Service Strategy – How do you become Instrumental?

There is a well-known concept developed by Ronald Coase around organisational boundaries being determined by transaction costs.

This concept stated that organisations are faced with three decisions.

To make, buy or rent.

In some scenarios, it makes sense for organisations to own and operate assets, or conduct activities in-house, however, at other times you could seek alternatives from the open market.

When seeking alternatives from the open markets the key factor can be the transaction cost.

The transaction cost it’s the overall costs of the economic exchange between the supplier and customer with the objective of ensuring that commitments are fulfilled.

In the context of Service Strategy, why is it important to understand this concept?

In the current shift towards cloud computing, the service transaction has now drastically been minimised in cost. It’s critical to understand this.

I often think of this like catching a fish, let me explain.

It takes time

There are costs that will be incurred when attempting to catch that fish.

In Service Strategy the costs can be calculated as the time taken to find and select qualified suppliers for goods or services that are required.

The right bait

Proven fishermen will always be asking the question “what bait works here”. So when putting together your service strategy make sure you know who you are considering in transacting with.  Knowing the track record of your provider is crucial, ask around you will save yourself a lot of time. I’m quite dumbfounded when I hear of customers ‘still’ transacting with suppliers that no longer provide any real value. More time spent transacting in the excuse basket than providing the outcome that the customer is after. Particularly when it comes to delivering services.

Certain bait attracts certain fish

If you are considering the leap to Cloud computing, find suppliers who are proven in this area. It’s not like the traditional on-premise managed service computing model. It has changed, go with providers who are working in this space and have been for a considerable period of time.  For example, they get what right sizing is and how crucial it could be to your cost model.

How many hooks and sinkers are you prepared to lose?

Governance is the costs of making sure the other party sticks to the terms of the contract and taking appropriate action if this turns out not to be the case.

Governance is fundamentally an intertwining of both leadership and management. Leadership in the sense of understanding the organisation’s vision, setting the strategy and bringing about alignment. Management in the sense of how we actually implement the strategy. Setting the budget, working out the resources required and so forth.

It’s crucial that your Cloud Enterprise Governance Framework has these qualities, for example, a policy is formally documented management expectations and intentions which can be used to direct decisions and ensure a consistent approach when implementing leadership’s strategy. In the cloud-climate where change is constant, you need to be in a position to respond with greater agility. Your governance framework has the ability to move between the two.

Once again do your homework. Find out what their Cloud Computing Service Model entails. Roadmaps, framework, fundamentally what approach they take. It’s crucial that they have this in place in order to succeed.

So what does it take to get hooked?

The actual answer to how you become instrumental is by clearly understanding your service transaction. The net effect will be brokering real value.

This, in turn, is likely to lead you to as prevailing conditions change, boundaries of the firm contract or expand with decisions such as make, buy, or rent.

Is Service Strategy your Everest?

Essentially strategy is separating what to do versus what not to do.

It brings about alignment to your organisation’s vision.

In this blog, I will endeavour to cover why having a service management strategy is critical for your organisation and point you towards well-known principles that will help you scale it.

You could think of this like climbing a mountain.

It starts with your perspective.

Perspective – outlines your vision and direction.

What does Everest look like? What do you see?

In the context of service strategy, it’s how you see yourself in the market. How you differentiate yourself from the providers you engage. At Kloud we are relatively young when it comes to alternate service providers that have dominated the markets over the past, yet we have a sound vision, and that vision is the inevitable shift towards cloud computing. Having this perspective allows us to clearly understand what we are about as we continue to evolve our service strategy.

What route will you take to ascend Everest?

In the context of service strategy, it’s your position.

Position – describes the decision to adopt a well-defined stance. At Kloud we believe that from a service management perspective there is a new model (consumption-based service management) when it comes to delivering value. Have a read of a recent blog I published around this shift.

https://blog.kloud.com.au/2016/04/06/consumption-based-service-management/

Your route will ultimately define the decisions you will continue to take amongst the many potential paths you will be presented to take.

You need a plan to make the ascent.

You can see the summit, you know the route you need to take but now it’s time to plan how your journey.

