HP data center services to sell through VARs

New Hewlett-Packard data center assessment and planning tools augment partner offerings.

Hewlett-Packard partners will now be able to sell a slate of HP data center services custom tailored for customers with small data centers.

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Some of the services tweak capabilities offered by HP Enterprise Services (formerly EDS) to very large customers. Others evolved from HP's acquisition three years ago of EYP Mission Critical Facilities. EYP specialized in strategic technology planning, design and support of large data centers.

The goal is to bring enterprise-class assessment and support services down to smaller data centers, HP executives said. Hewlett-Packard will provide the services and the partners will sell them.

Some partners worry about losing their own services business to vendors, but a couple of HP partners said that as long as they remain the primary face to the customer, they welcome the opportunity to sell these new services.

"It's only a conflict if HP is in the same shop [where] we are pitching the same services, and that hardly ever happens," said the CEO of a large HP partner in the Northwest. "It's all about account control, and if we're the primary contact with the customer, we're good with it."

This VAR also said the broadening of HP services, and the fact that they are sold via partners, could help HP compete with Dell and its Perot Systems services acquisition.

Ron Silliman, principal research analyst with Gartner Inc., said HP has made the services into a partner benefit. "In HP's case, they act as the service delivery arm of the partner vs. vice versa," he said.

Silliman said IBM Global Services fields similar data center optimization services, but focuses almost entirely on large data centers.

HP data center services focus on smaller enterprises

Given the recession, a more midmarket data center focus may be in order.

"Face it, there aren't that many companies building 100,000 square foot data centers anymore," said Ian Jagger, worldwide marketing manager for HP Data Center Services.

Partners will sell the services but the actual services themselves will be performed by HP personnel. HP breaks up the assessment capabilities into billable "units," which partners can mark up as needed.

The recession is forcing vendors to adjust their thinking on customer demographics. The new HP services to be sold by partners target companies with data centers of up to 5,000 square feet. Many of these companies put their data centers into commercial buildings -- and so they're limited in terms of space utilization and energy use.

HP has parsed out the services into units that it will bill at a rate of X dollars per square foot of data center space. The rate could vary depending on the channel partner, HP said.

The data center services include basic capacity analysis to help data center managers figure out how to best use a facility's existing resources. Higher level infrastructure condition and capacity analysis can pinpoint old or problematic infrastructure and figure out how long before the center outgrows its current build out. And energy efficiency analysis will help data centers cut energy costs and carbon footprints. These services include on-site licensed HP engineers.

New multivendor support services (MVSS) include HP Insight Remote Support, which provides round-the-clock remote monitoring and diagnostics for select IBM and Dell servers, Sun Solaris running on HP ProLiant servers, Cisco IP telephony products as well as HP's full storage and server line.

Let us know what you think about the story; email Barbara Darrow, Senior News Director at bdarrow@techtarget.com, or follow us on twitter.

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