The networking opportunity

The networking opportunity: Monetising cloud demand through partnership

20 April 2021 | Mark Daley

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Mark Daley

Blog Author | director of digital strategy & business development, Epsilon

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The cloud continues to be a massive driver for digital transformation in many enterprises today.

Gartner estimated that the public cloud services market experienced a 6.3% growth in 2020 despite a tumultuous year for businesses worldwide. This growing appetite for the cloud will continue to fuel business demand for secure, high-performance and scalable network connectivity.

For service providers, the momentum of this growth presents a huge opportunity to expand their offering to meet this demand. It is essential to differentiate in a market where end users are looking at price points and value-adds.

Service providers can capitalise on this opportunity by providing existing services with networking to deliver a more comprehensive solution to their customers. However, networking capabilities are not something that can be easily sourced or built overnight.

The Era of Everything On-Demand

Organisations are facing a number of challenges in the era of everything on-demand. There is the continual need to improve not just the user experience, but also the ‘application experience’. Enterprise customers need managed services that can meet their technical requirements to help their business grow and connect their infrastructure and cloud-based services. The ‘mash up’ of different applications to create new solutions has grown to industrial scale and needs the connectivity to enable it.

Enterprises are also experiencing new challenges across verticals. In hospitality, for example, new technologies are creating new expectations that need to be met to ensure guests have the best possible experience. Hotels need to have their guests’ data and information stored securely, and should be easily accessible should a guest have an enquiry about their stay. This seems simple enough, but requires networking, cloud, systems and applications to work together to make sure it all flows seamlessly.

Network and managed service providers (MSP) can become more well-positioned to help enterprises by understanding their challenges and how to solve them.

Network as a service (NaaS) has made it easier for service providers to gain access to the infrastructure they need, deliver network services to their customers and help them differentiate their overall offering. Finding the right network partner can make capturing growth more successful in the long term, with high-performance connectivity, network expertise and support.

Differentiating in a Commoditised Market

Without access to global networking, it can be difficult to meet new requirements due to the lack of presence. There is also a need to enable mission-critical networking between remote application and cloud locations. These are trends that are bringing real growth opportunities for network companies and MSPs.

These service providers must differentiate their offering to remain competitive in an increasingly commoditised market. How can they differentiate?

  • A Comprehensive End-to-End Service – Delivering a complete service ensures a seamless experience for customers, and better operational efficiency.
  • Offer New Services – Service providers need to be able to rapidly adapt their services to reflect the needs of their customers. For monetisation success, they must proactively react to the latest technology demands.
  • Pivot to Serve New Demand – For service providers to demonstrate scalability, they must be prepared to respond to the needs of an evolving industry. By pivoting their offerings, service providers can create value for their business and customers.
  • Continually Transform the Offering – Service providers need to constantly upscale and extend their services to ensure that innovation efforts are not slowed down.
  • Find the Right Partners – Having the right partner can accelerate a service provider’s innovation and capabilities. Best-in-class services and support can help reshape business opportunities.
  • Provide Seamless Delivery – Businesses should focus on ensuring solid delivery of services that take care of issues ahead of time.
  • Offer Predictable Costs – An effective price model and platform will significantly improve customer experiences by increasing transparency and visibility.
  • Plan for the Future – Providing predictive maintenance to customers helps to reduce the likelihood of network failures, resulting in lower maintenance costs.

Partnering for Long-Term Success

Networking underpins transformation, and it has become increasingly important for enterprises as they grow in the cloud. Network companies and MSPs can acquire new products and services and accelerate the delivery of their go-to-market strategies most effectively through channel partnership.

By adding new capabilities such as NaaS, service providers can go beyond traditional network services and offer flexible and scalable global connectivity. It is vital that they offer high-performance network services that enterprises need to connect their cloud-based platforms and services on a global scale. This adds value to their overall offering, enabling them to serve more of their customers’ needs and gain more sticky customers.