CEO Outlook 2024: 20 Solution Providers On The Cloud Moment

The CEOs of 3rd Element, Conduent and Wipro Americas are among the tech leaders to weigh in on cloud in 2024.

Multi-cloud. Hybrid cloud. Cloud-based applications, cloud optimization and cloud-connected mainframes.

This long into the cloud revolution, and solution providers continue to find more areas in which to expand their cloud practices while opening up new opportunities in cloud and security, cloud and artificial intelligence, and other areas that stretch use of the technology.

Observations on what 2024 will mean for cloud in this year’s CRN CEO Outlook 2024 come courtesy of written responses from 3rd Element’s Dawn Sizer, Conduent’s Cliff Skelton, Wipro Americas’ Srini Pallia and other solution provider leaders.

[RELATED: CEO Outlook 2024]

Solution Providers See Cloud Opportunity

In some cases, customers seek a solution provider who can provide a variety of technology services. Adapture President Brian Kirsch said that his company will expand cloud offerings because “clients are looking for a single source for cloud sourcing and support services who can also offer robust cybersecurity solutions and talent sourcing.”

Trace3 CEO Rich Fennessy said that “the underpinning of a viable AI strategy is a mature data, security and cloud strategy,” all areas of expertise for the solution provider.

“We're ready to help our clients design strategies to tackle complex automation objectives, navigate human capital constraints, and address growing data intelligence demands,” Fennessy said.

Read on for what some of the top cloud solution provider CEOs had to say in CRN’s 2024 CEO Outlook.

And of course, see the full CEO Outlook project for more thoughts from these and other tech CEOs, including thoughts from some of the biggest networking CEOs.

Dawn Sizer

3rd Element


What do you see as the toughest challenges facing your customers in 2024?

Most end users are really just embracing cloud technologies and real cybersecurity.

Now they will want to jump ahead and implement AI because they believe there isn’t a ramp-up process, or that they need to secure the data they have first.

There will be any number of breaches this year due to AI and unsecured or improperly secured data.

Brian Kirsch



What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

We are expanding our cloud offerings and strategically investing in our team.

Our clients are looking for a single source for cloud sourcing and support services who can also offer robust cybersecurity solutions and talent sourcing.

Our one-stop approach sets us apart and makes environments more visible and manageable.

CR Howdyshell

Advizex Technologies


What are the key technology investments you plan to make in 2024?

Over the past year, our strategic focus and investment in consumption technology, multi-cloud solutions and AI has proven to be pivotal in propelling our organization forward. Embracing consumption technology has enhanced our ability to adapt to evolving customer needs, ensuring seamless accessibility and a better ability to scale.

Our commitment to multi-cloud environments provides our customers with unparalleled scalability, resilience and flexibility. Moreover, our strides in AI and analytics have revolutionized customer operations, empowering data-driven decision-making and fostering innovation across all facets of their business.

These investments have not only optimized our customer operations but have also positioned us at the forefront of technical advancement, setting the stage for sustained growth and competitive advantage in today's market.

Josh Dinneen

Blue Mantis


What do you see as the toughest challenges facing your customers in 2024?

Without question, we have entered a brand new world with respect to data management and privacy from a regulatory perspective. The new SEC mandate to disclose data breaches more quickly and transparently intensifies their already complex environments. Data resiliency is another major challenge.

Customer data is under continuous attack by an increasingly sophisticated universe of adversaries. Clients’ risk profiles are expanding. Further compounding these two issues is what I call the growing ‘tech debt’—budgets have gotten tighter across the board in the past few years.

‘Do more with less’ is now the rule, not the exception, in most enterprises. The availability of skilled tech talent in IT and cybersecurity and other key areas remains constrained. Most enterprises are grappling with these issues, and they require guidance and direction on how best to prioritize projects in the areas of cloud, cybersecurity and digital transformation.

Lori Williams



What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

There is no doubt most companies are looking at this, but AI is a large market for us. Not just AI development, but also all the work customers need to do with their data and systems to be ready to successfully leverage the benefits of AI.

We are also seeing significant opportunities as major players in key industries are looking to innovate in the cloud. In this modern cloud era, self-managed infrastructures and VMs are things of the past.

Companies are starting to adopt services managed by the cloud provider, building next-gen infrastructures to enable their talent to build IP instead of managing IT.

