Have you ever wondered if your IT provider has ulterior motives with their recommendations? Managed Service Providers (MSPs) play a pivotal role in helping businesses manage their technology infrastructure, software, and processes efficiently. However, behind the scenes, a well-kept secret lurks: the industry has become riddled with predatory sales tactics designed to take advantage of customers. As organizations rely heavily on MSPs, understanding the implications of these practices is crucial for making informed decisions.

Deceptive Sales Tactics

Imagine yourself at an automotive service center, bringing your car in for a routine oil change. As you discuss the necessary maintenance, your friendly technician insists on additional work: new tires, windshield wipers, and a transmission flush, despite their lack of actual necessity. The less informed you are, the more additional work they may recommend.

Long gone are the days of your trustworthy neighborhood mechanic as these tactics have become widespread in the automotive industry. Most people are aware and on guard at the mechanic’s shop, but many customers do not realize how commonplace these tactics have become within the managed services industry. 

Stickiness Means Getting Stuck 

In the Managed Services Provider industry, there is widespread encouragement for employing contrived tactics aimed at making it difficult for customers to leave a service provider. These tactics, often referred to as ‘stickiness,’ focus on increasing customer retention through methods that create considerable discomfort when attempting to switch providers. As an example, MSPs frequently employ proprietary or MSP-focused IT management software, anti-virus, and other critical systems. Their deliberate strategy involves creating a reliance on the service provider, which will go away if service is cancelled. Additionally, some providers directly own critical components of the customer’s IT infrastructure, offering them as a service.

By intentionally creating dependencies and owning critical aspects of a customer’s IT infrastructure, providers are actively limiting customers’ ability to switch to better alternatives. For those customers who become aware of these tactics, the lack of flexibility can lead to frustration, increased costs, and a feeling of being trapped. Customers should be cautious when encountering such practices and carefully evaluate the long-term implications before committing to a service provider.

Hidden Incentives for Technicians

It’s not uncommon for MSPs to covertly promote products or services that maximize commissions, steering clients towards solutions that may not be the most suitable or cost-effective for their needs. While many recognize that most salespeople work on commission, they are often taken aback to discover that technicians operate under a similar model. Surprisingly, many IT service providers incentivize their technicians to prioritize recommending software or hardware that offers high commissions or manufacturer incentives, even if those options are not the most practical for the client’s specific requirements.

Manufacturers also actively incentivize MSPs with rewards and rebates to sell their products, with greater rewards for products that are end-of-life or untested, leaving customers vulnerable when issues inevitably arise. These practices promote a culture of prioritizing financial gains over the genuine interests of the client, which can cast a doubt on the industry’s overall integrity and trustworthiness.

Why Transparency in IT Matters 

Understanding the motivations behind service recommendations empowers clients to make informed decisions confidently, however, clients are often presented with a vague understanding of the products they are sold. Commissioned product recommendations made by technical staff are “anti-customer,” prioritizing the sale of specific products rather than addressing the needs of the customer. These practices pursue short-term gains, cultivating a culture centered around exploiting the customer rather than employing mutual respect and shared success. 

MSP The Right Way

At the heart of a genuine trusted IT provider lies integrity and transparency, with an unyielding commitment to prioritize clients above short-term gains. Virtuas operates free of sales quotas and commissions, fostering a culture where client needs take priority.

Our mission is to build enduring client relationships based on the quality of our work rather than resorting to predatory means, aiming to empower clients to thrive without manufactured dependency on our services. As a Certified B Corp, our dedication lies in elevating the customer experience, with the understanding that profit naturally follows exceptional service, rather than it being our primary objective.



Our team @Virtuas