As we’ve discussed in the previous two articles, businesses across the Asia-Pacific region are feeling the urgent need to transform their IT environments and do so in a highly scalable, resilient, and robust manner. For the channel, this is a massive opportunity, particularly considering that many of these enterprises are actively looking to adopt a managed services approach to their transformation.
This is the third article in a series that highlights how Telstra, in collaboration with other leading enterprises across Asia-Pacific, is assisting partners and their customers in achieving the potential of digital transformation. Read the part one here and part two here.
It was reported that the APAC managed services market enjoyed a year-on-year increase in annual contract value of 87 per cent in 2021. As noted in the report: “The global market today is driven by two mega-trends: the move to the cloud and digital transformation. COVID accelerated those moves by three to five years,” Steve Hall, partner and president of ISG said. “Business has clearly shifted, and if you’re lagging in your own strategy change, you may not be competitive much longer.”
Research from McKinsey shows that through the COVID-19 pandemic, most organisations had increased their rates of digital adoption. While this has helped them to weather the storm, it has meant IT environments in which services, technologies, and suppliers have also grown significantly. A sprawling IT environment introduces subsequent challenges into the organisation, including:
- Increased costs in managing so many vendors.
- Shadow IT and limited oversight into the whole-of-environment.
- Compromised security from links between technologies and applications not being fully considered.
- Inefficient procurement processes, as the organisation needs to grapple with an ever-more unwieldy environment.
For many of these organisations, the next step in ongoing transformation is to address these challenges, and that means they need to rationalise down and consolidate their environments. That’s where the partner comes in.
How partners can facilitate IT consolidation
The solution to the challenge of vendor consolidation is to streamline channel engagement; the fewer suppliers and partners an enterprise has, the better for it as it goes through the enormously complex transformation initiatives.
That means that enterprises benefit from having partners that can act as a “one-stop-shop,” providing them with a full suite of technology services that have been selected for their proven market capabilities. These partners can engage with their customers on a strategic level, offering expertise in building solutions, but for the end-user enterprise, it will all come through a single point of contact.
The additional benefit of being able to offer this “one-stop-shop” approach to the customer is that the partner can start to move up the value chain to become a value-adding partner or managed services provider, by offering consulting services that help minimise the need for the end-user to decide on the technology mix.
“To digitally transform, a one-stop-shop like Telstra can help incorporate connectivity, cloud, security, collaboration, and managed services, allowing you to concentrate on your core competencies,” Telstra Regional Head of Indirect Channels, Johnny Tan, said.
Finding the right technology provider
For the “one-stop-shop” approach to work, the channel partner needs to be able to rely on their provider to have the kind of reach, product mix, and technical support services to facilitate holistic solutions. “We harness an extensive network of resources, connections, knowledge and expertise - we accomplish so much more together and at lower customer acquisition costs,” Tan said.
To help formalise this form of engagement, Telstra’s Channels team collaborates closely with key vendor partners, including Cisco, Equinix, AWS, Microsoft Azure, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, and Dell Technologies, and in doing so, Telstra’s technology partners can help service their channel partners with proven, best-of-breed technologies to service their enterprise customers like as a one stop shop single provider.
Meanwhile, to provide key partners with technical assistance, Telstra Channels has an assembled Platinum Support Team to ensure an efficient project management and service delivery. The Telstra Platinum Support Team can assist with ordering, delivery and implementation of any turnkey projects that the partner might deliver. This will free the necessary operational resources for the enterprise customers to allow them to work on other critical and high-value strategic engagement.
Increasingly, enterprises across the Asia-Pacific region are relying on partners to deliver the technology solutions that will assist with their ongoing transformation efforts. With the current priority for many being to consolidate and rationalise, the partners that can be the single point of contact for as many technology needs as possible are the ones that are best placed to deliver meaningful value and a competitive edge for their customers.