The Plan – describes the means of transitioning from ‘as is’ to ‘to be’. A plan might detail, ‘How do we offer high- value or low-cost services?’ Or, ‘How do we achieve and offer our specialised services?’ You need a plan that will detail how you will get there. It allows all involved to see what’s required to get you there.

The way you climb.

In the context of service strategy, it’s your pattern.

Pattern – describes a series of consistent decisions and actions over time.  Over a period of time, your climbing style will start to show. What do I mean? Well, are you risk adverse? Do you climb with or without a support ? In Service Strategy, this could be providing service with high availability or high value, this will soon develop into your pattern, what you consistently gravitate towards.

In summary requirements and conditions are ever changing. A service provider may begin with any one form and evolve to another.

As a service provider, you might begin with a perspective. The service provider might then decide to take on a position articulated through Company policies, capabilities and resources.

This position may then be achieved through the execution of a plan.

Once you have been able to achieve this, the service provider may maintain its position through a series of well-understood decisions and action over time: a pattern.

I encourage you to use all four Ps, Perspective, Position, Plan and Pattern. Move between all four as required, seeing the big picture while working through the details.

 

Exploring Cloud Adoption

At Kloud we get incredible opportunities to partner with global organisations.

Listening to and observing one of our established clients has inspired me to write about the change programme around Office 365 and how we can expand the approach.

The change management programme, in terms of adoption, is based on a user’s journey through the office 365 toolset. A sort of step by step approach incorporating exchange online and SharePoint online – building a workspace for each department which effectively will become the reference point in which you work from. In short, targeting adoption champions throughout particular business units and keeping them abreast of the Office 365 updates.

We have seen results through this approach but it’s here I want to drop a different thought into the equation.

It’s natural tendency to develop a well-trodden path, but what happens when you have a disparate group of individuals who don’t take this route?

Taking people on a well thought out journey could almost take the excitement out of the trip. Why not foster an environment that will allow individuals to explore the Office 365 toolset?

What do I mean? Office 365 is continuously evolving its services. Just look at the roadmap and you will see what I mean.

Think about the last trip you took. Did you perhaps decide to stop the car and explore the countryside? You could well have stepped off the beaten track and explored the unknown finding that place that no one told you about.

Rigorous change control programmes that try and control how people ,within the organisation , adopt the services could well stifle the opportunity that the Cloud is creating.

Here are some key thoughts when considering an explorative approach to adoption.

Pop-up Adoption

The pop-up store is a remarkable concept in today’s society. It is a fantastic way to introduce a new thought, concept or idea down the well-trodden route with an ability to create a short term experience that could prompt exploring. There is fantastic opportunity to create these pop-up adoption initiatives throughout the organisation to inspire alternate ways to being productive.

Your posture on Change Management

In cloud computing, we find that cloud suppliers have a wave of new features designed to change and enhance the productivity of the consumer. The consumer loves all the additional functionality that will come with the solution, however at most times does not understand what the full extent of the changes. Herein lies the challenge, how does the conventional IT department communicate the change, train up end users and ultimately manage change? We get ready to run all our time intensive checks so that people know exactly what is about to change, when and how it will change. Challenging, to say the least, but when you ramp this up, well to be specific multiply by a factor of a hundred.

It’s time-consuming and nearly impossible to manage in the current cloud climate.

Here is a thought that will take you to the extreme opposite.

Enable everything. Yes, that’s right, let the full power of Cloud permeate through your organisation. The more time you spend trying to control what gets released as opposed to what doesn’t, the more time you waste which can be better used to create more value. Enable it and let your early adopters benefit, explore, they could even coach the late bloomers, then let the remaining people go on a journey.

Expose

Use what you got to expose people to what they could adopt

Yammer is a great tool in the Office 365 toolset that will expose people to different opportunities in being productive. Exposing different toolsets to people causes them to explore what they don’t know.

The mobile phone will help

People have started to explore technology. The mobile age has stimulated this approach. The slogan “There is an app for that” could well be the tag line that has encouraged end users to explore the tools that are available to them.

