New year’s resolutions for 2015

Simon Wilcox, MD of managed services hosting company Digital Craftsmen, puts down the mince pies and sets out some new year’s resolutions for 2015.

While pledging to slash my calorie intake, charge up my Fitbit Flex and get back on my bike, I’ve been pondering which new year’s resolutions should be adopted by the hosting industry. What could we all do better to be fitter and more effective in 2015? Here’s my hit list.

1. Pay attention to security
We need real people to combat cyber threats. Last year saw several vulnerabilities in some very widely used systems. I’m sure that 2015 will see many more. Security is an on-going process of preparedness and testing so let’s spend more time preparing to deal with the next vulnerability or DDOS attack. There is no technological solution to this: technology helps but essentially it’s down to the people and processes you have in place to respond to these threats.

Man_key2. Beware falling giants
I predict that, as the public cloud war intensifies, at least one major hosting player will implode in 2015. Why? We are in the midst of a price war between Amazon, Microsoft and Google. The 2014 mergers and acquisitions curve will steepen. And size is no guarantee of survival. The upshot? Specialist, vendor-independent providers such as Digital Craftsmen will be ideally positioned to help by providing excellent management services across multiple public cloud providers to ensure customers aren’t cut adrift.

3. Work with partners not suppliers
Lots of hosting companies can supply you with services but how many of them are true partners? You want a team that understands your business, not just your technology. And there should be commitment to common aims by all parties. Instead of piling high and selling cheap, 2015 should be the year the industry focuses on relationships and helping organisations like yours achieve more.

4. Make hosting human
Does your hosting provider talk about technology or people? Are they selling you a product, or providing a team that can grow your business in a vendor-independent way? In 2014, we won three new clients — Elastic Path, Young Hackney and The Education & Training Foundation — by focusing on our people and processes. Yes, we have great technology, but it was our enthusiasm, flexibility and lateral thinking that put us ahead of the competition. Technology is a commodity; it’s how you apply it that makes the difference. So in 2015, let’s making hosting more human.