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DIVERSIFICATION ACROSS MANAGED SERVICES: REFLECTIONS ON DAY 2 OF ITEX 2017

Dave Leabeater & Andrew Palmer, 21 April 2017

Following Andrew Palmer and Dave Leabeater’s Day One report from Las Vegas, here’s their perspective on Day 2 of ITEX 2017 which focuses on diversifying Managed Services.

Dave’s Day 2 Summary:

Diversification across Managed Services/Solutions is the recurring theme to continued growth and performance in the US market, and it’s something we have been acknowledging at SER for some time.

Why?

  1. Differing technology life cycles
  2. Alternate Market Opportunities
  3. Customer Loyalty

Whilst Managed IT is, and has been the primary focus, expanding your portfolio into complementary areas which require less technical specialisation may provide a faster transition. Digital signage and Audio Visual products provide a different entry point to attract and secure new customers whilst leveraging off existing dealer infrastructure and expertise. The upside being to later obtain opportunities with that customer base in core office print/technology.

Another avenue utilised here by dealers is to provide a MPS offering across non-core office print (eg Thermal print, 3D print) which, as above, allows a broader scope of service offering with minimal to no additional investment in a dealer’s current staff and infrastructure.

Managed IT Security

If you choose the Managed IT path, be sure you have a security component in your offering which includes the following 5 elements or “layers” as noted at the seminar:

  1. Identification
  2. Protection
  3. Detection
  4. Response
  5. Recovery

The Managed IT security sector is experiencing 82% net margin, however if you are unable to RESPOND when an issue is detected and then RECOVER data so your client doesn’t experience any downtime, you will not be able to secure customers and develop long-term business relationships.

If you are still asking why there’s so much hype around ManagedServices/Solutions: Simply, the Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR) generated via Managed offerings of ANY nature, creates predictability for your business.

Two words which continued to be used over the last 2 days were Data and Optimisation.

Data: Utilise it to attract new and similar audience and if you play in the Managed IT space ensure you protect your clients’ data.

Optimisation: Fine tune efficiencies in your sales and services around your core business, so that you are well placed/positioned/poised to diversify your Managed Services/Solutions which ever path you choose.

Andrew’s Day 2 Summary:

Dave and I started the day listening to Adam Fish from Google. Adam discussed how to grow your business in an AI (artificial intelligence) world. Google’s developments in helping organisations grow is amazing with such systems as Google Analytics, Adwords, and Smart Bidding.

In relation to digital marketing, Adam suggested always looking to spend 10% of your marketing budget on experimental or new marketing while following the mantra: “Try, Learn, Improve”

Seat-based Billing

While SER already offers this contract type, I enjoyed learning about how the US market was using/applying the product. Interestingly about 11% of all new MPS clients prefer to use per seat billing, which is a significant uptake in the past 12 months. Further, our US industry counterparts seem not to include print volumes in the per seat cost as the model is all about reducing print. This is not the way the industry has done this in Australia, however it was interesting to discover how it was done a different way. It was great to also see the excitement of some of the Australian dealers around this product. Watch this space as I think this could be a real point of differentiation in the future.

Incorporating Infrastructure Platform and Software into Managed IT

A session on the keys to successfully incorporating infrastructure platform and software into a Managed IT service tackled a complex situation that many vendors are going through.

I learnt that there were 4 types of Managed IT sales platforms:

  • On Premise
  • IaaS (Infrastructure as a service)
  • PaaS (Platform as a Service)
  • SaaS (Software as a Service)

What is included and who manages what is slightly different in each of these and the solution the customer wants alters which solution the vendor offers. All of the above are sold on a per seat model.

My last thought is that the message from previous ITEX visits has not changed:

“Diversify Diversify Diversify. And create recurring revenue.”

While at ITEX Dave and I observed that despite more and more vendors undergoing the diversification process, it is still a challenge.

We hope you enjoyed the blog over the last two days and if any of the points that we have covered have significant interest to you please let us know and we will gladly catch up and expand.

Cheers,
Dave Leabeater
National Sales Manager, S.E. Rentals
Contact Dave

You're invited to follow S.E. Rentals @SE_Rentals on Twitter and join the discussion in our LinkedIn Group.


S.E. Rentals are the finance as a service specialists that will help you grow your business by providing finance solutions in an 'all things technology' future. We provide you with the flexibility, scalability and agility to help you achieve your Managed Service objectives, and our unique in-house software platform automates the process for you with a One Bill Solution - your bill - your document - your branding.

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