IBM on Thursday will launch a research effort to bolster its services around cloud computing, analytics and delivery.
Big Blue's creation, the Services Innovations Lab, will be staffed by 200 experts picked from around the company.
In many respects, IBM is just making official what it has been doing in recent years. IBM has been using its research unit to bring intellectual property to services clients. Roughly 1,000 IBM researchers from around the world are focused on services and analytics.
The Services Innovation Lab will operate out of IBM's Thomas J. Watson Center in New York, Almaden in San Jose and other outposts in China, Israel, India, Japan, Switzerland and Brazil.
Scott Hopkins, general manager of strategic outsourcing at IBM Global Technology Services, said the aim of the lab is to focus on "services as a science." IBM research collaboration with Shell and the New York State tax department are examples of research-services connections.
For IBM, the services lab is an effort to change the outsourcing conversation from cutting costs to solving bigger problems. Hopkins noted that part of the research effort will revolve around making service delivery process repeatable and automated.
The Services Innovation Lab will focus on cloud computing, analytics, service delivery automation and mobility.