AWS provides the best technologies for the future of business. With their significant investment in data, analytics and GenAI, it creates a unique opportunity for Caylent to provide innovation to our customers by tailoring AWS’ product portfolio to meet their specific business needs and strengthen our position as a disrupter in the systems integration space.

Irfan Khan


President, CEO

What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

For Cloudsufi, based on our innovation, we are focused on handling the following opportunities, which are key pillars of data monetization for us.

AI-Powered Analytics: Integrating artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning into analytics processes will continue to be a major opportunity for Cloudsufi.

This includes predictive analytics, natural language processing (NLP), and computer vision to automate data analysis, discover insights and improve industry decision-making.

Supply Chain and Logistics: Post-pandemic disruptions have highlighted the need for supply chain resilience. Analytics will be crucial in optimizing supply chain operations, reducing risks and improving agility.

Edge Analytics: With the proliferation of IoT devices and sensors, there’s an opportunity for analytics at the edge. Edge analytics involves processing data locally on IoT devices, reducing latency, and enabling quicker responses and insights, particularly in manufacturing, logistics and health-care industries.

Ethical and Responsible AI: With increased awareness of bias and fairness concerns in AI, there will be opportunities for analytics solutions that audit and monitor AI systems for ethical and responsible use.

Garrette Backie

Clutch Solutions

Founder, CEO

What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

Far and away the market attention will continue to focus on artificial intelligence, but what is really being highlighted is the continued rapid adoption of digital transformation. In this case it’s moved beyond traditional IT workload efforts of old, to the more general (read: generative AI) and creative aspects of the way people work and engage with technology.

To enable this, we are seeing our clients increase their focus on data management, hardware optimization, hybrid cloud environments, SaaS migration, managed services, cybersecurity, and process optimization.

Cliff Skelton


President, CEO

What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

Conduent sees significant opportunity in 2024 and beyond in accelerating business process outcomes and quality through the strategic use of AI, including Generative AI and utilizing our cloud-based and mobile-enabled Business Process as a Service solutions (BPaaS) to enhance customer experience, performance and value for our clients.

For instance, our Digital Integrated Payments Hub streamlines payment processes, reducing processing times from up to 10 days to just minutes. This centralized platform provides secure, efficient and cost-effective payment options for businesses, government and transportation agencies, with transparent transaction tracking.

In the government sector, our cloud-based Medicaid suite (CMdS) automates health-care claims administration and our BenePath Suite streamlines eligibility and enrollment for social services and government aid programs.

We offer technology solutions with AI to modernize client business processes and are collaborating with technology providers to reimagine and enhance value in business processes through generative AI. For example, we are working with a large health-care insurance provider to explore how AI can identify patient or medical provider claims that will be rejected due to missing information or other errors.

Another example is using AI to summarize and analyze large page-volume claim protest submissions, including handwritten documents, to provide insurance providers with relevant, digestible information faster and at less expense than manual analysis.

By solving these challenges, we can save health-care insurance clients resources and costs, while eliminating hassles and delays for medical providers and patients.

Mary Nardella



What is the No. 1 thing you want your vendor partners to do to support your business in 2024?

In the upcoming year, our primary expectation from vendor partners is the establishment of robust partner programs.

These programs should recognize and appreciate solution providers who contribute substantial value to their offerings, while also carving out opportunities for partner profitability within the collaborative framework.

Additionally, with manufacturers increasingly transitioning to the cloud, our revenue model has undergone a significant shift towards services, amplifying the need for vendor partnerships that align with this evolving landscape.

Mike Strohl



What impact do you expect AI to have on your business in 2024?

Over the last 12 months, e360 has been integrating AI into our service offerings. We are focused on creating services that ensure governance, risk and compliance around cybersecurity and protecting customers from unwanted attacks, including those that utilize AI.

We are also working on helping customers implement AI, which has created many opportunities for our organization.

We see some companies trying to do anything and everything when it comes to AI, even in areas where they don't excel.

At e360, we are committed to focusing on our core strengths, which include cloud computing, cybersecurity, digital workplace and modern infrastructure, and delivering the best possible service to our customers in these practice areas.

We plan to eventually integrate AI across the board to make our service offerings even better, and we will accomplish this using various tools, technologies and software partners.

