Agile Computing Authors: Liz McMillan, Dean Madison, Elizabeth White, Rene Buest, Stackify Blog

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Microservices Expo, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, @DXWorldExpo, SDN Journal

@CloudExpo: Article

Three Ways to Sell Desktop-as-a-Service

And how a provider can create its strongest allies

Cloud service providers are up against several key challenges when it comes to selling desktop virtualization technology. An understanding of the benefits of desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) rarely exists, and licensing concerns - and their rising costs - are not going away any time soon. Knowing the do's and don't of selling desktop-as-a-service before diving in can solve problems on the front end while ensuring adoption of DaaS occurs in companies of all shapes and sizes.

1. Turn IT administrators into allies, not opponents.
Among the myriad reasons enterprises cite for turning to desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) technology, a few prove instrumental in driving its adoption. When evaluating the decision drivers behind DaaS, it is important to consider what the actual motivators behind a switch away from traditional desktop computing may be, and who it is that must be properly motivated. While some of the most progressive executives of small and mid-sized businesses may themselves be the driving force behind such a switch, it is worth noting that these are not typically the individuals interacting with DaaS providers. On the other hand, those who head the IT department of a company have many potential motivators for spearheading a switch from traditional compute to virtualized hosted Windows desktops. The time, energy and frustration DaaS can spare those who actually administer end-user compute for organizations with dozens - or hundreds - of desktops can be significant. If these individuals are sufficiently aware of the benefits they stand to accrue through a switch to more efficient DaaS technology, it follows intuitively that such heads of IT organizations would be among the strongest advocates for such a shift.

Interestingly, these factors bring into consideration another reality. Providers of cloud-hosted DaaS often find they are interacting with an individual who often does not bear the direct economic cost of his actions. The IT head who would implement DaaS stands to gain all of the benefits and none of the direct costs of the technology. In such situations, the financial decision maker who bears the direct cost thus becomes the primary bottleneck to progress and technological advancement. Evaluation of these factors brings this discussion to its ultimate point:

IT administrators, and the Cloud Hosting Providers who would sell DaaS to them, quite often find themselves with uniquely aligned goals; both parties stand to directly benefit from the technology, and both must sell its merits to those who bear the direct cost of implementation. Cloud providers who are to successfully propagate desktop virtualization technology must hold in esteem these IT administrators as the allies they are. Ultimately, the most successful providers will market their technologies to enterprises through - and not to - their IT departments.

DaaS provides many advantages in flexibility, control, and agility to enterprises with large end-user compute requirements. These advantages may be realized across the board - in terms of increased efficiency, higher availability, and ease of scaling. Additionally, DaaS makes anytime, anywhere access available across a wide spectrum of user devices, driving enhanced productivity. These are all points that can - and must - be spoken to as part of a successful strategy to drive virtualization technology. Those who can speak best to the individualized needs, requirements, and existing pain points of an enterprise's end-user compute pool are those who know their organizations from the inside out. An enterprise's IT department knows the idiosyncratic requirements of their particular organization better than anyone and can therefore best speak to these points in advancing DaaS adoption. These individuals also often have the strongest personal motivators for seeing its successful implementation.

It is not surprising that DaaS would have strong advocates on both sides of the market. Providers must be careful, however, not to alienate those who would otherwise be their greatest allies. Some in IT may fear this technology as undermining their necessity. Much to the contrary, desktop virtualization is a tool that enables, not eliminates, IT departments. This technology makes IT personnel more effective, and thus more relevant. DaaS technology brings unprecedented flexibility and control to the IT specialist, empowering him and giving him greater impact than ever before. The provider of quality virtualized desktops that understands these tenants at their core, and the needs of its customers, is the provider that will enjoy the greatest success in coming years.

2. License customers properly - VDI does not eliminate or replace a license burden.
When signing on new customers, transparency is paramount. It is essential that the service provider supply an accurate representation of licensing costs and be entirely clear about what these costs do and do not cover. Dislike it as we may, desktop virtualization in no way eliminates the need to properly furnish the end user with accurate Microsoft licensing for Windows desktops. Do not deceive your customers when it comes to Microsoft licensing. While it may come as a surprise to some that this point need be made at all, poor licensing practice seems to be an all-too-common trend emerging in the industry. Suspect providers downplay, or avoid mentioning at all, the additional costs of licensing that customers will incur beyond the DaaS subscription itself. Do not be swayed by those suspect service providers offering license free or "rented" license subscriptions.

