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Posted by Fred Giron on July 3, 2012
I recently finalized a report* on software asset (SA) based IT services, this time looking at vendors’ best practices in terms of governance, organization, skills, tools, and processes. Needless to say, the move to software asset-based services will have a huge impact on the traditional operating models of IT services firms.
Obviously, IT services firms need to learn from their large software partners to understand and implement specific software asset management processes such as product sales incentive schemes, product management, product engineering, and release management.
This will induce a formidable cultural change within the IT services vendor’s organization, somewhat similar to the change Western IT service providers had to undergo 10 years ago when they finally embraced offshore delivery models.
I see a few critical steps that IT services firms need to take in order to facilitate this shift towards software asset-based business models:
Accenture took many of these steps when it started Accenture Software (ASW) about two years ago. This software organization, today composed mostly of software professionals — not consultants — produces commercial software and licenses it leveraging on-premises, hosted, and SaaS delivery models based on a cloud-ready architecture. Independent of the other Accenture business units, it targets niche market segments — mainly within the insurance, banking, CPG, and transportation sectors — where it can bring differentiated business value to its clients. This is a good example of how a service vendor can operate a successful shift to software asset-based business models.
*The report, “Asset-Based IT Services Shift Service Vendors’ Operating Models,” will be published in late July.
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