The Adoption Map

Whenever one is navigating areas unknown we tend to develop visuals that will help us make sense of the space. The Adoption Map could be a great tool to visually show your people what is actually out there. Instead of being a mere passenger on the journey, they could help plot out their own coordinates. When people start learning for themselves it’s potentially the most powerful recipe for success.

This approach could alter the role of change managers to become change enablers. Instead of controlling change you are learning and innovating from it.

Adoption simple means to choose. We have a great opportunity to present them with as many services as possible from which to choose, you can potentially foster an environment that creates exploration. The ability to learn for themselves and ultimately to explore in the confounds of a boundary that is ever expanding.

Cloud Enterprise Governance

Organisational Strategies are currently being forged around SAAS, IAAS and PAAS in cloud computing.

What will the new Cloud Enterprise Governance framework look like?

Lack of Cloud Enterprise Governance can result in organisations not achieving strategically set directives as well as consumer loss of confidence.

This is challenging considering how fast cloud computing is currently being accelerated, at the same token, this also provides a fantastic opportunity to get it right.

Cloud computing is putting pressure on traditional governance ability to adapt and change.

It is critical that governance is addressed from a holistic point of view.

What does Governance mean?

Ensuring that policies and strategy are actually implemented, and correctly followed. Your ability to clearly define ownership, auditing, measuring, reporting and resolving any issues that are identified as a result thereof.

Some key thoughts to consider when putting your Cloud Enterprise framework together under a Cloud model.

Leading and Managing intertwined

This is where Governance gets interesting, sticking to the definition of Governance is fundamentally an intertwining of both leadership and management.

Leadership in the sense of understanding the organisation’s vision, setting the strategy and bringing about alignment.

Management in the sense of how we actually implement the strategy. Setting the budget, working out the resources required and so forth.

It’s crucial that your Cloud Enterprise Governance Framework has these qualities, for example, a policy is formally documented management expectations and intentions which can be used to direct decisions and ensure a consistent approach when implementing leadership’s strategy. In the cloud-climate where change is constant, you need to be in a position to respond with greater agility. It’s crucial that your governance framework has the ability to move between the two.

Your Evolvement (not involvement – that’s a given)

What are the new requirements that your Cloud model has outlined in its roadmap?

How you best position your organisation to maximise the offerings.

What has been launched? Hopefully, you are not caught out here, depending on your position on change management.

What’s currently being developed? What’s currently being rolled out? Important questions that need to be flushed out to ensure your evolution in cloud computing.

Cloud Enterprise Guiding Coalition

Experience at establishing a Cloud Enterprise Governance has shown that a carefully thought out group of individuals (Leaders and Managers) are critical in ensuring Cloud Service success.

A guiding coalition team does not have to be comprised solely of senior managers. A single champion cannot achieve success alone.

The end goal of establishing this team is not from a who has the power but more around experience, respect, versatility and trust. This team should be backed by an influential business or IT sponsor.

As the programme buy-in grows, and throughout the programme itself when more and more successes are achieved and benefits realised, this team should be increased to involve a wider range of people and functions.

The types of questions you need to be asking are, ‘Do we have the right people on board?’ and, if not, ‘Who should we have on board?’

Something to Remember

Do:

  • Lead and manage, intertwine the two at all levels.
  • Ensure you have a position of constant evolution.

Don’t:

  • Forsake building a Cloud Enterprise Governance framework.
  • Have clear markers on how you are assessing your operational performance, ensure that these indicators are accurately represented in the Cloud Enterprise Governance Coalition.

The Service Coin

We were recently invited by a customer to share on how we do managed services at Kloud, particularly around Microsoft Azure and Office 365.

During the conversation, I landed on an analogy that best articulated how we envision delivering service through the Cloud computing model.

I thought I would share that analogy.

Simply put service is a means of delivering value to customers, minus all the overhead of actually operating the service.

With that in mind let’s think about the service coin in terms of value in the economy called the cloud.

A service coin has three sides to it.

The first side of the coin can be known as the service management layer. It’s how the service will actually be delivered from a management perspective.

The framework that gets implemented, how we respond to demands, how we ensure availability, Incident Management, Change Management, Problem Management and various key processes that ensure services are being delivered.

The second side of the coin can be known as the operational layer. It’s how the service gets engineered.

