Posts Tagged 'PaaS'

Aggregating Salesforce Data with a Cloud Integration Template

Recently Informatica announced the availability of Cloud Integration Templates with the Summer 2012 release. I sat down with the lead product manager for this area of the product line and published the interview on the Informatica Perspectives blog. He described Cloud Integration Templates this way:

“In the world of mash-ups you have charts, components you bring into your framework. You size them and set certain attributes and it works. If you think of integration processes this way and define a Salesforce CRM to Netsuite integration as a Template for example, you should be able to just drop it in and it works (assuming the cloud connectivity is supported). Mash-up builders make it easy to build apps rapidly. What Cloud Integration Templates do is allow you to abstract integration processes so the developers can work with only what they need.”

I wanted to post an example of a Cloud Integration Template that has already become quite popular on the Informatica Marketplace – The Salesforce Aggregator Template.  From the Marketplace description:

The Salesforce Aggregator Template allows you to aggregate data using aggregation functions such as SUM, MIN, and MAX on any desired dataset. As a result, you can build summaries of a dataset from various field-level details. You can also perform mathematical and/or transactional operations between different source fields and place the result in a target.”

Here’s a video of the Cloud Integration Template in action. They are available to anyone taking a 30 day Informatica Cloud trial and in the Basic, Standard and Enterprise editions.

Cloud Integration in the Third Platform Era

I moderated a webinar last week that featured featured Robert Mahowald, IDC Research VP, Worldwide SaaS and Cloud Services Research, and Doug Menefee, CIO at Schumacher Group.  Actually moderated is not really the right word, as these are two cloud gurus who had a lot of great insights to share. I provided a brief introduction to Informatica Cloud at the end of the discussion. A few key points from the discussion that I thought were worth sharing:

  • IDC defines a new “Third Platform” for IT industry growth that is emerging, with public cloud as its foundation
  • External cloud services represent a transfer of responsibility (SLA), a transfer in location (outsourcing), and a shift in risk from business, to provider
  • 74% of companies using cloud expect to increase cloud spend in 2012 by > 20%
  • Even with SaaS spending growing by 105% between 2011-2015, >80% of Global 2000 will still have >50% of IT onsite in 2020
  • Integration becomes critical to 80%+ of buyer organizations, according to IDC survey research

The Schumacher Group case study is a great example of early cloud adoption that has resulted in long-term business agility and success. I’ve embedded the entire presentation below. Enjoy!

2012 Cloud Data Integration Trends

Ok, there’s a lot I know I missed (usage-based integration services and the role of a vibrant Marketplace come to mind), but here is my set of 2012 cloud data integration predictions:

  1. Get Ready for Data as as a Service
  2. True Cloud MDM will Emerge
  3. Analytics as a Service is Ready for Prime Time
  4. Enterprise PaaS Adoption Leads to Integration Platform as a Service
  5. IT as a Service: The Conversation Continues

You can read the complete post on the Informatica Perspectives blog.

I’d love to hear any feedback and input you might have on the topic. We discussed some of these and other trends in a webinar today with Jeff Kaplan from THINKstrategies: Doing Data Right in the Cloud – How the Best Companies are Getting it Done. Here’s the recording on YouTube:

#GartnerAADI Tweet Stream in Review

This past week I attended Gartner’s Application Architecture, Development and Integration (AADI) summit in Vegas. The tagline for the conference was:  “Cloud, Web, Mobile and Social: Rocking Your Enterprise Application Strategy.” To illustrate how “All In” Gartner when it comes to cloud computing adoption, the conference featured two tracks on the topic:

There was also a track with significant cloud content called: Architecture for Postmodern IT: SOA, WOA, EDA, and Cloud.

I plan to post some observations and notes on the Perspectives blog next week, but just looking at the #gartnerAADI stream of tweets from the conference tells the story. Here are few of my favorites:

That’s to Gartner for a fantastic event! Lots of great sessions, customer and analyst discussions. With SAP’s announcement of their acquisition of SuccessFactors, 2012 is definitely shaping up to be the biggest year yet for cloud computing adoption in the enterprise and cloud integration will continue to be a hot topic.

2011 Predictions: Hybrid Cloud Integration Platforms, Private Cloud Confusion

This photo belongs to s_kessler's photostream on flickrI posted my 2011 cloud integration predictions on the Informatica Perspectives blog today. They are:

  1. Cloud Adoption Drives Two-Tier Cloud Integration Strategies
  2. LOB-Driven Cloud Integration Projects Lead to Strategic Master Data Management (MDM) Initiatives
  3. The Rise of the Cloud Integration Platform
  4. Enterprise Database.com Adoption
  5. Private Cloud Confusion Continues

Full post:  2011 Cloud Integration Predictions: Hybrid Platform Adoption, Private Cloud Confusion

2011 Cloud Predictions from Jeff Kaplan

’tis the season, so I thought I’d highlight a great set of predictions from Jeff Kaplan, from THINKstrategies: Look for New Shapes in the Clouds in 2011.

