Business Technology Governance — An Update On Our Research

Craig Symons and I are undertaking an initiative to refurbish Forrester's research content on business technology (BT) governance. Here's an update:

Since we launched this initiative in September 2012 with the report “The Future Of Business Technology Governance," we have added two more documents to our collection. The first, “The What And How Of Decision-Making,” discusses the types of outcomes BT governance needs to deliver and the activities producing these outcomes. The second document, “The Who Of Business Technology Decision-Making,” overviews the structures, roles, and responsibilities that make the governance outcomes and activities happen.

We plan to add more research and organize it around the six building blocks illustrated in the following figure:

The assumption underlying the entire collection is that BT governance is IT governance done well — a process that builds consensus among business stakeholders on how to effectively evaluate, prioritize, direct, and track technology investments for optimal business results.

Based on the research done so far, we believe that BT governance requires strong CIOs who are able to master the art and science of building three reinforcing capabilities:

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Ericsson's Biggest Challenge Is Complacency

At its recent analyst event, Ericsson outlined its strategy, product, and service ambitions. Ericsson remains the overall benchmark for network infrastructure vendors. The company has a leading market position in the growth segments of mobile broadband and network services and delivers a solid financial performance — despite the disappointing Q3 2012 results. Still, in my view, Ericsson has several challenges that it needs to address:

·         The cloud strategy is built on a questionable assumption.Clearly network infrastructure is becoming more, not less, important for cloud-based solutions. Ericsson therefore assumes that carriers are well positioned to be cloud providers. But CIO perceptions suggest otherwise. CIOs tell us that carriers are far from the preferred choice for cloud-solutions (see Figure 9 in the “Prepare For The Connected Enterprise Now” Forrester report). Carriers therefore need help in addressing the potential of cloud computing. For instance, Ericsson’s cloud solutions ought to help carriers cooperate with cloud partners regarding embedded connectivity in devices and applications.

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Bring Your Own Technology: The Lines Between Work And Personal Technology Are Blurring

Bring-your-own-technology (BYOT) is no longer driven by do-it-yourselfers choosing their own devices for work — instead, a rapidly growing population of workers across industries and regions is embracing a wide spectrum of bring your own “fill-in-the-blank.” BYOT now spans hardware, platforms, and apps, plus cloud services like storage and collaboration.

Just how big is this trend? According to Forrester's Forrsights Workforce Employee Survey, Q4 2011, of nearly 10,000 workers worldwide, 53% bring their own technology for work. The rapid growth of mobile BYOT devices within business is reminiscent of Web adoption during the mid-1990s. After early handwringing and resistance, followed by rapid growth and innovation, the Web emerged as an indispensable tool. No one thinks twice now about using the Web for work. BYOT will follow a similar pattern.

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Symantec Engages Customers And Prospects Through A Social Media Command Center

My colleague Ted Schadler and I published several case studies in our recent report, "The Road To Social Business Transformation Starts With A Burning Platform." What follows is one of those stories -- Symantec's creation and roll-out of a social media initiative designed to funnel data from the social media sphere into the business to improve responsiveness to market trends. Here's the story:

Tristan Bishop, director of digital strategy at Symantec, knew something very important: If you listen to your customers, you can create a great experience that leads to customer loyalty. Of course, this knowledge was useless unless he could find a way to get the issues customers raised to the group within Symantec that could take appropriate action. So, in June 2011, Tristan worked with his manager, David Sward, senior director of user experience, to propose a plan to Symantec executives for exploring ways to uncover areas for customer experience improvements in social media. Symantec subsequently funded the project.

Around the time that Tristan was experimenting with social listening technology, Ellen Hayes, group manager, corporate communications and social strategy, and the social media team were working on a social listening initiative of their own for brand reputation management and public relations purposes. When they learned of what Tristan was doing, an idea emerged — they should marry their efforts to Tristan's.

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Forrester Introduces The Business Network Concept

We published the Business Network concept a month ago with this report: BUSINESS NETWORKS WILL PUSH THE CLOUD BEYOND IT

It's now my pleasure to share the definition on my public blog above. You'll see that the real-time sharing is an interesting characteristic of the Business Network concept. Actually, cloud computing and the further development of multitenancy architectures into a "collaborative tenancy" are an important enabler for Business Networks. Traditional B2B vendors, middleware vendors, and PaaS vendors are eager to get a share in the emerging world of cloud enterprise collaboration. 

But, the first step is with the CIOs: They have to identify these business scenarios where a trust-relationship-model can save manual effort or stimulate totally new business models. This helps CIOs finally deliver the vision of Business Technology, which innovates their companies' core business and not just the way they run IT.

Forrester clients can now download the webniar to this topic here: BUSINESS INNOVATION WITH BUSINESS NETWORKS IN THE CLOUD -- A CIO'S CALL!

