Posts Tagged ‘Jive’

Monday’s Musings: The New Engagement Platform Drives The Shift From Transactions

Convergence In The Five Forces Of Consumerization Of Technology Drives The Next Big Thing

Social has given us the tools to connect.  Mobile has given us the ability to interact any time and anywhere.  Cloud delivers access points to us with a rich array of content and information.  Big data provides us with the context and information to make decisions.  Unified communications and video transform how we share ideas.  This convergence of the five forces of consumerization drives the next shifts in technology.  The move from transaction to engagement and from engagement to experience is happening now.  The era of transactional apps rapidly makes way for the era of engagement.

If Business Value And Outcomes Are The Goal, Then We Need An Engagement Platform For The Enterprise

The arrival of engagement platforms does not signify time to throw out the transactional systems. In fact, those systems provide the foundation required for engagement.  The engagement layer exposes transactions and allow for deeper interaction and richer sources of information.  However, the transactional systems lack the ability to support engagement.

In fact, organizations around the world struggle with building the right engagement strategy for their customers and employees.  While crafting the right strategy should be designed prior to any technology selection, once completed, the technology to support the strategy does not exist out of the box from ANY solution provider.  Unfortunately, the technologies to achieve engagement remain disparate and hodge podge.   Many solution providers seek to achieve the engagement layer from different heritages:

  • Pure play social solutions morph to engagement apps.  Vendors such as Broadvision, Jive, Moxie, Lithium, Tibco, and Yammer have delivered many elements of the engagement layer.  These horizontal offerings provide an opportunity to assimilate disparate offerings across multiple processes and roles.  The challenge is finding the tools that support consistent integration at the process, meta data, and data layer.  Gamification vendors such as Badgeville, Bunchball, BigDoor, Crowdtwist, and Gigya play a key role in delivering outcomes and influencing behavior through engagement.  Platforms such as Atlasian, Box, GoodData, and Tidemark open the door to a new era of engagement apps.
  • Legacy transactional systems in transition to engagement. Major ERP and CRM vendors seek to address engagement with “social” and “mobile” features.  While many of the vendors have the components for engagement, the struggle will be to embed a sense and respond design point into both the interaction layer and process flows.  Salesforce embraces the social enterprise and uses Chatter as its entry point in creating engagement.  SAP attempts this with its CubeTree/SuccessFactors acquisition in Project Robus.  Oracle attacks this problem through a customer experience suite.  Microsoft acquired Yammer to create this layer inside Office and its Business Solutions portfolio. IBM embraces social business with a series of acquisitions and product enhancements to its IBM Connections product.  More importantly, IBM has built and acquired a portfolio of software solutions that sit on top of the legacy transactional systems, delivering high value and high impact.
  • Consumer offerings could enter the enterprise. With consumerization of IT increasing, platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Twitter provide a rich engagement platform that could be adopted in the enterprise.  Meanwhile, solutions providers such as Adobe blend consumer with enterprise as they provide the tools for engagement on the web and in mobile.  The challenge is dealing with societal norms between work and personal information.  The challenge is meeting enterprise class requirements for safety, security, and sustainability.
  • Vertically integrated prosumer platforms already deliver engagement. Google, Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft have the unique capability of delivering an end to end solution from hardware, consumer device, operating system, database, applications, and partner ecosystem.  Engagement platforms form the basis of future business models as consumer and enterprise blend into prosumers.  The challenge is meeting the disparate needs of enterprise and consumer.
  • Marketing and advertising networks provide rich profiles and targeting.  The ad networks are moving fast to shift engagement and offers.  While daily deal sites play one role, companies like Glam Networks also now deliver key components for ad targeting and optimization that compete with Google, Apple, Yahoo, and other media properties.   Marketing automation platforms such as
    Eloqua, Hubspot, InfusionSoft, Marketo, NeoLane, Pardot, and Parature already have may key components.  The challenge is engendering trust among the users or consumers to share more information in exchange for deemed value.

Figure 1. Technologies Will Evolve  From Transactions to P2P

The Engagement Platform Requires Nine Main Technology Components

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Research Summary: Best Practices – Three Simple Software Maintenance Strategies That Can Save You Millions

Forward And Commentary

Software ownership costs continue to escalate as vendors accelerate their efforts to capture support and maintenance revenues. Some vendors have gone to the extreme to eliminate third-party options for their customers. This best practices report examines three strategies to free up unnecessary costs to fund innovation and new projects.

