Businesses are looking for providers like Axians to deliver and manage their services – more like a utility

 

We have consistently seen two trends emerge with our customers: One, we are increasingly in conversations with business managers for IT purchases. For instance, if we’re talking to a factory, we’ll likely talk to the people who run the factory before an IT purchase decision is made. And two, these people are business led, so for them, IT is a means to an end. And just as they don’t run their own power plants to get electricity, they look to an IT service provider like Axians to deliver and manage their IT services for them – more like a utility.

This shift has had a profound impact on how we run our business.
If you look back 10 years, IT services were mainly acting transactional. Speaking simplistically, we’d make an infrastructure sale to the IT manager and then come back later to sell a refresh. Now our customers rely on our expertise to keep their infrastructure optimally and securely running. So they can meet their outcome requirements.

“In other words, we have become much more of a strategic partner to our customers, as opposed to just a integrator of technology.”

When we’re discussing putting in new IT infrastructure, business people are much more concerned about functionality versus brand. If discussing security, for instance, we’ll likely be asked about access control capabilities versus whether we will be recommending vendor A, B or C.

Our customers strategically rely on us to choose the best brands to meet their outcome objectives

Of course, it’s also in our best interest as the provider to deploy the best underlying technology, as we’re not only responsible contractually to meet our committed SLAs, but also ultimately responsible for delivering optimal customer experiences.

Interestingly, we now see CFOs get involved with 95% of our engagements, and CFOs fundamentally cares about two things:

Predictability — knowing what the infrastructure will cost today and in three years, while meeting the needs of the business

Flexibility – the ability to scale the infrastructure whether delivered on-premises or in the cloud to meet the evolving business’ needs.

Cisco Plus as a strategic cornerstone for as-a-service

This is where Cisco’s new as-a-service brand Cisco Plus will very quickly become a strategic cornerstone on how we build and deliver our as-a-service offerings going forward.

“Cisco Plus is fundamentally built on Cisco’s best-in-class portfolio of technologies and platforms, which gives us the confidence that the Cisco IT infrastructure will predictably meet the performance, availability and security concerns of our customers.”

The consumption-based model helps share the risk of deploying infrastructure that further helps us meet the customer’s need to have the flexibility to only pay for what they use. Previously, the partner took a majority of the risk, as we purchased transactionally from Cisco. Now with Cisco Plus’ pay as you use and pay as you grow models, Cisco or the partner has the option to hold title on the infrastructure. These models give us more flexibility on how to best deliver the as-a-service infrastructure.

Ultimately it always comes back to the customer
Our customers just want us to take care of their IT infrastructure as they focus on meeting their business outcome requirements. They rely on us to strategically choose the best underlying infrastructure, and to provide the flexibility to only pay for what they consume.

We have responded by putting customer care even more so at the forefront of how we run our business.

Put simply, everyone at Axians understands the importance of having happy customers. And our customers want flexibility and predictability in how they consume IT.”

Cisco Plus fundamentally and strategically helps us to have happy customers. With Cisco Plus, we provide best-in-class Cisco infrastructure offered as a service, making the whole business of consuming IT much more predictable and flexible for our customers – consuming IT more like a true utility.

Learn more

Cisco Press release  | Cisco Partner blog

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Dean De Blieck Global Business Development Manager Enterprise Networks at Axians