When it comes to cloud integration, he has this to say:

“Vendors that provide cloud integration tools and professional services, in particular, will be key acquisition targets because they represent a critical component in pulling the various cloud piece-parts together.”

Be sure to read Jeff’s full set of predictions (as well as cloud computing opportunities and challenges) here. He also published a good review of Dreamforce 2010 last week and had this to say about the industry at the conference:

Dreamforce 2010: Jeff Kaplan – The Evolution of Dreamforce, THINKStrategies, SaaS Showplace and The Best of SaaS Awards from DreamSimplicity on Vimeo.

Jeff Kaplan on Cloud 2.0

Jeff Kaplan, managing director of THINKstrategies (and the man with more air miles than anyone I know), posted his thoughts on Cloud 2.0 today. It’s interesting to note the shift away from start-ups with questionable viability and financial stability to more established solution providers. According to Jeff:

“I believe the more established vendors with proven brand equity will have a greater competitive advantage in this new phase of the cloud computing market evolution.”

As someone who went from one to the other, I couldn’t agree more. Be sure to check out the full post here.

Cloud Computing: The Dreaded “I” Word

“The biggest worries of all are centered on what one CIO friend calls “The dreaded ‘I’ word: Integration.””

CIO.com put cloud integration in the spotlight this week. Maryfran Johnson introduces the topic in this overview:  Cloud Integration Triggers Familiar Headaches, which sets up a detailed article by Kim Nash called, “Cloud Computing:  What CIOs Need to Know About Integration.  The article features interviews with Judith Hurwitz (who calls integration “the most important issues in the cloud”), the CTO of Finra, and the CIOs of Santander Consumer USA, Shorenstein Properties, PDS Tech, Shaklee Corporation, Bay and Bay Transportation, Legg Mason, and others.

Here’s the link to the full article. And in a different, but very much related story, you might also want to check out this CIO.com article: The Politics of Cloud Apps: Beware IT Staff Unrest.

Bottom line seems to be that there may be a U in Cloud, but whatever you do, don’t forget the “Dreaded I”…

Press Panel at All About the Cloud SIIA Conference

I attended the press panel at this week’s All About the Cloud SIIA Conference in San Francisco.  While there was some general negativity towards cloud computing hype, there was consensus on the inevitability of the market shift to the model.

Kara Swisher from the Wall Street Journal was particularly outspoken (and entertaining). I would definitely attend any panel that includes her as a participant in the future! You can check out the #AATC tag to find some of the musings. I jotted a few quotes down as well. To paraphrase from the panelists..

“CIOs are notoriously obstructive to anything that’s innovative.”

“Cloud will be led by CEOs.”

“It’s not that I’m optimistic about the cloud, it’s that it’s inevitable.”

“The cloud is like penicillin. This is what you’re going to be using now. “

“Who buys CDs, other than some old dude in my neighborhood?”

“It’s like a horse and buggy clinging to dirt roads.”
Agree? Disagree?

Shifting to SaaS: The Keys to Success for On-Premise ISVs

Loraine Lawson at ITBusinessEdge wrote an interesting post this week:  Analyst Says On-Premise Vendors Struggling with Shift to SaaS.  I added a comment, which I thought I’d post here for feedback:

Hi Loraine, I enjoy your blog and agree with most of your points about the challenge for on-premise vendors attempting (or not attempting) to move to the cloud. Having worked for pure-play SaaS application vendors (Salesforce and LucidEra) and enterprise software vendors (Business Objects and now Informatica) I’ve experienced the religion on both sides of the fence. My belief is that it is possible to be successful in both camps (to mix my metaphors) but the following ingredients/steps are necessary:
  1. There must be executive level commitment to developing a SaaS/cloud business.
  2. There must be a recognition that SaaS requires both a business model shift (in terms of sales, marketing, pricing, packaging, etc.) and a significant product shift (must be multitenant, must be easy to implement and use, etc.).
  3. There must be a focus on the right metrics (ACV, TCV,  and MRR as well as sales and marketing metrics.).
  4. The right compensation model must be in place if you expect your traditional sales team to sell the SaaS solution. And if you’re selling to a different buyer or market segment, a different sales team (typically inside) is required.
  5. There must be a laser focus on customer success. A multitenant SaaS offering allows you to monitor usage, deliver frequent releases, and get to know your users in a way that’s never been possible with on-premise software. And subscription pricing requires you to ensure that adoption and ROI is high.
Salesforce.com has published a great whitepaper called “7 Habits of Highly Successful SaaS Companies” and people like Phil Wainewright have written quite a bit on this topic. The fact is, while it’s easy for the pure-play small vendors to take shots at the big (and profitable) players, there are a few who have followed the steps I mentioned and continue to execute.
When I was at a pureplay SaaS application company founded by people who lived through some of this at Siebel we delivered a presentation that hit a few of these points. I’ve linked to it below.

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