Posts Tagged ‘Enterprise Software’

Research Summary: Economic Trends Exacerbate Digital Business Disruption And Digital Transformation (The Futurist Framework Part 3)

Constellation Applies A Futurist Framework To Guide 2014 Outlook and Beyond

Constellation’s research team uses a tried and true futurist framework that looks at the political, economic, societal, technological, environmental and legislative (PESTEL) shifts ahead (see Figure 1). The PESTEL model is used to synthesize the major trends and provides guidance on how Constellation approaches its seven key business themes over the next 2 to 3 years in:

  1. Consumerization of Technology and the New C-Suite
  2. Data to Decisions
  3. Digital Marketing Transformation
  4. Future of Work
  5. Matrix Commerce
  6. Next-Generation Customer Experience
  7. Technology Optimization and Innovation

The strategic assumptions from Constellation’s 2014 PESTEL framework form the basis for the business theme-led research.  Over the next 36 months, research from each business theme will factor these trends into the overall research agenda.  The goal in 2014 is to help clients not only navigate, but also dominate digital disruption.

In part 1, the focus was on the technological trends.

In part 2, the focus is on societal trends.

Download the report snapshot

See the February 27, 2014 webinar

Figure 1. PESTEL Approach Provides a Futurist Framework For Business Themes and Planning


Economic Trends Exacerbate Digital Business Disruption

Still reeling from the impact of the global financial crisis of 2008, Western economies have printed their way out of shock by providing short-term liquidity. Of grave concern, inflation appears around the corner as high debt loads stunt growth. Meanwhile, China and the resource-rich regions such as Africa, the Middle East, Canada and Australia continue their export-led and infrastructure-fueled economic growth. Brazil, Russia, India and China (the BRICs) as well as South Africa continue to grow their economies through direct foreign investment while Malaysia, Indonesia, Nigeria and Turkey (the MINTs) emerge onto the global economic scene. Five economic trends shape the prioritization of investments in digital disruption (see Figure 2):

Figure 2. Economic Trends Exacerbate Digital Business Disruption More…

Event Report: Marketo Moves From Revenue Management To Customer Engagement Platform #MKTGNation14

Marketo Moves Beyond Revenue To Customer Engagement Platform


A growing realization that funnels are dead again (and again) in sales, marketing, service, and commerce drives a big shift in the digital business disruption.  In front of 6000 customers, prospects, influencers, and employees, Marketo’s CEO Phil Fernandez put to bed some myths about the mix of Marketo’s key customer industries, showcased significant customer success stories, and announced new product features including the new customer engagement platform.  An analysis of the news from Marketing Nation 2014 in San Francisco includes:

  • Launch Of A New Customer Engagement Platform. The new Engagement Platform includes three signature features: Real-Time Personalization, Marketing Calendar, and Search Engine Optimization.  Real-Time Personalization enables a campaign to personalize across multiple channels including email, web, and mobile.   Marketing Calendar provides an interactive visual interface to manage campaigns.  Search Engine Optimization includes tools to analyze keyword rankings, suggest new key words, and optimize web page rankings.

    Point of View (POV):
    The shift from revenue management and marketing automation to a broader scope of customer engagement is critical.  Customers expect category leaders such as Marketo to anticipate customer needs and set vision.  The shift to digital transformation requires brands and organizations to design traditional marketing activities as part of a larger customer experience continuum.  Real-time personalization plays a key role in ensuring relevancy across channels.  The Marketing Calendar improves collaboration among internal and external teams.  The SEO optimization is one of many tools required to optimize existing campaigns and programs.  In speaking to over 50 customers at the event,  the general consensus was that the new product announcements would move Marketo from one-trick departmental pony to broader CMO platform.
  • Partnership with Axciom To Deliver Mass Personalization At Scale. Marketo announced a partnership between the new customer engagement platform and Axciom’s Audience Operating System (AOS).  AOS brings a rich stack that includes an applications layer, audience operations layer, and data layer to help organizations engage in a single view of customers across multiple channels.  Using Acxiom’s AbiliTag™ Real-Time Insight organizations can take relevant segmentation information to craft personalized marketing messages.

