Q&A with Dell's Cary Gumbert

We met with Dell executive Cary Gumbert to find out what the company is doing in the Software as a Service (SaaS) market.

As Dell makes its move into the Software as a Service (SaaS) market, IT PRO met with the company's SaaS product manager to find out what it had planned.

How long have you been working in this role?

I came over to the Software as a Service (SaaS) division from the support services group about 18 months ago. Dell services was organised around support, ProConsult and then our ProManage managed services business.

Cary Gumbert, Dell

Dell, renowned for hardware, is now making the move into Software as a Service (SaaS). Why has the company chosen to do that?

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We are attacking the problem around IT management. What we hear a lot of customers say is for every $1 [they] spend on hardware [they are] paying $8 on maintenance.

So the question we need to answer is how do we make it more self managed, automated and how do we make the system not require armies of consultants to maintain it? How do we make it reliable as a car these days where it just runs and runs, change the oil every 2,000 miles and it goes for as long as you want.

The key is [they] are not the one changing the oil, it is Dell doing it for you.

So how has it progressed from this idea?

We started off with integrating Dell's internal IT group to really make Dell our biggest customer. That has driven a lot of simplification of the infrastructure and we have rationalised, deployed virtualisation across our data centre, we are still in the process of doing that.

What that did was allow us to take out a lot of hardware, a lot of the complexity and the management of that, maintenance of that [and] the cost associated with that hardware.

We are drinking our own champagne is the saying I always use. We needed to do it to get the cost efficiency for our own organisation. This is the same problem our customers have so it's not just to use it as a case study but to make Dell more efficient.

Then what we have done? We have bought a lot of software and technology companies around desktop management, server storage management and business continuity and we are integrating these. This allows us to bring forward very disruptive offerings to the market.

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