Archive for the ‘Technologies’ Category

A Mobile-first & Cloud-first era   Leave a comment

As a long time tech company watcher – say Google, IBM, Microsoft, and so on – its interesting to observe the changes in their emphases. With what they see as their competitive advantage in the years ahead.

Take Microsoft’s recent shift from “a devices and services company” to “a productivity and platform company for the mobile-first & cloud-first world”.

That implies that they see an inexorable shift to mobile computing. They see the end of the traditional server room.

But what are the implications for those that use computing and those that supply computing?

  1. location independent interaction with organisations will be assumed
  2. convenience and responsiveness will be the only acceptable customer service experience
  3. unlimited computing power will be available to organisations
  4. the ability to use information will be critical
  5. the security of the organization’s information will be critical
  6. internal ICT users will expect the same mobile-first & cloud-first experience as customers do
  7. the ICT portfolio will be skewed toward SaaS
  8. a reduction in the headcount of internal ICT support staff

The world is changing, and technology leaders like Microsoft are changing in order to keep up with the times. In order to survive and thrive.

Are you?

For more, visit Dellium Advisory, follow on Twitter, connect using LinkedIn, or review my IT-centric blog.

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More mobility coming?   Leave a comment

Given that global tablet sales will be larger than PC sales next year, what are considerations should be weighed.

What are the trends already underway? What is likely to happen?

From an internal corporate perspective, among other areas there are impacts upon information security policies and systems supporting those policies.

From a customer interaction perspective, perhaps a greater emphasis upon customer experience with different computing device form factors.

From an IT perspective, there may well be a greater shift to services based in a public cloud.

And with this increasing trend to mobility, perhaps the most pervasive is the desire of all to have information available fast. For movement implies flow, which is not a cousin of patience and waiting.

For more, see Dellium Advisory, follow me on Twitter, see my organisational strategy blog Strategy, or connect with me on LinkedIn

Put the “Information Technology” back into IT   Leave a comment

IT is short for information technology. Its about the technology that supports, creates, transports and stores information.

But more often that not we use the IT tools at our disposal in such a prosaic fashion without fully comprehending the power available. We just open up Microsoft Excel to enter some of the latest financial data. Perhaps use Google Docs to share some facts. Even send some images via email or a social media platform.

But do we see the information we either have as a resource? As something that is valuable, as an asset of significance, as something worth more than just the intrinsic worth of its face value?

And do we see the tools we use, the Excel, the Google Docs, the email and social media platform as simply a tool to get a job done or as the means to facilitate something more.

What information do you have, and what technology are you using to exploit it?

What insights could you gain from the trends contained within the historical data about your customers, about your suppliers? Could your data be used to better support operational, even strategic, decisions?

For more, see Dellium Advisory, follow me on Twitter, see my organisational strategy blog Strategy, or connect with me on LinkedIn

Posted June 17, 2014 by terop in ICT Strategy, Innovation, Technologies

IT Spend – cost reduction or profit growth?   1 comment

Through a recent research mini-thesis I began to understand the view of management toward IT within a business. That management had the choice of viewing IT as either a cost centre or a profit centre. As a necessary evil, or as profoundly important to the future of the business.

If IT is a cost centre, well – just focus on efficiencies. Just make sure that you get the best value for money. That each of those computing clock cycles is used optimally and that none is wasted.

IT from this perspective is just a back-office operation. Things just need to run smoothly, efficiently and cheaply.

However, if IT is a profit centre – then focus on growth, on opportunities, on exploiting new ways of doing things. The effort is investment for bigger payoff. Its about using IT to improve, even create, intellectual property. That each of those computing clock cycles goes toward multiplying the effect of the investment.

IT from this perspective is for front-of-house. Its aligned to who you are as a business.

How, may I ask, is IT viewed in your business?

For more, see Dellium Advisory, follow me on Twitter, see my organisational strategy blog Strategy, or connect with me on LinkedIn

Posted May 28, 2014 by terop in ICT Strategy, Innovation, Leadership, Technologies

Mix it up – consider a hybrid cloud approach   Leave a comment

Is it all or nothing? That is should you have an IaaS-only approach, or go all-in on a complete suite of SaaS?

Or should you use the hybrid-cloud approach?

Are you listening to vendors who are saying, “well, we’ve got the best solution for all your IT needs” or are you stepping back and considering what works best for your situation?

Should you consider mixing it up? I dare say you already do. Disparate databases, different standards and technology across your range of applications. So, there’ll be nothing new for you by having a hybrid cloud approach.

And what is a hybrid cloud approach? Its a mix of private and public cloud technology. You might have your archives on a public cloud platform (ie. Amazon AWS’s “Data Archival Solution”), but run the finance application from your data centre. Others may choose to have their payment gateway hosted externally, but the related corporate data held internally.

With the decisions you make there are 6 factors to consider. Ultimately, will there be improvements in IT’s:
– governance
– measurement
– organisational structure
– processes
– service portfolio
– sourcing

It’s not just the lowest cost, or what seems easy and straightforward. There are many factors in considering a hybrid cloud approach.

For more, see Dellium Advisory, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on LinkedIn

How complex does your IT need to be? Try SaaS   Leave a comment

Exactly what business are you in?

Do you have an army of HR professionals, an array of people looking after accounts payed and received?

No? Well, why do you have an extensive group of IT professionals?

If you don’t and your IT isn’t working properly – that may be the reason. But that’s a topic for another day.

Asking from a different perspective, how may applications do you have? How complex is your business model?

Could your back-office functions be all done in one package and that package hosted on the internet?

You see, SaaS – software as a service – is just that. It’s a package, an application that is hosted by a vendor you trust that does the work you need it to do. Instead of that application being hosted internally, with all the attendant support and upgrade needs, all of the “lights-on” activity is taken care by that third party.

But, as with everything in IT, its just not that simple. There is the security of your data to consider. There are the linkages to other applications. There are some considerations around how close that data is in that potentially hosted application to your key intellectual property, how critical it is to your continued operation.

SaaS, that top layer, may be for you.

For more, see Dellium Advisory, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on LinkedIn

Got great computing ideas? Need IT infrastructure cost reduction? Well, try PaaS!   Leave a comment

Here’s some questions to ponder:

How much are you spending on IT infrastructure?
How do you currently develop applications?
How do you improve what you have?
What platforms do you have for those great ideas?

Well, PaaS – Platform as a Service – might be right for you.

With PaaS you don’t need to worry about the servers, the network, the storage and all of the trouble associated with these three. The provider takes care of that for you.

With PaaS you get a suite of tools and an application hosting environment.

So, how does this apply to you? Well, if you are in a standard IT shop – it may be that a lot of the infrastructure support costs could be done away with by reframing your cloud computing model search away from looking at the whole IT stack (applications, data & technology) to just the application and data layers.

That 70-80% of your IT budget which is spent on just keeping the lights going, could well drop significantly if you choose the right cloud computing model.

And what of your application developing, testing and deployment environment? Is it just on that Office PC or do you have to “fight” for resources on the virtual server farm. By considering PaaS a bit more robustness may be achieved for your work.

For more, see Dellium Advisory, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me on LinkedIn