The cloud wars are over. The clouds won.
After a decade of fits and starts and not a small amount of handwringing in the enterprise and channel, the results are clear. Cloud computing is at once the present and the future of IT. End users want cloud for its ability to turn IT into an efficient engine of innovation and profit. Vendors are remaking entire portfolios and sales models to capture the cloud opportunity.
Now it’s the channel partners’ turn.
Witness some of the findings from our State of the U.S. Cloud Report: The average solution provider today earns between 11% and 15% of gross revenue from cloud sales. That number will be closer to 20% by the end of 2018. And only a small fraction of the channel – fewer than 6% of partners – doesn’t offer some flavor of cloud professional services. More than 70% of solution providers are offering managed services in support of cloud infrastructure.
If there’s a poster child for technology traction in our industry, cloud computing is it.
But while cloud offerings are quickly becoming a must-have for the well-rounded solution provider, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to cloud transformation in the channel. Scan the solution provider ecosystem and you’ll find businesses at every stage of cloud practice development and maturity.
At one end of the spectrum, the native cloud providers are purpose-built to deliver cloud computing services as a core part of their business model. At the other end, traditional, transactional hardware and software reseller shops are just getting a feel for what the cloud transformation – and the associated disruption – means for their organizations.
Most partners find themselves somewhere in the middle. Sold on the premise of cloud as a cornerstone of their evolving business strategy, they continue to wrestle with the changes necessary to evolve from value-added reseller to modern services provider.
Over the past year, Ingram Micro, Microsoft and The 2112 Group have been working together to help solution providers of every stripe and services maturity level chart and navigate the cloud journey. Our Cloud Altimeter Project maps the progress solution providers make in the course of their digital transformations no matter where they are in their evolution. Cloud Altimeter has given the channel powerful new ways to visualize and understand partner capabilities, competitiveness, and value in the evolving cloud marketplace.
At the heart of the project is The 2112 Group Cloud Altimeter, a free, web-based, self-assessment tool that lets solution providers discover how they fare against their peers and what they need to do to improve the value and competitiveness of their cloud practices.
The data at the core of the 2112 Cloud Altimeter comes from our annual cloud benchmarking studies. Once again this year, we’re looking to our best sources – the channel partners getting their hands dirty spinning up and running cloud services practices – to help provide the framework by which all solution providers can succeed in the cloud era. And if helping improve cloud prospects for the channel at large isn’t enough incentive, our friends at Microsoft are offering up a chance to win a 13-inch Surface Book to a randomly selected participant.
Help us help you by taking the 2018 cloud benchmark survey today. The survey takes just a few minutes, and if you choose to register, we’ll enter you in the raffle for the Microsoft Surface Book.
Cloud computing is nothing short of an imperative – a key element in the next generation of nimble, innovative, hyperconnected businesses. Ingram Micro, Microsoft and 2112 remain committed to helping channel partners make a smooth, successful transition to cloud computing as a firm foundation for future growth.