Recurring revenue is the key to wealth in the IT industry, and Managed Services is the key to recurring revenue. Let ConnectWise drive your managed service process.
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Integrate to a growing list of best of breed MSP Tools:
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MSP Software Feature List
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- Integration to Invoicing
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I can only speak for the service side as that is the area of Connectwise (CW) I work with primarily.
There is a lot of valuable data collected by CW, the usefulness of it easily determined by the CW customer. I wager that any customer, given they have the talent on hand, could gather enough data from CW to run their operation very well. For this area I would give CW five stars.
Their email connector and the system built around it works very well.
Here are the areas that need improvement:
Reporting is weak. Quite weak actually. While some decent canned reports exist, it appears that CW runs under the philosophy of letting their customers create their own. This has many pros for CW, but they should really offer more.
It is FAR TOO LABORIOUS to perform common heavily used functions: Ticket creation, Time entry, managing attachments, etc. If one counts their mouse clicks as they navigate, you will often find it taking two hands to count the clicks required to perform something as simple as getting a start/end time entered into the system.
CW has greatly improved the UI from where it was two years ago, but they need serious help with the design in terms of what I just mentioned. When working on multiple "hot" items, the UI quickly becomes a hindrance, so much so that you're BP will likely rise by 5-10% because of it.
Cloud Performance: I find it difficult to experience response times less than 4 seconds and frequently see this rise to the range of 10 seconds. By itself this isn't terribly bad, however, (see previous point) add in the extra clicks required to navigate, and I find myself wishing for a 56k modem instead.
All in all it's a solid product. CW is continuing to make improvements according to customer input, and this is a good thing. I can't say we made a poor choice in selecting CW. I just hope they improve these areas.
The web interface is prone to slowness and doesn't handle latency at all. There is no keyboard shortcut to save the ticket, so say hello to RSI and lots of manual clicking to just get a ticket created and assigned. It takes about 5-7 minutes on average to cut a normal password reset ticket out. Managenow, HEAT and other service tools I've used have been FAR FAR FAR better than this waste of time. In order to get an accurate reporting picture, management has made it so that we need to assign the ticket to several different boards to change one status. If you need to change a procedure operationally in order to get your reporting accurate, then you have bad reporting integration too!!
Terrible service, never answer emails or calls. I'm glad our company tested ConnectWise for our marketing department before utilizing them for service. I would trust all of these 1 star ratings!! Companies do make dummy accounts for great reviews.
extremely and needlessly complex, time consuming, and confusing. This is coming from an employee of an IT company. When using this product I receive constant customer complaints because the invoices are confusing and inaccurate. Support is horrible and often takes days to answer a simple problem. I would never recommend this product to anyone. avoid at all costs.
I've used ConnectWise as a sales rep at two companies now.
My current company Southern Data Solutions rolled out ConnectWise in June of 2013. At the time we were just scratching the surface and so it seemed overwhelming to know where to start. However, the more we've dug in, trained, and interfaced with the CW support staff, the more we've uncovered ways to leverage our investment.
We provide professional and managed services to our customers so as a salesman and account manager it's helpful to have a tool that I can use during the full sales cycle on to managing existing and on-boarded accounts and increase profitability with our existing base. I have found the marketing campaigns and tracks particularly helpful. The integration to Quosal is seamless and impressive. Working and closing opportunities and maintaining client relations is easy and great for weekly reporting. I've also found the support team helpful when we needed assistance.
This isn't to say CW hasn't had it's hangups from time to time with rollouts of new editions but we have found a responsive team to help at CW to help with the growing pains.
I recommend it for any company that provides professional services since the service and project boards provide good interaction between operations and sales.
Here is an attempt to provide a real review that will help you depending on the state of your organization.
ConnectWise has seen a great deal of success by marketing through IT small business peer groups. As a former member of one of them, I can tell you that the average size of these participating companies is less than 10 employees.
If you are a small organization with no tools, freeware, and/or disparate tools, the product will likely seem like a holy grail and will indeed improve your business by leaps and bounds. The real attraction is a fairly good ticketing and ticketing labor invoice system. And, if you have no CRM solution, something is going to be better than nothing, so you will think it's a pretty darn good overall tool for managing customers and potential customers.
