Wednesday, July 2, 2014

SoftLayer + IBM: One Year Update

About a year ago I posted a couple of times regarding IBM's acquisition of SoftLayer.

Received email this morning heralding the one year anniversary of the acquisition and I thought I would take a few moments to give my take as a SoftLayer customer.

I was very concerned a year ago when I heard the SoftLayer announcement because, while I sincerely believe the financials of IBM's acquisition of Lotus Software back in 1995 are right in line with IBM's business track record (which is to say they made their money back and a whole lot more), for the people who made their living working with Lotus software, the time since the Lotus Software acquisition has felt quite a bit like being a flea on the tail of a happy dog.  Some fleas fell off, some fleas jumped off, and the remaining fleas had a harder and harder time holding on to what has continuously felt like a "Magical Shrinking Dog."

But in many ways the IBM of 2013 was not the IBM of 1995 and that appears to be good thing.

Overall, we have not been impacted at all by the acquisition.  That is really good news for us since we relied heavily on SoftLayer when we began our hosted application business and I did not relish the thought of having to research other vendors since we'd already done that and chose SoftLayer.

I've been in a lot of contact with support people during the last twelve months and have found the support to be superb.  The product offerings themselves have steadily expanded but in a way that has not disrupted current customers.  As our needs have become more complex, we have specific technology situations where SoftLayer does not always have the perfect solution but nobody has a perfect solution so we feel that there is significant value in using SoftLayer.

On the business side I do wish we could get them to adjust their MSA terms to provide a little more responsibility on their part.  That is such a big factor that if we found another vendor who could meet those needs, we would seriously consider moving.  Barring that, we're sticking with SoftLayer for now.