Cognos CEO Watching Managed Services

20130227-RobAshe_800The folks at Cognos, one of the leading business intelligence software providers, are in a curious position. Cognos’s rivals are getting acquired by big players like Oracle and SAP AG. And the software industry as a whole is moving toward software as a service (SaaS) — think Salesforce.com and NetSuite.com. So where does that leave Cognos? The BI software provider has to get a better feel for SaaS, managed services and the channel. Fast. Cognos’s CEO is doing exactly that. Here’s how. Continue reading

N-able Hosts Chicago Event

mike_cullen___svp_sales___n_ableThe folks at N-able Technologies have invited me to their next partner event — scheduled for October 19 in Chicago. But I’ll be preparing for our own MuniWireless conference in Santa Clara. The one-day N-able event focuses on strategies for marketing, selling and deploying “technology as a service” solutions. If you’re an N-able partner interesting in more details, you can find them here.

McDonalds Meets Managed Services

McDonalds_Golden_ArchesLike a Big Mac and a large fries (Mmmmm…), IT service franchises now go hand-in-hand with managed services. The latest example: Expetec Technology Services — an IT services franchisor in 20 states and Canada — has embraced the ConnectWise managed services platform. The move comes roughly one week after the Fast-Tek franchises announced plans to leverage Kaseya and SecureMyCompany’s managed services. The bottom line: If break-fix franchises are embracing managed services, surely more sophisticated solutions providers need to do the same. Continue reading

Will MSPs Ever Trust Dell?

Michael-Dell-1024x683I may have underestimated the MSP industry’s disdain for Dell. On the one hand, I’ve personally been a Dell customer for about a decade. But as I speak with managed service providers across the industry, most of them simply don’t trust Dell. Does the PC giant deserve the benefit of the doubt? Or is Dell’s move into the managed service market doomed to fail? Continue reading

Up to 50 Vendors Set to Earn MSPAlliance Accreditation

celiaMSPAlliance President Charles Weaver spent some time telling me about the organization’s new accreditation program during a conference last month. Sounds like the program is gaining some traction.

So far, eight vendors have received the accreditation, including Asigra, Dell/SilverBack, Do IT Smarter, Intel, LiveCargo, N-able, Untangle and XRoads Networks, according to Web Host Industry News. Roughly 50 vendors are on track to receive the accreditation by the close of 2007, Weaver told WHIN. So what’s the upside for managed service providers? The accreditation appears to offer four clear benefits to MSPs and their customers. Continue reading