In the latest HOSTING webinar, Sean Bruton, HOSTING Vice President of Product, teamed up with James Staten, Microsoft’s Chief Strategist of Cloud + Enterprise, to discuss how organizations can achieve success by leveraging HOSTING managed services on top of the Azure environment. Their wide-ranging discussion also covered how organizations can use managed cloud services to foster greater engagement with their customers. You can view the on-demand webinar anytime. We captured some of the highlights below.
Customer satisfaction a key measure of business success
Organizations were initially drawn to the cloud by the promise of cost savings. As James points out, that is no longer the case. As new technologies such Internet of Things (IOT) are introduced, there is a big shift in customer perception. Today’s organizations are driven by transformation and agility, largely due to the fact that customers are demanding smarter products, more intelligent support and higher levels of personalization. As a result, organizations are relying on cloud computing solutions to drive agility and transformation in order to deliver a better customer experience.
Customer satisfaction is now a focus with the C-suite. As James points out, “Customer satisfaction correlates tightly to company performance.” Citing recent research from Forrester, James notes that the stock from customer experience leaders outperforms the industry average (S&P 500 Index.) This leads to more board interest.
Managed services help deliver greater customer engagement
The key question that executives need to ask is, “How do I deliver a smarter, more interactive experience for my customers?”
According to James, the answer lies in offering customers the following:
- Smarter Products and Services – companies need to deliver a seamless mobile experience as well as IoT-enabled products.
- More intelligent touch points – companies must create and iterate better customer experiences. They must also use data to inform faster and better business decisions, and product and experience iterations.
The above require Software + Analytics
So how does this work?
Take professional soccer team (or football team, depending on where you’re from!) Real Madrid – a Microsoft customer. While the team plays to sold-out stadiums, there are thousands of fans who have never attended a game. Real Madrid realized that they needed to foster the relationship with them in order to drive loyalty and sales. So they used Microsoft Azure to build out a mobile app that allows them to engage with fans in new ways while creating more targeted, customized marketing initiatives.
“We can create one-to-one relationships with the Microsoft solution, connecting this huge community of people and making the experience of being a supporter of Real Madrid much better.”
- Jose Angel Sanchez – CEO, Real Madrid
Completing the Cloud Handshake
The Azure “Intelligent Cloud” by Microsoft consists of pre-integrated suites (e.g. Azure IoT, Cortona Analytics) that streamline and accelerate business transformation. Developers can bring any language or development tool to it. The entire stack designed to run in public cloud, but in concert with other deployments such as the Azure Stack or via a Microsoft CloudOS partner such as HOSTING.
James emphasized that organizations using cloud services must remember that they are multi-tenant, automated services. So what does that mean? Thousands of other businesses are using the same set of standardized services which may need to be customized to meet your specific business needs. So there should be a clear delineation between what the provider will do for your business and your responsibilities. Understanding that delineation is what James refers to as “completing the cloud handshake.” The first step is to review a cloud provider’s service level agreement (SLA). In most cases, the SLA is defined by the automated service itself, not the customer’s application that is using the service.
So for example, say you deploy an application a single virtual machine. The cloud provider’s SLA says that they provide 99.5% uptime, which is equal to roughly 5 hours of downtime per year. You can shield yourself from potential downtime of a single virtual machine by deploying your workloads across a cluster them. You can also spread out your workloads between your hosting site and the Microsoft Azure platform. Doing these types of activities can help you achieve 99.9% availability with only five minutes of downtime.
If this sounds like a good, but complicated option, relax, HOSTING has your back. One of the big values that HOSTING brings to organizations utilizing the Azure cloud platform is the ability to manage its complexity. By leveraging HOSTING managed services on top of Azure, companies are able to focus on their business and the changes they are trying to drive. HOSTING manages the workloads and applications while meeting security and compliance regulations to ensure you have the experience you’re looking for.
The HOSTING Unified Cloud for Microsoft Azure™
HOSTING unified cloud services for Microsoft Azure help to alleviate the burden of managing complex cloud environments. Our services help complete the cloud handshake by providing a complete suite of services to ensure the peformance, security, availability and compliance of customers’ cloud assets. The result is ONE Partner | ONE View – end-to-end support and visibility into the health and wellness of applications, as well as their security and compliance postures. HOSTING manages your complex cloud environments so you can focus on providing the best possible experience for your customers.
Listen to the webinar on-demand for expert insights on how to leverage HOSTING managed services with Microsoft Azure to create the types of experiences your customers are looking for.You can also contact HOSTING anytime to learn more about the HOSTING Unified Cloud for Microsoft Azure.