Intelligent Tech Channels Issue 55 - Page 55

EXPERT SPEAK
Despite universal familiarity with the term , only two in five of the technology leaders we spoke to claimed to fully understand what it means . The consequence of this was evident in the perception of NaaS as a solution – with only 11 % seeing it as an established and viable option for businesses today .
From a partner perspective , an emphasis from some vendors on ‘ referral ’ models also raises concerns : the general sentiment is often that as management workloads for partners lessen with As-a-Service , revenue will be taken away by vendors and reliance on the channel will diminish .
Another issue sometimes raised by partners relates to the true flexibility of offers . Due to the fast-evolving market the ability to flex up , but not down , is a common customer complaint – customers are seeking the option to do both so that is what you must provide .
Addressing customer confusion and your own finance fears
Armed with an understanding of the attraction to NaaS alongside an insight into potential concerns , you can use this knowledge to address customer confusion .
This starts by working with vendors to close the education gap . In fact , channel partners now play an increasingly core role in articulating IT benefits and delivering technical consulting .
Here , vendor partner strategies and programs , such as Aruba ’ s MSP program , can ensure that you get the information you need to become trusted advisors to your customers on NaaS . For example , Aruba offers access to network design templates and best practices , plus sample SOWs for our partners .
In terms of your own finance fears , offering a NaaS service can become a long-term source of profitability if handled correctly . The current challenge for many of you is around finding and offering services that encourage customers to partner for longer .
Not only do offering flexible payment models increase the potential for you to generate recurring income , but NaaS also opens up additional opportunities for you to layer on your own value-added services on top .
Providing the perfect package
Once you have educated customers on the benefits of NaaS and addressed any financial concerns of your own , you can turn your attention towards creating the right type of NaaS offering for you and your customers .
Here , you must do your research . Regarding some of the other barriers identified , not all offerings are only capable of upscaling the network or minimising the role of management for channel partners . One of Aruba ’ s NaaS offerings , HPE GreenLake for Aruba networking , which includes a suite of eight standardised NaaS solutions , gives partners four primary models for delivery : a partner assessment and design model with standardised and modular service packs that can be configured by partners in three to five year subscription models ; a fulfilment model that gives the partner the ability to sell the service but have Aruba fulfil it ; a model for the customer to contract service levels with a partner and finally a model where the Aruba team together with partners provide monthly billing and day one services for the customer .
Our solutions also give end-customers the ability to flex the network up and flex down .
Fortunately , we ’ re seeing a range of NaaS packages being introduced across the industry , giving you more choice of what you want to offer As-a-Service , how you want to go to market and how much management you want to take on . A NaaS package won ’ t look the same for everyone . Differentiation will be key to successful sales , so you should look to build offers around your own specialist vertical knowledge and experience .
Clearly , the appetite for NaaS isn ’ t going anywhere and channel companies cannot afford to lose out on this opportunity . In order to leverage the customer shift towards subscription-based models , you must prepare by understanding both the benefits and barriers to adoption , then doing your research to help you develop the best packages for your business and customers . •
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