ASPs: Partners or foes?

Software consultants, are you afraid of the growing Application Service Provider (ASP) market, or do you think it represents new opportunities? Tell us how your firm is addressing the issue of ASPs.

What does the flourishing Application Service Provider (ASP) market mean for consultants who provide customized software and related services?

A recent article in Consulting Magazine discussed the “much talked about, often disparaged, but increasingly evident ASP threat.” ASPs host software applications for customers who access it via private lines or, more commonly, via the Internet. Small to midsize companies are often lured to ASPs because they eliminate the need to purchase high-dollar applications and maintain complex systems. But, as the article pointed out, ASP customers get bland applications and strict parameters for modification. “…Serious customization, a cash cow for many consulting firms, is actively discouraged. However, integration with other systems back at the customer site is required, presenting a surefire opportunity for consulting firms.”

Proof of “hybrid species” wins TechRepublic T-shirt
Is your firm planning to enhance its services to include offerings by adding ASP-like services? Have you joined forces with an ASP to provide services in tandem? Will the demand for customized applications coupled with the benefits offered by ASPs spawn a hybrid business? Is your firm proof that the metamorphosis has begun? Send us your thoughts and experiences. The best eyewitness account will win a TechRepublic T-shirt.

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