The reality, however, is that the product does not compare to any leading software in terms of abilities and functionality. If you have spent any time in a market leading financial, CRM, or ERP solution, you will most certainly realize that the product is horribly painful to use and has significant inefficiencies. Functions require more steps, take longer, and many of the things you wish to do you simply will not be able to. The interface has very limited options for customizing the data fields you desire, and removing those you don't. Reporting is is flat out awful. The CRM system is the worst I've had the misfortune of trying to use.
My perspective is that you should only consider it as a ticketing system. In turn, you need to weigh the cost of that ticketing system against alternate solutions, consider integration costs, or more likely costs of time spent on manual processes between systems due to no integration.
Also, feedback from my peers suggests that there is often some level of buyers remorse, mostly in the fact that they spend so much to get into the product that they feel stuck and continue to renew etc and spend money on a system they don't like.
We Purchased Connect wise Back in June 2013
We paid for the Support install and integration which has never happened (Its now November 2013)
After they Installed the Base Product, which they would not let us install our selves,We found a security whole that allowed us access to the administrator password on all customer and cloud based services (yes there hosted service too). (It took them a while to resolve this issue) when we reported the issue they never called us back to see how we found this fault.
Basically the product was developed with its config files unencrypted within a web accessible folder.
Since this point we have had no real reply from Conenctwise
Their support is non existed for anyone out of thier time zone, so if your in Australia looking at this product stay clear.
They will only "reach out to you" (their favourite phrase) by email and never answer you questions
(I've payed installation costs but never had the installation completed)
"THE WORST COMPANY WE HAVE EVER DELT WITH, BY FAR"
We have been a committed partner of CW for 4 years and use almost all areas of it's functionality. While some are better than others (CRM is poor) the overall benefit of it's wide scope has been really useful. Unfortunately without fail every new release has added more problems than it fixes. The support are fairly tireless in trying to help but all serious issues generally fall out of their hands as known issues or the ubiquitous excuse of "enhancement requests" (read poorly designed features that need fixing)
Development releases are now more rolling in nature which is a response to complaints about the delayed bath releases. Unfortunately the batch releases came about due to serious problems with the lack of control on ad hoc patches. Neither of these changes address the issue of poor development and testing practices but the message from CW is that development problems are now a thing of the past.
My latest experience was a complaint about a number of core known issues that have been outstanding too long (including poor general performance). Adding to the concerns about weak development the customer service team did nothing but send automatic emails and close of my complaint without any discussion. Further complaints to the customer service manager have resulted in no action taken or response provided.
This leaves a very strong impression of Arnie Bellini expecting that we are now tied in following the investment of time and money in the software, and therefore are not going anywhere. This is not the case for us but may be enough to keep other partners from leaving.
Awful product. Inflexible and poor reporting. Poor support. We've been using Connectwise for a few years now, fortunately our contract is coming to an end soon. No web-to-lead functionality, uploads contacts using Company as unique ID (instead of something more unique like a web address or email...so you get duplicate contacts), poor campaign and group management, no custom reporting, can't use custom fields...and the list goes on.
If you plan to use this product, you better be a guru in excel, that's the only way you'll get the information you want out of it.
We've been with Connectwise for several years now and there are many things that make this the tool invaluable for our organization. Integration is a key piece of our business puzzle and ConnectWise has that in spades. Almost all of our key vendors have hooks into the CW system and the open API allows us to do even more should we choose to go that route in the future. Automation and workflows are also something we rely on heavily within CW.
Not to make it sound like we're Kool-Aid drinkers, there are also some things that could be better. We use a 3rd party reporting tool to send out reports to our clients. Also support can sometimes be tricky to deal with. The online chat has been a huge plus and they are available after hours and weekends which is perfect for me because that's typically when I have time to make requests. When the chat support can't answer the questions, that's when things can sometimes go into a black hole but that is rare and email support typically takes a lot longer to get a response from.
Everyone I have ever come in contact with at CW seems to genuinely care and IT Nation (the annual conference) is second to none in the industry. CW has been, is and will continue to be one of our key partners and overall we have been very satisfied with our decision to use them as our PSA tool.