A. Introduction

On average, IT budgets are down from 1-5 percent year-over-year, yet software support and maintenance costs continue to escalate ahead of inflation. Hence, continued pressure on IT budgets and a growing need for innovation projects have top business and technology leaders reexamining their software support and maintenance contracts for cost efficiencies.

Based on experience from over 1500 software contract negotiations, Constellation suggests three approaches to reduce the cost of software support and maintenance. Key strategies include third-party maintenance, shelfware reductions and unbundling maintenance contracts as part of every organization’s tech optimization strategy. Successful implementation can lead to savings from 10-25 percent of the IT budget, freeing up cash to fund innovation initiatives.

B. Research FindingsWhy Every Organization Should Consider Third-Party Maintenance, Shelfware Reductions and Unbundling Maintenance Contracts

Most organizations suffocate from the high and hidden cost of support and maintenance. On average, Constellation’s surveys reveal global IT budgets trending down from 1-5 percent year-over-year since 2008. Consumerization of IT, rapidly changing business models, and aging infrastructure have exposed the high cost of software support and maintenance. Because most organizations allocate from 60-85 percent of their budget to keeping the lights on, very little of the budget is left to spend on new projects (see Figure 1).

Organizations can unlock millions by considering third-party maintenance (3PM), reducing shelfware, and keeping support and maintenance contracts unbundled. Each strategy on its own creates opportunities to drive cost savings. All three strategies combined, provide a roadmap for funding innovation.

  1. Third-party maintenance (3PM) delivers the most immediate cost savings and opportunity for innovation. Third-party maintenance describes support and maintenance offerings delivered by non-OEM providers. These vendors can provide a range of options from basic break/fix to bug fixes, performance optimization, tax and regulatory updates, and customization support. Keep in mind, 3PM does not provide access to upgrades and future versions of the OEM’s product. One big driver is the lower cost of delivery, as much as half the cost of the original vendor’s pricing.  The report shows a survey of 268 respondents and why organizations choose 3PM and who the key vendors are.
  2. Reduction of shelfware remains a key pillar in legacy optimization strategies.  Shelfware (i.e. purchased software, not deployed, but incurring annual maintenance fees) is one of the biggest drains on operational expenses for enterprises. The simple definition of shelfware is software you buy and don’t use. For example, an organization that buys 1000 licenses of Vendor X’s latest ERP software and uses 905 licenses, becomes the proud owner of 95 licenses not being utilized. That’s 95 licenses of shelfware because the user will pay support and maintenance on the license whether or not they use the software or not.  The report details 4 successful and proven approaches.
  3. Unbundling maintenance contracts prevents future vendor mischief. About a decade back, vendors would offer support and maintenance as two separate line items on their contracts. Support would run about 5-10 percent of the license fee and so would maintenance. Keep in mind, average support and maintenance fees were under 15 percent back then. Unfortunately, many users have expressed a growing and concerning trend with support and maintenance contracts. Vendors concerns about support and maintenance contract retentions have led to new initiatives to consolidate contracts. At first glance, this may appear to be proactive and beneficial to customers, but the report details three rationales vendors provide and three strategies how to avoid bundling.

Figure 1. Visualizing the High Costs of Support And Maintenance

(Right-click to see full image)

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Monday’s Musings: A Working Vendor Landscape For Social Business

Confusion Persists In The Social Business Market

As with any new disruptive technology, the social business solution landscape faces a dynamic, confusing, and converging market. As vendors seek to grab mind share and market share, customers and prospects remain confused as to what are the right business problems to address with social business. However, rampant confusion among users hampers efforts to solve business issues. Three key factors accelerate this level of confusion:

  1. Early adopter market. Constantly changing conditions force customers to alter original plans as executive sponsorship fluctuates from intense to pensive and back to intense in short cycles. Projects remain secretive for competitive advantage reasons. Consequently, prospects lack strong case studies to build off of despite peer groups, adoption networks. Prospects seek metrics that matter and relevant use cases.
  2. Consumerization of IT. With increased social media penetration, success in consumer grade products highlight the potential for enterprise adoption. However, most enterprise class products remain one to two generations behind in achieving similar capabilities. As business users gravitate towards simple, scalable, and sexy attributes; IT departments seek to rein in shadow IT efforts with safety, security, and sustainability requirements.
  3. Marketing mayhem. Fast paced markets always generate hype in marketing messages. Hence, legacy collaboration, community platform, CRM, unified communications, integration platform, and office productivity vendors seek to reposition themselves and address the emerging and trendy social business use cases customers seek.

