Mandy Cozby is Vice President of Channel Sales at Swizznet and has spent years working within the technology industry. She is a knowledgeable advocate for our Sage Business Partners, supporting their business growth by making it easy to provide the benefits of Swizznet hosting to clients.
2020 has caused us to say goodbye to business — and life — as usual. We’ve grown accustomed to remote work, virtual meetings, socially distant gatherings, and curbside pickups. This is the “new normal,” as it’s called. But even after the pressure cooker that was the beginning of the year, all the steam has yet to be released. Many businesses are struggling to find their footing and adjust to changes in workforce and technology trends.
As a Sage Business Partner, you’ve seen firsthand how drastically your clients’ businesses have changed. With the flip of a switch, offices shut down and business and accounting tasks that needed to be completed in person or on site were left unaccomplished. It became clear that for businesses to succeed, they would need to embrace the cloud in all its varied forms.
As businesses proceed to what McKinsey has dubbed the “next normal,” cloud tools will be a central part of the way we move forward. For organizations using Sage software and associated third party applications, a cloud hosted solution will enable them to continue operations — and even run more efficiently! — whatever disruptions may come their way. With this in mind, I put together these top Sage hosting tips we share with our Swizznet Business Partners to help you and your clients choose the best path forward as we work through the coronavirus and beyond.
Your Options as a Sage Business Partner
There are three main ways for your clients to consume Sage: traditional, on-premise; a Sage hosting solution; or a SaaS model. These options give Sage Business Partners what we and Sage call “The Power of Choice.” By understanding the strengths of each, you’ll be able to guide your clients to the best fit for their budget and requirements.
- On Premise: Maintaining Sage software on premise — perpetual or subscription — is the best option for clients that have a dedicated IT staff to support all business priorities plus a Sage environment. You or your client will manage the deployment, and Business Partners step in as needed to help maintain the environment. The client’s IT staff will find ways to ensure remote access and security for employees working from home or other locations in the “next normal.”
- Sage Intacct: Sage offers a subscription software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution called Sage Intacct. This option allows general contractors and real estate developers to access the core features of Sage without the costs and IT requirements of an on-premise deployment.
- Sage Cloud Hosting: When Sage Intacct isn’t a fit, doesn’t meet your clients’ full business needs, or the client isn’t ready to change their Sage application, you can host Sage software in the cloud — perpetual license or a subscription. With the best Sage cloud hosting providers, your clients get the same look and feel, with added security, backups, disaster recovery and real time monitoring. You get all the customization and features needed, and the hosting provider handles IT support and system optimization. The Sage Business Partner still maintains all the revenue streams around the Sage software and other applications as well as the install and migration to the Swizznet cloud.
The Benefits of Sage Cloud Hosting Solutions for Business Partners
On-premise and SaaS models have their benefits, but Sage cloud hosting is a bright third option for Business Partners. In fact, research shows that “The average company achieved a 3.2 times greater return on investment from the cloud when compared to an on premise solution.” That’s an eye-opening stat to share with your clients! (If numbers are speaking your language, view our infographic “Why Businesses Will Love Sage Hosting (And How You Can Offer It to Them)” for stats on improved productivity, collaboration, and more.)
“The average company achieved a 3.2 times greater return on investment from the cloud when compared to an on premise solution.”
With Swizznet’s Sage cloud hosting solution, your clients get the benefits of an on-premise Sage deployment, without the IT headaches. What’s more, Sage Business Partners get access to new revenue streams from reselling or referring hosting, plus opportunities to build stronger relationships with clients. It’s a win-win situation!
It Makes You Stickier in Your Accounts
Our number one goal is to make it simple and beneficial for Sage Business Partners to offer Sage hosting. Swizznet provides custom demo environments, a market-leading channel enablement and training program, rapid customer deployment, and easy and simple pricing so you can provide clients with services and an experience that makes them want to stick around.
Further, by working with Swizznet rather than a do-it-yourself public cloud, partners have admin access at their fingertips to see all their accounts and easily access at any time from anywhere. If your clients migrate to Azure, AWS, or other providers directly, they have to ask for temporary credentials every time to allow others in. This can take hours. Swizznet gives client and partner immediate, anytime access, within seconds.
New Revenue Channels for You
Another added perk is Swizznet’s HostShare® program, which allows our partners to complement the services they provide to their clients while providing an additional revenue stream for their business. We provide our partners with a dashboard that gives them immediate administrative access to their clients' environments so they can continue to provide the installations, migration, and upgrade services that support their business and that their clients rely on. It's important to Swizznet that our Sage Partners maintain all their same revenue streams around services and software. Swizznet Hosting is another offering for our partners to help keep them sticky in their accounts. The Swizznet market leading, HostShare program provides access to subject matter experts around channel and hosting, as well as exciting programs, promotions, simple pricing and industry proven marketing support
Same-as-Desktop Experience for Clients
Moving to the cloud doesn’t mean a decrease in performance. Swizznet uniquely offers an unparalleled experience through CloudJumper that provides a user experience with the ability to operate like a true desktop, including local printing, dual monitors, and more. CloudJumper also adds another layer of security above and beyond the standard Remote Desktop Service (RDS) by Microsoft that others deploy. Clients get the best of both worlds. A seamless, smooth, and superior user experience paired with an industry leading, multi-layer security experience… plain and simple.
Put the Main IT Burden on Your Hosting Provider
If a hosting provider isn’t all-in on technical support, look elsewhere! You and your clients need a hosting solution to run smoothly and to know you have someone to help if issues arise. Swizznet is well-known for our Obsessive Support® and service. We’ve thought of every detail and take on IT needs. The burden to keep your client optimized is on us, which also helps to reduce your costs. Further, our professional, US-based technical support team is always available and ready to help you with your services anytime of day or night. We’re on the clock 24/7.
Responding to Common Objections to Hosting and the Cloud
We sometimes hear clients say they can host Sage on their own at a cheaper cost. At first glance, this may seem true, but there are long-term considerations to note. For example, has their IT infrastructure reached its end of life to the point they need to upgrade? Are they prepared to maintain servers, assure performance, and spend on top-notch security? When potential costs start to add up, note this: “Companies who have adopted cloud services experienced a 15.07% reduction in IT spending.” Lay out the numbers by providing a comparison of on-premise vs cloud costs to show the potential savings.
“Companies who have adopted cloud services experienced a 15.07% reduction in IT spending.”
The biggest concern we hear is that the cloud is not secure. This may once have been the case, but we have advanced to the point where the cloud is almost always more secure than on-premise. At Swizznet this is the case. Security and business continuity is always top of mind and built into all of our services. When cloud infrastructure is architected correctly, to enterprise standards using industry-leading brands, the risk is much lower than many have been led to believe. If clients mention this, you can explain that Swizznet’s enterprise-level infrastructure supplies bank grade security. We have multiple layers of defenses to protect our clients from security threats and ransomware as they arise. We know our clients are handling sensitive data and have regulatory compliance in mind, which is why we don’t skimp on security.
Are you and your clients prepared for what’s next?
Given the realities of the “next normal,” anytime, anywhere access to Sage software and other associated third party applications from any device will be critical for maintaining business continuity. Not only that, McAfee found that “87% of companies experience business acceleration from their use of cloud services.”
If you’re looking for a provider to smooth out the transition, Swizznet can help. But don’t just take our word for it. CIO Review named us one of their Most Promising ERP Solutions Providers of 2020 for our industry-leading Sage cloud hosting solution and our focus on supporting business growth, not just providing hosting services. We also were named to the Accounting Today VAR 100 list, which you can read more about here.
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