Posts Tagged 'cloud computing'

Cloud Integration on the Whiteboard

Check out this chalk-talk series with the head of engineering at SnapLogic talking about application and data integration delivered as a cloud service (aka iPaaS):

Going Beyond Point-to-Point Cloud Integration

SnapLogic Integration Cloud Architecture in Review

The series of whiteboard presentations is posted on the SnapLogic blog.

The Cloud Integration Dilemma for Enterprise IT

According to Gaurav Dhillon, CEO of SnapLogic, there’s not just an Innovator’s Dilemma hitting legacy technology vendors, there’s an Integrator’s Dilemma that the customers of traditional middleware and data integration providers are struggling with in the face of the today’s industry mega-trends. As he states:

“The dilemma for enterprise IT organizations is that their legacy integration technologies were built before the era of big data, social, mobile and cloud computing and simply can’t keep up.”

Here’s a video of Gaurav talking about the Integrator’s Dilemma:

Pandora Runs their Business in the Cloud

This is a pretty cool video about how Pandora runs over 80 internal business applications in the cloud. They deliver an amazing music service in the cloud and they run their entire IT infrastructure in the cloud. I guess you can say that Pandora’s IT organization isn’t just Cloud First, they’re Cloud Only!

The Nuts and Bolts of Being SaaSy

Last week I wrote about Zuora’s subscription manifesto and the differences between a technology vendor selling an on-premises solutions vs. a company that delivers a true SaaS solution (which I still believe must be multitenant). Today I read a great series called the SaaS Manifesto, written by Peter Levine, General Partner at Andreeson Horowitz. Part one is on Rethinking the Business of Enterprise Computing. Part two is on Focusing of Building a Real Sales Team.  The series draws from extensive first-hand experience and outlines what it takes to truly become a best-in-class software as a service (SaaS) solution provider. Traditional enterprise software company executives should read it as they prepare for their future and SaaS company executives should review it as checklist.

I’ve been fortunate in my career to work with some real SaaS pioneers.  I’ve seen companies struggle and fail to truly embrace the SaaS model and others execute against what seemed like impossible odds. The first paper I read about “being SaaSy” was by Mark Trang, when he was at salesforce.com. The paper was called, “7 Habits of Highly Effective SaaS Companies.” I couldn’t find the paper, but here’s a great presentation from a 2008 Salesforce ISV event. In 2011 Matt Holleran, now founder and managing director at Cloud Apps Management, delivered a great Dreamforce presentation on the same topic. Some of this early knowledge sharing clearly had a positive impact on the so-called “Salesforce Mafia” –  check out this summary of Salesforce employees who have gone on to start companies. The Start-Up Cloud indeed!

Here are some of the best articles I’ve read over the years on best-in-class SaaS (in no particular order):

  1. Bessemer’s 10 Laws of Cloud Computing and SaaS
  2. 9 Worst Practices in SaaS Metrics
  3. SaaS Metrics 2.0: A Guide to Measuring and Improving What Matters
  4. My Top 10 Year One SaaS Mistakes. Save Yourself Some Pain & Just Don’t Make Them Yourself
  5. Should Your Startup Go Freemium?
  6. Marketing SaaS Solutions to Enterprises: Seven Hazards to Avoid
  7. SaaS in the Enterprise and the need for social selling
  8. HubSpot’s Best Practices for Managing SaaS Inside Sales
  9. SaaS Marketing: 21 Growth Hacks to Test Today
  10. How SaaS Changes an ISV’s Business Model 

Thanks to the authors for sharing their SaaS insights.  Of course I should also give a shout out to Behind the Cloud, by Marc Benioff.  And if you’re still working at an enterprise software company that has not yet begun the inevitable shift to the cloud and the subscription economy, I’m sure there’s not a day that goes by without somebody mentioning Clayton Christensen and the Innovator’s DilemmaEscape Velocity by Geoffrey Moore is also excellent.

What’s missing? Got any more “Best in SaaS” articles or best practices to share?

Marc Benioff Speaks at Disrupt SF 2013

Michael Arrington talks business strategy with Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff. Good discussion about technology disruption and the impact of cloud, social and mobile on the industry.

The Shift to Cloud Business Intelligence

In 2006 I posted a presentation on Slideshare called, What is Driving the Shift to On-Demand BI? While it might have been a little early in terms of cloud business intelligence adoption, looking at it today shows that most of the industry analyst predictions were actually quite conservative when it comes to cloud adoption in the enterprise. I listed the drivers for the shift to analytics as a cloud service as:

  1. It just makes sense
  2. Simple, simple, simple
  3. OLTP –> OLAP
  4. Because Gartner said so!
  5. “Date a fad, marry a trend.” (with acknowledgement to @kellblog of course)

Here’s the presentation.

Recently Amazon.com announced that Redshift, their data warehouse solution, is the company’s fastest growing AWS service. Over 1000 global customers are moving significant business intelligence initiatives to Amazon’s data warehouse in the cloud. This video does a pretty nice job of explaining how it works and why the value proposition is so compelling.