    (POV):
    Customer engagement systems must deliver massive contextual relevancy at scale, create role-tailored communication styles, deliver bionic user experiences, and move at the right time More…

News Analysis: Vertical Solutions Extends Customer Experience And Field Service Footprint With Three Partnerships

Vertical Solutions Partnerships Showcase Why Complex Field Service Is A Critical Glue Between ERP and CRM In Improving Customer Experience


Announced March 4th, 2014 at the Microsoft Convergence event, Vertical Solutions, made three significant partnerships with Blue Horseshoe Solutions, Cincom, and Vidcie.  The Cincinnati, Ohio based customer experience software vendor provides cloud contact center and service management solutions that bridge the worlds of physical goods with customer experience.  The analysis of the three announcements show:

  • Where after market sales and service creates a strategic differentiator for Cincom. Cincom signed a reseller partnership with Vertical Solutions for integrated Field Service Management and Maintenance Repair Operations.  Cincom is a global Microsoft ISV for manufacturing. The partnership allows Cincom to resell VSI’s Service Lifecycle Management Solution with Cincom’s Business Suite for Microsoft Dynamics AX.

    Point of View (POV):
    In the current digital business transformation, manufacturers realize that product margins can no longer sustain growth.  While service revenues, warranty management, and installation can provide additional revenues, organizations must move from selling products to keeping brand promises.  Post sales service is a key component to ensuring that the brand promise is kept for manufacturers.
  • Why supply chain and post sales service should team up to improve customer experience in the Blue Horseshoe partnership. Blue Horseshoe provides a Supply Chain Suite for Microsoft Dynamics AX.  The partnership ties customer support, field service and mobile environments with logistics, supply chain, transportation management, advanced warehousing, and order completion.

    (POV):
    While the Blue Horseshoe solution provides a robust capability in supply chain, Vertical Solutions provides post sales and complex field service requirements.  These requirements enable customers to deliver on the complete order management cycle.  In speaking with several Blue Horseshoe and Microsoft Dynamics AX customers, they have a need to reduce warranty costs and improve customer satisfaction through improved first visit resolution programs.  Constellation believes that customers do not care what department resolves the issue, just that the issue is resolved across the continuum of customer engagement.
  • How video streaming can provide real-time access to experts through the Vidcie partnership. The partnership with Vidcie allows customers to integrate video streaming technology into the VSI enterprise Service Lifecycle Management solution VServiceManagement.  Vidcie is a Silicon Valley based hands free live streaming, mobile, and wearable technology provider.  Vidcie is More…

Event Report: #AdobeSummit Celebrates Digital Marketing From Creative To Commerce

Market Leaders And Fast Followers Celebrate Over A Decade Of Digital Marketing Vision

In 2004, Omniture founder Josh James, an avid skier, held the first Summit atop the Snowbird Ski Resort for 270 early adopters and converted.  Fast forward eleven years to 2014, an estimated 5600+ customers, partners, influencers, and prospects gathered at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City, Utah, March 25th to March 28th, 2014, in search of reinvention in digital marketing (see Figure 1).  Since that time, Adobe Summit has emerged as a must attend event for those looking at the entire digital experience from creative to commerce.  Despite the size, this year’s event remained equally intimate.  At almost every venue, restaurant, or session, attendees remarked on how easy it was to meet people and discover, connect, and engage on the future of digital marketing.

Figure 1. Adobe CEO, Shantanu Narayen Opening The General Session on the Need for Reinvention In Marketing

Source: Adobe

Adobe Summit 2014 Announcements Focus On Needs Versus Wants

New product enhancements, a new release, and a few key partnerships highlight advancements in Marketing Cloud which includes a number of organically developed products and acquisitions of Omniture, Day Software, Efficient Frontier, and Neolane.  Today, the Adobe Marketing Cloud includes Adobe Social, Adobe Analytics, Adobe Target, Adobe Experience Manager, Adobe Media Optimizer, and Adobe Campaign (see Figure 2).  This year’s announcements reflect a need to improve integration among the acquisitions and deliver core needs versus nice to have capabilities.  Main announcements from this year’s summit include:

Figure 2. The Six Components Of The Adobe Marketing Cloud

Source: Adobe

  • Adobe Marketing Cloud Core Services Improve Suite Value.  Adobe announced new cores services for Marketing Cloud.  These services include a key master marketing profile, shared assets, marketing mix planning, identity, contextual activation, tag management, integration, and collaboration.