3. Don't focus on cost. Focus on quality.
So, you have on board a new client with 100 virtual desktop licenses. Now, can you guarantee the client the highest degree of uptime and reliable, consistent access to its hosted desktops? The answer should be a resounding yes. At the end of the day, the availability of your cloud infrastructure will prove the most important consideration for a business customer. The cost of your customers' losing productivity is very high. Payroll for a 100-person company on average is $35,000 per day. If those employees can't work because your VDI cloud is offline, there will be problems. Quality here is key - you may be able to acquire customers with an attractive price, but you will lose them just as quickly if you can't back up your price with availability of service. With promises of increased availability and easier administration, DaaS can be a double-edged sword. Increased availability is only realized when the provider can back its promises. For this reason, the cost of a DaaS subscription comes second in importance to its functionality. The real cost - or savings - of VDI comes as a function of its quality.

More Stories By Marshall Lincoln

Marshall Lincoln is a Cloud Marketing Analyst at 8x8, Inc. (NASDAQ:EGHT). 8x8 is a provider of cloud virtualization services, under the Zerigo brand, with public and enterprise-grade solutions for Desktops as a Service, Infrastructure as a Service, Cloud Virtual Private Servers and Virtual DNS. 8x8's Zerigo Hosted VDI enables businesses to capitalize on the myriad user benefits inherent to VMware's View with a simple, proprietary user-interface and on-demand desktop provisioning.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

@ThingsExpo Stories
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
DevOpsSummit New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DXWorldEXPO within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of bus...
With 10 simultaneous tracks, keynotes, general sessions and targeted breakout classes, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO are two of the most important technology events of the year. Since its launch over eight years ago, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO have presented a rock star faculty as well as showcased hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors! In this blog post, we provide 7 tips on how, as part of our world-class faculty, you can deliver one of the most popular sessions at our events. But before reading...
DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICOHOLDER named "Media Sponsor" of Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO. ICOHOLDER give you detailed information and help the community to invest in the trusty projects. Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO has opened its Call for Papers. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO also offers s...
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...
Enterprises have taken advantage of IoT to achieve important revenue and cost advantages. What is less apparent is how incumbent enterprises operating at scale have, following success with IoT, built analytic, operations management and software development capabilities - ranging from autonomous vehicles to manageable robotics installations. They have embraced these capabilities as if they were Silicon Valley startups.
The standardization of container runtimes and images has sparked the creation of an almost overwhelming number of new open source projects that build on and otherwise work with these specifications. Of course, there's Kubernetes, which orchestrates and manages collections of containers. It was one of the first and best-known examples of projects that make containers truly useful for production use. However, more recently, the container ecosystem has truly exploded. A service mesh like Istio addr...
Poor data quality and analytics drive down business value. In fact, Gartner estimated that the average financial impact of poor data quality on organizations is $9.7 million per year. But bad data is much more than a cost center. By eroding trust in information, analytics and the business decisions based on these, it is a serious impediment to digital transformation.
Predicting the future has never been more challenging - not because of the lack of data but because of the flood of ungoverned and risk laden information. Microsoft states that 2.5 exabytes of data are created every day. Expectations and reliance on data are being pushed to the limits, as demands around hybrid options continue to grow.
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
As IoT continues to increase momentum, so does the associated risk. Secure Device Lifecycle Management (DLM) is ranked as one of the most important technology areas of IoT. Driving this trend is the realization that secure support for IoT devices provides companies the ability to deliver high-quality, reliable, secure offerings faster, create new revenue streams, and reduce support costs, all while building a competitive advantage in their markets. In this session, we will use customer use cases...
Digital Transformation: Preparing Cloud & IoT Security for the Age of Artificial Intelligence. As automation and artificial intelligence (AI) power solution development and delivery, many businesses need to build backend cloud capabilities. Well-poised organizations, marketing smart devices with AI and BlockChain capabilities prepare to refine compliance and regulatory capabilities in 2018. Volumes of health, financial, technical and privacy data, along with tightening compliance requirements by...
The IoT Will Grow: In what might be the most obvious prediction of the decade, the IoT will continue to expand next year, with more and more devices coming online every single day. What isn’t so obvious about this prediction: where that growth will occur. The retail, healthcare, and industrial/supply chain industries will likely see the greatest growth. Forrester Research has predicted the IoT will become “the backbone” of customer value as it continues to grow. It is no surprise that retail is ...
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that "Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO" has announced that its Call for Papers is now open. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Financial enterprises in New York City, London, Singapore, and other world financial capitals are embracing a new generation of smart, automated FinTech that eliminates many cumbersome, slow, and expe...
Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo have announced the conference tracks for Cloud Expo 2018. Cloud Expo will be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, and November 6-8, 2018, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DX Expo within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive ov...