Predicting the three technology trends set to influence and shape channel opportunities throughout 2018
Jan 23, 2018
Another year gone by, and here are my own predictions about the channel industry that I think Partner circle should pay attention to in 2018.
Inevitably, security concerns continue to apply pressure on every organization, forcing change at almost every level, and with GDPR just around the corner, simple, automated, secure networking will be on top of many companies’ agendas! The unavoidable adoption of multicloud models and the need for network simplicity, brings at the same time the need for protecting ever more valuable data.
Here’s a little more detail on three of the main technology trends for 2018.
Channel Partners’ Networking and Security Success Requires Increased Automation Skills
Automation has been used to ‘self-protect’ networks for several years, in scripting and configuring, log gathering, and even automated security signature updates. With IoT gathering increased velocity, this will create more vulnerabilities across the network. In 2018, as cyber-criminals continue to attack networks to access confidential data, customers will need partners with network and security automation skills to secure their networks against threats. This shift in approach presents a tremendous opportunity for channel partners to establish themselves as a strategic, trusted advisor to end-customers. The advent of GDPR in May 2018 will also make simple, automated, secure networking (and effective data analysis) a very marketable skill. No single product or solution can deliver GDPR compliance, but partners who are able to advise customers on improving data-centric processes via intelligent security solutions within the network will be highly valued.
The Channel will Shift Towards Solutions Built on Industry Use Cases to Support Customers’ Consumption Models
Traditionally, partners are specialized in selling components and infrastructure, but this model has been gradually shifting over time. Partners have now started moving towards a services and solutions model. Forward-thinking partners will take this a step further in 2018, creating industry-specific offerings with multiple consumption models to support the dynamic nature of their customers’ business. The most successful will be those who can articulate the business value of their offering in the context of an industry use-case.
Promoting a Hybrid Approach to Customers
Partners have enabled customers from almost every industry to move workloads and applications to the cloud successfully. However, a considerable proportion of enterprises continue to rely on in-house personnel to manage, store and protect their core and non-core business applications and data. As we move through 2018, customers will evolve to “multicloud environments” where mission-critical data will be held in on-site private clouds, while non-core applications will be stored with public and hybrid cloud providers. Progressive partners with skills to support customers’ cloud migration will benefit from this services-led approach.