«I can sleep easily because Swisscom is a strong partner.»
Klingsor Ziörjen, founder and CEO, dplan Ltd
IT service provider dplan has been integrating Swisscom cloud services into its products for over four years. The partnership is bearing fruit and, according to the company’s founder and CEO, Klingsor Ziörjen, has enormous potential.
dplan designs and operates ICT infrastructure solutions for SMEs and large corporate customers. Klingsor Ziörjen is proud that his company now employs 55 people across four locations. Such success requires a good nose for new opportunities. In today’s ICT market, Ziörjen is convinced that “any integrator who claims that the cloud does not have a future is living in the past”.
Try before you sell
Ziörjen recognised the potential of cloud-based solutions at an early stage. In 2014, dplan was one of the first companies to outsource its infrastructure to the Swisscom cloud. The move was not without an ulterior motive, since the company was serious about its strategic decision to become a cloud integrator. “We wanted to burn our own fingers before we started selling Swisscom solutions to our own customers,” grins Ziörjen. The experiment was so successful that dplan began offering cloud solutions to its customers just six months later. However, the new business model took a while to get off the ground. Ziörjen explains: “The customers found it difficult to come to terms with the fact that their data was no longer stored on their own premises – and they were put off by the higher prices at the time. In 2017, the tide started to turn and, in 2018, half our projects were implemented in the cloud.”
Swiss virtues in demand
Data theft, system failures, contact partners – if they can be reached at all – anywhere in the world, etc.: there are more potential reservations about the cloud than keys on a keyboard. “Thanks to the reputation of our partner Swisscom, we can dispel these fears completely,” says Ziörjen, reflecting on his own experiences. “The data is securely stored in Switzerland, and the place of jurisdiction is also here. This is incredibly important for our customers. And Swisscom could simply never allow an SME to encounter data loss issues – the damage to its image would be enormous.” What else helps convince customers? “They often ask us who our partner is, and the Swisscom name always sounds impressive. And the fact that we work in the Swisscom cloud ourselves builds trust. And, although it should never happen, even if we made a mess of our own company, our customers would be able to continue working in the cloud without any problems.”
A simple path to partnership
Ziörjen says that becoming a Swisscom partner was a simple process. After an initial workshop, dplan developed a technical concept and submitted it to Swisscom for approval. Swisscom provides a comprehensive package of cloud services (Dynamic Computing Services), connections and security. Ziörjen explains: “This means we can offer our customers standard solutions that work extremely well. We carry out a stocktake for the customer and identify which resources they would find useful. The scalability of cloud services is very advantageous: the customer can order more resources at the touch of a button. It is hard to achieve such flexibility with your own infrastructure.” Prices, on the other hand, are less dynamic: “Here, everything is fixed, so there are no surprises. It’s also helpful to have names and faces at Swisscom that we know we can rely on to provide support.”
On-site storage is out of date
What advice would Klingsor Ziörjen give to other ICT service providers? “They should examine new forms of work very closely. Everything is becoming more flexible, fixed workplaces and infrastructures are disappearing, people are working anywhere and seamlessly across different devices. It works better if your data is not stored at your own premises. The cloud has enormous potential.”
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