Tuesday, 09 September 2014 18:50

LogMeIn to channel: cloud is an opportunity, not a threat


IT service providers and other channel players can benefit from the move to cloud-based systems if they play their cards right, according to one vendor.

Although "there was a lot of fear in the channel about cloud," the way it complicates infrastructure integration and management means it provides another way that managed service providers and others can better help their clients, LogMeIn vice president of channels Ted Roller (pictured) told iTWire.

Tools such as LogMeIn's AppGuru can help this process by "creating a better opportunity for channel partners to be effective," he said.

The growing complexity means it is harder for SMEs to cope without professional help, so there is an opportunity for resellers and others to provide more value to their customers or clients.

A good managed service provider can provide its customers with more value at a lower cost, which is a win for both sides.

At the same time, broadening the range of services delivered leads to increased customer stickiness, he said.

The traditional 'break/fix' model for consultants and small service providers is basically doomed, observed LogMeIn Asia Pacific vice president Andy Farquharson, with senior director of IT management products forecasting "a steep descent but a long tail" for that business model.

But these channel players are not going to get rich just by reselling cloud services, warned Mr Farquharson, rather they need to make their clients more productive.

According to Mr Roller, current break/fix players should start by evaluating the tools they can use to efficiently deliver managed services.

They should also look at their customer base to determine what each is spending in total, and then work out how they can optimise that expenditure to save money for the customer while increasing their own revenue by providing managed services.

Some US businesses have successfully gone as far as telling their customers to switch to this new model or be 'fired,' he said.

Mr Roller is in Australia to promote the company's new channel partner program for managed service providers, value added resellers and IT service providers that offers volume discounts, marketing support, channel-specific training, and early entry to LogMeIn's app reseller program.

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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