At the top of the year, Mike set out the challenges and opportunities we're all facing in 2018. More than a month in already, and I wanted to talk about the exciting ways Ideal is rising to meet those challenges, and help you seize and deliver on opportunities.
In the cloud
A key area of development for us this year is with the cloud. We're extremely pleased to have been joined by David Sanders, our new cloud architect, who brings with him a huge amount of public cloud experience and knowledge. With David already hard at work developing our cloud services, we can now offer products, expertise and support across five key architectures: enterprise networking, data centre, communications, cloud and security.
In practice, of course, business solutions span multiple architectures, and with the addition of cloud we're particularly excited that whatever our customers' business challenges and strategic goals, we can consult, design and provide multi-architectural, integrated responses. With David's skills and Adrian Clarke's CCSP qualification, we're already offering cloud compliance and migration consultancy. As our cloud offering matures, expect to see a broader portfolio of cloud partners and services.
Our managed services customers already know the strength and quality of our support. Ideal's service desk operates 24/7, is manned by our own vendor-qualified permanent staff, and has been providing managed networking and security services for more than seven years.
The recent creation of the service operations director role, filled by Gary Johnson, reflects our commitment to expanding the range and quality of our managed services throughout 2018. New services in planning and development span security, backup, disaster recovery, and even hassle-free branch office set-up and support.
Internet of Things
The internet of things (IoT) is pretty much defined by its limitless possibility, but the flipside is that it's such a vast field almost nobody offers end-to-end solutions. Ideal's specific expertise is around the secure, dependable connectivity that underpins IoT applications, whether that's Ethernet, Industrial Ethernet, wireless or LoRaWAN. It's a fast-developing area for our business, and working with specialist partners we're integrating skills in cloud, storage, sensors, connectivity and compute to provide increasingly sophisticated consultancy and design services.
Networking and Data Centre
Our focus for the year isn't just on developing our cloud, IoT and managed services offerings. We're refining and developing core networking and data centre products and expertise, ensuring we continue to offer best value solutions. The rise of software definition in networks, WAN and data centres continues to be an exciting area, with more vendors - and even WAN connectivity providers - using software to provision and configure flexible, scalable solutions.
So it's going to be an exciting, fast-moving year. Through it all our sights will remain set on the challenges and goals of our customers, and how we as a technology partner can be on hand with expertise, products and support that truly makes things happen.
And as always, we'll continue to distinguish ourselves through attention to detail and excellent customer service - if you're yet to experience the Ideal difference, this is the perfect time to give us a shout.