    Point of view (POV):
    The core marketing services are much needed to bring not only the acquisitions together, but also future partner integrations.  The Master Marketing Profile allows marketers to aggregate profiles information from multiple sources.  Shared assets put the power of the Adobe Creative Suite to work allowing marketers to create once use everywhere.  Marketing mix planning enables marketers to tie together attribution, analytics, media planning and execution to analytics and campaign activation.  The new identity capabilities are a good start, but much more will be required to support commerce apps entering a digital business world where trust is the new currency and transparency must balance privacy.

Event Report: The Storify From #AdobeSummit

Market Leaders And Fast Followers Celebrate A Decade Of Digital Marketing Vision

In 2004, Omniture founder Josh James, an avid skier, held the first Summit atop the Snowbird Ski Resort for 270 early adopters and converted.  Fast forward eleven years to 2014, an estimated 7000 customers, partners, influencers, and prospects gathered at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City, Utah March 25th to March 28th, 2014 in search of reinvention in digital marketing (see Figure 1).  Since that time, Adobe Summit has emerged as a must attend event for those looking at the entire digital experience from creative to commerce.  Despite the size, this year’s event remained equally intimate.  At almost every venue, restaurant, or session, attendees remarked on how easy it was to meet people and discover, connect, and engage on the future of digital marketing.

Enclosed is the Storify of Tweets from #AdobeSummit:

Figure 1. Storify from #AdobeSummit


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Research Report: Digital ARTISANs – The Seven Building Blocks Behind Building A Digital Business DNA

Shift to Digital Businesses Requires A Transformation Of Leadership And Organizational DNA

The discussion about digital business often goes deep into the five pillars of digital technologies.  In fact, the convergence of these pillars have spawned the latest and trendiest iterations of technology from enabling the sharing economy to 3D printers to wearables that drive sensor and analytical ecosystems.  As organizations contemplate how these broad based digital business trends will disrupt existing business models, leaders can apply Constellation’s Futurist Framework [Download the report snapshot] and consider dimensions from the political, economic, societal, technological, environmental, and legislative (PESTEL) angles.  However, even after much planning, astute CXO’s from market leading and fast follower organizations quickly realize that technology and process alone is not enough to transform their organization’s DNA inside the organization.

It’s Still The People, Stupid!

Despite robots potentially taking over by 2020 (snark), people still play a key role in the success of digital business transformation.  In the shift from selling products and services to promising outcomes and experiences, information flows faster.  Every node and person in the digital network must react more quickly, yet also needs to be more intelligent.  Success comes faster but so does failure.  Thus, both the seduction of massive success and the fear of facing massive failure provides a great catalyst to design, influence, infuse, or transplant the proper digital DNA.

The DNA Of Digital Artisans Blend The Intelligence Of Quant Jocks With The Co Innovation Skills Of The Creative Class

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News Analysis: Gainsight Spring 2014 Release Targets Large Enterprises Making The Transition To #DigitalBiz

Customer Success Management Pioneer Adds Key Functionality For March 2014 Release

On March 18th, Mountain View, CA based Gainsight announced the Spring 2014 release of its customerssuccess management platform.  Led by CEO Nick Mehta, the cloud software vendor has received over $29M in funding from key investors such as Bain Capital, Battery Ventures, Capital Innovators, Cultivation Capital, Silicon Valley Bank, and Summit Partners.  In addition to the latest release, the company added two industry veterans Sherif Botros from SAP as Chief Data Scientist and Puja Ramani from Facebook as Director of Product Management and Analytics.

