How is IT Sales evolving in the age of Automation and AI?
For as long as I can remember, IT Sales has always been about three words: Product, Product, Product. Technology was evolving at such a rapid pace, that you didn’t even have to wait for something to be End of Life anymore, because the new shiny product did oh so many things more that you had to have. They all made sense too, the toughest part was showing an IT department, that their investment from two years ago, was now becoming obsolete, and they could lower their maintenance times significantly. Just like everything though, there are those companies that “stay the course ” and those that push the envelope.
For the longest time as well, the main companies of the world like, HP, DELL and CISCO had almost the entire market share of the products. They were dependable, and no Director of IT was ever fired for buying CISCO products, so it was a sure thing. However, not too long ago now, these smaller companies started doing the one thing the large giants were not…Innovating. They were looking at the problem, and coming up with new, better ways to solve them using the cloud. Sure, Gillette razors ignored “Harry’s” or “Dollar Shave” for a little while, but suddenly you’ve lost 10 15% of your market share things start to add up. As a result, you started seeing these giant product companies start to acquire all these smaller technologies so they can roll them into their portfolio and start offering a seamless start to finish solution using one product set. Again, with the focus on Product.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not about to say there is no need for product anymore, and just the opposite product will never truly go away. However, we are starting to see a shift right in front of our eyes where companies like Amazon, who are always pushing the envelope continue to disrupt a company like Sears, that has stayed the course and built a very successful company for a long time without truly being forced to make major changes to the business model.
Fast forward to modern day, a lot of people assume Cloud and X as a Service type platforms have dramatically decreased product sales. While that may be true in the mid-market and SMB type of companies, what really has happened is we have shifted “where” that product sits. Just because something is in the cloud doesn’t mean it’s not running on product, it’s just owned by someone else and hosted in another location, which is why now a days most SMB’s are almost fully hosted at this point, and VAR’s are now focused on enterprise clients more than ever.
The most difficult part of the product and services industry though, is that there are so many people offering it, and it really has become a commodity (for quite some time now actually.) People don’t have much interest in taking appointments to meet with you if you’re just selling them the new product that they already have. Companies now are trying more then ever to crack into Big Data, Machine Learning and Automation through different AI Technologies. Now more then ever they want to hear about how they can use these Business Process Automation tools to capture an edge on their competitors and lower their backend time and costs to focus on growing their business rather than sustaining it.
Accelirate is on a mission to help their Clients on how they can automate Business Processes using RPA, BPM, AI and Cognitive technologies. Accelirate focuses both on RPA and “Smart” RPA Technologies (http://www.accelirate.com)