Cloud front and centre

Any and every development within the ScanSource strategy roadmap has cloud at its core, according to Vice President of Cloud Solutions & Services Paul Emery.

Emery was promoted to the role of VP of Cloud Solutions and Services in July. The appointment is reflective of ScanSource’s greater focus on cloud technology offerings and also draws on Emery’s previous experience. “Due to my background in both sales and technology it was the right fit for me,” he stated. “With the market moving rapidly one of my main objectives is to prepare customers for the transition and ensure that they are using cloud to their best advantage.”

Armed with a degree in computer science Emery went straight into a graduate scheme with a distributor which gave him a firm grounding in pre-sales consulting. His career path has not since wavered from distribution and led to ScanSource’s doorstep over 12 years ago. “I always like to have the latest gadgets and products and I carry that mentality in business,” he stated. “I’m constantly looking at how we can improve and grow as a company.”

Emery’s team is focused on expanding cloud solutions across Europe and working with other countries and European executives to build a cloud practice in EMEA. “I’m excited to be leading such a qualified team of professionals,” he enthused. “ScanSource’s commitment to cloud has been developing over the past few years and although we already had solutions in place the focus has been on putting more emphasis behind our cloud offering. We have achieved this with two goals in mind. The first was the cloud practice, which I lead as part of my role, the second was the Intelisys Global acquisition which enabled us to strengthen our cloud proposition via an expansive portfolio of new vendors.”

ScanSource gained access to additional tools to bolster its cloud business following the acquisition of Intelisys. “These allow us to educate and support the reseller community in their cloud offering,” stated Emery. “This is something we will harness and develop over the next few years. Resellers are also evolving, their previous offering of on-premise based solutions going into the cloud means a change of model. One of the strategies they will have to pursue is compensating their people when the cashflow changes, this is something we can support.” 

Given a magic wand Emery would in a single stroke transform the industry to be focused on solution selling rather than individual products. “An agency based model enables this by deploying an agnostic approach to end user requirements,” he added.

Cloud and ‘anything as a service’ is now the priority as market demand continues to gather momentum, pointed out Emery. He also noted that hardware devices still form a key component of the overall strategy. “In Europe we are focusing on our joint offering of both cloud-based services and physical devices,” he confirmed. “Our UK channel objectives are focused on increasing our cloud supplier line card. The biggest opportunity for ScanSource is to deliver the entire solution to our partners. Helping our customers to connect with cloud services, data centres and audio-visual providers offers great opportunities for partners.”

Citing Gartner’s 2018 review Emery emphasised that 90 per cent of IT leaders will not purchase new premise-based UC infrastructure by 2021. “This shows the scale of the cloud market opportunity for partners,” commented Emery. “As digital transformation and cloud technologies continue to proliferate resellers should question whether their distributor can truly support their business with cloud-based solutions and services.”

Just a minute with Paul Emery...

Role model:
Richard Branson: I admire entrepreneurs and see Richard Branson as a great role model when it comes to business, vision, drive, competitiveness, desire to win and ability to build and create effective teams

What talent do you wish you had?
To play the piano  

What do you fear the most? 

Tell us something about yourself we don’t know: 
I had surgery on my nose as it was badly broken when I was 17

Your greatest strength and what could you work on?
My greatest strength is that I’m always right, my biggest weakness is learning to accept that I’m not always right

Name one thing you couldn’t do without in your job:

What’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given? 
There is no such thing as failure, only learning experiences which develop you and help you to succeed

If you weren’t in IT what would you be doing? 
The secret service... that’s what I tell myself! 

Name three ideal dinner guests: 
Winston Churchill, he would have some good stories to tell; Donald Trump to hear his outrageous comments first hand; and the comedy genius Michael McIntyre 

One example of something you have overcome: 
The desire to please everyone which in life isn’t always possible

Biggest career risk you have taken? 
Moving from technical management into sales management

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