While it will likely be categorized as an Application Service Provider (ASP),
2ndWave Inc. would not mind being known as a Management Service Provider (MSP). The
start-up from Austin, Texas, headed by alumni of Tivoli Inc., is looking to take on
system management chores for companies that may find implementing advanced system
management tools like Tivoli's appealing but daunting.
"We are taking a different view on IT infrastructure management, and are applying
the ASP delivery model in order to bring advanced system management tools to bear for
customers," said 2ndWave chairman and CEO Bob Seebold. Seebold said 2ndWave has
agreements with BMC Software and Tivoli to deliver management solutions over the
Internet using an ASP model.
Last month, 2ndWave was one of 19 companies that formed an MSP consortium to promote
the idea of managed services over the Internet. Other founders include HP, McAfee, and
Alltel Information Services is one of the first companies to take advantage of the
2ndWave network-management service. The Little Rock, Ark., company is using the tools
to support an application-hosting service it provides for e-commerce applications in a
variety of Internet data centers.
Susan Rogers, Alltel's senior segment marketing manager, said this approach enabled
Alltel to get to market with a management service much faster than if it had bought
Tivoli management software and offered the service itself. She also noted there was a
higher overall initiation cost for buying the software. Alltel would have also had to
create a special IT staff to support the service.
Rogers said, "There is a reduction in the investment from a couple of different
standpoints. There is the up-front cost to purchase the application, the cost
associated with deploying that within the enterprise, and then finally the cost of the
IT staff you will need to hire to support it."
Since Alltel has just initiated the project, it is too soon to tell if this approach
will be cheaper once the application is scaled to its large customer base. Rogers
said, "There are a number of variables in terms of the cost and we have not used it
long enough to quantify the savings. However, there are some savings in time to market
and being able to monitor the infrastructure of our customer's applications."