I’ve spent a lot of time on the road over the last few months. Europe. Asia. Canada. Latin America. And everywhere I go I talk to our partners. The one constant: frustration over their ability to have a deep conversation with customers about cloud. Partners have told me their customers want to hear how they can leverage applications and cloud services to impact their business outcomes. However, they also say that their conversations are often relegated to ‘box-level’ discussions about speed and feeds and costs of specific technologies at the bidding phase of the deal.
What if I told you that you can discover every single cloud service your customers are using and help them understand the potential business risk or compliance challenges they are facing. And, armed with such insight, that you can uncover new cloud, security, and data center opportunities.
Too good to be true? Partners can do all that and more with our new Cisco Cloud Consumption as a Service. This new product, now generally available, helps customers solve a significant challenge for their business and, at the same time, provides partners with insights and concrete data to help transform cloud conversations with their customers.
Shadow IT: Growing Exponentially
Customers are facing an explosion of cloud use. And it’s becoming a major headache for IT leaders.
On average, large organizations are now using 1,220 individual cloud services, largely without oversight, which leads to increased risk and spiraling costs. And it’s growing by leaps and bounds. The average number of cloud services used has grown 112% over the past year, and 67% over the past six months. Additionally, the hidden cost of public cloud services is four to eight times higher than billed costs.
Cloud Consumption as a Service helps customers discover and monitor which cloud services are being used across the organization. It helps customers mitigate cloud risks, uncover redundant services to reduce costs, and compare providers and benchmark usage. Ultimately, it helps organizations strategically manage their cloud use and gain insight to inform their cloud roadmap.
If this sounds interesting, make sure to watch our Cloud Consumption overview video.
Our new product provides customers and partners with deep insight into their customers’ cloud use that can help inform their cloud (or perhaps more accurately hybrid cloud) roadmap. The insight gained can help partners improve relevance in cloud and uncover future sales opportunities.
But don’t take it from me. A small number of partners participated in a pilot program with our new Cloud Consumption software. Here’s what they’re saying:
“I recently had conversation with a VP of IT at one of my larger customers. I was able to show him data in the Cloud Consumption dashboard and he was amazed at cloud services he didn’t realize they are using,” said Chris Jennings, president and chief strategy officer of Aqueduct Technologies, a regional partner based in Boston, Massachusetts. “That level of insight and data helps us raise our conversations with customers and help them identify public, private and hybrid solutions that can impact their business. Ultimately, it helps us enter the cloud conversation much earlier where we have the opportunity to develop requirements rather than just bid on a project.”
He continued, “Knowledge is power. Cloud Consumption gives us the insight to transform our relationship from an IT consultant to a business consultant.”
World Wide Technology is one of Cisco’s largest partners, but Cloud Consumption is also helping them with their cloud engagements. “We want to empower customers with capabilities to monitor and manage cloud services. Cloud Consumption not only helps with this goal, but also provides insight to help define the next steps customer’s cloud journey, and concrete data to build the business case for their cloud initiatives,” said Jim Melton, Technical Architect, Cloud Practice at WWT. “Cloud Consumption can help WWT identify and position solutions across data center, cloud, and security. It helps us move from a product-centric conversation to a solutions-oriented, business outcome approach with our customers.”
If you think Cloud Consumption as a Service is a fit for your business or to learn more about our free 30-day trail, please contact us for a demonstration or learn more about how you can start a conversation with your customers.
As always, feel free to chat with me on Twitter or provide any questions and feedback below in the comments.