COVID-19 Update

CI New Revenue Madness: Collaboration vs. Managed Services

Just because Surface Hub hasn’t made its mark yet, that doesn’t mean there aren’t other options for those looking to make more efficient business decisions. But why do some integrators still think inside the box?

In our first matchup in CI’s 2016 New Revenue Madness, we pitted content creation against drones to see which source integrators, manufacturers and others in the industry believe has the most potential to boost your bottom line this year and beyond.

This time, we look to the other side of our Elite 8 bracket and pit top-seeded collaboration against fourth-ranked managed services, including remote monitoring, cloud solutions and analytics.

We’ve heard a lot about collaboration solutions for several years, but certainly no product has gotten more buzz than one that isn’t even officially on the market yet: Microsoft’s Surface Hub. The company earned a lot of attention when it announced plans to have a booth at InfoComm 2014, but ended up having no products and no people in the large space that featured phone chargers and screens showing World Cup soccer games. Microsoft debuted Surface Hub at InfoComm 2015 but critics say it has too many bugs. The IT giant is maintaining its stance, however, and the new-and-improved Surface Hub will be released by the end of March.

When it comes to managed services, Yorktel’s expertise in that area helped the company earn 2015 Integrator of the Year honors. The company derived about half of its revenue from managed services that year and the company almost never takes an installation job without a managed services component.

At the 2016 NSCA Business and Leadership Conference, Kevin Freiberg highlighted managed services as a way for integrators to set themselves apart in an ever-more-crowded field of competitors.

We’ve talked a lot about managed services in the past five years, urging integrators to step away from a focus on products and shifting to an approach that can lead to new and different opportunities beyond hanging and banging a videoconferencing system in a corporate boardroom or a projector in a classroom.

So which area do you think has the most potential to help your business? Vote in our comments section or in our Twitter poll and we’ll reveal the results next week.

Content Creation vs. Drones

CoronaVirus Update