Leveraging cloud brokering still a challenge for IT service providers

Posted by Mike Vizard on Mar 24, 2015 12:00:00 PM

A generally accepted piece of wisdom about cloud computing is that when there’s a need to broker services across multiple clouds, a significant opportunity is created for IT service providers.

A new survey conducted by Technology Business Research finds that of the 318 IT professionals using cloud services who were surveyed only about 32 percent have actually adopted cloud brokerage services, though. The survey does find that another third are planning to adopt them, but what’s not clear is to what degree organizations are actually using these services. The reason for this is that while there is no shortage of cloud computing platforms, most of them are semi-autonomous.

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Topics: IT Services Trends, Cloud Industry and Technology, Cloud Trends

Need for greater agility will drive service providers to invest in LSO software

Posted by Mike Vizard on Mar 19, 2015 2:00:00 PM

As IT becomes more complex to manage, providers of IT services are starting to come to terms with the idea that a major upgrade to the platforms they use to deliver those services is all but inevitable. In fact, a new report from the market research firm Rayno Media finds that the market for service provider lifecycle service orchestration (LSO) software could be valued at $2.75 billion by 2019.

The simple truth of the matter is that most of the processes used to manage IT are still far too manual. While advancements have been made in terms of provisioning virtual machines and now containers such as Docker, it still takes weeks to provision network services. To address that issue, there is a major migration on the horizon to software defined networking (SDNs) and eventually to network function virtualization (NFV) software.

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Topics: IT Services Trends, Cloud Industry and Technology

Demand for managed security services grows as threats increase

Posted by Mike Vizard on Mar 12, 2015 3:54:00 PM

With information security becoming a challenge that is too big for most organizations to handle, there’s now more interest in relying on third-party experts to manage it. In fact, a new study from ABI Research forecasts that demand for managed security services will grow from $15.4 billion this year to $32.9 billion in 2020. Much of that demand is likely to be driven by the line of business executives who are coming to the realization that no matter how skilled their internal IT organization is, the task of securing information these days is beyond the means of a single IT department.

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Topics: IT Security, IT Services Trends

Interest in IT automation rises to meet the challenge of scale

Posted by Mike Vizard on Mar 10, 2015 11:44:41 AM

Unlike large-scale web companies such as Facebook and Google, most IT organizations don’t have an excess of engineering talent to throw at IT challenges. Therefore it’s not surprising that a new survey conducted by EMC finds that many IT organizations are counting on advances in IT automation to help them manage IT at scale.

The survey of 10,451 IT business decision-makers also finds that 74 percent of the respondents said that increased reliance on automation is imperative to their business growth strategies.

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Topics: IT Services Trends, IT End User Management

Internal IT cloud spending trends towards fundamentals

Posted by Mike Vizard on Feb 6, 2015 12:00:00 PM

For all the hype surrounding cloud computing as transformational technology most usage of cloud computing by internal IT organizations can best be described as utilitarian.

For example, a new survey of 600 IT professionals by Spiceworks, a provider of IT management software, finds that only 12 percent of annual IT budgets will be spent on hosted/cloud-based projects in 2015. Of that, 18 percent will be allocated to email hosting, 16 percent to Web hosting, 13 percent for online backup/recovery, 7 percent for application hosting, and 6 percent for industry-specific apps.

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Topics: IT Services Trends, Cloud Trends

Hybrid clouds should spur demand for managed services

Posted by Mike Vizard on Jan 29, 2015 10:12:54 AM

For more years than most IT services firms would care to admit, selling managed services has been an exercise in frustration. As profitable as those services can be, internal IT teams remain firmly entrenched inside most organizations where they exist. In fact, a recent survey of 600 IT professionals released by Spiceworks, a provider of IT management tools, finds that only about 10 percent of the average IT budget is allocated to managed services.

But there is hope. A separate survey of 1,200 IT professionals conducted by ScienceLogic, a provider of IT monitoring software, finds that 62 percent admit they don’t have any visibility into what’s occurring in the cloud.

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Topics: IT Services Trends

Custom-priced productization for managed services

Posted by Achmad Chadran on Jan 28, 2015 1:53:20 PM

A services manager for a large and growing MSP shared some valuable insights recently during a conversation about Intronis’ fixed pricing. He enthusiastically offered that, compared to the per-gigabyte plans he was used to working with, fixed pricing vastly simplified planning and positively transformed forecasting. Moreover, his company now had greater flexibility to bundle and value-price their service offerings.

“That’s excellent,” I said. “So do you tier your services now?”

Here the response was much less definitive. “Well sorta-kinda. I’d say we tend more to size up the work effort and then custom-price our services per customer.”

Aha! Customized pricing for managed services….

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Topics: Growing Your MSP Business, MSP Marketing, Innovation and Ideas, IT Services Trends, Business Development

Recharting your MSP strategy in a cheap fuel economy

Posted by Achmad Chadran on Jan 5, 2015 1:17:51 PM

One of the headlines commanding our attention at the beginning of the year is the steep decline in the price of oil. According to Reuters, oil prices have dropped a precipitous 40 percent in the past five months. As individuals and as consumers, the prospects of cheap fuel are clear and compelling. CNN likens the impact to a $60 billion tax cut. Relief at the pump clearly means more money for such discretionary items as meals, entertainment, consumer electronics, and life’s other luxuries. But might cheap fuel spell similar benefits for managed service providers?

An armchair analysis yields both pluses and minuses to this story.

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Topics: IT Services Trends

IT Automation and the Cloud Redfine the IT Services Paradox

Posted by Mike Vizard on Sep 8, 2014 9:30:00 AM

A new survey of 312 enterprise IT customers conducted by Horses for Sources and KPMG finds that half of all existing outsourcing contracts are up for grabs because customers are dissatisfied with the level of value-added innovation being provided by the IT service provider.

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Topics: IT Services Trends

Coping with multiple instances of Windows

Posted by Mike Vizard on Sep 4, 2014 9:03:41 AM

The combined usage of Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 for the first time exceeds Windows XP. But despite the pulling of official support for Windows XP, there are still millions of instances of the venerable operating system that are still running. And just to make matter more interesting for IT service providers, Windows 9 is now on the horizon. 

For IT service providers this means that in addition to the multitude of non-Windows clients that are proliferating, chances there will ever be again a standard desktop computing environment for them to support are almost nil.

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Topics: IT Services Trends

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