VAR500: Changes To IBM Services, DiData's Unified Communications Study

VAR500 Solution Providers In the News

This week, IBM debuted a modular plan to deliver IT services more quickly and cost-effectively to customers. In addition, Dimension Data released research finding unified communications -- while popular -- aren't yet fulfilling their potential in the workplace.

Other VAR500 solutions providers, including Atos Origin, DLT Solutions, CIBER and Accenture, also made headlines.

IBM Introduces Building Block Approach To Services Portfolio

IBM debuted a standardized set of highly-engineered IT assets that will streamline the way IBM designs, deploys, and manages a clients’ technology infrastructure. The creation of these pre-designed building blocks will help IBM reduce the time it takes to build out the IT system for a client by 60 percent and drive down costs as much as 50 percent, said IBM Services expert, Jim Comfort.

The project has been taking shape for the past two years, said Comfort, adding that customer response has been positive. Comfort noted that it has required a shift from customers wondering what a solution provider can do to help accomplish the client's goals, vs. how they can help. "If [the customer] follows this path, we can commit to an outcome more quickly," he added.

Survey Says: Unified Communications Aren't Yet Reaching Full Potential

Dimension Data has released the results of a survey of more than 800 U.S. IT leaders on unified communications deployments. The survey revealed that while investment in unified communications and collaboration solutions is growing rapidly, organizations are not realizing the business productivity and cost-savings benefits, because of a lack of a carefully planned roadmap and comprehensive user adoption plan. For example, while 70 percent of companies surveyed have video capabilities, only 41 percent typically use the technology. In addition, 72 percent of respondents reported using IM tools regularly -- 19 percent of which are not corporate sanctioned -- yet 34 percent admitted their IM is not integrated with other communications systems -- revealing a large untapped opportunity for unified communications.

CIBER Appoints New CIO With Bearingpoint Background

CIBER has named Eric Goldfarb, a former BearingPoint, executive vice president and CIO, as executive vice president and chief information officer. Goldfarb, 46, was an Executive Vice President, executive committee member and CIO at BearingPoint, Inc. from 2006 to 2010. In this role, he was responsible for redefining the mission of and setting the priorities for the IT organization. Within 20 months, his team successfully integrated multiple financial systems, achieved compliance with federal regulations, and delivered significant cost savings. Additionally, Goldfarb was instrumental in expanding the client base through website redesigns that enabled client mining and increased marketing activities. That effort won a 2007 Interactive Media Award. He is also co-author of several books, including Ways to Reduce IT Spending.

Accenture Reports Jump In Sales

Accenture reported strong financial results for the second quarter of fiscal 2011. Net revenue hit $6.05 billion, an increase of 17 percent in U.S. dollars and 18 percent in local currency over the same period last year and exceeding the company’s guided range of $5.6 billion to $5.8 billion. Increased demand for IT services was credited for the revenue bump.

EC Clears Atos' Path To Buy Siemens IT

Atos Origin has received the green light from the European Commission to proceed with its purchase of Siemens IT Solutions. Atos signed a final binding agreement to acquire Siemens IT Solutions and Services with Siemens AG on February 1st, 2011.

The transaction is also approved by U.S. anti-trust authorities, provided the terms remain consistent during the relevant waiting period. The deal is expected to close by July 2011, subject to the completion of the remaining condition precedents, including the Atos Origin shareholders approval at an Extraordinary Shareholders Meeting.

DLT Wins Award From 3D Software Vendor

DLT Solutions has received the Ninety-Ninety Excellence award from Autodesk, a world leader in 3D design software. The award, presented at Autodesk’s annual global channel partner One Team Conference, recognizes that DLT obtained at least a 90 percent subscription renewal rate and 90 percent attach rate on subscription contracts for the previous fiscal year.