Tuesday, July 13, 2010

MPS is a NASA Crawler

NASA Crawler

From the MPSA website:

"Why is moving to selling Managed Print Services (MPS) such a challenge for so many? Of course if it were as simple as adding a new product or service to your existing portfolio of offerings, it would be significantly easier. However, it’s more than adding another product or trying a new sales approach. Moving to an MPS model is really a significant change to what you sell and how your business operates. It entails moving from hardware sales to selling professional service contracts, which in turn, affects product, cash flow, sales, operations and customer relationships. It’s a big change."

The red text above speaks volumes about the assumptions many would-be MPS providers have made. For a while now I have been talking about the "mps bandwagon" which, is a myth in and of itself.

There is no bandwagon...

If MPS is comparable to any vehicle it would be the NASA Crawler. The NASA Crawler (pictured above) is a gigantic, slow moving tank like transportation device. It is the vehicle that moves rocket ships into place for take off.

In many ways MPS is (in a metaphorical sense) comparable to the NASA Crawler. People who think they are just going to launch there own MPS program because the iron is hot and it seems like "the thing to do" are in effect deciding to build and man a crawler, mistakenly thinking that it will be a simple, cookie cutter process... enter the bandwagon....

CRUNCH! What was that?

That is the MPS crawler crushing your presumptions.

For those who have been in the trenches of MPS since the early 1990's MPS is not a challenge. However, that is because it has been developed for years through trial an error by companies like Expert Laser Services, Printelligent, and other industry veterans that have in effect, created and evolved MPS to what it is today.

It took a while, the crawler moved slowly, one contract at a time. Until finally the launchpad was ready...

5...4...3...2...1... BLASTOFF! < Getting to this point does not come from adding another product or trying a new sales approach.

While there is a wealth of knowledge about MPS and organizations like the MPSA and the Photizo Group to help those who are serious about entering this industry reach their goals, the process is still a major commitment. MPS is not a fad, it is not easy. You can not go to Vegas for a week long seminar and expect to return as an MPS professional.

As we move further into the future the trenches will reveal who the real MPS providers are.

If you are considering signing a contract with an MPS provider, once again I implore you, do your homework and ask yourself, does your provider drive a wagon or a crawler?

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