My company Evolve IT Australia originally signed up as a Connectwise partner since 2007 simply to manage our recently created client agreements and have some integration and communication with our RMM tool but our attitude towards the importance this product would play in our business instantly changed once we set it up and saw the financial benefits within the first 30 days alone. It was then and only then that we decided that this will be our business platform for all areas of our business. Like any other PSA or RMM tool, to maximise the potential of the product, you MUST set aside time to properly plan, train, implement and empower your team to be part of the process. I believe these in conjunction with purchasing Connectwise are the keys to success with implementing a PSA.
We use most almost all areas of Connectwise with a real focus on the Sales, Accounting and RMM integration pieces. To have flow right from the opportunity stage, to the quote, to the purchase order, invoice, general ledger and then back out to managing the asset with agreements, renewals etc, it covers every aspect of our business returning instant value and meeting our recurring revenue goals.
Connectwise offers a training and resource area like no other that we have seen from a vendor. There is more education resources and training videos than you can ever apply or use. To be able to assign a category of training for an employee to complete and successfully pass in order to start their job/role as well as ongoing training as roles change or the business grows is invaluable. The training and successful passing of free online courses in the university is part of our on boarding process of a new staff member. The support is fantastic (especially love the Live Chat support), discussion forums are VERY active and most of our suggestions over the years for enhancements that we have submitted have now been chosen and built into Connectwise.
Finally I think the strength of Connectwise also comes from partners. As far as community is concerned, they have nailed it. From quarterly user groups where we come together to work with Connectwise and other partners to achieve better results for all, to their tight relationships with the other key vendors we use. These vendor relationships covering RMM tools, sales, security right through to reporting companies ensures we have the correct flow of information through our business.
If you are hoping to purchase a PSA as a “magic pill” to fix your business like many companies have done with purchasing RMM tools, remember that nothing much will change until you set aside plenty of time to properly plan, train, implement and empower your team to be part of the process. Connectwise now runs my business and since 2007, I have never looked back.
My company has been on Connectwise for 3 years. I have seen the other posts here and feel it necessary to give my experience with the product. When I started with Connectwise the add-on features and quoting options were explained to me. Not to mention all very useful. The integration with several quoting tools (Quosal, Quotewerks, and Channel Online), integrations with several RMM tools (Kaseya, Labtech, N-Able, etc…), and the Connectwise Mobile have all been invaluable options for us. They allow us to use Connectwise as a tool that fits our business the way we choose to use it.
Another thing I have always been very impressed with is the Connectwise University. I think the other posting person may have not noticed what is in there. The library of step-by-step guides in videos is massive. There are hundreds of them, and they are well categorized to be able to drop in and see a specific subject you are interested in.
In other posts I also saw mention of horrible support. I find their support is typically very responsive and easy to get a hold of. The support chat option works very well.
I think the real missing link for many Connectwise users happens when they don’t engage in the Connectwise Community. This is the real gem of Connectwise. I don’t care what software you compare it against, there is nothing else like what Connectwise has built. They have quarterly user’s group meetings, an annual summit, and excellent forums for users. This more than any other part makes Connectwise worth every single penny. I have never seen a company invest in this like Connectwise has.
Sure, something in your setup may be funny, or you don’t like the ticket flow. Come to a user’s group or the online forum and ask the question once and get answers from real companies that use it every day. I love it, I wouldn’t even dream of using anything else.
I am a ConnectWise user since 2005. We bought into PSA software for one main reason; because we were not capturing all billable time. The system has paid for itself several times over on that fact alone. However, we utilize ConnectWise for so many things in our business it would be difficult to list them all! Our business is inter-woven into ConnectWise. For example, opening a ticket (either by the customer or our techs or by RMM automation) kicks off workflow and automated processes that we could no longer effectively replicate manually. We deliver better, consistant service to our customers through ConnectWise.
It does take a significant investment of time to learn the software and to really integrate it with your business and processes. But ConnectWise really shines at that too. There is an incredible community of staff and users who are more than willing to help. ConnectWise has an online University that is phenomenal, online forums filled with active users, well attended quarterly user group meetings around the world, and of course, IT Nation, a huge conference in Orlando each November. Last year, I think there were 1200 attendees. Aside from the great social events, the education and networking factors are second to none.