Social Business Vendors Converge Towards Business Value Sweet Spot

The vendor landscape for social business market represents a diverse and broad collection of solutions.  Vendors approach the market from multiple heritage points, technologies, and markets.  Four key criteria cut across two axes (see Figure 1):

  1. External facing vs internal facing.  External facing includes customers, partners, and suppliers.  Internal facing include employees and trusted networks within the corporate firewall.
  2. Platforms and infrastructure vs purpose built solutions.  Platforms and infrastructure referred to core technology solutions.  Purpose built solutions address specific applications.

Figure 1. Social Business Vendors Converge Towards Business Value Sweet Spot (Working Draft)

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Research Report: How The Five Pillars Of Consumer Tech Influence Enterprise Innovation

Most Enterprise Software Vendors Fail To Deliver Innovation

Despite hundreds of billions wasted on failed research and development projects, most market influencers would agree that enterprise software vendors have produced a dearth of innovation over the past decade.  Vendors often cite UI re-skins, major functionality additions, integration of acquisitions, technology re-platforms, and weak attempts at faking cloud computing as innovations.  In fact, let’s call it what it is.  Only a handful of enterprise software vendors have truly innovated.   Many enterprise software vendors are fast followers.  Most are innovation laggards living off fat maintenance revenue streams.  Ask any product strategist where they gain their inspiration and they will all cite advancements in consumer technology; and not peer enterprise competitors.

Innovative Enterprises Push Forward Mostly On Their Own

During this year’s Information Week 500 event, conversations with over 50 leading business technology leaders highlighted the growing gap in innovation.  These next gen leaders demonstrated how they were turning to consumer tech advancements to influence their custom development efforts; and/or seeking emerging vendors with innovative offerings.

For example, Bill Martin, the CIO of Royal Caribbean showed how design thinking coupled with real-time analytics and on-board mobility could improve the cruise experience on the largest ship ever built.  Shawn Kleim, Director of Development at WetSeal, provided proof points on mobility and social convergence in driving retail sales and eCommerce in the highly competitive teen apparel market.  Dave Bent, Senior VP of eBusiness services and CIO of United Stationers, proved how a company could deliver cloud services to partners and create competitive advantage across a value chain.

A number of CIO’s showcased how they were taking advantage of the cloud with SaaS apps and private clouds. Others discussed their efforts to optimize costs using third party maintenance to pay for innovation.  The common lessons learned – most did not expect to gain market advantage from their existing and legacy vendors.  Innovations came from the consumer tech side and next generation solution providers.  Consumer tech advancements influenced business driven technology advancements.

Software And Tech Vendors Rush To Incorporate The Five Pillars Of Consumer Tech

Ten elements drive key design points for next generation apps.  These design points showcase how advancements in consumer tech now permeate the enterprise.  Design thinking concepts drive dynamic user experiences, business process focus, and community connectedness.  Based on existing research, deep dives into major vendor road maps, and validation with clients, five pillars of consumer tech have emerged as the foundation for future inspiration in the enterprise (see Figure 1):

Figure 1.  Five Pillars Of Consumer Tech Will Influence Enterprise Software Throughout The Next Decade

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Monday’s Musings: SaaS, SOA, Integration and How To Make A Peanut Butter And Jelly Sandwich In The Cloud

Rapid SaaS Adoption Will Lead To A Repeat Of 1990′s Best Of Breed Integration Challenges

The proliferation and rapid adoption of SaaS solutions stems from 7 key benefits: richer user experience, rapid implementation, frequent cycles of innovation, minimal upgrade hassles, always on deployment, subscription pricing, and scalability (see Figure 1). Despite these benefits, organizations head full circle towards the same best of breed dilemma they faced in the late 1990′s.  In that era, organizations sought innovation from more nimble and agile competitors.  The result – a concerted effort to deploy a number of on-premise, point solutions.  Willing to sacrifice not having a single instance for functionality, they invested heavily in integration.  Almost a decade later, organizations will encounter similar challenges with harmonizing a plethora of SaaS entry points in the next 2 to 3 years. Given the growing number of SaaS solutions at cost-effective price points and easy adoption, today’s organizations face problems in a geometrically larger scale.

