Eye on AI: How AI, ChatGPT, and MSPs can work—and succeed—together

By Ben Liebing

Humans have had a tenuous relationship with technology ever since the first caveman chiseled away at a rock, rolled it down a hill, and called it a wheel. We, as a creative species, are naturally wary of that which we create, and as technology builds upon technology, it seems that every generation has a new question to answer: What is our relationship going to be with these machines?

A hot button issue for MSPs and all technologists (and really, everyone) today is, of course, the rise of AI, machine learning, and applications like ChatGPT.

Maybe you’re wary, like Elon Musk:

“There certainly will be job disruption,” the Tesla and SpaceX CEO says. “Because what’s going to happen is robots will be able to do everything better than us. … I mean all of us,” said Musk, speaking to the National Governors Association in July. “Yeah, I am not sure exactly what to do about this. This is really the scariest problem to me, I will tell you.”

Or maybe you’re more blithely optimistic like Mark Zuckerberg:

“I have pretty strong opinions on this,” says the Facebook—sorry, Meta—CEO. “I’m optimistic. I think you can build things and the world gets better. But with AI especially, I am really optimistic. And I think people who are naysayers and try to drum up these doomsday scenarios—I just, I don’t understand it. It’s really negative and in some ways I actually think it is pretty irresponsible.”

Google’s chief of AI, John Giannandrea, objects  “to the hype and the sort of sound bites that some people have been making,” he said at TechCrunch Disrupt SF. “I am definitely not worried about the AI apocalypse.”

But what does the future of work look like for MSPs, and what does it mean to you?

We’ll be kicking off a regular series titled Eye on AI that will focus on how MSPs are thinking about these issues and taking various perspectives and outlooks as we look to learn about, and interpret, the future together.

This summer, TMT CEO and Founder Robin Robins sat down with MSP leaders in a series titled Titans of the industry and discussed, among other things, the use of AI in their work.

Mark Shaw was one of those 2023 MSP Success Titans of the industry, as well as the CEO of StoredTech. He swears by developing partnerships and relationships with employees, clients, vendors and other MSPs. His philosophy is rooted in the human experience and expresses that partnership and people are the best ways to drive business forward.

So what did he tell Robins about AI?

OpenAI, or ChatGPT as most people know it, it’s monetized. You pay for tokens. It’s something that all these people bought these massively powerful tools. I almost pity the smaller MSPs because I know I’ve got at least a dozen people who have all sorts of competencies in this stuff. If I were a three- or four-man band, I don’t know how I’d keep up. It’s getting tougher and tougher,” he told Robin. “I know a lot of people are saying AI is a fad, but I think MSPs should be ready for it. I was reading an article the other day and it said, and I’m summarizing, that your MSP will not be replaced by AI, but your MSP will be replaced by an MSP that’s using AI. We’re already testing it. Is it going to be perfect? No. But you need to start figuring out how to use it.”

Read his full Titan interview HERE.

Mike Chaput, also a 2023 MSP Success Titan of the Industry, has a slightly different take. The president and CEO of Endsight understands the value of his workforce and says he sometimes even refers to Endsight as a farm company, where they develop talent from the ground up and create superstars.

At this point I am bullish on the long-term ability for AI in our industry, but not super bullish on it,” Chaput told Robins. “I think it’s going to affect the middle layer of our technical talent. I don’t think AI is going to be able to replace the experts. But, let’s say by 2028, maybe AI will be significantly better than it is now. But my thinking is to wait until things get mature and it starts to become standard, then adopt, because otherwise you’ll be chasing your tail.”

Read the 2023 MSP Success Titans of Industry special report and watch the videos HERE!

And then there’s 2023 Titan Daniel Garcia. The Virtual IT Group CEO is enjoying the explosive growth his company is seeing in Australia, but he isn’t relaxing just yet. He has plans to become a $1 billion company with future expansion overseas. And his company isn’t just optimistic about AI—they’re inventing it.

What we’ve created is basically an AI engine that classifies the tickets as they’re coming through. We then have a library, or an RPA platform, that has 60 workflow automations, which is made up of about 600 different automation packages that basically streamline all of the service-desk work,” Garcia told Robins. “Virtual IT Group was the creator of that and then spun a separate organization off. We’re seeing 30%, 40%, 50% of our service-desk work completed via automation and this platform on a week-to-week basis. And that creates huge leverage, especially for our size. It makes a huge difference when a lot of that work is being automated.”

So, what does the future really hold, and how big an impact will AI and machine learning have on YOUR business? Stay tuned as we continue to explore the fascinating and ever-changing world of ChatGPT, AI, and how the future of technology continues to evolve in Eye on AI.

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Ben Liebing is the lead writer for MSP Success, the gold standard in the MSP space, providing timely and meaningful content that gives readers the tools they need to be the BEST in the business. Have a tip, story, or comment? Ben would love to hear from you! Prior to joining MSP Success, Ben worked as a Marketing Director for Tesla Motors, reported for The Cincinnati Enquirer, and served in the United States Air Force. He has lived, worked, and traveled in over 40 countries around the world.



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