Jeff VonDeylen



What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

Our focus will be on collaborating closely with technology, consultancy and VAR partners to deliver innovative hybrid cloud solutions seamlessly integrating complex legacy, mission-critical systems to modern cloud environments.

An example of this approach is our modern, cloud-connected mainframe enabled by our full ecosystem of partners.

We differentiate ourselves in our ability to modernize even the most complex legacy environments, whether it be making the mainframe a first-class citizen with the rest of a client’s hybrid cloud estate or converting legacy code to enable modern cloud-based solutions that allow data to be leveraged in new ways.

With the growing complexity of IT ecosystems, there is an increasing need for managed services that can provide continuous monitoring, security, optimization and innovation. Ensono and our partners will work together to offer managed services supported by the best technology and innovation in the market, ensuring that our clients can focus on their core business objectives while relying on us for their hybrid cloud operational needs from mission-critical to cloud.

Mark Marron


President, CEO

What do you see as the toughest challenges facing your customers in 2024?

There are profound disruptions occurring across AI, security and cloud—and they are coming at an accelerated and relentless pace.

The speed of change is making it increasingly difficult for organizations to efficiently or effectively consume the technologies they need to support their modern enterprise. In many cases, even if an organization embraces a technology, they fall short of optimizing that technology to really get the most out of the investment due to knowledge or skills gaps. In some cases, even when organizations are curious about adopting new technology they’re unsure how to best leverage it.

This is where relying on knowledgeable, experienced service providers can be tremendously helpful and effective. Whether for staffing support, managed services that remove work from their plates entirely, or consulting services where they can outsource the expertise they need to strategize, design or implement a new technology—there are countless ways that a professional service provider partner can provide value that pays dividends over time.

Skills shortages aren’t new, but as AI brings a new wave of complexity to the technology market, customers are facing an even bigger challenge as it amplifies the need. AI applications can’t exist in a vacuum; they require planning and strategy around data storage, evolved cybersecurity platforms and much more.

Martin Schroeter


Chairman, CEO

What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

We’re a services business, so our biggest market opportunities necessarily align with the direction our customers are headed to achieve their strategic business goals. For us, this means working to modernize and manage their mission-critical operations, which right now gravitate toward a few secular IT trends.

The first is all about helping enterprises prepare their organizational data in preparation of deploying innovative new tools, including artificial intelligence-powered technologies.

Secondly, we’re leaning into helping our customers better figure out how to balance their on-premises and cloud-based workload processing. Enterprises are leaning into a hybrid approach. Third, we're working to increase our customers’ visibility over their own complex IT estates. They need this bird’s-eye view. Among other things, it allows them to spot and address challenges before they impact the business.

Eric Clark

NTT Ltd. Americas


What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

In 2024, as companies continue to manage digital transformation at varying paces, our focus is on essential areas like cloud optimization, gaining actionable insights from data and analytics, and prioritizing automation and generative AI to deliver optimal business outcomes and enhance overall experiences.

It is essential to develop trusted partnerships for delivering simplicity, flexibility, and a faster return on IT investments. NTT Data and our partners are ready to assist our customers. Our goal is to simplify how we design and deliver technology solutions to help our customers achieve their business objectives.

Bob Cagnazzi



What are the key technology investments you plan to make in 2024?

Presidio’s differentiator is our talented team of technology experts. We will make continued investments in our software development teams and innovative new technologies to keep up with the increasing demand from our customers turning to us to modernize their applications.

We’ve been doing this for years and continue to see increased demand from our customers to help them on this journey. Key areas include secure data modernization leveraging GenAI and automation, both which require better efficiency in mining data assets to provide timely access to information that can provide strategic insights and meaningful cost optimization.

Multi-cloud access and enterprisewide security are also top areas of investment as customers increasingly turn to Presidio for building their strategy and supplementing their team to manage it for them.

Nyasha Tunduwani

Real Impact Technology Consulting


What are the key technology investments you plan to make in 2024?

We plan to make significant investments in two AI-enabled platforms. The first, our Power Platform governance and adoption platform, is set to launch in Q1. It aims to assist enterprise and midmarket customers with governance, adoption,and security for Power Platform and AI. Our second major investment is the AI experience platform, which will allow users to execute generative and applied AI scenarios using technologies like Microsoft Azure OpenAI, Cosmos DB, Microsoft Fabric and more.

