The emergence of resellable cloud-based IT device management services.
Cloud-based services are about benefiting from the scale of the Internet, without the hassle of operating all the hardware and software in-house. Exactly the features and capacity needed. The caveat is in the perceived lack of control, causing hesitance in organizations to act on the opportunity.
Startup companies often choose a cloud-based IT infrastructure from day one, dismissing the risks of the cloud as one of the smallest in their growth path. Large global organizations have the resources to buy and build their own private cloud infrastructures if they so wish. Now how about those left in the middle?
In search for the ideal model to balance the benefits with the perceived risks, small and medium sized businesses (SMBs) typically seek for advice and expertise. They call up the ones they always did: the value-added resellers (VARs) and IT service providers that helped them with IT before.
According to the 2011 State of Cloud Survey commissioned by Symantec, 3 out of 4 respondents turned to VARs, independent consultants, vendors’ professional service organizations or system integrators when implementing hybrid infrastructure or platform-as-a-service clouds.
While the trend is clear, the offering lags behind. How can the VARs and service providers that built their businesses around selling hardware and software licenses now grasp the opportunity and assume a new role as a provider of cloud-based services?
Building a cloud infrastructure is simply too demanding and expensive an effort to be viable for all but the largest VARs and service providers. However, as the value chain of cloud services is taking shape, there is a new path to take: resellable cloud-based services.
In cloud-based IT device management, as an example, there are distinct roles to be taken by different organizations. While a larger managed service provider (MSP) may technically provide the platform and the service, smaller VARs and service providers could well brand and resell the services to their SMB customers.
Where physical box moving loses ground, reselling cloud-based services may well make up for the loss – and a lot more.