Since our founding in 2005 we have said technology should be delivered “as-a-service” to businesses on a fixed fee basis. No hours, no one-off charges, no weekly visits. It should be like electricity and water, you get connected and access it from any device (light, appliance, bath, sink, etc.). Pay for what you use and go from there.
I think our vision is essentially on-target but WHO we are delivering these services to has shifted. It’s not businesses or IT departments that we deliver these services to, it’s USERS. No longer do you have a “work” computer and phone. No longer to you have to log onto the VPN to access email. No longer do you have to show up at the office to work (well, okay maybe we aren’t there yet!)…it’s not servers and networks we are supporting, it’s USERS!
Two technologies have really made this boundless user-based technology world possible. The first is ubiquitous network coverage. Today it’s a disappointment to have only 3G coverage in the middle of nowhere, you can’t even stream an HD movie on that! This coverage combined with all users having at least one mobile device means access anytime, anywhere. It’s also increased user’s expectations that the SERVICES are available if the network is…24/7 world here we come!
The second is a services-based delivery model where the underlying technology infrastructure is abstracted from the end-user. Wow, just kidding, I think most people call this “THE CLOUD”. Businesses now want “email”, “collaboration services”, or “a sales management service”…not servers, software applications, and the various groups required to connect and maintain them. We don’t run into many folks bragging about the size of their servers anymore…we DO hear about businesses bragging about how their users can get access to the information they need anytime/anywhere.
So how, as a business, are you going to support your USERS? How are you going to make sure users have the right technology services available? How are you going to provide users with real-time, “right then” support? Who is going to be responsible for making sure the technology strategy and services make sense for where your business is? How do you handle this on a “per-user” basis?
Stringfellow has built our delivery and pricing model around users. This continues to be validated when we see that most technology services today are now being sold on per-user subscription basis. This gives businesses a powerful way not only to support their users but also to KNOW what their IT delivery and support costs will be. No more guessing with hours, in-house resource management, and other random costs!