Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Microsoft and HP announce combined SaaS Effort

From CRN - Microsoft Corp. and HP today announced a joint initiative that will enable value-added resellers (VARs) to benefit from a Software Plus Services (aka SaaS) business model by providing new revenue streams and helping them be strategic advisors to their clients. HP and Microsoft plan to equip VARs with comprehensive tools and guidance that will enable them to “private label” Microsoft’s solutions that are hosted by managed service providers.

So do you care? Should any of us care? The reality is we have to adapt to the changing marketplace if we want to continue to be relevant. I don’t see immediate impact in the SMB space with cloud computing, but I could be surprised as the economy could drive more companies to make the jump rather than a capital investment. But at the end of the day if we are doing our jobs well as trusted business advisors, most of our clients in the SMB will do what we lead them to do. I believe we need to understand the opportunities and requirements of being successful with the cloud and SaaS, TaaS or whatever other acronyms that will come up, but overall, we just need to always keep the customer needs top of mind and center of our actions and we will have a place in the technology ecosystem. Microsoft and HP are providing us tools to enable us to engage in this new playground that take out a significant portion of the cost of entry. There is a definite trade off in revenue opportunity as an expected result, but at least we can go to market with trusted technology partners that we can rely on to build a practice around. There is still much to learn and figure out, but it is time for all of us in the channel to get after the pending transition and prepare for the future. The waters will get muddy before they clear up again……my thoughts and I am sticking to them.

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