Build a Virtual Industrial Park

A majority of the enterprise decision-makers we surveyed are looking for a connected development platform and help with industry-specific applications. An equal number are split between developing those specific applications in-house and buying access to everything as a turn-key service. That’s two-thirds of the enterprises surveyed that want substantial help from digital and communications service providers.

“THE INTERSECTION OF CLOUD AND COMMUNICATIONS OCCURS AT THE USER. WHETHER USED BY AN INDIVIDUAL OR BUSINESS USER, THE WORKSPACE IS THE KEY.”

Creating an online industrial park, where businesses can go for a variety of solutions from simple connectivity to business applications and storage to all-inclusive offerings, delivers flexibility for businesses. Business users are continually frustrated by their inability to search for and access apps for business as easily as they can for personal use. Businesses aren’t in a position to create their own secure virtual spaces, but they would readily subscribe to and purchase from a virtual space that is securely provided for them and stocked with a choice of business and industry-specific connected applications.

In the online industrial park, business users are presented with a next generation workspace that provisions, aggregates and provides end-point-agnostic delivery of applications, data and IT management services. With access to each workspace carefully controlled and enabling access to only approved applications, the business workspace exists independent of user device to manage access to internal applications and cloud services in a single secure service.

A multi-tenant platform that delivers fully automated in- frastructure lifecycle management and provisioning workflows would reduce management overhead, ensure secure access, im- prove user productivity and satisfaction, and support any type of application delivery technology or platform, while controlling access to cloud services. Any of these advantages reduce operating costs, and the business is presented with a monthly, predictable bill. While cost and security are the primary criteria for businesses when purchasing connected applications and services, there are other pressing concerns.

Service quality and support are near the top of the list. If a business is to rely on an off-premise solution, those services are expected to perform, and SLAs will be strict. Others require more flexibility from digital and communications service providers like technology refresh, so hosted services don’t fall behind as well as the ability to quickly and easily define, order and purchase new or additional services.

Portal users remain at 20-25 percent of the surveyed group, consistent with previous research. However, also consistent with previous research, those portal users include the largest and most lucrative business customers. Digital and communications service providers must monitor the performance of individual users and proactively notify each business of problems and potential impact before they occur.

The number of businesses that expect to rely on professional and integration services is the same as the number willing to accept a turnkey service. Generic business services may not meet all of their requirements, but will still deliver cost savings and productivity improvements. That’s only one item that should be on the menu in the virtual industrial park. Like a physical industrial park that offers facilities of different sizes and finishes, a virtual industrial park needs to support various size businesses and customise its workspace for specific needs.

The intersection of cloud and communications occurs at the user. Whether used by an individual or business user, the workspace is the key. Digital and communications service providers will require operations and business support system (OSS / BSS) solutions to enable the creation of secure multi-tenant, multi-user environments that can be sized accordingly. In addition to managing those services, there is also the opportunity for value-added services. With access to employee and customer usage data, digital and communications service providers can provide insight into user behaviours, product performance or even part- ner settlements. This is all possible with existing technologies, and now, it’s time to deliver.

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