Ask the Experts: How Outsourcing and IaaS Lead to Success

Welcome to Ask the Experts, brought to you by CloudServicesUniversity.com. In this video, Intelisys’ SVP Cloud Transformation Andrew Pryfogle discusses outsourcing infrastructure to the cloud, and the many ways IaaS helps IT leaders to succeed with UnitedLayer’s CEO, Abhijit Phanse. Find out more about IaaS and cloud computing from Abhijit and the UnitedLayer team here: http://unitedlayer.cloudservicesuniversity.com/

Andrew: So we’re into our next Ask the Experts session and were going to dive into a really interesting topic around outsourcing as part of our definition of what the cloud is. I wanted to invite to our studio, Abhijit Phanse, CEO of UnitedLayer, one of our smart guys here. Abhijit, welcome again.
Abhijit: Thank you, Andrew.
Andrew: Always great to get your input on something. You’ve heard me talk about the definition of cloud that I’ve been using that very simply: #1 it’s not here, #2 it’s as a service, and #3 it is outsourcing. The latter, that outsourcing word, the “O” word, tends to scare people once in a while and I wanted to get your take on that. Should outsourcing scare people?
Abhijit: I think outsourcing used to scare people. If I give you … If I outsource my infrastructure as an IT director or as an IT manager what do I do? I’m out of a job. I think that situation is changing in a big way because frankly the lack of outsourcing is more scary. Let me explain that.
Most IT managers, directors, implementers are under-resourced. They are under deadlines they can’t meet. They have requirements which don’t fit into their budget. They’re working with administrative issues, procurement, hiring policies, which limit their ability to execute quickly to meet the velocity of their business. Their business is changing much faster. Their management demanding a lot more from them. At the same time there’s always that hassle of not getting the resources required to deliver on the promises of their business objectives.
So that is the natural tension. There is always this friction I see in organizations with the top management in the IT organization.
I think in today’s world outsourcing … The IT group never has to the complete expertise to deal with all the issues of networking and storage and security and compliance. So they’re always at a disadvantage. They’re working on a set of problems which they don’t have all the answers. If they have the ability to actually get an extension of a team to work behind them to enable them for success, they suddenly have the opportunity to look good. Look good in the context of delivery, look good in the context of offering an SLA which is really hard for them to do, but that’s something they can demand from a hosted provider. Then manage that SLA, then look good in front of their management. Look good in terms of having an IT strategy in terms of all the confluences of all these different disciplines and making sure security is geared for, and compliance, and scalability and future business agility – all scaled for.
All of a sudden outsourcing, Andrew, can make them super-efficient, make them competent, make them deliver on schedule, make them have a great vision. Also make them really really cost effective and efficient. My position is very clear. You can go to an IT director and say, “We are your team. You manage us. We help you look good.” That’s not scary.
Andrew: Love it. That’s great stuff! I want to ask you a quick bonus question. Could I, Abhijit? We’ve talked about this a little bit. Suppose for a moment that a company with, say, 300, 400, 500 employees was interviewing a new Director of IT or a CIO even. If that candidate for that job did not have any experience at all in migrating a company of similar size from premise based to a cloud architecture. How much of a disadvantage would that candidate be in that job search?
Abhijit: I think that would be a significant disadvantage. If you step up a little higher, Andrew, I think in today’s world we have to recognize that we don’t have all the answers. Any individual, we have to rely on experts to get the job done.
I think as any person, any manager in an organization, your management abilities to figure out your core competencies, figure out the team of experts you want to work with, and delegate your work to them and effectively manage them to objectives, manage them to deadlines. That’s a key part for any IT managers.
To your question: if a person hasn’t had the track record of doing that before and outsourcing a portion or a piece of portion of their IT infrastructure to the right set of experts, maybe it’s for reasons of expertise or reasons of being in the right geography, and doesn’t have the management expertise to be able to not only outsource but manage them effectively. That’s a huge disadvantage.
Andrew: Fascinating. That’s of course where outsourcing is …. and cloud really comes into play here. I love your points about how it shouldn’t be a scary thing. In fact, not outsourcing should be more scary!
I know a lot of our Sales Partners are starting to wake up to this idea that they could be in the position of helping build kingdoms, if you will, for our best customers. Companies that can really start to embrace this idea and leaders that can emerge along, hand and hand with our Sales Partners to show, “Hey this is how it’s done. I’ve done it, let’s do it somewhere else.” That’s a good story!
Abhijit: You got me! I think you’re absolutely right, Andrew. That is a very compelling story right now. I think with the lack of human capital, expertise, the complexity of situations which IT managers and directors have to deal with, this is a very compelling story which hits home really hard.
Andrew: Very cool. Abhijit, thanks for carving out some time, man. Really, really great stuff. Great insights from Abhijit Phanse, CEO of UnitedLayer, Abhijit, thanks, man. We really appreciate it.
Abhijit: Happy to be here. Thank you, Andrew.
Andrew: Make sure you check out UnitedLayer’s learning center. It has some great, great stuff in there. It’s things that you can download, videos you can watch, sales tools that will help you close more deals in the cloud. You can have lots of success with UnitedLayer. We’re big fans. You should be too. Good selling everyone.