GreenPages Technology Solutions ended its annual technology summit with a bang this week by demonstrating its own groundbreaking Cloud Management as a Service (CMaaS) tools offering.
The Kittery, Maine-headquartered national solution provider showed the service, which provides a single pane of glass to manage public, private and hybrid enterprise cloud environments as well as everything from servers to desktops and personal devices operating on the cloud, to about 100 customers on the final day of the conference, which was billed as “Cloudscape 2. The Journey Continues. Automate. Orchestrate. Manage.”
The ambitious cloud management framework has been under development at GreenPages for more than a year and is scheduled to be delivered to customers priced on a per user basis later this year.
GreenPages CEO Ron Dupler called the CMaaS tool framework, which integrates cloud platforms like Amazon, Terremark and Rackspace with complex technology platforms like Cisco’s Unified Compute System (UCS), a breakthrough “game changer” that will allow midmarket companies to unlock the true potential of cloud computing.
“What we have got is a way for customers to operationalize cloud,” said Dupler in an interview with CRN at the Summit. “The market is dying for this. You cannot have an enterprise hybrid cloud environment without these tools. Otherwise, it is just too painful and unmanageable. We have been in the bunker looking at this and what is out there and feel this is a big game changer. This has been our biggest internal initiative over the last year.”
Several large midmarket customers have asked GreenPages, the winner of the SP500 2012 Company of the Year, for help in solving the thorny enterprise hybrid cloud management problem. Those midmarket customers have found enterprise solutions aimed at Fortune 100 companies too costly and some have even failed in their own attempts to develop a cost-effective cloud management offering.
GreenPages Chief Information and Technology Officer Kevin Hall, Vice President of Consulting and Integration Chris Ward and Vice President of Managed Services Michael Halperin provided customers with a live demonstration of the new CMaaS offering.
A CIO for a large midmarket company that viewed the demonstration said he was blown away by the potential benefits of the GreenPages CMaaS offering. He said the service solves a huge problem for midmarket customers grappling with everything from preventing cloud outages with proactive problem resolution to device and desktop asset management and updates. "The way it works is you log in once to the tool, and it manages everything from personal devices to public/private cloud resources," said the IT executive. The IT executive said he was particularly impressed by the CMaaS' ability to prevent a variety of potential cloud disasters with proactive alerts sent to an iPhone.
NEXT: GreenPages' Integrated Platform For Managing Midmarket Cloud EnvironmentsGreenPages is essentially providing customers with a cloud management framework and service along with the technical talent to successfully implement a cohesive cloud computing strategy, said Dupler.
“We have basically created an integrated platform with two components: the platform itself and the day-to-day operations behind it -- the people and process are at least half the solution,” said Dupler. “There is a blend of home-grown technology and IP [intellectual property] built around our managed services team and then we are partnering [with vendors] on some of this as well.”
“We’re going to cover the 20 percent of features that deliver 80 percent of the value, and then if we are working with a midmarket customer that needs more robust functionality, we can then integrate a piece of the suite from a vendor into this platform,” said Dupler. “What we are trying to do is bring the core that gets customers the base-level functionality they need to really manage in an enterprise hybrid cloud world. And then, as they scale and need to get more robust functionality in some area, we’ll integrate with other technologies.”
Dupler said it was too early to talk about the vendors working with GreenPages on the CMaaS offering. “If we had another month, I think we’d be able to bring this to the market and say: 'This is nailed -- here is what we are coming out with.'" he said. "Right now what we are saying is these tools run and are available today. We could be bringing these to market tomorrow, but we are rationalizing the last part of the strategy."
Dupler said the CMaaS framework is critical to the future success of GreenPages. “Solution providers in the future have to be integrating business services not physical technologies anymore,” he said. “That is what we have to become. That is why apps and [cloud] management become important. In a cloud world, companies like GreenPages need to be about business process, integrating business service platforms. Apps and Data. That is what the market is about.”
Dupler said he sees cloud management as a growing piece of the company’s business over the next five years. In fact, he sees management products and services soaring from 10 percent of the company’s sales today to more than 50 percent of sales in five years.
The CMaaS offering is part of a one-two punch that also includes a significant GreenPages investment in application development focused on application modernization, big data and business intelligence.
“This is the next evolution of the knowledge worker and IT,” said Dupler. “It is really to be able to understand the essence of the business and how to use technology to differentiate it. Everything we are doing in cloud right now is about business velocity. So businesses can react, migrate their application platforms, execute on new ideas, create competitive advantage and empower their employees.”
Published Aug. 10, 2012