Five key features designed for the largest of enterprises were announced for the Gainsight Spring 2014 release and include:

  • Support for sponsor tracking with LinkedIn and InsideView. New feature takes contacts listed in a client’s CRM system and monitors status changes in InsideView and Linkedin.  Known as Gainsight Sponsor Tracking, the feature also adds relevant news, events, and CRM intelligence.  These additional, external data points factor into a holistic customer health score that includes usage, support, engagement, and and other relationship health metrics.

    Point of View (POV):
    A top root cause for churn is an executive sponsor’s departure.  The automated system serves as an early warning indicator when status changes for key contacts to help provide the advantage of time and insight when protecting renewals and future upsell.  The feature also locates potential advocate or customers to on board.
  • Delivery of a Salesforce1 mobile app .  The Gainsight Salesforce1 Mobile App integrates natively with Salesforce (see Figure 1).   The Gainsight offering allows users access on Android and iOS phones and tablets.  Alerts, tasks, customer health data, and survey feedback are integrated with Salesforce system data.

    (POV):
    Mobility tops this year’s list of key enabling digital technologies in almost every Constellation survey.   Customers can take advantage of in-between and wait times to update customer health and fill notes via the application.  Many existing customers expect that this feature will improve team productivity from 10 to 25%.

Figure 1. Gainsight Delivers a Native Integration To Salesforce1

  • Release of  Gainsight Success Snapshots. As a new data visualization publishing feature, the solution helps clients build and publish data filled presentations, executive updates, and QBR reports.  Users can populate presentations with customer queries or templated reports.

    (POV):
    Customers seek not only good reporting tools, but also consumer grade user experience and ease of use. Data visualization tools play a key role in effectively democratizing the data to decision process among stakeholders championing customer success.

Research Summary: Five Societal Shifts Showcase The Digital Divide Ahead (The Futurist Framework Part 2)

Constellation Applies A Futurist Framework To Guide 2014 Outlook and Beyond

Constellation’s research team uses a tried and true futurist framework that looks at the political, economic, societal, technological, environmental and legislative (PESTEL) shifts ahead (see Figure 1). The PESTEL model is used to synthesize the major trends and provides guidance on how Constellation approaches its seven key business themes over the next 2 to 3 years in:

  1. Consumerization of Technology and the New C-Suite
  2. Data to Decisions
  3. Digital Marketing Transformation
  4. Future of Work
  5. Matrix Commerce
  6. Next-Generation Customer Experience
  7. Technology Optimization and Innovation

The strategic assumptions from Constellation’s 2014 PESTEL framework form the basis for the business theme-led research.  Over the next 36 months, research from each business theme will factor these trends into the overall research agenda.  The goal in 2014 is to help clients not only navigate, but also dominate digital disruption.

In part 1, the focus was on the technological trends.

In part 2, the focus is on societal.

Download the report snapshot

See the February 27, 2014 webinar

Figure 1. PESTEL Approach Provides a Futurist Framework For Business Themes and Planning

Societal (S) Shifts Showcase the Digital Divide Ahead

Generational shifts by age and by digital proficiency will show up in force in 2014. A generation of millennials no longer seeks the same objectives as previous generations.  Lack of upward mobility and opportunity sow the seeds for societal disruption.  Furthermore, a fear of government intrusion along with a need for government programs creates a bipolar view on the role of government.  Hence, organizations must adapt to an ever-changing array of future business models based on dynamic demographic and psycho-graphic preferences.  The following five broad societal movements shape how individuals behave and play a strong role in influencing business model adoption (see Figure 2):

Figure 2.  Societal Shifts Showcase the Digital Divide Ahead


  1. Access trumps ownership in a sharing economy. From car sharing in the late 1990s, to vacation rentals to collaborative financing, the sharing economy has been inching its way into the forefront of the consumer’s mind.  Since, thought leaders such as Rachel Botsman, Lisa Gansky and Anne-Sophie Novel, have been chronicling the forces, underlying trends and players behind the movement.  Key success factors in this new business model require the identification of underutilized assets, optimization of value through time slicing of access, trading on the goodwill and generosity of others and building a reputation economy.  A sharing economy model is not for every industry, yet this trend may affect how products and services companies shift their offerings and business models in the next three to five years.
  2. Five generations of customers and workers driven by digital proficiency, not age. When discussing the future of work, most people  immediately jump to the discussion of millennials, Generation Y, Generation X, Baby Boomers, post war, etc.  However, under a shift to digital business, the generations are defined differently.  This segmentation describes how proficient people are with digital technologies and digital culture.  The five generations include digital natives, digital immigrants, digital voyeurs, digital holdouts and the digital disengaged.
  3. More…

