IoT is Eating IT—Report Shows Massive Shift of IT Budgets to IoT

October 7, 2016

If the Internet of Things hasn’t hit your IT department yet, wait for it. It’s going to very soon.

According to a new report from IoT analyst firm Machina Research, big changes are right around the corner for US enterprise companies. By 2020, IoT is expected to eat up as much as 43% of IT budgets.

Companies across the globe are starting to realize the many strategic benefits of using the IoT to their advantage. Although adoption of these new technologies was slow at first, the pace is heating up quickly, and teams are already preparing their people to maximize use of IoT solutions at their disposal.

A Machina survey from July of 2016 shows that, while only 38% of polled companies are currently leveraging the IoT, 81% say they plan to by the end of 2018. That’s a big shift in only two years.

So where will all this time and money go?

At first, converting legacy processes and resources will be critical. IT professionals will lean heavily on trusted systems integrators (SIs) to provide new solutions that can adeptly take advantage of IoT technologies while also providing a user-friendly experience.

The role of SIs throughout this process is a big one. SIs that can effectively partner with operational technology vendors and service providers will be the ones that break through the complex web of IoT implementation and take a dominating position in the marketplace. And that marketplace will be a big one. Let’s consider the graphic below for a minute.


As you can see, value-added services are poised for huge growth in the coming years. That means that SIs that build competency at multiple layers in the IoT tech stack — rather than just focusing on network hardware and connectivity — stand to gain the most from this budgetary shift.

In short, engaging IoT solutions holistically will put SIs in the best position to cash in on new IT budgets. That means engaging IoT solutions holistically and looking for services opportunities at the device layer, the connectivity layer, and into analytics and application integration.

What does all this mean?

For one, it means that SIs need to develop near, mid, and long-term strategies to attack this new services opportunity. And they need to do it fast. The next phase of connecting unconnected devices and standards working their way out is coming. And with budgets moving over to IoT at such an aggressive pace, there’s really no time to waste. picture3


So as you can see from the information above, the IoT revolution is coming to enterprise workplaces — in the U.S. and across the globe — and the services sector is poised to drive growth and adoption. Are you and your team prepared?

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Fast Lane Releases New Collaboration Portfolio

March 4, 2016

Collab Blog ThumbnailFast Lane has significantly enhanced the standard authorized Cisco Collaboration curriculum with an exciting set of unique courses that further support the needs of business’ transformation to digitalization. The new Collaboration Portfolio includes new Certification Bridge courses, new Technology Bridge courses and a new curriculum that supports Cisco’s CSR release 11.

Fast Lane US CEO, Chuck Terrien, said “We are excited to announce these important new offerings. Our customers and partners have been very clear regarding what solutions they need to help them improve their ROI on Collaboration.”

Last year Cisco announced the new Collaboration certification that posed a transition issue for many IT professionals, as some have taken the version 8.0 courses and now they need the new material from the version 10.6 courses. Professionals can either retake the 10.6 versions of the v8.0 courses which is very expensive and has significant overlap or they can take the 10.6 versions they haven’t taken yet, but they would be missing important material from the v8.0 courses. To help candidates achieve their certification goals during this transition, Fast Lane developed Certification Bridge courses. These unique Bridge courses allow professionals to choose shorter, custom courses that meet their specific needs and, in turn, save them time and money.

The second part of the Collaboration Portfolio developed by Fast Lane is the Technology Bridge courses which are designed for professionals that are adding new Collaboration solutions to their Collaboration suite. These courses are perfect for professionals who want training that meets their specific solution needs exactly.

Finally, Fast Lane created a focused curriculum on CSR release 11 and the new and important applications the platform supports including Skype for Business and Contact Center. To view Fast Lane’s exclusive Collaboration portfolio please visit http://www.fastlaneus.com/collaboration.

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Fast Lane Paves the Way for Enabling Digital Businesses

March 3, 2016

enabling digital businessMost people who are familiar with Fast Lane, think of it as only a training company that enables students to advance their professional development, whether their goals are knowledge-based or certification-based. While it is true that Fast Lane still provides a comprehensive portfolio of learning solutions, we are also moving toward a new direction: enabling business digitalization.

By focusing on the better utilization and flexibility of Virtualization, Cloud Computing, Enterprise Mobility, and Business Analytics, we can understand the new landscape of IT and better apply this information in building a stronger business. While each of these pieces consists of different components, they are all interconnected within the goal of transforming technological offerings.

The IT ecosystem of the future will be distributed, software based, multi-vendor, automated and highly secure and reliable. We at Fast Lane have identified four solution areas that we believe are key to achieve desired business outcomes: IoT/Connected Enterprise, Collaboration, Cyber Security, and Customer/Workplace Experience. Revenue growth via new hyper connectivity efforts, connecting today’s busy worker, securing your corporate network, and providing a better user experience, respectively, are all shifting the focus toward innovation and away from outdated business methods.

Fast Lane plays a strategic role with our vendor partners, providing a range of services supporting the deployment of digital strategies and the resulting business outcomes. This includes strategic consulting services, sales enablement, business transformation services and a variety of educational services. All of these efforts are designed to ease the implementation of new business strategies and the revolution of IT applications and business outcomes.

Fast Lane’s portfolio of offerings addresses the complexity and the impact of the latest transformative technologies in order to achieve positive return on investments in next generation IT.

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Who To Trust In Training

December 10, 2015

In her blog post “Who to trust in training- what you need to know”, Rachel Forke highlights the importance of using qualified experts for IT training. Forke, Director of Cisco’s Worldwide Learning Partner Channel, explains the effect IT training has on successful companies who are taking full advantage of market opportunities. Cisco focuses on the benefits that organizations will acquire when taking advantage of their approved Learning Partner.

Forke also warns consumers about the dangers of using unauthorized training. While the benefit of a lower cost is initially appealing, taking this route can end up costing much more in the long run. When using unauthorized training, you run the risk of training in a lab that is not Cisco-certified with an instructor who has not been properly trained. This can lead to re-training in the future, which wastes time, money, and resources. Unauthorized training can also hurt the reputation of an organization.

An organization’s best asset is motivated and informed employees. Providing employees with proper training is essential to the overall success of a company, especially in helping employees evolve their skills as technology changes and develops in the IT world.

It is extremely important to find a qualified training company for your IT training needs because of the benefits it will create for your organization. This is why Cisco created Learning Partners, so that consumers and companies have all of the best information easily available for them to research. It’s important for an organization to find the training company that will best meet the needs of the training they are hoping to acquire. All of the Learning Partner’s associated with Cisco are recognized for their specialty in providing an expert learning environment with the equipment necessary to give the consumer the best training possible.

Fast Lane has been an Authorized Cisco Learning Partner for more than 10 years and we offer a wide range of Cisco training from entry-level to advanced courses. All of our courses are taught by Certified Cisco Systems Instructors and we were named the 2013 Cisco Global Learning Partner of the Year.


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