How would you recommend selecting a compute and storage solution based on the company size?

Hi community professionals,

I work at a small tech services company and in my position, I have to provide solutions in the IT infrastructure area to our customers. 

In some cases, I analyze their needs and tell them: "You can fulfill your compute and storage demand with this product". But, sometimes I'm getting responses such as:  "No, we are an enterprise company and we can't use this product".

However, in my opinion, they don't need to purchase a $30k device. Instead, they can get the required functionality/services using a cheaper product (e.g., an HPE DL series storage).

I wanted to learn from you when we call a company an enterprise vs mid-sized company vs small business (this is to find proper and more reliable solutions for my customers)? 

Also, what should I take into account when I recommend (e.g., a compute and storage solution) based on the company type?

Thanks in advance for your help!

Ben Amini - PeerSpot reviewer
Chief Executive Officer at Robin Trading Company
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PeerSpot user
2 Answers
President/CDS at Comcast Business
Real User
Feb 4, 2022

Ben, what you are talking about are advanced selling skills. A bit much to provide you an answer, so I will paraphrase as best I can. You need to understand in-depth, several aspects of the customer's problems you are attempting to solve from their perspective:

1. How are they solving those problems now? Make no mistake, they are solving them in some way. It may be with spit, chewing gum, and baling wire, but they're solving them.

2. Where does the current solution fall short and when does it hit the wall?

3. Why are other solutions inadequate, too costly, unsustainable, or all 3?

4. How is your solution a better fit in solving those problems now and in the future?

The key is in the questions you ask. Remember none of us buy logically. We always make buying decisions emotionally and justify them with logic. No one buys on price. We reject on price when it does not match the value. Price is an issue when the prospect cannot distinguish between different solutions. 

There are always different factors in the buying decision. Your organization's job is to show how other solutions will not achieve what they need or want based on all of their parameters, requirements, considerations, etc., but yours will. You must spend more time talking about the problem you're solving than the solution you're selling. You are driving their self-induced anxiety about their problem and making the devil they know worse than the devil they don't.

As to the specific situation you described. Keep in mind that IT pros are very risk-averse. They will over-provision and overbuy to cover themselves. A typical IT philosophy is "it's better to have the resources you may not need than to need the resources you do not have." Remember, it's emotional. No one wants to be caught with their pants down. By over-buying, they give themselves headroom for the unexpected. 

There are methodologies to deal with this. Several vendors have implemented cloud-like on-demand elasticity and pricing where the customer can automatically utilize more resources that are on their premises and only pay for what they use. Dell, HPE, Pure Storage, Infinidat, NetApp all have programs like this today. And more vendors are following.

This is one of the driving forces behind public clouds.

Sorry for being so long-winded here. This is a complicated discussion that takes more than a short answer.

Good luck.

Director of Community at PeerSpot (formerly IT Central Station)
Community Manager
Feb 5, 2022

@Marc Staimer this is a really great answer!

PeerSpot user
Search for a product comparison in Secure Storage Appliances
Manager at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Feb 4, 2022

Hmm, this is tough. You wouldn't have enough granularity to get you close to an optimized solution. Your best bet will be to document at least your top 10 requirements for compute and storage, then use that to identify plausible options to explore. So for compute, for example, what kind of processing do you do, will it be just for office work or server workloads; if server workloads, what type of workloads are they, and so on and so forth.

For storage, what will be your needs, file or block, high transaction rate, replication requirements, do you need an object, so many questions. 

Sorry, I can't be of more help, however, all I am saying is you need refined requirements.

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