We spend a lot of time at Kloud investing into this layer, instilling operational run books amongst other initiatives that will provide comprehensive steps on how to successfully run the service. They serve as an open book on how we engineer the service in the complexities of our customer’s environments.

At this layer, we will find;

Checklists, configuration documentation, patching cycles and so forth. It reads like a novel, well more of a technical manual to be precise. Our talented engineers love it.

Last but not least there is a third side of the coin, it’s actually the side on which it all rests, this can be known as the adoption layer. It’s where we ultimately take people on a journey on how to use the technology. I think it’s here that we find that a shift has taken place. People have started to explore technology. The Mobile age has stimulated this shift. The slogan “There is an app for that” could well be the tag line that has encouraged end users to explore the tools that are available to them.

Yes, some require hand holding but on the whole if we foster an adoption strategy that encourages people to explore what they have at their disposal we just might take productivity to a whole new level. Yes, we might have some other challenges, but these challenges are the one’s worth taking.

The adoption layer is potentially the most important layer in terms of service success, it’s what will introduce the value and actually introduce the coin into the organisations economy. Resulting in net productivity and the ultimate effect which is value.

The coin’s ultimate purpose is a medium for exchange. In the context of the service coin, it’s purpose is to ensure healthy exchange between the three sides.

One has to be prepared to spin the coin to get that perfect pattern.

Finally, the coin has an imprint; this is the part that signifies who the Coin belongs to. In our case, the Service Coin ultimately belongs to our customer. It’s their service, they entrust us to run the service, it’s of tremendous value to them. We get to hold it for the time that they allow us to.

Judging by the response from our client I think it resonated with what had always just been in his pocket. The Service Coin.

The art of managing a service

In the age of technology, it’s important to deliver value to customers in terms of outcomes. Service typifies what this means, providing value to the customer.

There is an art to managing a service, it’s here I want to focus the attention. “Art,” implies mastery of any sort of craft.  I love the picture this paints.  One could imply that managing a service is a mastering it, in turn mastering value.

Here’s a few pointers on how to do that.

Know thy customer

Relationship is key when it comes to managing a service. This might sound strange, how does managing a service (technological) fall into this category? Surely it’s all just binary? Either the service works or it doesn’t. Not necessarily, take the scenario where a service is in use and people don’t really use it. Relationship ensures you are listening to the people who utilize the service and understand if the value is in place. Having the ability to listen is crucial. Listeners have the ability to bounce their way to a positive outcome. Effectively an act of support, encouragement and growth which ultimately reflects value.

Rhythm

At Kloud we focus extensively on ensuring we have a healthy rhythm in place, it ensures we move faster, able to respond in a timely manner. It introduces agility onto our canvas.

Some examples of what we have at our heartbeat;

Daily Kuddle were we focus on what’s been happening, important Metrics and any of our customer’s challenges.

Weekly we take the time to improve what we do where we focus on news, numbers, customer and employee data, the one thing we personally each can do to improve our contribution.

Events

This might seem odd in the context of this blog, it could even find its way under the rhythm but we need to call this out. The ability to discover events, make sense of them and determine the appropriate control action is critical to service management. Like an artist studies his canvas for its creativity expression, we study our systems to ensure its expression is of a healthy nature. It here we can build a visual of how we are progressing and touch it up if required.

Cost a new approach

Cost is an important factor when it comes to managing a service. Customers want to see value at this layer. Imagine the cost actually varying? Whereas a customer you see the cost decrease? At Kloud we have introduced consumption-based service management (to be fair, it’s not a new concept but a model that will potentially redefine the way services are being delivered). In this model the consumer pays for the value that you as the managed service provider will deliver on a consumption, rather than a fixed, basis.

Governance

Spending far to much time doing Post incident reviews as opposed to pre incident reviews. Governance is important to the way that we manage our services. We spend time ensuring we have a considerable and robust governance framework in place. This framework allows us to build on hindsight, stay relevant and anticipate what’s to come in the digital age.

