Everything as a Service

Yesterday, I attended GigaOM’s Structure ’09 conference where HP’s CTO of Cloud Services Strategy, Russ Daniels, made a bold prediction.

“Everything as a Service.”

To clarify, Daniels’ believes that the current trends in technology will lead to a world where “information, opportunities and experiences — from computing power to business processes to personal interactions” will be “delivered wherever, however and whenever you need it.”

In practical terms? New cloud technology will revolutionize how businesses operate and interact with each other. Because of how new technology is designed, the cost savings associated with scale will allow more businesses to save money by outsourcing their non-core tasks. Not only will this increase revenue, but it will also allow businesses more time to focus on their core business.

This technology’s impact on the supply chain industry has already started. Many companies today – Oracle, Invensys, SAP – already offer supply chain services. This model is viable because it helps small businesses take advantage of the economies of scale associated with supply chain systems. If your business isn’t large enough to scale, it is ususally more cost effective for you to pay someone who has scale to run your that aspect of your business.

The same trend is already starting to happen in the reverse logistics business. Many companies are beginning to outsource the management of inventory liquidation into the secondary market to companies like B-Stock Solutions because they realize the cost savings associated with our solution can be substantial.

The old protocol of liquidation, where one or two liquidators get everything from a retailer or manufacturer under a fixed price contract, is dying. Technology-enabled services like B-Stock’s are revolutionizing how businesses operate and the reverse supply-chain is no exception.