IBM is moving fast!
Marc van Lint 060000D5M2 Visits (4160)
At an irregular basis I’m invited by System Integrators or consulting firms to give an update on Rational. The audience expects an update on the testing products, while they invite a Rational Testing expert.
Common questions are “What are the new cool features of Robot?” or “Where is Test Manager?”. Really!! Respected firms and respected people. They are buried in their day-to-day job that little to no time is spend to educate them on what’s happening in the market! Their organization should spend serious time and effort on keeping track of the major players in the market, IBM is one of them. And IBM is moving fast! We can’t update you by one simple blog. It is an ongoing effort.
IBM delivery every year a serious update across their complete portfolio. Not just a simple release update, real new features enabling new ways of working across the whole portfolio. A customer can capitalize on these new features and improve efficiency and productivity year over year.
“So, I’ve to buy the whole suite?”, my other big frustration: No, no! IBM Rational consists of many integrated products. They may look as one, especially when you look at the Jazz based CLM products. But you can start with one (1), if that’s the right approach. Because everything is integrated you can grow fast by introducing other products. But there is more: don’t confuse products with licenses and cost. Especially for the CLM products the licenses are role based. A tester needs to do his testing thing, clear. Additional to that he needs the option to create or at least collaborate on requirements. When finding defects he must be able to communicate them efficiently into his organization and focus his efforts on the high value work packages. “Wooh, that’s a complex job!” Right. Especially for such a role there is a “tester license” which supports all this. The tester can do his job efficiently across several Rational products.
The associated license cost is a separate blog entry. A lead-purchaser (completely different industry) once told me that volume is the biggest influencer in the financial negotiations. Clearly there is some tension with the previous statement to start small. At least we can conclude, products, licenses and cost are three different views.
Take your time to understand them all thoroughly, ask IBM to explain and advice. Identify your route of improvement. An “all you can eat” does not make your organization effective (I always crash with my F1-car in the race game). A graduate path of improvement will. That will identify the needs and the timing. Which can be mapped to products and the mix of licenses and will indicate the demand for flexibility.
It’s a complex environment, it’s hard work, it’s change. I’ve seen the best results when there is a good collaboration between the customer, IBM and the system integrators. But we all need a common understanding of the capabilities of the software and the organizations. Start small, grow fast.