Passion

This could be my all-time favourite.  I think of our team when this comes to mind.  Wikipedia describes passion as a very strong feeling about a person or thing. Passion is an intense emotion, a compelling enthusiasm or desire for something.  We care about the Cloud and the value that it will provide for the modern day organisation. It’s very essence will allow organisations to concentrate on their core business function therefore we passionately throw ourselves at our mission of the inevitable shift to the Cloud.

Something to Remember

Do:

  • Know thy customer, listen more than you talk.
  • Passion, care about your customer and the services you deliver.
  • Evaluate your cost, ensure you are competitive and relevant in today’s cost climate.

Don’t:

  • Forsake a healthy rhythm.
  • Ignore the events.

Accelerating Azure Multi Factor Authentication in Enterprise Organisation

At Kloud we get incredible opportunities to partner with organisations who are global leaders in their particular industry.

Recently we were asked to accelerate Microsoft’s Azure Multi factor authentication for Office 365 users in the cloud throughout an enterprise organisation.

This blog is not so much focused on the technical implementation (there is an incredible amount of technical documentation provided by Microsoft that covers this) but more around what we discovered whilst accelerating the technology throughout the organisation.

Implementing Microsoft multi-factor authentication for Office 365 users is relatively straight forward, it is actually quite easy from a technical point of view.

The technical steps as detailed by Microsoft;

https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Set-up-multi-factor-authentication-for-Office-365-users-8f0454b2-f51a-4d9c-bcde-2c48e41621c6?ui=en-US&rs=en-US&ad=US

Our approach was pieced into a few key building blocks.

Its post enablement that I want to take the time to focus on and I hope to stimulate a few thoughts around the areas that we spent the most time in the hope that it will help you successfully roll this out successfully to a large usage base. (thousands of people!)

We endeavoured to keep this relatively simple by focusing on the Standard Operating Environment and Communicating  around Azure Multi-Factor authentication.

Let us unpack these key points in a little more detail.

The Standard Operating Environment

With this particular enterprise organisation, they had a majority of their SOEs running an instance of Microsoft Office 2010.

The Office 2013 device apps support multi-factor authentication through the use of the Active Directory Authentication Library (ADAL).

Therefore a key task was to ensure all the office clients were able to support multi-factor authentication as outlined above.

As a result, a key dependency to accelerating Azure MFA was in having a reliable removal and installation package for Microsoft Office. e.g. automated the removal of Office 2010 and process for packaging any new Office 2013 plugins.  It’s important to factor this time into your deployment of Multi-Factor Authentication.

If you don’t have a package that removes and re-installs the correct version of Microsoft Office you will encounter a roadblock.

Under communicating the Multi-Factor Authentication transformation technology

I cannot stress how important the communication part actually is.

We decided on conducting  a couple wave of pilots over a short period of time. The benefit of this approach was to weed out any minor issues that might confuse the larger groups, taking a position of refining our learnings as we progress through the pilots in a healthy order.

We prioritised in the following groups;

  1. Technology group (Security and End-user Computing)
  2. Executive Team (Yes we did this early)
  3. Technology IT (the whole department in one go)
  4. We targeted two Business units (around 300 users combined)
  5. Bulk Azure Multi-Factor Authentication production rollout (all remaining Business units)

We noticed a few patterns with respect to communication, all very common as detailed as follows;

In the first group,

The Technology pilot we conducted a workshop, ensuring that they had all the relevant requirements beforehand  and stepped them through the enablement process. We find that they tend to stumble along initially and figure it out for themselves. Not a lot of noise is generated at this level and generally well received, which is fantastic bearing in mind that they are generally drivers around a more secure environment.

The second group,

The Executive Team are not overly concerned and generally welcome in the additional layer of security knowing the current climate around data loss and the publicity it can generate.  Its almost as if they are relieved it has finally arrived. They have an executive support team who are agile and ready to process any communication around the technology and how to successfully deploy.

In the third group,

The Technology department we find much more effort goes into communicating the technology, including workshops on the how and why, but some very visible senior individuals still behave in ways that are antithetical to the technology transformation. “Do I have to add this additional step to authenticate?” The net result is that cynicism among the people goes up, while belief in the communication goes down.  Its important to spend time at this layer (over communicate) to ensure they understand the importance of safeguarding the organisation’s data. I cannot stress how important the why is in this instance. It is at this level where having done the executive layer is crucial as they would have already seen the benefits of using multi-factor authentication and you would have the senior stakeholder actively engaged in the technology component.

