Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Business technology isn’t what it once was. A little more than a decade ago, the system infrastructure consisted of servers, work stations, network components and the software manually loaded in each machine. The support process was primarily on site, with the occasional call center to walk users or the company’s IT staff through some primary diagnostics and repair steps.
A lot has changed, with the new business system environment encompassing extensive cloud platforms, a wealth of mobile devices and solutions. BYOD (bring your own device) and other consumer-oriented technology policies have made a significant impact on the way companies employ and leverage their technology investments—and solution providers have to be able to support all their needs.
At heart, MDM (mobile device management), cloud and managed services rely on the same business and technology policies that have been used for years. Even if the solutions and delivery methods have changed, SLAs continue to be essential to VAR/client relationships. Innovation is still critical to a solution provider’s success and the focus on a client’s real business issues and opportunities remains.
These concerns were discussed extensively during today’s IT Services and Support Community
panel discussion at the CompTIA Annual Member Meeting
(AMM). The “standing-room only” session covered a number of hot topics, including the impact of consumerization and cloud technologies on support and service programs. Moderated by Howard Cohen, senior resultant with the TechChannel Partners’ Results Group, the panel of industry experts included:
- Bob Godgart, managing partner for ChannelEyes and chairman of CompTIA,
- Scott Chatten, senior director of Services and Support Division, Sharp Electronics,
- Dave Smith, vice president at CompuCom Systems and
- Michael Toto, VP of strategic global alliances, Verizon Enterprise Solutions.
Toto summarized the mobility and convergence opportunities with one key takeaway, “MDM is basically a matter of managing assets and configuring data.” The group also came to a consensus on the best cloud opportunities for solution providers, highlighting the importance of moving more configurations to the virtual (off site) environments. When the applications AND user customized settings reside outside an individual device, the restoration process after a failure or loss is much easier for all involved. Just like the iCloud, the ability to instantly reinstate data and custom configuration saves time and keeps support costs low, both essential to ensuring greater profitability for providers.
The panel also agreed the convergence of multiple technologies and platforms will help VARs and MSPs balance their bottom lines, bringing additional revenue opportunities and greater margins from an expanded portfolio of solutions and support options. As always, service will be the key differentiator, ensuring that the clients’ technology runs without effort…and can be restored the same way.
Learn more about the benefits of CompTIA IT Services and Support Community membership at www.comptia.org/membership/communities/servicesupport