​Google - Climbing the cloud ladder in A/NZ

​Google - Climbing the cloud ladder in A/NZ

As businesses increasingly migrate to the skies, Google Cloud aims to capitalise on its standing as a cloud contender.

Renee Gamble - Country Manager of Australia and New Zealand, Google Cloud (Photo by Maria Stefina)

Renee Gamble - Country Manager of Australia and New Zealand, Google Cloud (Photo by Maria Stefina)

On top of that, Google is offering GPUs in its cloud both through the vendor’s managed services and its infrastructure-as-a-service product.

As a result, organisations intent on rolling out machine learning systems and algorithms can now take advantage of the new hardware.

“It’s definitely a strong play locally also,” Gamble added. “We are definitely looking at the core infrastructure workloads but analytics and intelligence is a differentiation that we do have.

“We have strong and unique capabilities in the analytics and the machine learning space. Because we offer these as managed services, it’s easier for customers and allows them to do some really intelligent and sophisticated things in the cloud without needing to invest in that talent themselves.

“They can focus on their core business and utilise our investment in building that capability.”

For Gamble, the local market is “no longer restricted” by the early mentality around cloud, allowing innovation to arise through data analytics, machine learning and the business intelligence.

“It opens up a whole new different set of opportunities for customers so they don’t need to necessarily have such a binary view,” Gamble observed.

“I think the market is really maturing and is really open to this new way of thought.”

New world order

Across the board, Australian and New Zealand enterprises are boosting usage and increasing spending on cloud services, with CIOs at a national level planning to increase investment within the next 12 months.

Consequently, the expanding channel ecosystem now plays host to the new breed of “born-in-the-cloud” partners, revolving around cloud-based delivery rather than traditional methods of the past.

Renee Gamble - Country Manager of Australia and New Zealand, Google Cloud
Renee Gamble - Country Manager of Australia and New Zealand, Google Cloud

While overlap can occur, the change is creating a new world order in cloud, driven by a trailblazing group of partners disrupting the status quo of on-premises hardware and licensed software players.

“We have a different channel focus compared to some of the traditional vendors,” Gamble acknowledged. “We are looking for partners that can help provide unique value to the customer.

“And that’s around the service piece of the puzzle they are providing, whether that be through GCP, specific development services they offer or how they’re going to manage those services.

“That’s our core play in the channel for the year ahead because we want to develop deeper relationships with core partners, not so much a deep breadth of community partnerships.”

Specific to fostering deeper relations with a core group of partners, Gamble’s approach to the channel seems to align with that of the market’s largest player, following AWS CEO Andy Jassy’s comments at AWS re:Invent in November.

For Jassy craves a fully committed ecosystem of partners and consultants, believing that the “strategy of hedging is the wrong one for this time”.

Spanning the states of Australia and New Zealand, Gamble acknowledged that Google still relies on a “long trail of community partners” serving the G Suite business, partners that “play an important role in the mid-market and enterprise spaces”.

But in response to calls to hone skill sets and expertise, Google’s partner base is growing through specialised players building out tailored capabilities.

“They are building out the kinds of capabilities and service offerings that can be monetised and scaled across either a vertical or a specific problem,” Gamble said. “And that’s the key, solving a problem for the customer is where a Google partner will be most valuable.

“We work in partnership with the customer and the partner to offer a deeper connection around what the business is trying to achieve through our technology.

“This includes deeper engagement with our engineering team and with the partners creating custom-built applications for the cloud.”

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