For customers that take up the IBM Power IaaS offering we have at Recarta, there are a variety of benefits. The main is cost, not just of the hardware but also of the ongoing maintenance, support, security, replication and staffing, etc. In some cases we see companies that have a sunsetting policy for the IBM i based applications and do not want to continue looking after the solutions themselves.
Another reason is Moore’s Law and IBM’s continuous leap with the technology. The average workload requirement now for an IBM i based ERP solution is way below the minimum specs that a low end Power7 or Power8 can offer. If a client can take an OPEX based offering and only pay for the resources they need when they need them then financially this is a much better option.
There can certainly be cost savings by engaging with the correct hosting provider, but we are finding that the majority of our hosted clients are choosing to either host their IBM i workload with us, or engage us to look after their systems remotely, because they need to know that the server that runs the entire business is well maintained and looked after. An MSP provides a Service Level Agreement that means someone will need to respond to that alert in the early hours of the morning…. Finding someone to do this internally can be a challenge.
MSP’s such as Recarta are providing an economy of scale, which ensures that the IBM i remains an affordable solution. Hosting the IBM i platform also then removes the large upfront investment required when considering a new ERP implementation. Outsourcing all or part of the ongoing support – means that you have protection against holidays, sickness and skills shortage in the IBM i marketplace!