Figure 1. Seven Benefits of SaaS Deployments

screen-shot-2009-11-08-at-22936-pm

Modeling How To Make A Peanut Butter And Jelly Provides Key Insights Into The Integration Challenge

Today’s integration challenges move beyond data integration to include process level and meta-data requirements that span across a range of business processes and relevant key performance indicators (KPI’s).  As more solutions are added, organizations will want to model their end to end business processes as web services and support synchronous and asynchronous communication protocols across hybrid deployments.   Organizations can expect canonical data models play a key role in harmonizing business objects.  To put this in real world terms, imagine describing how to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich using a hodgepodge of solutions.  Let’s take a look:

Example 1:  Modeling in a .NET application

  1. Bread: take 2 slices of bread
  2. Peanut butter: spread peanut butter on one slice
  3. Jelly: spread jelly on the other slice
  4. Assembly: put the bread together
  5. Assembly: slice down the middle
  6. Delivery: serve on plate

Example 2:  Modeling in Force.com

  1. Bread: take 2 slices of bread
  2. Bread: determine whether or not to toast the bread
  3. Peanut butter: choose chunky or creamy
  4. Peanut butter: spread peanut butter on one slice
  5. Jelly: choose type of jelly
  6. Jelly: spread jelly on the other slice
  7. Assembly: put the bread together
  8. Assembly: determine if the slices is in half or diagonal
  9. Assembly: slice down the middle
  10. Delivery: choose type of plate (e.g. paper or plastic)
  11. Deliver: serve on plate

Example 3:  Modeling in NetWeaver

  1. Bread: take 2 slices of bread
  2. Bread: determine if the bread is organic or not
  3. Bread: determine whether or not to toast the bread
  4. Bread: determine how light or dark the bread should be toasted
  5. Peanut butter: determine if the peanut butter is organic or not
  6. Peanut butter: choose chunky or creamy
  7. Peanut butter: spread peanut butter on one slice
  8. Peanut butter: determine thickness of spread
  9. Jelly: choose type of jelly
  10. Jelly: determine if the jelly is organic or not
  11. Jelly: spread jelly on one slice
  12. Jelly: determine thickness of spread
  13. Assembly: put the bread together
  14. Assembly: determine whether you want the crust or not
  15. Assembly: determine how to slice the bread (e.g. diagonal, half, 4 cubes, etc.)
  16. Delivery: choose type of plate (e.g. paper or plastic)
  17. Delivery: determine garnishes with the sandwich
  18. Delivery: serve on plate

In these examples, notice how they granularity of processes become deeper and deeper within more complex solutions.  How would you take the peanut butter web service from the .NET example and harmonize this with the NetWeaver example?  Now take this real-life example at a hypothetical global pharma:

  • SAP financials (on-premise)
  • Oracle JD Edwards manufacturing (on-premise)
  • Salesforce.com CRM (SaaS)
  • Workday HR and Payroll (SaaS)
  • Concur Expense Management (SaaS)
  • Xactly Incentive Comp (SaaS)
  • NetSuite OpenAir Project Management (SaaS)
  • Ariba Spend Management (SaaS)
  • Gmail and Google Docs(SaaS)
  • Jive Community Platforms (SaaS)
  • SocialText (SaaS)
  • WebEx (SaaS)

Recommendations

As organizations consider SaaS adoption they must put into place an integration framework to support the competing forces of innovation and harmonization.  These integration frameworks must consider not only data, but also process, metadata, and business intelligence.  Key suggestions include:

  • Begin with the end in mind. Identify the key performance indicators.  Determine how to measure business value
  • Understand your key business processes. Classify your business processes into 3 buckets: commoditized, mission critical, and innovative.  This way you’ll know which processes can be put into an outsource, shared service, or internal ownership.
  • Map the granularity of the business processes.  Group similar processes across different solutions and understand the levels of granularity.  Identify points for harmonization.
  • Determine the data integration requirements. Identify the key business objects associated with the business process.  Ensure that the right data arrives to the right process at the right time for the right person.  Map key meta data to process and business objects.  Build out your canonical data models.
  • Build loose frameworks for evaluation of SaaS solutions. Give line of business teams guidelines to determine how SaaS solutions fit into existing processes.  Use this to jump start integration and proactively identify integration challenges.
  • Determine approach and SaaS adoption policies. In some cases, point to point will make more sense. In others, greater levels of integration and control may be required.  Avoid a one-size fits all methodology in setting up policies.  Consider the business case first and foremost.

The Bottom Line – SOA’s Not Dead And Integration Is Key To Successful Hybrid Deployments

Given these scenarios, CIO’s and line of business apps will need to rely on stronger enterprise architecture and integration in hybrid deployments.  In fact, au contraire on the death of SOA!  Introduction of next generation social enterprise apps will only accelerate the need for good architecture and services design. Expect solutions from Boomi, Cast Iron, Informatica, Pervasive, SnapLogic, and Talend to play a key role going forward.

Your POV

Where are you with your SaaS deployment strategy?  Have you considered SaaS integration tools? What are you using and why?  Do these issues resonate with you?   Who owns the larger integration problem in your organization? Let us know how we can assist or please post or send on your comments to rwang0 (at) gmail (dot) com or r (at) altimetergroup (dot) com and we’ll keep your anonymity.