You'll see in the right column next to this post an POLL. Please let us know your opinion about Business Networks and if it makes sense for you at all. Thanks!

 

Stefan Ried

Platform-As-A-Service: Cloud Providers' Silver Bullet?

I’ve been writing about platform-as-a-service (PaaS) since the beginning of 2009, and we published our first Forrester Wave™ on the PaaS market about 18 months ago. While the lines between IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS are blurring in the minds of some end users and developers, delivering PaaS requires a lot more intellectual property on the part of the cloud provider. IaaS is “just” the offering of an industrialized infrastructure service — but full PaaS service turns the cloud provider basically into a real software vendor or VAR of a decent stack of software platform components.

The market has undergone amazing changes since 2009 and the market landscape has been shaken up considerably since the last Forrester Wave. Why? A number of vendors have joined the crowd from three different directions:

  • IaaS cloud providers such as Amazon are moving up the stack to PaaS. From advanced database, messaging, and parallel processing to identity management and federation services, Amazon is arming itself with a myriad of value-added PaaS services to combat margin pressure in the commoditizing pure infrastructure space. Other IaaS providers are about to follow, most by OEMing PaaS stacks like those from Cordys or LongJump, or some other PaaS stack that is available to third-party infrastructure provider models.
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FlexFrame Private Cloud Management For SAP – Revamped At Fujitsu Forum 2012

 

Fujitsu’s annual Fujitsu Forum attracted about 13.000 in Tokyo and even about 10.000 people over the last two days in Munich. Fujitsu’s strength is still the competitive hardware portfolio in the class of IBM and HP. And similar to HP, Fujitsu used to have a narrow and focused software portfolio, which offered value very close to their hardware. The FlexFrame infrastructure management product is a traditional example of this strategy. But, before we go into FlexFrame, I have to attest that Fujitsu’s software portfolio has become richer and broader:

  • This year’s Fujitsu Forum showed major traction for the Fujitsu Cloudstore. An ecosystem approach enables software vendors to offer SaaS application in the SMB space in Germany. The concept is now rolling out to other countries and even to the US. Fujitsu’s Cloudstore also holds Fujitsu’s own CRM solutions, which are based on an early branch of Sugar CRM and now further developed by Fujitsu.
  • A personal cloud approach, still very close to all flavors of personal hardware from Fujitsu, but well supported by multiple software tools and scenarios.
  • Fujitsu Eco Track, an energy/carbon management and compliance reporting application – delivered exclusively next quarter as a Fujitsu-developed SaaS application.
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Axway Aquires Vordel: Why Does The Acquisition Of Security Experts By Integration Vendors Make Sense?

Axway just announced it will acquire the security specialist Vordel; and you might ask, does this make sense at all?

I do believe it does!

Actually, I was personally evaluating security vendors as an acquisition target for middleware vendors and B2B integration companies a number of times over the last five years as a Forrester analyst (and before).

The need to modernize security around integration scenarios becomes more important than ever:

  • Traditional B2B integration over private networks is more and more replaced with B2B connectivity and cloud-based integration over the Internet.
  • Traditional rigid EDI gateways still exist and handle huge volumes, but many new applications are developed in the cloud and access synchronous REST or SOAP APIs for immediate customer and partner engagement.
  • Large enterprises have heterogeneous integration strategies to meet different characteristics of integration. See my recent blog for an overview.
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The US Tech Market Outlook After The Election: Four Questions Awaiting Answers

The 2012 US election is now over, and the results were about what I expected based on the polls going in: Barack Obama reelected President (although with a wider margin of victory in the popular vote and electoral college than many had predicted); the Democrats retaining control of the Senate, with a slightly higher majority; and the Republicans holding their majority in the House. The blog I wrote in September on "What An Obama Reelection Would Mean For The US Tech Market Outlook" now becomes the one to focus on. With the balance of political power in Washington now settled for the next two years, those of us who track the tech market will now be awaiting answers to four key post-election questions:

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Kindred Healthcare Empowers Sales Reps With iPads And Salesforce.com

 

This case study is from TJ Keitt and my social business playbook report, “The Road To Social Business Starts With A Burning Platform.” A social business harnesses mobile technology to empower sales reps in their moments of customer – or in this case, patient – engagement. Here’s the story.

Sales executive Barry Somervell has a passion for arming his team with tools that yield productivity; he believes in the power of technology to transform the selling process. Barry was asked to come into Kindred Healthcare, a $5 billion supplier of post-acute-care services, to energize and modernize its nursing center division's sales process to bring patients into its 224 skilled nursing and transitional care centers. Barry quickly saw that the tools that the "clinical liaisons" carried were lacking. This group of sales professionals, from a clinical or nursing background, needed better ways to collaborate with colleagues and with hospital medical staff to offer the right services to patients about to be discharged and in need of rehabilitation services. You can see Barry and his team in this video.

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