For anyone experiencing frustration communicating with ConnectWise, I suggest you probably just need some help navigating the organization. ConnectWise staffers care more about their customers than any of our other vendors. Start by finding out who runs your local user group (email@example.com), and ask for help getting connected to the right people.
We have been a ConnectWise Partner for more than 8 years and could not run my business without it. Of course we have had technical difficulties, but I will say they have always worked through them with us, and management is always availiable to help you if you need it. The software has grown and progressed very nicely over the years. My techs are loving the new mobile app and helps them keep time current and up to date, which I love!!
We are at the end of month two since install. One email was received letting us know the installation was complete and until this week that is all we have heard from the company. As part of our set up fee we were supposed to have a two hour training session - this has not happened. A rep finally contacted us this week about the training by email, I left a voice mail with available times, and received a reply that she needed to contact her supervisor. When we first looked at Connectwise our decision was narrowed down to it and Autotask. Autotask was much more segmented with add ons and our sales rep assured us everything was included. Now that we are in it we find that the mobile add is an additional fee, the quickbooks integration is extra, and quoting requires purchase of Quosal according to support. We feel as if these were details that should have been included in the sales process. Instead we were told that everything was included with our purchase and now we are being told that we were not specific enough in our questions. All told this seems like a good platform but training is limited to online videos and different answers are given by support depending on the rep spoken to. Not highly recommended at this point.
Since September 2009, I have been using ConnectWise and LOVE it! At times there have been situations where the support was spotty, but never with severe issues. In the beginning we spent a lot of time sorting out various minor problems as we had expected to do with any software of this caliber. The software ran on our in-house server back then, which added some management time and costs, but today we use the cloud version which is infinitely better than it was upon first release. We also use Labtech for our remote monitoring and love it.
ConnectWise is a monster that helps to run the vast majority of your business so if you're expecting to install it without any configuration or learning curve then you're barking up the wrong tree. Think of it like downloading a business plan template and attempting to use it to obtain funding without making any changes. Silly right? So take some time to learn the software and how it can improve your business processes before jumping into it with little to no regard.
I guess the moral of the story is, don't get all worked up about a few negative reviews regarding support because there will be bumps along the road. ConnectWise is an incredibly powerful and robust software that will improve your business by leaps and bounds. If it doesn't then you're not using it properly.
We've been on Connectwise for almost 10 years now and have seen the software change from a small start up that did time tracking, CRM, and billing to the powerhouse PSA it is today. The software continues to evolve and the Management Team has really started to listen to end users and get their feedback.
On top of being a core software that we rely on every day to run our business, the Community they have is AMAZING. That's where I get the most value from the Connectwise platform and that's where I get the most learning and improvements for my business. They care about the community and they invest in the community to help their partners grow.
We have been a CW client since 2004. The ability to maintain all client information in once place for both sales and service has been invaluable. The product that we installed in 2004 is not the product we use today. It has morphed and grown through updates and upgrades into a product that has become more and more usable and relevant to us. Our primary takeaway from CW is accountablity. We can understand and measure the efforts of our sales staff and our engineers. We are also able to forecast future business through opportunities. Support has been very good for us. We are completely happy with the product and partnership we have with CW.
I just became a recent cloud partner with Connectwise. I am extremely disappointed. Though the actual program is a useful tool getting anything done by support is ridiculous. I submitted a request to get some email connectors setup, it took 5 business days for a half ass email response from the tech, which could have been answered by a quick phone call. I responded immediately and now 2 business days later nothing. I have called asking for a manager. The response I always seem to get (same with the partner company Labtech) is they are in a meeting. Anyone else seeing these issues? I am wondering if I should even move forward with this software.
Awful software. We have been using it for about a year now, and it takes more time to create and add time to a ticket than it does to actually work the ticket. It's called a cache, but apparently the CW developers are unaware of why a bloated quasi-browser front end is a bad idea. I'm sure there is some reporting on the back end that is useful for management, but as a tech that has to use it dozens of times a day - I hate it. I've honestly thought about writing my own front end. Every single step requires far too much complexity. Even entering time is cumbersome.