Copyright © 2009 R Wang & Insider Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.

Wednesday’s Whispers: People Whispers – August/September 2009

PEOPLE WHISPERS: MOVES, PROMOTIONS, AND MILESTONES*

Congratulations to all!  Good to see that the job scenarios have improved as a number of individuals made organizational changes and promotions.  As always, thanks for your emails and alerts. If you’ve got a change or know of a promotion, keep dropping me a line! If you need a referral, and we’ve worked together in the past, don’t hesitate to reach out to me via Linked In.

Jim Anderson is now Sr VP Client Services Operations at Analysts International.  Recent executive roles include serving as a Partner at Element Consulting Group, EVP at Lawson Software, Group VP – Services at PeopleSoft, and Group VP at J.D. Edwards

Kamal Ajitsaria is now Chief Consultant – Manufacturing Solutions at Cognizant Technology Solutions.  Other professional service roles include business head – manufacturing solutions at Geometric Ltd., Head of SAP Adaptive Manufacturing Practice at TCS.

Martha Bennett became Business Development Director at eBenchmarkers in May 2009.  Martha’s a Star Analyst in the financial services industry with roles including FS Research Director at Datamonitor, VP, Research Director at Forrester, VP at Giga Information Group, and Head of Advanced Technology at Prudential.

René Bonvanie is now Vice-President of Worldwide Marketing at Palo Alto Networks.  Renee has served various senior marketing roles at Serena Software, Inc., Salesforce.com, SAP, Business Objects, Veritas Software, Oracle, Ingres Corporation, and Relational Technology

Shankar Borkar became Head – IT Management Consulting at L&T Infotech in July 2009.  Previous roles over the past 5 years include other senior management positions as the GM and Center Head for the Manufacturing business unit and JGM.

Samuel Bright is now Associate – Tech M&A at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.  Sam served as a research analyst at Forrester prior to graduating at Harvard Business School.

Paul Ellis became Director, Marketing at CA in June 2009.  Paul’s served various roles at CA.  Other industry positions include senior marketing manager at Selectica and Director of Marketing at IBM.

Lindsay Euller is now Manager, Product Strategy at Ultimate Software.  Prior roles include Sr. Account Manager and Team Leader at Forrester Research and Account Manager at WGBH.

Killian Evers became Principal User Experience Architect at PayPal in April 2009.  Other roles include senior manager at eBay/Paypal, Director of Program Management and Group Manager of Program Management at Oracle.

John Ferguson became Operations Director at SynCom Electronics in June 2009.  John previously served as the CIO at Optical Cable Corporation, President and Foudner of IntegriSoft LLC, and Director of Channel Systems and Strategy and Microsoft Business Solutions – Great Plains.

Mette Søs Gottlieb is now Partner at Herman & Company. Sos has served as Nordic Director at Forrester Research, Senior Consultant at Telenor, Client Sales Executive at EDS, Customer Account Manager at Baan Company. and Senior Consultant at Maconomy.

Lenley Hensarling is now Vice President for Business Development at stealthy startup C3.  Lenley brings deep technology experiences with roles such as Group Vice President at Oracle, VP of Product Strategy at JD Edwards/PeopleSoft, Senior Vice President at Enterworks, and Vice President of Engineering at Novell.

Kip Heuertz became Principal Consultant at Market Progress International in July 2009.

Tuyen Ho became VP Sales & Marketing at Sakhr Software in June 2009.  She served as the Vice-President for Dial Directions for the past 2 years prior to the acquisition by Sakhr Software.  Other senior positions include VP of channel sales at Voxify and VP for client services at Personify.

Chi Hoang is now Data Architect at Cisco. Chi’s a software development pro with experience at Netflix as the Business Intelligence Lead at Netflix, Senior Principal Consultant at Oracle, and Software Development Manager at Oracle.

Daniel Hong is now Lead Analyst at Ovum.  Daniel now heads up Ovum’s Customer Interaction (CI) practice. Prior to the acquisition by Ovum, he served as a lead analyst at Datamoniotor and prior to that he served as a Research Associate at Columbia Institute for Tele-Information.

Kunal Kant became Consultant at Capgemini in June 2009.  Kunal served Business Development APJ and Project Manager roles with Wipro Technologies.

Marshall Lager became Managing Principal at Third Idea Consulting LLC in June 2009.  Marshall’s been an active voice and thought leader in the CRM and press community with roles including a 4 year run as a Senior Editor at CRM Magazine and contributing editor at Vault.com.

