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Cloud Computing Channel Engagement - Is Your Paradigm Ready?

Tracy Delphia, Ph.D.


Cloud computing adoption is continuing to see phenomenal growth.  But the conversation has shifted gears in 2012 as businesses and their assessment of cloud computing reach a tipping point.  The need for cloud computing is evident – and inevitable.  But enterprise in particular is now pausing for a restorative catching of the breath as they begin to assess the appropriate use of cloud computing – what activities and data should best be stored in the cloud?  What should be kept on premise?  Who controls decisions about cloud computing in the organization?  Rather than making a mad dash to jump on the Cloud bandwagon, decision makers are now circling the wagons and crafting formal IT plans that address the how, when, and what of cloud computing for their companies.

Likewise, the Channel is also taking a little breather – most probably to lace up our proverbial shoelaces to be ready for the serious marathon race about to ensue.  HP’s announcement Tuesday about their reorganization combining the Personal Systems Group (PSG) and Imagining and Printing Group (IPG) is a perfect example of how manufacturers are positioning to consolidate resources and leverage opportunities farther up the stack.  Vyomesh Joshi – who is now leaving HP – talked to Partners just last month about the need to move up the stack from hardware to supplies, to services, to solutions.  This mirrors movement within the Cloud computing stack as well.  

Forrester’s Holger Kisker presented information on Cloud trends and predictions earlier this month in which he discussed the movement within Cloud computing offerings as well.  Commoditization is already beginning within cloud computing and we’ll see movement over the next 10-15 years as opportunities for higher margin try to stay ahead of the commodization curve.  Forrester predicts the trajectory as moving from Iaas to PaaS to SaaS and finally to Business Processes-as-a-Service as the opportunities move up the stack.  

For those of us working in the technology Channel, this means yet another paradigm shift.  Vendors and Partners alike are seeking stable ground in the ever shifting sands.  Channel revenues are shifting from transactional sales to a recurring revenue model.  That means that Vendors need to not only make programmatic adjustments, but they also need to reassess the value of existing partners and target recruitment, coverage and capacity issues; the characteristics of a successful partner today may not pass the Darwinian test as the channel continues to evolve in as short a time as just a year or two from now.   Vendors need to consider investing in key partners to help them transition their business – and partners likewise need to commit to vendors willing to make an invesment.  


Watch a recording of the live webinar HERE.

Channel Landscape for 2012
Working Magic in the Channel

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