What’s mid-sized?

As I talk to clients, it strikes me that companies with fairly similar IT infrastructures can use very different words to describe how they feel about it. One client might say, “Oh, we’re just a small IT shop, we’ve only got a little over 250 servers, we think cloud computing is for people like us.” Another client that’s functionally identical (same approximate business size, industry, mix of workloads and technologies) might say, much more indignantly, “We’re a big IT shop! We’ve got more than 250 servers! Cloud computing can’t help enterprises like us!”

“SMB” is a broadly confused term. So, for that matter, is “enterprise”. I tend to prefer the term “mid-market”, but even that is sort of cop-out language. Moreover, business size and IT size don’t correlate. Consider the Fortune 500 companies that extract natural resources, vs. their neighbors on the list, for instance.

Vendors have to be careful how they pitch their marketing. Mid-sized companies and/or mid-sized IT shops don’t always know when they’re talking about them, and not some other sort of company. Conversely, IT managers have to look more deeply to figure out if a particular sort of cloud service is right for their organization. Don’t dismiss a cloud service out of hand because you think you’re either too big or too small for it.

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Posted on July 27, 2009, in Industry and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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