The Velocity of Change

Peter : On Rad's Radar?
| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

The Velocity of Change

 I edited this message from President of the TCA, Jeff Ponts (also President of CloudMSP and COO/EVP of master agency Datatel Solutions). Much of what he says is poignant. The Velocity of Change is very striking to me.

The Velocity of Change and the Customer Experience

Next week many of you will be filling the tradeshow hall at the Cloud Partner Conference and Expo at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston September 16-18th. Channel Managers will be lined up to scan your badge, hand you tchotchkes, and updated flyers of their product offerings. Instead of asking vendors the traditional question of "tell me about your products and foot print," how about asking how they are handling the velocity of change and delivering a quality customer experience?

Maybe we need to be asking if the vendor's business support systems (BSS) can handle and add cloud based offerings to the mix. Additionally, are they positioned to work with and integrate other vendors across different disciplines offerings on an ad hoc basis? Just last week my company was asked to deliver an integrated solution combining an international provider, with both WAN and application optimization, satellite failover, with a security solution. Our partner already manages the desktops, IaaS, and line of business applications. In addition to all of this they are charged with integrating legacy platforms to cloud based applications that are managed in Asia, which is what started this entire process. If the above example looks scary you have a few choices. The first choice being change the way you pick vendors and solutions to represent, partner for the disciplines you lack, or head to the multitude of bars you can find along the Freedom Trail while in Boston to toast your past career.

We are in the middle of the perfect storm. Our customers are demanding virtualization, cloud computing, SaaS, big data, social media, marketing as a service (MaaS), mobile work force automation, and many more solutions all at the same time. The disruptors who have figured out how to deal with this velocity and deliver what the customer wants on demand are winning the game. Uber, who is the largest taxi company in the world, has never owned a vehicle, but gives a better experience than any taxi service. Facebook is the single largest content delivery platform in the world, but does not create any content, and has more than a billion followers. Airbnb will soon be booking more rooms than the world's largest hotel chains, without owning any real estate. With 140 character snippets the Arab Spring was launched via Twitter, what will the next movement look like?

Jim Swoyer of Swoyer Technologies, the creator of the TCA's Certified Telecom Professional (CTP) exam, states that telecom carriers were the original managed service providers. They delivered and managed telecom and datacenters far before the specialized world we are in today. The bones are there, but do the carriers have the infrastructure that can move with velocity? Tricia Wurts, president of Wurts & Associates, a 25-year channel consulting firm, notes that over the past few years, data and communications channels have been merging, competing, and collaborating in a way never before seen in the history of technology sales. Further, these are not the only channels that are selling technology. A number of new "channels" have developed with the maturation of mobile computing, big data and other areas. I believe the winner(s) of the next communications industry movement is yet to be discovered. They will be Uber like and deliver a seamless customer experience, using next breed BSS that can aggregate and integrate the pieces needed to build the ecosystem that customers demand.

Does all this seem way out in the future? You better think again. I know multiple startups and large companies working on solving the formula of handling the velocity of change while delivering an excellent customer experience, which means many of you who are reading this also know others working on the same formula.

Best Regards,

Jeffery Ponts

note:  I am seeing mid-sized companies already planning hybrid solutions of colocation, Rackspace/MS cloud and direct connect WAN. Security is an issue. BC/DR is a consideration. Lots of moving pieces. Not everyone is up to speed on everything -- agents, VARs, network admins are all in a learning phase. And quite frankly, a deer in the headlights phase as things are just changing too fast. Even for carriers who push products out but can't deliver on promises or support customers the way customers expect. This is the largest opportunity in our industry ever. Take advantage of it!]

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