Dimension Data Moves IT Support Maintenance Into Cloud Services Era

The new offering for the first time provides the system integrator's 6,000 clients worldwide with a proactive, multivendor managed services offering that replaces standalone IT break/fix support maintenance agreements.

That means clients now have the option of buying a single Dimension Data "Global Uptime" managed services offering that includes cloud-based IT asset tracking with proactive, uptime monitoring from a smartphone or tablet.

[Related: Dimension Data Consolidates Cloud Businesses ]

The Global Uptime offering, which incorporates managed services support for Cisco, Riverbed, Blue Coat, F5, Checkpoint, Fortinet and Microsoft Lync, is the kind of cloud-era managed service that put Dimension Data into Gartner's leaders Quadrant for Communications Outsourcing and Professional Services.

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The next-generation service is one more step in Dimension Data's aggressive drive to transform its business with a comprehensive set of its own cloud-based managed services, said Dimension Data Vice President of Services Operations Tom Praschak.

The new service has the potential to save customers anywhere from 5 to 25 percent by consolidating multiple break/fix maintenance agreements into a single managed service, said Praschak. That includes savings resulting from considerable IT resources that companies are spending to track IT assets themselves. "Clients are under constant pressure to reduce spend in this area," he said.

The potential cost savings, along with cloud-based proactive monitoring, is expected to drive double-digit sales growth for the Global Uptime offering, said Praschak. "As with all things cloud, this is less about technology and more about the support relationship you want with your [IT] provider as you move down the path to the cloud," said Praschak.

One key to the new service is Dimension Data's ability to offer the managed service globally, said Praschak. That makes it an especially attractive offering for Fortune 500 companies looking to move their IT business to a cloud-based services environment. That said, Praschak said the service will also appeal to midmarket companies grappling with support/maintenance tickets from multiple vendors.

Dimension Data said the new Uptime service can be priced on both a monthly "per user" basis as part of an overall managed services offering or on a "per device" basis as part of a traditional IT maintenance agreement focused on specific devices such as network routers or switches.

Dimension Data, a $6 billion global systems integrator that was No. 11 on the CRN SP500 list last year, has doubled its cloud services sales over the last year. That growth has been sparked in part by a multiyear plan to become a cloud services-driven business. Among the game changing investments driving the Dimension Data cloud transformation: the acquisition last year of both enterprise cloud services provider OpSource and Web-based telecom expense management company Xigo.