Event Report: Microsoft Convergence 2014 Day 1 Demonstrates Solid Momentum and Mindshare ( #CONV14 )

Microsoft Convergence Kicks Off In Atlanta

The annual Microsoft Convergence customer event kicked off on March 4th, 2014.  Far from the days of the Stampede in Fargo, North Dakota, the event shows how far the Microsoft Dynamics customers, partners, and products have progressed.  Over 12,000 attendees including customers, partners, staff, and prospects gathered in Atlanta, GA for the largest Microsoft Enterprise Applications conference.  The sold out event featured a volunteer program on Day 0 and a good number of partner meetings the weekend before.  Analysis from four key announcements on Day 1 include:

  • Microsoft Dynamics gaining momentum on the large enterprise and divisions of large enterprises. Key customers presenting in the opening keynote include Chobani, City Harvest Inc, Delta Airlines, Lotus F1 Team, New Belgium Brewery, and Weight Watchers.  These presenting customers share a key theme of customer centricity and a Microsoft enterprise backbone.  Moreover, many showcase the devices and services theme set by former CEO Steve Ballmer.

    Point of View (POV):
    Constellation sees a growing trend where organizations and brands move to Dynamics for both CRM and ERP.  The ability to integrate back to other Microsoft technologies such as SharePoint, Office 365, and Azure Services provides both a pull and a push.  As organizations think about consolidating vendors and moving to the cloud, the Microsoft Dynamics team provides some compelling options in manufacturing, retail, distribution, public sector, professional services, and travel and entertainment.  The launch of a Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online Enterprise License at $200 per user per month show cases the move upmarket.
  • Dynamics CRM users gain key marketing and social capabilities. Microsoft announces the next release of Dynamics CRM in Q2 of 2014.  Microsoft Dynamics Marketing, which was formed from the Marketing Pilot acquisition , debuts to assist with campaign management.  The service and support offering gains new features such as Unified Service Desk along with closer integration to recently acquired Parature.  Newly launched Microsoft Social Listening launches at no additional charge for Dynamics CRM Online professional license holders.

    (POV):
    The rewrite of acquired entity Marketing Pilot provides some improvement to the original product.  Parity at the Exact Target and Hubspot level will take at least two to three more releases.  Release of unified service desk paired with Parature, provides a powerful combination in customer service and support.  Microsoft Social Listening finally provides customers with a social tool that has been sorely missing in the line up.  More importantly, in CRM and customer experience, the mobile access options have not forced customers onto Windows Phone and instead have provided native support of iOS and Android..
  • Dynamics ERP users prepare for new releases. Dynamics GP gets a release for Q1 2014 that includes identity management, workflow, and self service companion apps.  Dynamics NAV shoudl receive an update in Q4 2014.  More importantly, the team announced the availability of Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 R3 for May 1st 2014.  Key themes include mobile enablement, support for deployment on Windows Azure in the Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) layer, and an end to end apps and services framework.  .  The cross offering with the Windows Azure team is the Microsoft Dynamics Lifecycle Services which improve implementation times and enable agile updates.

    More…

News Analysis: FinancialForce.com ERP Arrives To Signal The Era Of Best Of Breed Cloud Suites

FinancialForce Debuts Its Full ERP Suite


On February 19th, San Francisco headquartered, FinancialForce.com announced the launch of its full suite of ERP offerings built on the Salesforce1 platform.  Backed by investments from UNIT4 and Salesforce.com, the cloud based vendor began as a single ledger financial management system built on the Salesforce.com Force.com platform.  The announcement and product launch shows how FinancialForce:

  • Delivers a full ERP suite on the Salesforce1 platform. The platform brings together a series of organic products and recent acquisitions in HR, supply chain, and project management (see Figure 1).  The December 2010 acquisition of Appirio’s professional services automation assets form the Professional Services Automation offering.  The 2013 acquisitions of Vana Workforce and Less Software brought the human capital management (HCM) and supply chain management (SCM) capabilities.

