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The evolution of Managed Service Providers (MSP) is the next step in the local cloud journey. The move to the cloud has been anticipated and well documented over the years, but benefits of the technology platform adoption is yet to be fully realised. This is according to Cheslynne Britz, VMware business development manager, Axiz Advanced Technologies, who says that cloud-enabled managed service providers are key to continued and improved cloud adoption.

“By ensuring managed service providers are able to assist end customers to be up-to-date and experience the latest in technology, we are encouraging more companies to develop their skills as VMware cloud providers. In doing this, they will have the skills to maintain and manage a truly hybrid solution,” says Britz.

This evolution of managed service providers is a growing global trend. Two distinct trends were noted by VMware, the first is around traditional hosting providers transforming into full-fledged cloud providers driving automation of infrastructure and application services along with managed services on top. Second, is that a lot of providers recognise the value of managed services and have begun to provide services on top of third-party clouds, particularly the big providers like Amazon, Microsoft, Google and IBM. Providers are responding to their customers’ use of multi-cloud to offer management, security, compliance and other services across multiple cloud platforms.

Britz says that as a result of these trends, traditional managed hosting, system integrators, outsourcing and traditional VMware solution providers are increasingly moving to become cloud providers or managed service providers: “Axiz Advanced Technologies is hoping to assist more of our local providers to become certified VMware cloud providers and grow their share of wallet from end customer business.”

She says that knowledge and expertise in cloud computing is lacking and Axiz Advanced Technologies is focused on assisting its providers to assist end users to overcome this obstacle: “While cloud-first adoption is slowing down, it is not reluctance as much as it is a lack of understanding. By adopting this value-added managed service approach, we can assist our providers to offer a higher level of service and ensure they can tailor the offerings based on the end user’s requirements,” says Britz.

Value to the end-user also remains critical according to Britz. In assisting businesses to better manage day-to-day IT operations will reduce running costs and provide much needed advantages end-customers need to compete effectively.

Not always an easy or simple progression, managed service providers schooled in cloud can play an instrumental role when it comes to IT infrastructure components: “Whether it’s a migration or a solution that requires complex levels of integration, we aim to assist managed service providers to extend their role within the end-user environment,” says Britz.