Being involved with Software-Defined Networking (SDN) does not automatically translate into Software-Defined Everything (SDE) competency, according to Schneider Electric.
Pacific datacentre software sales manager, Andrew Sylvester, said partners and resellers have a tendency to be proficient in the design and delivery of a chosen technology competency.
“I wouldn’t expect a channel partner to become proficient in SDE as a whole, but instead remain focused on specific areas of expertise,” he said.
A channel partner with skills and experience in SDN is thus likely to move into Software-Defined Storage with “only a relatively small increase in skills and capability.”
At the same time, Sylvester said the same reseller may struggle to move into the Software-Defined Datacentre space or as yet newly defined SDx (Software-Defined Internet Exchange) segment.
“It may be more beneficial to leverage existing competencies and add the services and process skills to create a 'new' SDx portfolio and service catalogue,” he said.
With a growing range of technologies around SDE already hitting the market and more on the horizon, the key opportunity Sylvester highlights is in designing and providing software solutions with a large level of automation.
In particularly, if they are focused on management, and control and agile programming of infrastructure components, such as networking, storage and data centre hardware.
“Ideally, channel partners should consider providing associated services that not only deploy the SDx solution, but also assist customers to operate and maintain the solution over time,” Sylvester said.
If the channel goes in this direction, Sylvester said operational risk can be mitigated, agility is improved, and value is added as businesses assess and take advantage of Software-Defined IT and datacenter environments.
Patrick Budmar covers consumer and enterprise technology breaking news for IDG Communications. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_budmar.