R “Ray” Wang is the Principal Analyst and CEO at Constellation Research, Inc. He’s also the author of the popular enterprise software blog “A Software Insider’s Point of View”. With viewership in the millions of page views a year, his blog provides insight into how disruptive technologies and new business models impact the enterprise. Ray’s a prominent key note speaker and research analyst working with clients on engagement strategies, social business, customer experience, and decision management. He advises Global 2000 companies on business strategy and technology selection. Ray is quoted regularly in Harvard Business Review, The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Forbes, Bloomberg, Reuters, IDG News Service, Tech Crunch and other media outlets around the world.
- Harnessing Innovation in a Downturn to Create a Sustainable Advantage
Organizations face an onslaught of competing priorities that include growing the business, cutting costs, complying to regulations, and fostering innovation. Because most organizations lack the resources in good times let alone in today’s economic climate to meet such requirements, innovation is often prioritized as a luxury and accordingly relegated. In fact, most organizations devote more than 3/4′s of their budget to keeping the lights on. So how can organizations innovate and differentiate in such an environment? The good news—disruptive technologies have transformed how leading organizations respond to massive changes in macro economic conditions, workplace dynamics, business models, and technology adoption. The bad news—the pace of change continues to accelerate to the point where the rate of obsolescence outpaces the pace of change. Now is the time to make the investments that will pay off during a recovery. But investment in innovation does not come in spurts. It’s a disciplined and dedicated approach over time that creates success. While it may hurt now, it must equally be invested in good times to have an impact. Gain practical approaches as Ray shares the most promising disruptive technologies, shows how these technologies have helped other organizations create competitive advantage, and provides a strategy on how to harness innovation in a downturn to differentiate.
- What’s the Role of the Next Generation CIO?
Less than 5 years ago, the mighty CIO controlled his or her organization’s destiny by shepherding multi-million dollar projects and ruling with a fist. Business leaders had to pay homage to the IT team and they hated it. The economic crisis, advent of the cloud and SaaS, and the massive number of IT failures have rapidly changed the role of the CIO. Saddled with the burden of maintaining legacy projects and faced with a shortage in budget and resources, businesses now move around the IT team as they must meet a flurry of business requirements. CIO’s have lost a lot of control in guiding how technology is used in the enterprise because the world of consumer tech has out innovated enterprise class technologies. What’s the role of the CIO in this next gen enterprise? Learn the key skill sets needed to re-earn a seat at the business table. See how next generation CIO’s can help organizations navigate complexity while realizing the benefits of a solid business technology strategy.
- Ready for the Cloud and SaaS?
The proliferation of SaaS solutions provides organizations with a myriad of sorely needed point and disruptive solutions. Good news— business users can rapidly procure and deploy, while innovating with minimal budget and IT team constraints. Bad news—users must depend more on their SLA guarantees and deal with a potential integration nightmare of hundreds if not thousands of potential SaaS apps. Though the 7 key benefits of SaaS outweigh most downside risks, organizations must design their SaaS apps strategies with the same rigor as any apps strategy. Just because deployment options have changed, this does not mean basic apps strategy is thrown out the window. Concepts such as SOA, business process orchestration, and enterprise architecture will be more important than ever. Discover how to put 10 practical SaaS/Cloud strategies to work.
- Building Successful Enterprise Apps Strategies
Complexity often plagues today’s apps strategies. With tight budgets, limited resources, and little time, organizations need to find bite-sized entry points. The need to meet ever changing complex business requirements requires a four-step, basic approach. Start by aligning your business requirements, basing decisions on the types of business process, choosing entry points based on business value, and defining the metrics that matter. Given today’s economic constraints, organizations will have to complete small tactical projects that build out the larger picture. Learn how to build apps strategies that include tactical road maps to achieve longer term strategic goals. Discover why organizations must iterate every 6 months as business needs change and new disruptive technologies emerge. Gain strategies to keep focused on the goal in mind – business value.
- The Future of Enterprise Software for the Next Generation Enterprise
The next generation enterprise is here. Unfortunately, innovations in enterprise software have traditionally not kept up with next generation requirements. In fact, the consumer web and Web 2.0 offerings have outclassed most legacy vendors with software that provides dynamics user experiences, focuses on business processes, and connects users to new communities and channels. Learn how successful organizations can apply a systems approach to embrace end to end business process orientation in the application, design, and measurement of an organization’s success. See how the future of enterprise software will go beyond the forced fit best practices of the last century. Understand the implications of change across functions and processes. See which vendors will succeed in taking these innovations and making them enterprise class—that is secure, scalable, and safe.
What’s on Ray’s current research agenda? Currently, Ray is focused on:
- Disruptive technologies for the enterprise from Cloud to Location Based Services
- Innovation imperatives
- Next generation enterprise strategy including contract negotiations strategy
- Next generation CIO issues. The shift from infrastructure to innovation
- Cost saving software strategies
- Customer bill of rights
- Future of social enterprise software
How have other organizations utilized Ray’s expertise, and what’s ahead on his schedule?
Ray has brought his expertise and advice to variety of clients across multiple industries including:
- Consumer package goods – Global 2000 companies
- Telecom – Fortune 100 telecommunications company
- Professional services firms – Top 20 management consulting, top 50 legal services
- Financial services clients – Top 10 financial services
- Manufacturing – Global 2000 including top 20 Oil and Gas, Fortune 50 conglomerates
- Travel and hospitality – Top 10 airlines, leading gaming companies, and hotels
- Public sector clients – Large Canadian Provincial Agency, State Agencies, US Federal Government, local governments
- High Tech – Workday, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP, Syspro, Siperian, Initiate, IBM, Cisco, HP, VM Ware, EMC, Salesforce.com, NetSuite
- User Groups/Trade groups – American Payroll Association, various software vendor user groups
SPHERE OF INFLUENCE
Who shapes Ray’s thinking and inspires his work?
John Foster Dulles
What’s on Ray’s must-read list?
Justin Fox – The Myth of the Rational Market
Tom Smith – How Did That Happen?: Holding People Accountable for Results, the Positive, Principled Way
Hugh Macleod – Ignore Everybody: and 39 Other Keys to Creativity
Sun Tzu – Art of War
Ann Rynd – Atlas Shrugged, The Virtues of Selfishness
Tom Rath and Barry Coniche – Strengths-Based Leadership
Gary Vaynerchuk – Crush It!: Why Now is the Time to Cash in on Your Passion
Ivanka Trump – The Trump Card
Malcolm Gladwell – Outliers: The Stories of Success
Tom Friedman and Michael Mandelbaum – That Used To Be Us!
PREVIOUS SPEAKING ENAGEMENTS
See the list here