Anne Lapointe became Media Consultant at Yellow Pages Group in April 2009.  Ms Lapointe’s served many roles including Director of Industry Analyst Relations at Bell Canada, Director of Industry Analyst Relations at Equant, Director of Marketing Communications at Global One, and Director of Marketing Communications at France Telecom North America.

David Levine became General Counsel at Japan America Society of Washington, DC in June 2009.  Mr. Levine currently is a Principal at Groom Law Group and the Director at DC Arts and Humanities Education Collaborative.

Warren Lewis is now Legislative Director for for NJ Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo. Previous influencer relations roles include associate director at Capgemini and account executive at Mindstorm Communications.

Sean Loiselle is now Sales Executive at Salesforce.com.  Previously, he served as the General Manager for Oracle‘s Financial Services Industry business unit.  Other roles include Senior Director, Human Capital Management Solutions at Oracle.

Pete Marston is now Web Strategy Consultant at Verndale.  Prior to Verndale, Pete served as senior analyst covering CRM at Forrester Research.  Other roles include Partner at Horstman Builders, Program Manager at Molecular, and Senior Consultant at KPMG Consulting / Peat Marwick.

Phil Morris is now Business Technical Analyst, Web Portal Team at McDonald’s. Phil’s served other roles in IT at McDonald’s including Business Technical Analyst — Enterprise Architecture and IT Research Analyst — Global IT Strategy over the past decade.

Nancie Norman is now Client Development Director at AnswerLab.  Nancie’s served senior sales roles as an Account Manager at Forrester Research, Account Executive at OneSource Information Services , and Account Executive at Giga Information Group

Michael O’Kelly is now Owner at SysTechPlus.  Prior to starting out his own consulting, Michael spent almost 11 years with International Aid as their IT director.  In July 1, 2009, the non-profit ceased operations.

Dominic Pannell is now an independent Consultant.  Former roles include heading up UK Analyst Relations at Hill and Knowlton, serving as a Principal Consultant at Serendipp Ltd, and consulting for Sunesis Analyst Relations.

Jyoti Kharb Phogat became ES – Sales Effectiveness Manager at Infosys in May 2009.  Prior roles include AM- Marketing at Infosys, marketing manager at Pronto Networks, and marketing at Indscape Softech Pvt Ltd.

Udayraj Prabhu became Head of Supply Chain Development & CNO Planning at Marico in June 2009.  Mr Prabhu has built a 9 year career at Marico with roles as Head of Business Applications, Head of Buying (Edible Oils), Manager of ERP, and Manager of buying

Sarah Reed joined BMC Software as the Lead Analyst Relations Manager in August 2009.  She most recently served at Eloqua as the Director of Corporate Communications.  She brings a wealth of experience from similar roles at Vignette and IONA Technologies.

Jaci Robbins is now PR/AR/Marketing consultant at JR Communications.  Previous marketing roles include work with companies such as UST Global, Entropia, and Telogic.

J Rollins became Vice President, Retail Sales at RedPrairie in July 2009. J’s 25 year tech company management experiences include tours of duty as the CEO at Ascend Software Inc, VP of netASPx Inc, and President and CEO at SalesTactics, Inc.

Subhojit Roye is now North America – Alliances Management at Infosys BPO.  Mr. Roye brings significant professional services expertise with roles as a Director at Trianz, Practice Manager – North American Enterprise Apps at Wipro Technologies, Director at iGATE Global Solutions, Director of Oracle Business at Solix Systems, Inc. and Business Manager at Oracle Corporation.

Jeremy Suratt is now Product Design Manager at Aspen Technology. Jeremy brings a wealth of tech marketing experience serving as a Director for Technology Marketing at Infor, Solution Marketing Manager of Technology at SSA Global, Software Engineer at Marcam, and Technical Presales Consultant at Wonderware Solutions.

Katherine Teitler is now VP of Strategic Accounts at IANS. Ms. Teitler has served senior sales role including Senior Account Executive at izmocars, Forrester, Headhunter.net, and The Employment Guide.

David Anthony Wilkins is now a Managing Director at ICI in Dubai, UAE.  Previously roles include Senior Consultant at indigo – pure ICT recruitment solutions and Senior Contract Recruiter at Computer People

Lisa Whelan is now Business Development Consultant at Offbeat Guides.  Lisa provides business development, strategy, and marketing services in technology and consumer products with a focus on mobile and Social Media.

Alex Wong is now CIO at Endeca Technologies, Inc.. Previously, he served as the Vice President, Project Management Group, Information Technology at Eaton Vance

G. Oliver Young is now Senior Product Manager at Jive Software. Oliver served various research roles at Forrester looking at the technology industry including Web 2.0 and tech industry economics.