Transformation is impossible unless tens, hundreds or thousands of people are willing to help, often to the point of making short-term sacrifices. “I know it’s a pain to click verify on the Azure Multi-Factor Authentication application but by doing so I am safeguarding my organisation’s data” They get this revelation by understanding why they are doing what they are doing, the very essence of communication.

Employees will not make sacrifices, even if they are unhappy with the status quo unless they believe that useful change is possible. Without credible communication, and lots of it, the hearts and minds of the team are never captured and you run the risk of another failed transformation project.

In more successful transformation pilots, we used all existing communication channels to broadcast the technology transformation. Our guiding principle was simple: Use whatever we can to communicate why Multi-factor authentication is critical to the organisation and how it will take place.

Perhaps even more important, most of the successful pilots of this change learned to “walk the talk.”  Communication comes in both words and actions. Nothing undermines change more than behaviour by important individuals that are inconsistent with their words.

Where we landed

The technology component is relatively straight forward the challenge lies in user adoption, spend most of your time in this space, over communicate  so people understand why you are making the leap forward! Your data will be all the safer for it.

Cloud and the rate of Change Management

At Kloud we get incredible opportunities to partner with organisations who are global leaders in their particular industry.

Listening to and observing one of our established clients inspired me to write about their approach to change management in the cloud around the SaaS model.

Let’s start by telling you a quick story about bubble wrap.

Bubble wrap has taken a very different journey to what it was originally intended for. It was meant to be used as wall paper. Who would of thought that to be the case?!

It turned out that at the time there was not a market for bubbled wallpaper and the product was slowly fading into oblivion had there not been innovative and outside-the-box thinking. Bubble wrap’s inventors approached a large technology company in the hope that it could be the packaging material for its fragile product – the result of which revolutionised the packaging industry and today bubble wrap is a household name for many reasons.

In cloud computing we find that cloud suppliers have a wave of new features designed to change and enhance the productivity of the consumer. The consumer loves all the additional functionality that will come with the solution, however at most times does not understand the full extent of the changes. Herein lies the challenge – how does the conventional IT department communicate the change, train up end users and ultimately manage change?

We get ready to run all our time intensive checks so that people know exactly what is about to change, when and how it will change which is challenging to say the least. However, when you ramp this up to cloud-speed it clearly becomes near impossible to manage.

Change can be likened to exercising your muscles. The more you train the stronger you get, and change management is no different – the more change you execute the better you will get at managing it.

Many organisations keep features turned off until they understand them. Like my client says “I think this is old school”.

The smartphone has been a contributor to educating people on the new way of handling change. It has helped gear people up to be more change ready so we should give the end user the credit that they deserve.

So what approach is my client taking?

Enable everything.

Yes, that’s right, let the full power of Cloud permeate through your organisation and recognise that the more time you spend trying to control what gets released as opposed to what doesn’t, the more time you waste which can be better used to create more value.

Enable features and let your early adopters benefit, then let the remaining people go on a journey. Sure, some might get it wrong and end up using the functionality incorrectly but this is likely to be the minority. Remember, most people don’t like change whether we like to admit it or not. As a result you need to spend listening to feedback and seeing how they interact with the technology.

Now let’s address the elephant in the room.

If we enable everything doesn’t it lead to chaos? Well let’s think this through by looking at the reverse. What would happen if we did not enable anything at all? Nothing. What does nothing lead to? Well, to be precise, nothing.

Think about when Henry Ford first rolled out the self-propelled vehicle which he named the Ford Quadricycle in an era where people struggled to look past horses. Did he ever dream that one day there would be electric cars? Probably not. Which is ironic considering he was introduced to Thomas Edison!

My point though? If you try and limit change you could very well be stifling progress. Imagine the lost opportunities?

Unlike bubble wrap which eventually will pop, Cloud services will continue to evolve and expand and so our way in handling change needs to evolve, adapt and change. Just maybe the only thing that has to pop is our traditional approach to change.