    Point of View (POV):
    The management team at FinacialForce.com was smart to bring in acquisitions built on the original Force.com platform.  Post merger integration was greatly simplified as the products shared a common architectural base.  More importantly, the acquired solutions were easily upgraded to the Salesforce1 platform to create an end to end ERP cloud based ERP suite.  Customers gain the full advantages of the Salesforce 1 platform and integration with the core Salesforce CRM offerings.
  • Demonstrates focus on long term growth and viability .  FinancialForce.com showed 80% year over year growth in revenue run-rate compared to 2012.  Headcount grew 62% year over year with over 260 global employees.  Furthermore, customers represent a global base with 27 countries and users in 45 countries.

    (POV):
    Cloud has gone mainstream and customers now expect their cloud companies to demonstrate viability.  The mergers and acquisitions required to build a full cloud ERP suite signal a maturity by FinancialForce.com and the market.  Early customers of the full suite provide positive references on both the synergies of the ERP offering and the flexibility of the Salesforce1 platform for extensibility.

Figure 1. FinancialForce.com Launches A Full Integrated ERP Suite

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Research Summary: Next Generation CIOs Aspire To Focus More On Innovation And The Chief Digital Officer Role

Executive Summary

Constellation shares with its clients the fourth annual groundbreaking survey of CIOs later this week.  The 2014 survey interviews respondents about their priorities by CIO persona.  Constellation identified infrastructure, integration, intelligence, and innnovaiton as the four personas of the next gen CIO in 2011.

Survey results show that while CIO’s prefer to spend more time on innovation projects, most CIOs must spend their time battling the reduction of cost in IT delivery.  In the shift towards dominating digital disruption, CIOs can only move as fast as their organization’s DNA will allow while driving transformation. Using Constellation’s organizational DNA framework, CIOs can understand how much change they can expect their organization to consume and gauge their ability to impact the thought process and culture.  An excerpt of some of the findings can be found below:

A. CIOs Must Battle Keeping The Lights On Despite A Desire To Focus On Innovation

In Constellation’s recent CIO survey of 119 respondents, over 44% expressed that reducing the cost of IT delivery remained the number one priority (see Figure 2).  However when asked what should be the number one priority almost 44% expressed that bringing innovation to the business was the number one requirement (see Figure 3).

Figure 1. CIOs Still Prioritize Reducing IT Costs

Figure 2.  Bringing Innovation to the Business Is Top Of Mind On The CIO Agenda

B. CIOs Must Overcome Three Barriers To Bringing Innovation To The Business

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Quips: Dachis Group Acquired by Sprinklr

Deal Is First Of Many As Digital Business Providers Consolidates


On February 19th, Sprinklr announced the acquisition of Dachis Group.  The acquisition will make Sprinklr the largest independent end-to-end Social Relationship platform in the market. While many will see this deal as a services play, the acquisition is significant in the for a few key reasons:

  • Dachis brings key product sets to the Sprinklr portfolio. While known for pioneering social business consulting, over the past 24 months, Dachis Group had built out a portfolio of products from brand analytics via the Social Business Index, Content Optimization (which supports the push to native advertising), and employee advocacy (which can be seen on the Sprinklr Content Creator).
  • Sprinklr augments its services capabilities. Partnerships with Accenture and Deloitte have given Sprinklr the range and reach to deliver on global deployments.  The services arm of Dachis will add to this capability and augment existing partnerships.  Customers should not expect Dachis Group service folks to compete with Accenture and Deloitte.

The Bottom Line: Spinklr and Dachis Group Customers Gain a Win Win

In this rapidly consolidating market, mergers and acquisitions provide the scale and critical mass to compete in the market. As the market shifts away from social business and more towards digital, expect new models to emerge among the social leaders who see the vision to move forward.  Services and software will be key to competing in a world of networks and mass personalization at scale.

Your POV.

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