Salesforce MSP Superstar West Monroe Partners Is Expanding Into AWS Market

West Monroe Partners, a fast-growing next-generation MSP with a robust Salesforce application management practice, is making a big investment in building out an Amazon Web Services practice.

West Monroe, which has carved out a significant business helping midmarket customers drive more business value with, is now set to apply that same model to the AWS market.

[Related: AWS Introduces Channel Program With New Incentives For Solution Providers]

The Salesforce application management practice has been West Monroe's sales growth leader for the past two years. Now the company is taking aim at the booming AWS market.

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"What we are most focused on in terms of growth for the business in the next 18 months is around AWS and AWS Connect [AWS' cloud-based contact center]," said Nathan Ulery, managing director of West Monroe's Performance Services practice. "We are investing a lot of engineering talent around AWS. The adoption of AWS in the midmarket is just getting started. That is where we see the market going over the next couple of years."

West Monroe has done a pilot with Amazon Connect that saved the company 80 percent a month versus the legacy software provider in that market. "That is how big an impact Amazon has in changing the market landscape," he said. "We are having conversations to migrate clients to Amazon Connect and then run it and maintain it for them."

West Monroe is currently training its current Performance Services team on AWS and will be adding new AWS positions over the next year.

The AWS offensive comes with an increasing number of customers looking at treating "infrastructure as code" with an ability to quickly shrink and scale on demand, said Ulery.

"We focused on Office 365 five years ago, two years ago and now we are doing it with AWS," he said. "This is just the next step in our evolution as a next-generation MSP."

Ulery believes that the AWS practice will in short order overtake West Monroe's growing business. "Look at the breadth of what AWS provides," he said. "There is just so much capability within the AWS platform that it has all the potential in the world to be bigger than our business."

The AWS business will be focused on the same business-outcome-based cloud services consulting focus that has powered a 40 percent compound annual growth rate over the past five years for West Monroe's Performance Services business.

Ulery – a 20-year technology consultant – said the secret to the group's success is a razor-sharp focus on how next-generation cloud services can drive better business outcomes for midmarket customers.

"We are focused on how do we improve IT operations for clients with new cloud technologies," he said. "We don't have legacy assets that we need to sell. That has allowed us to embrace the new technologies. This is all about having IT that supports the overall business objectives."

West Monroe, which was formed 16 years ago as a pure business services consultant by former Arthur Andersen executives, has eschewed technology product sales in favor of what it calls a "vendor-agnostic" business-outcome-based cloud "performance" services model.

West Monroe not only provides consulting around cloud services like, but also a suite of managed services focused on maintaining those applications.

That no-nonsence focus on business outcomes will drive an estimated $20 million in business this year with a mind-boggling 85 percent of that business from recurring revenue managed cloud services from some of the top technical cloud talent in the country, said Ulery.

That Performance Services technology team of 110 employees is highly prized by midmarket clients who have hit the wall and have outgrown their existing MSPs, said Ulery. "A lot of our clients are finding that their existing MSPs do not have the people, processes and accountability to take them to the next level," he said.

The prime target for those services is midmarket customers with $250 million to $1 billion in revenue with 10,000 and even more seats. "There are not a lot of midmarket MSPs that are really focused on the midmarket who understand the complexities of those businesses in areas like regulatory compliance, security and M&As," said Ulery.

West Monroe's midmarket focus has been boosted by the Chicago-based company's multinational management business with some 800 business industry experts that can team with the Performance Services team.

Among the West Monroe services areas are infrastructure management for cloud, on-premises or data center with support for Office 365, Azure, Cisco, VMware; client device managemen,t which includes patching management and service desk support with a 24/7 support staff; and a growing security consulting practice that includes risk management audits and day-to-day management of firewalls, secure client devices and even security incident response.

Besides and AWS support services, West Monroe provides SharePoint application and custom .Net applications. "We are finding that a lot of organizations are looking to refine their cloud applications implementation to ensure they get more and more business value from a platform like," Ulery said.

"We are doing continous enhancements every month to these platforms so customers are getting more and more value," he said.

West Monroe also has found a growing practice around assisting companies with merger and acquisition technology planning and implementation. "We are helping customers think through in the long term which pieces of the infrastructure and data centers should be kept or retired over time," said Ulery.

Ulery says the future is bright for next-generation MSPs like West Monroe that are embracing new cloud services like AWS and AWS Connect. "The successful MSPs will be the ones that embrace the new way companies are consuming technology and then providing value on top of that to help those customers get the most out of those platforms."

Many companies are investing in cloud platforms but are not taking advantage of the full business impact of those services, said Ulery. "Midmarket customers want a business partner that is looking out for them so they can get more business value from these technologies," he said. "We are helping customers get more business value every month, every quarter and every year."