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Why going deep matters for AWS partners targeting the public sector

Leon Spencer | Sept. 4, 2017
AWS A/NZ channel chief talks up the virtues of specialisation.

Stefan Jansen - Head of Channels and Alliances, AWS (Photo - Maria Stefina)
Stefan Jansen - Head of Channels and Alliances, AWS (Photo - Maria Stefina)

Amazon Web Services (AWS) partners looking for success in Australia's public sector need to go deep rather than broad.

That's the message for local partners from AWS head of channels and alliances for Australia and New Zealand (A/NZ), Stefan Jansen.

The advice comes as the company launches itself into its AWS Public Sector Summit in Canberra, which kicks off on 30 August.

"The core message that we really want to ensure our channel partners understand is the need for deep skills to start with," Jansen told ARN. "Deep skills are becoming more and more important for partners to allow them to differentiate themselves going forward."

Jansen pointed out that with more than 93 unique services available on today's AWS platform, the ability for partners to provide end-to-end services well or, indeed, competently, is fast diminishing.

"So, now we encourage partners to specialise," Jansen said.

To this end, AWS has invested locally in ways to help partners dive deeper into building their required skills, according to Jansen.

Further, thanks to events such as the AWS Public Sector Summit, local partners can differentiate themselves by demonstrating customer success and highlighting their presence on Government panels in front of customers who are increasingly asking for cloud infrastructure.

Broadly speaking, the skill sets needed to make the most of, say, AWS' artificial intelligence or machine learning capabilities are very different to the skills required for digital transformations or large-scale cloud migrations.  

With this in mind, the AWS partners that are able to zero in on a particular industry sector or technological specialisation are likely to do well. That said, Jansen stresses that partners don't necessarily need to do just one thing well and forget the rest.

"Now, we're not saying that as a partner you should only do one, but what we're saying is, if you do one, we do recommend you really go deep, and demonstrate the skills and customer outcomes, and as you grow your footprint and your capability with AWS, you may decide to either go vertical or expand your capability," he said.

One partner that comes to mind here is GorillaStack - a multiple finalist at the upcoming ARN ICT Industry Awards 2017 - which, incidentally, is taking part in the AWS Public Sector Summit.

GorillaStack, which is both an AWS authorised government partner as well as a technology partner, has made a name for itself thanks to its AWS automation technology.


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