.

Best Cloud Platform-based Managed Service Solution

ANS Group
ANS' Managed Cloud offering enables public and commercial sector customers to optimise the efficiency of their cloud platform, while reducing spend. ANS GLASS is a platform which allows customers to view incidents and changes, projects, service level data and access the cloud cost explorer.
ConnectWise
ConnectWise Manage is a PSA tool that helps MSPs pull separate business tasks and information into a single application, giving MSPs the ability to manage critical business processes through a single pane of glass. The solution boasts a broad set of modules that covers all aspects of an MSP's business, giving users better visibility into all phases of their operations
Gridz (by zsah) 
Gridz is an automated multi-cloud management portal, not only for securely deploying virtual machines, but used as a quick pricing calculator and for custom visual infrastructure planning. It uses APIs from AWS to directly compare prices and make decisions within organisations, following best business practices and using contracts for fixed monthly costs.
Highlight
Highlight is a multi-tenanted, cloud-based network monitoring and reporting tool designed for sales, service management and operations teams to see clearly all IT services through a single pane of glass dashboard, rendered in near real time.
IT Glue
IT Glue provides a centralised hub for critical business information, removing the need for cumbersome spreadsheets, the risk of information loss and the dependency on knowledge locked inside someone's head
METCloud
METCloud’s vision is to be the global brand of choice for next generation cyber-secure cloud services. An advantage of METCloud is that it allows customers to scale and innovate, while maintaining a highly secure environment
Six Degrees
Six Degrees supplies and manages disaster recovery and backup, voice over IP, licensing, communications, migration services, and interconnections between the Azure and Six Degrees data centre platforms for a major energy company