Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Enterprises Achilles' heel in Cloud computing

Below is my comment to the post Cloud computing's Achilles' heel: Poor customer service by David Linthicum (@DavidLinthicum) on InfoWorld yesterday.

Short break out from Davids post:
"These days, larger enterprises are investing in public clouds, and they're accustomed to real people talking to them on the phone, account managers in their offices, and cell numbers for support engineers on call around the clock. In other words, they want public cloud providers to offer the same level of customer service as the larger enterprise software providers.  
The problem is that many of the public cloud providers are not set up to meet this level of customer service. They simply don't have the people or the systems in place. To establish such systems and personnel, they'll have to raise their prices -- and no one is doing that these days.  
But as public clouds push into larger enterprises, they will have no choice but to provide a richer customer service experience. Large enterprise IT demands that level of service, and public clouds won't be able to penetrate the large enterprise market without it."
My comment, which I choose to call: Enterprises Achilles' heel in Cloud computing:
Good points and I do agree with you. But I think it’s an Achilles' to larger Enterprises too since they don’t seem to get the point with cloud. Of course you as a consumer need to be able to contact the provider of the service but Enterprises (SMB, Ent or “whatever”) need to understand they can’t afford buying bespoke services including customer services where someone asks: “Coffee or tea?” Bespoke isn’t what cloud (especially not public ones) is about. Enterprises can’t expect same level of service as for instance a more traditional (historical?) software delivery. 
At the same time a dilemma for CSP’s if large enterprises demands full customer services. Not only because of a need to raise a price. We live in a “core business” world and I wonder if a full customer service function is core to a CSP? Can a cloud broker take this responsibility instead of the CSP? Can the function be outsourced to a customer services specialist (a cloud services customer services specialist? Specialized call centers?)? Is it a role to be taken by established ITO’s and M/SP’s if they want to be a player in the game in the future? Customer services and people within that function is somehow the soul in a service and company but is a public cloud service ready to fund souls?! CSP’s need to think smart (and twice) if and when adding these functions to their services.

As commented in my tweet: Don’t know if my words make sense. But I hope you get my point. Things aren't as they used to be.

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