UK Universities Consider Shared Managed Services

UK Universities Consider Shared Managed Services

shared managed servicesWhat if dozens or hundreds of separate businesses could unite and gain economies of scale through shared managed services? That's the potential scenario in the United Kingdom, where universities are considering shared managed services and cloud services. Here's why managed service providers should care.

According to ZDnet UK:

The Joint Information Systems Committee [JISC] says it will explore this and other shared and managed services options in an effort to cut costs and spread expertise across further and higher education, according to its strategy document for 2010-12.
JISC helps UK colleges and universities to embrace digital technologies. The organization's five strategic objectives include the goal of providing "cost-effective and sustainable shared national services and resources."

I realize most smaller MSPs aren't in a position to support dozens or hundreds of colleges. But the shared managed services concept is still worth kicking around. For instance...
  • MSPs can certainly develop shared managed services for local real estate or insurance franchises, among others.
  • Some MSP franchises and associations are standardizing on specific tools to gain economies of scale.
  • And software vendors, in turn, can design their license programs for shared managed services. Some software license models now allow MSPs to receive discounted licenses by essentially rolling all of their small customers into a single, large virtual customer.
I'll be curious to see whether JISC and UK universities can execute on their shared managed services vision. On the upside, end-customers (in this case, universities) could potentially receive standardized, lower-cost services. But on the downside, a one-size-fits-all approach can lead to watered down solutions...
TAGS: Financing
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