I'm sure all the complexity adds up to some nice back office reporting and tracking - but from one of the grunts who has to use it all day, I can say look somewhere else.
Our company has been using ConnectWise for almost two years and I cannot wait to move to another platform. Their support has been horribly slow, our cloud-hosted solution has been slow, and our experience in general has been terrible. They roll out updated with no apparent testing, which has taken down our company on invoicing days multiple times. You can't call for support without getting transferred to someones mailbox, which leaves you with chat or email as your only options. It seems like they couldn't care less about our business, as long as theirs keeps growing. I've tried to give them the benefit of the doubt and attribute these issues to growing pains, but it just doesn't appear to be the case.
There are so many intuitive reports that are not available. For example, if i want to know how much of product X have we sold in a certain date range, it isn't possible. Downstream IT and reselling CW to clients are both complete nightmares, and CW seems to just throw their hands up at both. The sales module, inventory/purchasing module, marketing capabilities, configurations, integrations with RMMs, etc. are all so cumbersome and complex that they are nearly unusable.
In an nutshell, CW does a lot of things okay, but does none of them well. It is very difficult to find someone at CW who actually cares about what you are going through or has any sort of pride in the service they are providing. I can't wait to get away from CW!
Kinda huge, kinda slow, but lots of value for the money.
CW has really helped us as far as sales tracking and integrating things a little more cleanly. We already had a product that did what CW does for support, asset management, and contact management, but we just shifted the $$$'s we were paying a developer over to ConnecWise and got so much more in return. It's funny, we went to the CW conference in 2006 and Arnie polled the audience for how many people use what modules. After ticketing and contacts, man, next to no one was using any of the other things (and I still don't use the project management, it is just to much trouble). But, the CRM and Sales tools are where the rubber meets the road folks. There may be better PSA tools that handle ticketing, or assets, or crm, but none do all the tricks as well as ConnectWise. As a bonus, CW has a prety active community that had broad knowledge of the product and how their businesses use it.
ConnectWise is an amazing PSA but the community and the peer support is just as good. ConnectWise has been instrumental in building our business.
We found ConnectWise in 2004 on a frantic search for something better than the Exchange-driven home grown system we had. One of the initial driving factors to our purchase was that this was a software package written by people who walk in our shoes and were originally trying to solve the exact same problems we had. The approach: profitablity through utilization and accountability. It was the single best purchase we made since we started in 1989 and had paid for itself in under 6 weeks. We never realized how much unbillable time oozed out the day of the average engineer until we were able to track it, and again didn't realize how many other opportunities we were missing.
What began as a single process has really helped us develop over the next several years. ConnectWise continued to develop the product, but an even larger value were the events, community activities, and education that helped break us out of "tunnel-vision" mode and get a much bigger picture of the industry in general. In short, it very well could have saved us from a slow and painful death. In fact, we had never even heard of "managed services" until then, but over the years we have formed relationships with other IT companies and vendors as a direct result of the ConnectWise community.
From a product standpoint, we have had outstanding success being able to effectively manage everything from standard service tickets to recurring agreements, projects, and even the elusive sales funnel. The open API integration has allowed communication with all of our RMM tools and even third party solutions that integrate into our website. Fewer products to manage = happier employees!
If you are looking for a new PSA, consider ConnectWise the entire IT EXPERIENCE rather than just a simple software solution, and realize that anybody can create a tool, but it takes a visionary company to create the community ConnectWise has - and when you learn to leverage that value, the other packages pale in comparison.
We've been using ConnectWise since 2003 (I think we were install #40 or something like that), and it's hard to imagine our business without it. Out of the gate, it added 10% to our bottom line just in terms of accurate and prompt billing for T&M work. Then, as Managed Services business took off, the tools and integration with the industry platforms allowed us to implement services that really help our clients.
They say you can't manage what you can't measure, and ConnectWise helps us measure EVERYTHING. We can track utilization and ROI quickly and accurately, and that makes us nimble, and THAT helps us and our clients.