ConnectWise continues to upgrade CloudConsole with new Office 365 management, provisioning, billing and reporting functions for channel partners and MSPs. In addition to the enhancements, a larger story involving cross-platform cloud management is emerging.
When ConnectWise unveiled CloudConsole at IT Nation 2015 in November, some MSPs expected it to be a free add-on to the company's other products -- particularly LabTech remote monitoring and management. But ConnectWise had larger value-added ambitions. More than a plugin for the company's other tools, CloudConsole appears to be gaining more and more value -- at a rapid pace -- for partners that want to manage Office 365 today, with Azure support coming soon.
ConnectWise CloudConsole Upgrade
The latest CloudConsole update includes the following enhancements, ConnectWise says:
- New purchasing and provisioning options – Partners now have the ability to purchase and provision Office 365 licenses from any authorized vendor. (Earlier CloudConsole releases only supported Office 365 purchases via Tech data and Ingram Micro.)
- Improved reporting – Partners now have more ways to customize reporting with greater data granularity, the company says.
- Customized billing and invoicing – Partners now have extensive flexibility in how they bill and invoice clients, the company asserts.
- Better access – Partners are now able to access CloudConsole from both “company” and “contact” ConnectWise screens, the company says.
More than 500 partners now leverage CloudConsole, according to Craig Fulton, general manager, ConnectWise Business Suite. During an earlier interview with ChannelE2E, ConnectWise CEO Arnie Bellini said CloudConsole was managing more than 750,000 seats.
ConnectWise CloudConsole: Rivals, Futures
Admittedly, multiple MSP-centric software companies offer Office 365 management tools. But ConnectWise is extending CloudConsole to support Microsoft Azure sometime in mid-2016, and there have been rumors about the platform eventually supporting Amazon Web Services (AWS) as well.
Still, ConnectWise will face plenty of competition in the cloud monitoring and management platform market. ChannelE2E is tracking more than 50 cloud monitoring and management tools, many of which have service provider partner programs.