When the MSPWorld conference kicks off this week (Feb. 1-3, Miami, Fla.), a healthy portion of the event content will focus on cloud computing and cloud services. That's hardly surprising, considering nearly 60 percent of top MSPs now offer cloud and SaaS services to their customers, according to our fifth-annual MSPmentor 100 report. But what cloud trends will be on display at MSPWorld? Here are some guesses.
ScienceLogic, for one, will be on hand to discuss trends in cloud services management. I must concede: I don't know which MSP-centric software providers have a leadership position in the cloud management market. A lengthy list of software companies -- everyone from Level Platforms to Nimsoft -- offers monitoring software and services that MSPs can aim at the cloud.
ScienceLogic is an interesting play because of the company's management team -- which includes several veterans from the ASP (application service provider) wave a decade ago, plus veterans from CA Technologies, IBM, Interliant, NetQoS and Verizon.
Cloud Service Level AgreementsMeanwhile, cloud service level agreements (SLAs) will also be a key theme at the conference. IQ Services, NetScout and Zyrion Inc. will be on hand for a panel discussion that covers SLAs, application and infrastructure performance and ITIL best practices.
The panel will focus on industry critical issues such as ensuring the Cloud Provider is delivering on their SLAs, measuring application and infrastructure performance within the Cloud and using ITIL BSM methods to measure performance of IT services.
I hope the panel covers some basics of cloud SLAs -- even phone and help desk support, a market sweet spot where small MSPs are finding success competing against Microsoft Office 365.