September 15, 2015. Business Cloud Author: Scott Murphy

Why should partners build a Cloud business & how can Arrow help

A while ago I read an article from Timothy Hughes about Cloud and the premise was all about a scene from the film Interstellar. For those that haven’t seen it, the analogy is that Cloud is a wave and not a mountain. It’s not a static mass in the distance, it’s moving and moving fast.

What does this actually mean though? Having worked in enterprise IT for many years, working with all types of partners (SI,MSP, CSP, VARs etc) large and small, there is always some trend of technology or solution that’s the next big thing. Some come off (like virtualisation) and others don’t (later evolutions of tape, which ironically Cloud backup and storage has been replacing).

Well with Cloud, it’s coming. It’s not some buzz word with no growing business revenue associated to it. It’s not a mountain in the distance; it’s a tall, wide and fast wave. Cloud is growing and growing fast. Whether its end users leveraging a number of cloud solutions to meet a specific need or moving into Cloud in a big way. Vendors (legacy and born in cloud) working to develop their solutions in a cloud delivered platform or enabling Private Cloud for End Users, or partners looking how to best position and deliver Cloud with their unique value proposition wrapped around.

 

The Challenge & Opportunity 

You only have to look at Gartner, IDC or Cloud Industry Forum to see the market statistics showing expected growth in Cloud across all spectrums.

Cloud Services from Arrow

Add to this a recent stat which said that 80% of Cloud revenue is being sold directly between a Cloud provider and the end user. This for me represents a huge challenge to partners, as well as an enormous opportunity.

The challenge is one of timing and positioning. Partners need to have a clear and compelling value proposition aligned with their end user relationships, to position themselves in the middle of the cloud supply chain before it’s too late. The opportunity is such that no single cloud provider can deliver it all and this for me is where partners come into their own. They hold the key relationships. They know their customer. They can help their customers on their Cloud journey by helping them identify, evaluate, make a decision, provision, implement, support and manage their Cloud, whatever that looks like, to the maximum benefit to the end user customer.

 

Partner research 

Arrow recently undertook some research globally to help the team better understand the Cloud market and more importantly, the requirements of our vendors and partners to help everyone maximise the opportunity it represents.

The partner experience was I’m successful at selling an array of products to my customers.  I know there’s an opportunity with Cloud but I dont have the infrastructure in place to support it.” 

The partner view on Cloud was There’s tremendous potential but it’s a different business model that presents a huge financial risk. I need someone to make it an easy transition.” 

 

Partner challenges were;

  • Changing business models
  • Investing money and resources in a category that’s new
  • Selling services is a new and complex entry
  • Long term investment can see upside potential new revenue stream, a better way of doing business

The service provider experience was I’m successful at selling my Cloud services and clients see the value I bring. I would like to expand my offerings and deliver more to clients. I’m interested in understanding how Arrow can help me grow my business.” 

The service provider view on Cloud was I’m only tapping the surface of what my business could be in the Cloud space.”

 

Service Provider challenges were;

  • Must address the hybrid cloud model
  • Investing limited money and resources to grow
  • Don’t have the relationships to expand
  • Limited time to spend on complex operational tasks

 

How can Arrow help

Think big, start small!

Arrow believes our role in helping partners maximise the opportunity that cloud represents essentially boils down to 3 areas;

  • Agility – less risk with an established player who provides knowledge, sustainability and reduced costs
  • Time to market – rapid deployment with a single point of contact
  • Process optimisation – consolidate billings, financing, reporting compliance

  

Arrow the Cloud Enablers

We’ve created an Arrow Cloud Enablers programme, which is specifically designed to help partners build and drive a successful Cloud practice by progressing through a structured programme of deliverables from Arrow to help partners onboard, plan, then enable and execute a Cloud business revenue stream. Providing market insight, understanding the partner profile and transformational vision.

Moving into planning a execution based set of objectives which includes helping partners clearly define their value proposition and steps to transact Cloud business. Including support from Arrow and our Cloud providers to allow partners to execute demand generating activity, to generate, propose, win and support a growing, recurring Cloud revenue stream.

 

Some specific areas of value from Arrow on Cloud

Service Provider

1.       Operational efficiencies

2.       Financing

3.       Build solution as a team/ Arrow people

4.       Outreach of seller community

5.       Relationships and connections to make hybrid real\

 

Reseller

1.       Solution opportunity ecosystem, aggregation in one place, acceleration on front end

2.       Trusted advisor to move to reccurring revenue model

3.       Proper tools to stay competitive/more efficient

4.       Easy on-boarding, easy access

5.       Automated billing and provisioning

 

Want to engage? Contact Arrow, The Cloud Enablers!

Email: Arrowsphere.ecs.uk@arrow.com,

Call: 0800 983 2525

Visit: http://www.arrowthehub.co.uk/cloudenablers/

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