Cloud Integration and Data Management at Informatica World 2013

I recorded a brief video this week on the new Hybrid IT track that will be a big part of Informatica World 2013. It wasn’t too long ago that there were only a few sessions focused on the topic of cloud integration.

What’s changed?

Analyst firms like Gartner are publishing more and more research on the importance of integration platform as a service (see: Enterprises Should Use iPaaS for Cloud Integration) and enterprise IT organizations continue to seek new ways to keep up with the need for speed, while maintaining good governance practices as SaaS application adoption continues to accelerate.

Join the Informatica team in Las Vegas in June to learn more.

Cloud Data Management in the Spotlight

This week I had the pleasure of hosting a webinar featuring two great subject matter experts on the topic of cloud data management in the era of hybrid IT:

Mike West outlined why “hybrid” (or highly interwoven) deployments are the new normal for enterprise IT. He reviewed how the coud is radically changing the role of enterprise IT and why data management must be a part of an overall cloud strategy. He identified 7 trends of the so-called Boundary Free Enterprise and pointed to these 5 best practices:

  1. Commit to (Cloud) Data Management
  2. Manage the Organizational Issues
  3. Partner with a Data Management Provider
  4. Manage Both Control and Access
  5. Approach Data Management as Value Creation

Andrew Bartels shared the story of how he led the transition at his company to “cloud first” and drove Salesforce adoption from a peripheral system to a key driver of business performance and success. Andrew spoke passionately about the need to treat data as an asseet and concluded with the following words of advice:

  • Communication is key
  • Focus on real needs not just philosophy
  • Establish a Data Committee
  • Become a partner & not an obstacle
  • Integration & accessibility is key
  • Be prepared for a long road

I’ve embedded the video below and posted the slides on Slideshare. There’s some great insight here. I hope you find the discussion interesting and useful – I sure did!

From SaaS Spree to SaaS Sprawl to SaaS Sanity?

I wrote earlier in the week that cloud integration suddenly seems cool. A few articles this week  reminded me that it’s not just about cloud integration, it’s about cloud data management. And in many cases, it’s about the need for Cloud Master Data Management.

  • Cloud Services Becoming Foundational: “Through 2016, a hybrid model (cloud and captive systems) will become the platform of choice, a transitional platform en route to a future dominated by public and private clouds. By 2016, 75 percent or more of new enterprise spending will be cloud-based or hybrid according to Saugatuck’s research.”
  • Geoffrey Moore: The Next Decade Will Be About Systems of Engagement: “Moore forecasts the emergence of an enterprise-focused tech industry that will offer workplace versions of consumer technologies that people actually will like to use. He imagines there will be enterprise versions of Facebook, Facetime, Twitter, etc.”
  • And bringing it back to Cloud Master Data Management, Mike Vizard wrote about the concept of “Two-Tier MDM” noting:  “as integration issues become more pressing in the cloud, IT organizations are once again going to discover many of the same MDM issues that have plagued their internal operations for so many years — only this time it will involve a lot more applications that they have less control over than ever.”

It seems we have we gone from a “SaaS spree” toSaaS sprawl” and now finally to “SaaS sanity”?

Here are three brief videos that explain at a high-level how the key capabilities of a cloud master data management (MDM) solution can help deliver SaaS sanity:

 

Cloud Integration is Suddenly Cool

I started a blog post with an “is it me?” question once and got one comment:  “Yes, it’s you.”

With that as an intro and a risk, let me ask: “Is it me or is cloud integration suddenly cool?”

Okay, maybe “cool” is the wrong word. But take a look at the trend:
cloud integration

So what’s so hot about cloud integration? In May 2010 I wrote about Phase Two Cloud Integration and The Dangers of Delaying Cloud Integration.

What’s changed?

Here’s how I answered the question in a recent interview:

“The first wave of cloud adoption was driven by software as a service (SaaS) applications. Pioneered by companies like salesforce.com, these applications typically were sold directly to the business, with minimal (if any) involvement from the traditional IT department. While there was a great deal of small to mid-sized company adoption early on, there was just as much departmental purchasing taking place in larger companies due to the benefits of ease of use, the promise of rapid deployments and the operational expense appeal of the subscription pricing model. On the IT side of the fence, I would characterize this as the “cloud skeptical” phase. On the business side, it was more like the Wild West. This is where cloud-based data integration first gained a foothold. Mid-sized companies and autonomous divisions and departments had limited technical resources but needed many of the same capabilities – data migration, synchronization, replication, and of course data quality.

Fast forward to today and IT organizations are increasingly becoming “cloud first.” Cloud deployments are becoming more complex, whether they are software, platform or infrastructure as a service; and the importance of broader cloud data management strategy is now recognized as the critical enabler of success. It’s a now truly a hybrid IT world. To avoid the perils of data fragmentation and “SaaS sprawl” business and IT organizations are starting to align around the need for trusted data.”

Do you agree? Disagree?  Anyone got a comment?


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