What is Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM)?

Connected applications - Remote monitoring and management

Remote monitoring and management (RMM) is the process of remotely monitoring and maintaining IT infrastructure. RMM software is mostly used by managed service providers (MSPs) to manage their clients’ IT systems, such as servers, desktops, laptops, and software, through locally installed agents. It enables them to control their clients’ IT operations without setting foot on-premises.

How Does RMM Work?

Deploying RMM requires an agent, which is a lightweight software installed on client servers, hypervisors, workstations, networking devices, laptops and all other devices connected to the network.

This agent allows technicians to get real-time insights on the health of the client’s IT environment. It also enables them to control and monitor remote devices.

The RMM agents can connect without VPN and firewalls, hence when you install an RMM agent onto a device, the RMM platform can recognize it from anywhere, allowing technicians to control devices remotely.

What Does RMM Software Do?

Here are few core functions of modern RMM tools:

  • Automatic discovery and inventory of all devices on the network
  • Remote monitoring and management of all endpoints
  • Automated software updates and patches on all managed devices on the network
  • Automated monitoring, alerting and remediation of IT incidents
  • Tracking and reporting of system status and issues

RMM tools have evolved and have become feature-rich, allowing technicians to do more than just monitoring. Now they can secure devices, back up data and automate many IT processes, easing the burden on themselves by offloading routine tasks.

Transition of Break-Fix IT Services to Fully Managed Services With RMM

In earlier days, small IT service providers usually had a team of a few IT professionals who would travel to the client’s location to analyze system issues and provide on-premise remedies. The providers would then be paid a fixed fee for the services rendered.

This ad hoc, “break-fix” approach towards client servicing meant that IT service providers would get paid only when organizations needed something to be fixed. This brought quite a bit of unpredictability with regards to revenue generation and sustaining business.

With the advent of RMM tools, IT service providers were able to transition to managed service providers by proactively monitoring and maintaining systems, detecting issues and fixing them, and moving to a subscription fee model. This new model provided more consistent revenue flows and better visibility into the health of the MSP business.

RMM for IT Departments?

While RMM software is predominantly used by MSPs, the functionalities of RMM cater to the needs of internal IT teams as well.

Organizations that have internal IT teams can leverage RMM tools to manage their endpoints, ensure maximum uptime and automate common IT processes.

Internal IT teams using RMM tools may not call them “RMM” per se since the commonly used terms are “endpoint management software” or “network monitoring software,” but in any case, the functions being used are the same.

Read more about endpoint management and network monitoring here.

Five Things to Look for in Your RMM Solution

With IT environments being more complex than ever, IT technicians need RMM tools that meet more than the most basic requirements.

Your RMM solution should help you improve your response times, boost operational efficiency and deliver better service, even with limited resources.

A few things you should look for in your RMM solution are:

  1. Centralized management: Your RMM should provide complete visibility of your IT environment and be able to monitor and control all your managed devices, regardless of the location, from a single centralized console.
  2. Automation capabilities: Automation of routine IT processes, such as server maintenance, software patch management and auto-remediation of issues, helps drive cost savings for MSPs and internal IT teams by reducing manual effort.
  3. Hassle-free integration: Your RMM solution should seamlessly integrate with antivirus/antimalware solutions for maximized endpoint security, help desk solutions for easy ticket management, and backup solutions for reliable recovery and uptime.
  4. Scalability: With the number of endpoints increasing every year, your ability to grow and meet the business needs of your clients depends on the scalability of your RMM solution.
  5. Productive Technician Experience: An RMM tool with a modern, clean and intuitive user interface (UI) increases efficiency and dramatically reduces staff training requirements.

Kaseya VSA, an RMM software enables MSPs to manage their essential functions from a single pane of glass. To learn more about RMM and how to make the best use of it, download our checklist Everything You Should Monitor With Your RMM.

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