Your POV

Got a scoop or something to share? Please post or send on to rwang0 at gmail dot com and we’ll keep your anonymity.

* Not responsible for any factual errors or omissions.  However, happy to correct any errors upon email receipt.

Copyright © 2009 R Wang. All rights reserved.

News Analysis: Jive and Radian6 Partner – Great For Business, But Could Fragment IT Systems

This post was collaboratively written on a wiki with my colleague Jeremiah Owyang whose focus is on customer strategy which encompasses social technologies. Together, we’re covering convergence of the emerging and incumbent technology system.  This entry is also cross-posted on his blog.

Jive Offers Brand Monitoring Using Radian 6 -Empowering Companies To Quickly Respond
Jive Software made an announcement that they’re now incorporating listening service Radian 6 into their community platform suite, they dub it Jive Market Engagement. This gives internal teams that manage brands, topics, or influencers to discuss, manage, and assign tasks to follow up with real world -and real-time market events. An example? A company selling headache relief medicine can quickly be alerted to conversations with mommy bloggers in the social sphere, discuss in an internal, private community powered by Jive, then decide on how to quickly take action before it escalates.

Currently, companies are doing this in a mish-mash of manual efforts using scraped together RSS feeds, Google alerts, and Twitter clients. The benefits of this partnership? Companies can now become more organized around the real-time web, develop a process to quickly respond and therefore be more reactive to customers. Yet, despite the automation upside to brand and customer management, this causes yet another disparate pool of customer data that IT departments will have to splice together -potentially giving customers a fragmented view. Companies should nod to this latest trend of social business software converging with existing company systems and develop an information strategy (see Figure 1).

Figure 1. Companies can monitor and manage the discussions in their marketplace in Jive Market Engagement

Screenshot: Jive Market Engagement

(Source: Jive)

Macro Market Forces Foster New Trends In Adoption And Risk
Despite this announcement, there are greater trends at play that impact both business and IT side, be aware that:

  1. Diverse systems converging, resulting in greater speed but more complexity
    The push to improve customer intimacy, move to a proactive customer experience, and convergence of Web 2.0 with enterprise class social business apps, drives new models and solutions. We’re tracking this living breathing reef and see social software, CRM, brand monitoring, email, and mobile quickly converging.
  2. More “CRM” features being deployed, without involving the CIO
    Jive’s offering is really a customer relationship module in disguise, yet because of the web based offering, marketing can implement this pseudo-CRM solution without involving IT. We continue to see technology adopted from business units -often at the frustration of not getting on the IT road map during budget tightening times.
  3. Greater exposure to risk, as more siloed customer information fragments enterprise systems
    Being responsive to customers is ideal, but in the long run, it’s not truly effective if you can’t integrate it with your sales, service, or marketing systems. In the end, fragmenting customer data will result in disjointed user experiences for customers as separate departments will have disparate data for each customer.

Recommendations
Jeremiah (business side) and Ray (IT side) come from completely two different worlds’ speaking two different languages. Yet they both know that these new technologies are going to force IT and Marketing to quickly come together. Expect to see more joint-blog posts merging these two groups together, because customers don’t care what department you’re in -they just want their problems solved.

The Bottom Line – Ray’s Take For The CIO
Expect a proliferation of social media monitoring solutions to emerge with a tie back to CRM, eCommerce, project based solutions, and collaboration software. Disparate sources will create fractured customer experiences.  The single 360 degree view wil be assembled and reassembled.

  1. Find tools to aggregate these new channels and sources. Consider how these new social business software platforms will integrate back into data warehouses or customer interaction histories.
  2. Focus on data integration skill sets as process, data,meta data across hybrid deployment models. Data will be coming from a greater number of sources.  Data integration and master data management will play a role here.

The Bottom Line – Jeremiah’s Take For The CMO
Marketers should continue to be responsive to the real-time web, but quickly develop processes that involve other customer touchpoints such as support, service, and product development into the mix

  1. Don’t limit your responses to the corporate communication team and brand monitoring team -cascade this information quickly. While the discussions that will be had in Jive’s community platform will help to aid the customer triage problem, be sure to tie the process and data back to other customer facing teams. Remember, customers don’t care which department you are in.
  2. Use imported social data to create topic based aggregations. Looking forward, use the data that brand monitoring companies are unearthing and turn your product pages into trusted aggregations of conversations -not just static product pitches. Learn how future webpages will be more like collections of customer conversations.

