Accolades recognises the winners at this year's ARN IT Industry Awards - the best of the best. Over the course of the next few weeks, ARN will be running their stories. ARN continues to recognise the vendors that work hard to engage actively with their distributor and reseller ecosystem. This year’s award winners have assisted in helping partners transition to complex new business models such as the annuity billing that cloud computing demands, and provided solutions and channel programs to help their partner’s profitability.
This year’s Best Emerging Technology Initiative recognises the huge impact managed services has had on the channel by rewarding a vendor that has been hugely effective in engaging with partners in making that transition.
Cisco, Best Emerging Technology Initiative (Managed Services)
In a year controlled by discussions surrounding Cloud computing, and a year where partners from varying businesses have been turning to their vendors to support their Cloud migrations, it is only fit that the best emerging technology of the year award would go to a vendor with strength and coherence in its Cloud message.
That vendor is Cisco.
When ARN interviewed Cisco A/NZ director of partner business group, Sara Adams, she mentioned that channel programs, public commitment and emerging virtualisation trends are very strong focuses for the vendor, as it wanted to further develop the value it brought to the channel.
“A lot of vendors are struggling to figure out where Cloud should fit in and their strategy. These things would have resonated with the channel audience and I think we had an upper hand on is Cisco coming to market with a Cloud program that only goes through partners,” she said.
According to Adams this means that unlike companies that build, design and manage services that compete with channel partners, Cisco’s strategy supports them instead.
Cisco will be focusing massively on innovation and furthering company strategies in winning the award again next year. Adams outlined three strategies that it will focus on including:
- A number of channel programs designed specifically to support partners who sell and deliver cloud services (such as the Cisco Cloud Builder, which is for partners who design and implement cloud-ready infrastructure and the Cisco Cloud Provider, for partners offering public cloud services to the market).
- Cisco’s public commitment in having a partner-only model and commitment to supporting them in their cloud service offerings.
- Possibly branching out into virtual desktops (Cisco Virtualisation Experience Infrastructure or VXI) as its channel partners have identified it as an emerging trend.
“What’s driving this is IT has to date struggled to bring the worlds of desktop virtualisation and collaboration together.
With virtual desktops, partners can deliver a new collaboration to their customers that addresses the changing nature of work – that’s more mobile, virtual, visual and social with users demanding access to business information on any device, with any content,” Adams said.