As part of our effort to make the channel community better informed and get an earful of what the leading vendors are thinking, expecting, and planning for the channel community in 2022, we have started this new section to record the channel predictions of the most prominent players of the IT industry.
Here, as part of this special series of Tech Forecasts, Nutanix India registers its predictions for 2022.
“As customers move to consume IT products as a subscription service rather than a one-time purchase event, vendors will face the pressure to align partner incentives with that of the customer’s lifetime journey.”
Director- Systems Engineering,
Nutanix India & SAARC
In a special interaction with SME Channels, Naresh Purohit, Director- Systems Engineering, Nutanix India & SAARC, shares his company’s Channel Predictions for the year 2022. Edited excerpts…
Give a brief introduction of your company.
Nutanix is a global leader in cloud software and a pioneer in hyperconverged infrastructure solutions, making clouds invisible, freeing customers to focus on their business outcomes. Organizations around the world use Nutanix solutions to leverage a single platform to manage any app at any location for their hybrid multicloud environments.
Today, the Nutanix Cloud Platform is enabling thousands of companies around the world to run their apps and workloads with unparalleled performance in whichever cloud makes sense—private, public, or edge—knowing it’s working seamlessly with minimal intervention. We were also ranked by IDC as India’s Dominant HCI SW Vendor for the 15th Consecutive Quarter.
As the pandemic is still there and a new variant has surfaced, what are the major market trends you are forecasting for 2022?
Two years into the pandemic, we’ve seen massive innovation as companies of all sizes have embraced technology to navigate in a rapidly changing business landscape that includes new operating models, customer challenges, and managing a remote workforce. We have witnessed an acceleration of digital services in every sector, with businesses using cloud technologies to extend their offerings.
As businesses increase their cloud adoption, costly lock-ins will become more of a concern. Organizations will lean further toward hybrid multicloud strategies that enable flexibility and avoid cloud lock-in. This will give them the best cloud mix the market has to offer, with freedom and choice for their applications and data.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) will become an even important tool to power IT operations and automation. AI can help organizations tackle multiple challenges between advancements in technology and the shortage of skilled labor in a number of areas. While AI implementations may not always succeed in the first attempt, those who leverage existing models developed by leading research or company projects will be ahead of the pack.
What major trends are you forecasting in the channel market?
Companies will shift their focus away from transactional volume sales toward technical services in areas including cloud computing and hybrid multicloud infrastructure, and security. There is also an untapped opportunity in granting the right partners secure access to telemetry. It will be a whole new dimension of validating solution adoption and usage, and ultimately will better enable partners to provide proactive and reactive support. Partners will be instrumental in identifying new opportunities to improve customer experience and success once they have access to these insights.
Furthermore, partner tools such as customer experience and success insights can help drive greater growth, intimacy and value for the customer. In the coming year, we anticipate there will be greater demand among partners for these insights and they will look at growing these practices alongside vendors. Along the way, the term “sales rep” will likely phase out as “customer success managers” become the norm.
The alliance landscape will also see more examples of vendors finding common ground as demand grows for more complete, multi-technology solutions. Alliances will be driven by not only the customers of today, but the customers of tomorrow as the technology landscape drives innovation and more complexity. This isn’t a new trend – Nutanix recently forged strategic relationships with Red Hat and Citrix which have both proved to be of great value to our partners with solutions that are certified and supported together.
Which areas you want to focus in the channel – skillsets – sales and marketing, vertical and technology practice development, service capability, etc.?
Nutanix’s primary focus is to simplify engagement for our channel ecosystem as much as possible, so that our partners can focus on helping customers move to multicloud environments. Our business is 100 percent channel-driven in the country, and we ensure that our partners have the resources, technology and tools that are necessary to succeed. We recently launched a Partner Support Center in India that will enable our partners to quickly move to an Everything-as-a-Service model. We have also introduced the Nutanix Elevate Service Provider Program to provide further support to our service provider partners.
We are also prioritising attracting and retaining the next generation of talent as the world tries to bounce back from the pandemic. We are actively looking at DevOps as one of the next practices to drive differentiation and growth. Low code /no code development methodologies will transform solution delivery – slashing engagement time and costs and thus, providing a significant competitive edge. This is likely to attract the next wave of digital-native channel professionals entering the workforce embracing these new approaches and will become a new source of vibrancy, innovation, and growth for organizations.
What is your expectation from channel this year?
Legacy sales methods and incentive models are quickly becoming a thing of the past. As customers move to consume IT products as a subscription service rather than a one-time purchase event, vendors will face the pressure (and opportunity) to align partner incentives with that of the customer’s lifetime journey.
Nutanix believes that disaggregating the incentive stack will create more sustained value for customers and are exploring how we can incentivize partners throughout the full lifetime of a customer’s engagement with us. This will better enable partners to deepen their engagement with customers and benefit them in a more sustained way as they drive solutions and services development with us and their customers over a time.
As we transition into the new year, work-from-anywhere continues to be a top priority for CIOs as the emergence of new Covid-19 variants delay the return to work. In order to cater to this demand, we’ve expanded our relationships with Citrix and Lenovo TruScale to support our clients with safe and confidential access to corporate applications for their remote workforce.
In this new world of work, organisations are increasingly adopting a hybrid multicloud solution to deliver new capabilities, maintain a competitive advantage, reduce inefficiencies and enable rapid scalability. Furthermore, Indian enterprises in the future are likely to seek a higher level of automation- automation of databases, automation of security, automation of applications to work efficiently and deliver higher business outcomes.