Your POV

How are marketing teams and enterprise strategy teams working with each other to coordinate these investments?  Have you experienced this convergence?  What are your lessons learned?   Do you need help with choosing the right tools?  Post your comment here or reach me direct at r at altimetergroup dot com or r at softwareinsider dot org.  Put the power of expert apps strategy and vendor selection advice to work or just drop us a line.

Related Resources

  • Jive has a slide show with details on the announcement, we’ve uploaded it here.
  • Salesforce.com CRM launches social features (we also collaborated on that piece)
  • Lithium also launched features into it’s platform that allow workflow of social content -similar concepts
  • We like Oliver Mark’s take on how this makes true impacts to business and the real world, he cites how media events can now be tracked -and managed from the toolset.
  • Read Write Web gives more color to the story and gives examples of how other companies are managing this.
  • This conceptual slideshow demonstrates how the emerging and incumbent systems are quickly merging on the “Reef”. (a more Web 2.0 emerging tech view)

Copyright © 2009 R Wang. All rights reserved.

Event Report: Salesforce.com Pushes Social CRM Technology — But Don’t Expect Companies To Be Successful With Tools Alone

This post was co-written with Jeremiah Owyang, Partner and Colleague at Altimeter Group

Mark Benioff and Jason from TwitterWonder what your high school mascot guy did when he grew up? He went to enterprise software.Salesforce Demo AreaMarc Benioff of SalesForce

Service Cloud 2 Answers IntegrationService Cloud 2 InStranet Knowledge IntegrationService Cloud 2 Google IntegrationService Cloud 2 Twitter Integration

Above: Pictures from Salesforce’s event

Salesforce.com launches a new set of social apps that make CRM connected to the social web. So what does it mean?

Salesforce.com’s Twitter integration and application launch helps brands monitor what’s being said. Yet despite the fanfare, the application lacks a pre-determined way to identify the profiles of Twitter profiles and primary keys within the CRM database. Secondly, the system doesn’t provide a default setting to prioritize the influence (such as more followers) vs a profile with few followers -limiting the ability for brands to prioritize their support offerings.

Salesforce.com’s “Answers” product is a threat to community platforms that offer support-heavy features. Vendors like Lithium (although a SF partner) Jive, Telligent, Awareness, and Mzinga are impacted. Brands that have a strong Salesforce.com implementation will first look to their CRM vendor for social support offerings -reducing the pipeline for community platform new comers. The newly minted “Knowledge” product, which harvests the IP from customer service reps, and customers themselves is also a direct threat to wiki creators such as SocialText, Atlasian. Those vendors should quickly bolster their marketing efforts to demonstrate how they are differentiated. Client server based contact center products such as Amdocs, Cisco, and Genesys, will face increased competition as business users choose to move to platforms that deliver provide greater social aspects tied to user generated content.

Despite Salesforce.com’s technical announcement, this doesn’t mean success for their customers. Technology is only 20% of any enterprise change, the other 80% is culture, process, roles, and strategy change -key requirements that Salesforce.com is not equipped to provide. As a result, don’t expect customers that don’t have the right program in place to take advantage of these technology offerings -instead expect vendors with a heavy professional service offering to empower a company to truly embrace customers in the social web.

Overall, Salesforce.com is above and beyond other CRM vendors in terms of connecting to the social web. Yet despite their ability to connect with new channels, they lack a full solution to empower brands to make the cultural changes within their organizations. Expect other CRM vendors such as Oracle’s Social CRM offerings and Microsoft Dynamics CRM to do a “me too” in coming months as others jump on the social CRM bandwagon.

For the CIO: Ray’s Take: The coming wave of social CRM initiatives and cloud based service solutions require CIO’s to rethink about their overall apps strategies to support hybrid deployment options. Rapid proliferation of SaaS solutions inside the organization requires strong CIO leadership in coordinating data, business process, and meta data integration strategies. Moreover, now will be the time to begin master data management activities that will support social CRM initiatives and resolve profile identification and entity resolution issues. Take control now or lose control forever.

For the CMO: Jeremiah’s Take: Marketing has spread beyond awareness and lead generation -support IS marketing. Yet to be successful, your internal processes must quickly meld PR and support to provide a seamless experience to the customer. Be proactive, not reactive: Use brand monitoring technologies to head off issues before they volcano into PR disasters.

Your POV

Ready to put your service strategy to the test with Salesforce.com’s Answers product or another social CRM tool? Where are you today in your efforts?  Post your comment here or reach me direct at r at altimetergroup dot com or r at softwareinsider dot org.

Copyright © 2009 R Wang. All rights reserved.