Tim Alexander, Senior Director of Alliances EMEA at Snowflake makes the case for managed services infrastructure and its importance when developing a mutually beneficial relationship between partners and customers.
Last year, the channel faced one of the most uncertain years on record. As the pandemic rewrote the notion of the traditional office, customers grappled with shifting their channel budgets to support a remote workforce. For the channel, the immediate and sustained impact of the ‘new normal’ was a significant dip in on-premises infrastructure as demand for collaboration and comms, security and cloud infrastructure increased rapidly.
This shift was a significant inflection point for the channel that underscored just how important it is for them to have cloud managed services in place for their customers. Research shows that the cloud managed services market has grown exponentially in recent years and is expected to soar from USD 62.4 billion in 2020 to USD 116.2 billion by 2025.
As well as providing capacity and communication to make working from home as seamless as possible for their employees, businesses have found that moving to a cloud managed services platform has given them significant benefits in how they service their customers. The change in consumer behaviour in the last 12 months has been difficult for businesses to keep up with, and even data-driven organisations have seen their data models lose impact in the disruption. Businesses are now looking for new ways to harness data driven strategies.
Looking ahead to 2021 and beyond, it’s clear that one of the technology legacies of 2020 is that many businesses will retain and develop the cloud strategies they adopted during the pandemic. With this in place, the question for channel partners is how can they stay ahead of their competitors and deliver value on top of this? Given this increased reliance on data, the answer is investing in a managed services solution that harnesses the data cloud. Entering a global network, managed by a dedicated cloud provider, where thousands of organisations store their data will give customers both flexibility and the insights required to make better business decisions.
A data-driven solution for customers
Cloud managed services not only save time for customers by outsourcing specific responsibilities but also offer considerable financial benefits. By outsourcing cloud maintenance support, companies don’t need to spend time hiring a larger IT team to maintain their cloud services. Staffing a full-time in-house team is extremely expensive, whereby expert cloud managed services providers can instead deliver round-the-clock, dedicated services at a fraction of the cost.
These benefits can be further amplified by investing in a channel partner that delivers solutions through the data cloud. For organisations to be successful in today’s data economy they must have a platform that enables them to make decisions based on increasingly granular data. A managed service solution delivered by the data cloud can unlock the value of a business’ data and eliminate silos across the company. Rich data can be connected, shared and utilised all in real-time by partners and customers who are part of the data cloud, without having issues of concurrency or data silos. With consumer predictability at an all time low, the ability to make quicker business decisions is a significant competitive advantage for customers.
This model means that not only does the customer get more time back for their IT teams to focus on the most important projects, but the organisation gets a more comprehensive, informed view of its business and customers. More time also gives small, medium and large businesses time to focus on innovating faster through managed services, on a budget that is respective to their goals and objectives.
With cloud managed services, channel partners will be safe in the knowledge that cloud providers are maintaining constant control of the cloud environment, continuously monitoring performance and ensuring any issues with the system are dealt with immediately. By proactively monitoring for potential issues, cloud providers can prevent any periods of downtime and can fix a problem remotely across any time zone.
Channel partners will also be reassured by the fact that their solutions are functioning at optimal levels throughout the day through the support of a cloud provider. With optimum bandwidth, data storage and uptime, channel providers can rest assured that their services will go uninterrupted, even under heavy workloads.
As the channel industry forges ahead into 2021, channel partners should look to embrace data-driven, low maintenance technology partners who can lead their customers to success in what will surely be another uncertain year. Cloud managed services have now become an essential extension of this journey. Using a service that provides a global network of data through the data cloud will empower companies and channel partners to stay competitive in an otherwise challenging landscape.
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