Level Platforms Tightens Partnership with Microsoft

The managed services vendor's technology integration with Microsoft aims to make remote management easier for channel partners.

Level Platforms and Microsoft have teamed up to better integrate their remote management tools, making it easier for solution providers to take advantage of Microsofts technology.

As a result, Level Platforms channel partners now can access the capabilities of Microsofts System Center Essentials from Level Platforms central management console. The two companies are announcing the partnership July 10 in Denver, where Microsoft is holding its annual partner conference.

Redmond, Wash.-based Microsofts Essentials allow network administrators to manage various tasks involving servers and desktops, and also automate the system updates and the collection of necessary data.

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By integrating its managed services platform with Essentials, Level Platforms is addressing an often-repeated call from MSPs (managed services providers), who say they need integration between the remote management platforms they use and the technology at their client sites to be as effective as possible.

Through managed services, providers remotely monitor and manage their customers IT environments, taking a preventive approach to IT maintenance for which they bill customers utility-like monthly, quarterly or yearly fees.

"Businesses are facing increasingly complex IT environments and need solutions that enable them to more easily manage their infrastructure while reducing costs and maximizing their IT resources," Eric Berg, director of product management for Microsoft System Center products, said in a statement.

Level Platforms, of Ottawa, has about 2,500 partners in 23 countries, typically servicing customers with fewer than 100 seats.

The company, which is vying for market share against competitors such as N-able Technologies, also of Ottawa, and SilverBack Technologies, of Billerica, Mass., already had ties with Microsoft, having built its platform on Microsofts .Net Services technologies.

The integration with Essentials, said Level Platforms CEO Peter Sandiford, is a logical extension of that partnership that he expects will accelerate the adoption of the managed services model by solution providers across the IT channel.

Already, he said, Level Platforms owes much of its success to its work with Microsoft.

In addition to leveraging the technology of the worlds largest software vendor, Level Platforms also has a strategic partnership with the worlds biggest IT distributor, Ingram Micro, which has built its packaged managed services around Level Platforms software.

Justin Crotty, vice president of services at Ingram Micro, in Santa Ana, Calif., lauded Microsofts decision to work with Level Platforms "rather than seeking to create a competitive solution."