The "as-a-service" Era

Over its nearly two-and-a-half decade history, the concept of ‘as-a-service’ has taken many shapes and forms. This era which is full of as-a-service options has made it so that for almost every industry on the planet businesses and users can access products, options and ecosystems for a small monthly fee.  

There are four main reasons as to why organisations are embracing subscription models: 

  1. Continuous updates and improvements are made available with little to no effort from the channel company – organisations can not only get an evolving product with minimal resource cost, they can also request features and updates that suit their needs.  
  1. Enhanced flexibility and scalability– Whether sizing up, down or sideways, with a subscription-based service a business always has exactly what is required. 
  1. Cost effectiveness – Not only do companies only pay for what they need, there are also almost always no intimidating up-front costs.  
  1. The as-a-service model is futureproof – As more and more people become aware of the above three points, we are seeing increased migration to aaS and cloud-based structures. 

As is it so all-encompassing, the as-a-service industry has changed the bottom line for channel companies indefinitely. This ultimately means that some are facing their biggest challenges yet, namely in the transition from NRR (Non-Recurring Revenue) to MRR (Monthly Recurring Revenue) and finding their place on the as-a-service value chain.  

Because NRR has been the most dominant model in previous years, an overreliance on big, one-time payments means that converting to smaller, albeit steadier income streams has made it difficult for businesses to adjust. The benefits for those that successfully convert their business model however are plain to see – an established, recurring revenue is simply more valuable than inconsistent one-off payments.  

On top of this, organisations must solidify what they can truly differentiate themselves with or risk falling behind, a daunting task at the best of times.  

We are seeing a few innovations that are emerging across the market. The first of course being the use of AI, a technology whose power, influence, and utility we will undoubtedly see grow into 2024 and beyond. Secondly, as more and more Developers and Providers get on board with as-a-service models we are seeing a surge in efforts to integrate them all together. After all, businesses and their users first and foremost want a single pane of glass from which they can work to the fullest. With this we may also come to see a massive drive in interest towards the security and compliance factors that make it possible for all of these services to effectively talk to each other.  

In telecoms especially we are seeing an industry-wide realisation that companies need to become more efficient. Traditional models can no longer compete and with hybrid and remote work on the rise, hyper-mobile cloud-based solutions are imperative, and this is something that as-a-service thrives on. The opportunity to help businesses transition away from hardware-based working is there for the taking and channel companies can make sure that businesses have everything they could ever need, all without the limitations and complications of clunky traditional models. The race isn’t just on though, it has already begun. If you are a Provider, Distributor or Reseller that hasn’t already embraced as-a-service functionality, time is quickly running out to stay relevant.  

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