Last year, Microsoft announced Surface Enterprise Initiative focused on bringing greater mobility and productivity to organizations. They announced that Dell will be selling Microsoft Surface Pro and Surface Pro accessories through their sales organizations around the world. Today, they are expanding the Surface Enterprise Initiative with a set of new partnerships and programs.
First, IBM will draw on its analytics and enterprise applications expertise to create new industry-specific solutions for financial services and consumer packaged goods(CPG)/retail companies that take advantage of the unique capabilities of Surface devices.
For example, IBM will develop an application for CPG and retail companies that puts Microsoft Power BI on Surface to bring decision makers closer to the data and analytics they need to optimize utilization of employee time. The app combines organizational and industry data in visualized diagrams and reports to provide insights that empower employees to make smarter staffing decisions that maximize productivity while minimizing costs. The functionality can also be extended to other aspects of the industry such as product management, sales management and demand forecasting.
“Many of our clients have requested mobile solutions for Surfaces that are tailored to their business needs,” said Murray Mitchell, global leader, Microsoft Services at IBM. “IBM will design Surface solutions that allow financial services and CPG employees to tap in to their company’s information on-the-go. We’ll apply experience of over 20 years as a Microsoft strategic partner to ensure the mobile apps blend with our client’s existing infrastructures creating dynamic, new mobile experiences uniquely suited to the needs of their employees. IBM is a recognized leader in enterprise computing, sitting at the center of a broad ecosystem of partners who, like Microsoft, aim to meet the needs of this market.”
To meet the needs of Public Sector organizations, Microsoft is announcing similar partnership with Booz Allen Hamilton. Read about it here. Microsoft today also announced its “Surface as a Service” program at WPC 2016. The company’s new program will allow its partners to sell through a managed service. Read about it here.
Microsoft clarified that IBM is not a reseller of Surface. IBM will be a solutions integrator, a little different from Dell which was the first company that signed Surface Enterprise Initiative. IBM will be providing solutions for their customers & clients (who will have purchased the Surface hardware through their usual channels.)