Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Challenges to Enterprise Adoption of Multi-Tenant Messaging Services

Mid-Large Enterprises, typically defined as circa 3,000 to 20,000 employee’s, face a common and well defined set of challenges when it comes to evolving their messaging delivery model from a traditional in-house approach to an outsourced model delivered by a service provider. Enterprises of this size are typically fluid in size and shape, geographically dispersed, and operate a set of processes and procedures with clear demarcations of responsibility and accountability.

Multi-tenant services provide a good economic alternative to in-house messaging delivery, but are more suited to the sub 500 user market segment than for Enterprise customers due to the limited ability of multi-tenant environments to accommodate the needs of Enterprise requirements for:

Merger & Acquisitions (Complex Active Directory structures, Multiple Domains, Multiple Global Address Lists)
Geography (User Access, Data Jurisdiction)
Compliance (E-Discovery, Data Retention, Policy Enforcement)
Security (Authentication, Encryption, Permissions)
Business Continuity Planning (including Disaster Recovery)
Availability & Performance Monitoring and Reporting
Application & Data Dependencies (Integration, Migration)
Bespoke Billing

Enterprise organisations will undertake detailed Risk Management exercises and are naturally wary of the complexities and dependencies unique to their business which frequently do not lend themselves to a on-size fits all service. The challenges described above mean that multi-tenant services are not yet mature enough to deliver against Enterprise requirements. Further, widespread adoption and market penetration of multi-tenant is not apparent leaving only the avant-garde CIO to adopt this service delivery model as a mechanism to satisfy Enterprise messaging requirements.

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