Where is the partner opportunity in the public cloud?

The actual costs of managing public cloud services can get out of control if not managed by staff with a specific skill set

By By Chris Player
Sept. 20, 2016


Public cloud is fast becoming the go to technology platform for Australian organisations of all sizes, but for many businesses, managing their environment quickly becomes a pressing issue.

Many organisations have embraced the cloud in the expectation of achieving lower costs and improved competitive advantage. However, the actual costs of managing public cloud services can get out of control if not managed by staff with a specific skillset.

Fronde CTO, James Valentine, said that, while public cloud can seem cost-effective in the short-term, building the capabilities to support and manage cloud platforms within an organisation can be expensive.

Fronde CTO, James Valentine

“The challenge for organisations is to build the capability to support and manage the platform. In practice, their priority defaults to delivering product or software delivery milestones. The result is higher platform costs. Worse, they may be exposing themselves to significant security risks,” he explained.

Valentine said Fronde’s analysis of its customer base found that organisations without specialist skills to manage and optimise the Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform spend up to 60 per cent more in platform costs and experience 35 per cent more security breaches.

For many organisations, achieving maximum return on investment is unlikely, given their limited access to in-house skills and resources. The general tech skills shortage in Australian IT means that organisations struggle to find talent and, as a result, will increasingly need to lean on the partner community to fill this gap.

Fronde has a number of customers under active management, some of which are quite passive and use the company to bill them for AWS services.

“Then we have a spectrum of customers which goes right up to full managed services,” said Valentine. “When there is active management, you are looking for efficiencies, and you take proactive steps to ensure that you are doing the things that should be done.

Read more:Fronde hires new strategic alliances GM

“Amazon does a great job of making you aware of the things that should be done, but what we find is, customers that are not actively managing it don’t prioritise doing that and don’t go out of their way to take the steps they need to stay ahead of the game and get the efficiencies and benefits they should be getting," he said. “It is more like they are missing out on the efficiencies and opportunities available to them as a result.

“We haven’t really seen a particular demographic or type [of customer] who is going to do it their own way. There are people who think it will take care of itself and assume that it is automated and in the cloud, and that some of the day-to-day BAU [business as usual] activities will just happen.

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