Andrew Caprara


President, CEO

What are the key technology investments you plan to make in 2024?

We are continuing to make significant investments in deepening our capabilities in AI and related services, along with software asset management, cloud, digital workplace and security.

AI and related services: We are building out our full spectrum of AI and wraparound services, from consulting and business case development to application and data modernization, integrating the technology into our customers'’environments, data governance and security, and end-user adoption services. Building on our application and data capabilities, we are expanding into building and tuning large language models and managing through MLOps.

Our Adoption and Change Management team is expanding to include helping organizations change the way they work by utilizing and training in areas such as prompt engineering. Security is top of mind, and we have developed assessments and remediations so that organizations use AI safely.

In addition, Softchoice was one of a small number of Microsoft partners invited to participate in the M365 Copilot User Study Program. We have seen very positive results and look forward to bringing the value of Copilot to our customers and our people.

Software asset management: We are further enhancing our world-class software asset management offering.

In January, we launched SAM+, a suite of software asset management services purpose-built for subscription-based licensing.

SAM+ comprises assessment, planning, transition, and deployment and adoption services, enabling organizations to remove the risk and realize the rewards of subscription licensing.

Cloud: We are continuing to deepen our industry-leading capabilities across Microsoft Azure, AWS, and Google Cloud Platform, and hybrid cloud.

This starts with our proprietary methodology to assess and plan the proper cloud destination for every workload and is then supported with infrastructure modernization and automation capabilities, application and data platform modernization solutions, all wrapped with DevOps consulting services and our multi-cloud managed services to enable our customers to rapidly innovate solutions to their business goals.

Digital workplace: In 2024, we're unleashing the potential of our customers’ employees by building tailored experiences to each persona in their workforce.

This starts with adopting Microsoft 365 for core productivity and collaboration capabilities, and then augmented with ISV solutions across the ecosystem, and brought to life through integration into modern devices.

Security: 2024 is the year that our customers are adopting identity-based security solutions at mass scale, which Softchoice is enabling through investments in security consulting roles, and then supported through a broader portfolio of SecOps managed security services that offload responsibility from our customers to monitor and manage these modern security environments.

Rich Fennessy



What are the key technology investments you plan to make in 2024?

We believe we are entering an era of true convergence that is going to be driven by GenAI. We’re ready to help our clients design strategies to tackle complex automation objectives, navigate human capital constraints, and address growing data intelligence demands. It’s important to recognize that we have been making investments to prepare us for the age of artificial intelligence for the past 20 years.

The underpinning of a viable AI strategy is a mature data, security and cloud strategy which are all very mature businesses for us. And, most importantly, the client has to have a partner that has deep expertise in deploying innovation and emerging trends with a program management approach that maintains business continuity and ensures success.

Srini Pallia

Wipro Americas


What are the key technology investments you plan to make in 2024?

Wipro is focused on four key technology investments to drive innovation and growth in the retail, consumer goods, health-care and technology industries.

These investments include: Cloud Technology, Artificial Intelligence, Lab45 (Wipro's think tank), and Cybersecurity.

Jim Kavanaugh

World Wide Technology

Co-Founder, CEO

What is the biggest market opportunity your company will tackle in 2024?

As we look ahead to 2024, the most significant market opportunity we see lies in empowering our customers to unlock the full potential of AI.

AI will be the most impactful and transformational technology of all time, but the complexities of today’s rapidly evolving landscape give organizations more options and risk considerations than ever before.

AI can be an intelligent solution and a preventative capability, but it is not stand-alone. With digital transformation and the more advanced an organization’s IT infrastructure and strategy becomes, the greater the need for a seamless data and cloud strategy, and the greater the need for a proactive and comprehensive approach to cybersecurity.

So in empowering our customers, our commitment extends beyond merely offering AI solutions—we focus on a comprehensive approach made possible through our Advanced Technology Center (ATC), which for over a decade now has helped IT leaders by serving as a testbed for innovation in data management, machine learning and deep learning for traditional AI use cases, but more importantly creating a system that seamlessly integrates AI, digital, cloud and cyber.

AI has been a large focus of ours in the past several years but has gained steam in 2023 as the industry moves toward generative AI and will continue to be a large focus for us in 2024.