it's a brand new era and it got here when no one was looking. if you don't believe me - show me the bracket that picked george mason, florida, lsu and ucla!!! change has hit ncaa basketball and it has hit the rest of the world as well.
we are entering a new era. during the second half of the 90's, during the dot com rage - the two key drivers of growth were; (new) technology for technology's sake and software upgrades to get ready for y2k. as we all know, that changed dramatically in 2000. the past five years saw a re-prioritization toward consolidation and cost-cutting. businesses - large and small - focused on getting the most out of the investments they had made, while only cautiously adding more.
one can argue that today we are on the cusp of a brand new era. sure, companies will continue to worry about managing costs, but increasingly they are changing their focus to growth and differentiation. the world is flat. small businesses are being forced to integrate their systems as part of large supply chains, but they can now compete with the big guys, locally and globally as never before. this new world we are entering will reward collaboration and innovation. you hear it from everyone you meet ....clients and partners. how can i deliver superior service to my customers? how can i reinvent myself? what is my unique value add in my market? technology is no longer confined to the back office and certainly no longer just a cost center.
this chasm is happening right before our eyes. large hospitals like upmc or small software firms like sphera are re-engineering their business processes and introducing new business models. new technologies like soa bring capabilities that both large enterprises and small business can leverage. in hindsight, it was obvious when the dot com bubble burst and the market shifted. i believe we will look back to 2006 and see an another clear shift. technology and business are coming together in ways very different than before. just like the ncaa basketball tournament, things have changed and i suspect most of us would agree not only is it exciting, it's a very good thing............[Read More]
General Manager, IBM ISV & Developer Relations
Buell 110000QTMG 444 Visits
Buell 110000QTMG 340 Visits
last week was a whirlwind of meetings at partnerworld in las vegas. as you know, it's the annual gathering of ibmers and thousands of business partners from around the world. there were partners of all types; resellers, value added distributors, systems integrators and isvs. in many cases, some of our best partners are also major competitors. companies like csc, tata consulting services and oracle compete head to head with ibm, yet we are able to work together with our mutual customers to drive literally billions of dollars of business each year.
what was most surprising to me was how different this partnerworld felt. now, i have probably been to the last 10 events (long before the name was changed to partnerworld!) most different this year was the strong sense of optimism and enthusiasm i heard from our partners - literally across the board. now, this isn't to say there aren't challenges and more work to be done. after all, i didn't meet with all 4,000 - but the 50 or so one-on-one meetings i had focused clearly on the opportunities we share together.
several underlying themes that came thru time and again are worth sharing. first, consistency. working with partners is about showing a steady hand. the dna of an organization takes years to build and you can't do it changing direction one year to the next. you have to listen carefully, constantly tuning your programs to meet the needs of the market and your partners. a great example is the new software value incentive program introduced by ibm software group. it rewards the sales efforts of our partners - emphasizing skills rather than pure fulfilment. this protects margins and drives new business opportunities. second, almost every discussion centered on better connecting at the field level. for example, it was amazing to me the number of isvs that utilize sales connections. you should call them. bill bush at actuate, pat finn at dicarta or tom burke at solidcore can tell you the power of this teamwork far better than i can. we reached our 1,000th transaction thru sales connection last month and it's growing exponentially. finally, everyone seemed to feel that it is simply our time. as the market increasingly shifts to open standards and now to services oriented architecture, it places ibm and our business partners in a unique position to help our customers. the strength of ibm's product portfolio and services capabilities is unmatched. the real leverage happens when we team together.
there was something different last week. things are coming together in a way that makes the future very bright indeed.
Buell 110000QTMG 442 Visits
all in all, it was a pretty good week. cognos and ibm announced a strategic alliance to offer joint development, marketing and sales of services-oriented architecture (soa) based software. we launched an soa specialty program for partners that has gotten great feedback from the analyst and business partner communities. idc published a report ranking ibm as the leader in "best practices" for independent software vendors (isvs). ibm's commitment to the isv community leads microsoft, oracle, sap and hp. the breadth of investment - both in sales and technical support - makes ibm the industry leader.
what - in some ways though - is even bigger news, is idc's report that ibm is also the leader in developer programs. now the isv ranking placed ibm in sole leadership position. on the developer side we aren't alone, but tied with microsoft. the fact that developerWorks has now caught microsoft and msdn for value to the software development community is incredible news. well , maybe not so incredible when you peel the onion back a bit......
there are, broadly speaking, three major developer camps; dot net, java and increasingly open source scripting languages (such as PHP). as business (and therefore demand for skills and jobs) moves towards innovation, collaboration and integration of systems and processes, proprietary simple platforms that do not scale are not where the market is moving. the enormous growth of java-based eclipse ide is proof positive. companies are building open, integrated solutions that today must be robust enough to handle the web demands of thousands - or even millions of customers. the wealth of content on developerWorks for skills building and software downloads have become an incredible treasure chest for the open developer community. i encourage you to take full advantage of everything that is there. each month, well over two million software developers already do![Read More]
Buell 110000QTMG 468 Visits
to some companies the growth of open source is both exciting and threatening - all at the same time. how should traditional software companies play in this new world of open source? oracle trying to "buy" their way in is certainly one approach. we know open source plays an important role as a driver of innovation. we also know it's here to stay. at an industry analyst meeting last week, there were some key questions for those who profess to support the open movement: 1) do you eat your own cooking? 2) do you actively contribute to the community? and 3) do you have a way to connect your portfolio directly to open source in a way that delivers value to your clients?
over the past decade - not only has ibm fully adopted open standards for all of its software and hardware platforms - but increasingly, these platforms are built on top of open source community offerings. take rational and the eclipse ide or websphere and the apache geronimo server. today, about a thousand internal software developers in ibm labs work in the open source space! ibm has long been recognized for its leadership in supporting and contributing to the community; from the founding of apache software foundation and early days of linux, to our recent patent commons pledge contributing both ip protection and support. finally, this week we launched a web site called "kick-start java." it offers a blend of open source, free software and much more. developers can now download the eclipse ide, was community edition (geronimo web server) and db2 express-c database... all free! plus, developers can easily find all the information they need: how to start, get code samples and find help. it's a resume builder too -- everything learned can be used with a much broader set of rational, websphere and db2 products, which are built on the same technologies. hundreds of eclipse plug-ins are available from other sources as well.
open source is like a wave in the ocean. you can't swim against it forever (redmond) and you can't try to harness it all for your own use (redwood city). you have to recognize its power, work with it and ride it. this won't be the last wave, but it's a darn big one that we can all benefit from....[Read More]