Unlocking the potential of cloud with S&M Cloud and IBM

It’s hard to imagine an innovation that has changed the IT landscape as much as the cloud. Since the digital revolution started almost a century ago, hardware was always one of the most important factors. Where are your servers? How are they being managed? Are they in a locked room? Are they too warm? Do they have enough memory?

There were so many technical and logistics elements that we had to worry about when it came to our data. But with the cloud, all of that changed.

Cloud now offers a vast potential for enterprises to unlock new kinds of value from their existing systems and information. Linking systems through the right combination of clouds – be they public, private or hybrid multicloud – can streamline innovation, both physical and virtual, and produce tangible results on demand and in real time.

For a company like S&M Cloud in today’s technology-driven world, being an IBM Business Partner represents a guarantee: Our relationship with IBM opens us up to the very latest in cutting-edge technology, enabling us to get hands on experience, training and the ability to create compelling solutions. It means we remain cutting edge, and our customers get the keys to success in today’s hyper-competitive market.

A brief history

S&M Cloud is a consulting and services provider based in Spain, with additional operations spread across Portugal, Greece, Israel and more recently, Latin America. We have been an IBM Business Partner since 2014, but our relationship goes back to the days before IBM’s acquisition of PricewaterhouseCoopers. Back then, we were known principally for providing SAP services for the Spanish utilities sector in collaboration with IBM’s Spanish subsidiary, Viewnext.

Our successful track record in the SAP space with some of the region’s largest players and the increasing demand for cloud-based services meant that when IBM acquired Softlayer in 2013, we were ideally positioned to take our collaboration to the next level. It was, for us, an inflection point.

Up to that point, we had been moving customers to the cloud, typically piece by piece. Moving full scale production to the cloud was seen then as a new opportunity, and these businesses were quite understandably nervous about things like privacy and data sovereignty. But with the acquisition of Softlayer, conversations with customers began to truly shift, and the first question they would ask was no longer about security. It was, “How much will it cost?”

A promising present…and future

We began to invest heavily, particularly in as-a-service offerings, and today, around 90 percent of our clients are hosted in the IBM Cloud™. And the value-added services let them take full advantage of hybrid multicloud as well as the capabilities of blockchain and AI, applying these benefits across all industries.

For example, in the banking, energy and utilities sectors, we are implementing AI-powered chatbots to manage call center volumes by handling the more common kinds of customer interaction like account switching or balance checks.

Our cloud-based blockchain solution for the pharmaceutical industry helps ensure that supply chains run smoothly with transparency and accountability at every step of the journey from production to pharmacy.

Our What are they Saying In Internet (WATSAII) service for business-to-consumer (B2C) companies, monitors a customer’s feedback on the Internet by tracking discussion about brands or product sets across web forums, Instagram, other social media, product review sites – anywhere that customers might be discussing their experience with a the company. WATSAII then produces an AI-based sentiment analysis which enables users to sense and respond to the voice of the customer, no matter where it is heard.

For us, being an IBM partner enables us to stay at the forefront of the cloud opportunity. We get hands-on with the latest technologies, which gives us a head start on helping customers realize their market potential. In our experience, IBM manages the difficult balance of being a giant company with all the resources at its disposal while also managing to be a people-oriented company that works with us directly to help ensure we can take advantage of their capabilities in building solutions for our clients.

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