The Consumption-based Service Management Model

One question all organisations should be asking themselves is what happens to traditional managed services models once we shift towards cloud computing?

In the past, managed service providers would tell you why, what and how they deliver service management so it will provide value to your organisation. The end result would likely be a fixed term service management model.

Technology has always been a fast-pace landscape which has made the delivery of long term value to customers out of service management agreements challenging. If you thought it was already fast, cloud computing has put the accelerator to the floor! All of which means the way service management models handle change has to go on a transformative journey as well.

What is service management?

ITIL defines Service Management as “a set of specialised organisational capabilities for providing value to customers in the form of services”.

There are two important questions any managed service provider must ask themselves:

  1. Are you capable?
  2. Are you providing value?

Key to answering these questions are people and the way that they provide value.

As we progress more towards a cloud computing model we find the following:

The managed service provider will intermediate between the cloud service provider and consumer, aligning the two and ensuring minimal service disruptions.

So how does this change the traditional methods of service management for an organisation?

Hello to the new approach

Let me introduce consumption-based service management (to be fair, it’s not a new concept but a model that will potentially redefine the way services are being delivered).

In this model the consumer pays for the value that you as the managed service provider will deliver on a consumption, rather than a fixed, basis.

I’m going to use a metaphor here:

As more and more organisations recognise the importance of the cloud, they have a ‘light bulb’ moment.  They come to realise that they only need pay for the said light bulb when it’s on. Also, typically the switch used to turn it on or off is included in this cost.

Was that metaphor enlightening?

The obvious follow on is to ask why should managing cloud environments not align with the way that the cloud is being consumed? Hence we arrive at a model based on consumption service management.

So what does this mean for the day to day operations of a managed services model?

The customer will cover the cost of the cloud provider and the supplier managing the service, ensuring the technology is being effectively managed, but to our metaphor above, why should they cover this when the lights are off? It’s here where we find value of consumption-based service management.

If the customer needs service management all the time, then you have to begin to wonder why? What are the changes one needs to put into place to remediate?

This change in model will surely flip everything upside down. How we measure service consumption in this case?

Is there a different way of measuring value? What impact that would have on the traditional measurements and costs associated?

Regardless of the above, the central goal to this consumption-based model will still be value, which will continue to drive conversations and delivered outcomes.

When you sit down to reflect or dream at what managed services for your organisation will look like in the cloud you should think about consumption-based service management and delivery thereof.

Kloud Solutions named as Microsoft Australia Partner Awards finalist in four categories!

MELBOURNE, VICTORIA – 10 August, 2015 – Today, Kloud Solutions proudly announced it has been named a finalistin four categories in the 2015 Microsoft Australian Partner Awards (MAPA):

  • Cloud Productivity
  • Cloud Platform
  • Managed Service
  • Social Enterprise

Earlier this year, Kloud won Cloud Productivity Partner of the Year and was recognised as a finalist for Enterprise Mobility Suite Partner of the Year at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference in Orlando, Florida.

Kloud’s managing director Nicki Bowers is proud of the recognition, saying it is representative of the way customers entrust Kloud with their journey to the cloud.

“To be recognised in multiple categories is a huge honour and a testament to the strong relationship we enjoy with our customers. It’s proof that customer centricity is a key driver to innovation and this enables us to deliver the right technology to meet business needs across the board” she said.

The 19 categories of the Microsoft Australia Partner Awards programme recognise Microsoft Partners that have developed and delivered exceptional Microsoft-based solutions during the year.

Microsoft’s director of partner business and development, Phil Goldie, said this year partners had embraced the company’s Cloud platforms in unique ways, creating new applications and transforming line-of-business for clients.

“These award-finalist solutions all highlight the extraordinary power of our partnership and proof of customer confidence. It’s very apparent that when customers have a stronger connection with their trusted partner, they also demonstrate a stronger commitment to products like Azure and Office 365. Most importantly, together we’ve achieved the ability to delight our customers with product and solution offerings that better meet their needs,” he said.

The Microsoft Australia Partner Awards programme winners will be announced at the Microsoft Australia Partner Conference on August 31st 2015.

Microsoft Awards Kloud