From client server to cloud and systems of engagement: Geoffrey Moore at IBM Connect
Delaney Turner 270003RQ8K Delaney.Turner@ca.ibm.com | | Tags:  socbiz ibmconnect
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"When I went to school, collaboration was called cheating."
Betraying the scope and scale of the changes in IT (if also his age) since his days as an undergraduate, legendary tech analyst, author and consultant Geoffrey Moore capped off the Opening General Session to PartnerDay at IBM Connect 2014.
Moore's presentation was entitled "The Future of Enterprise IT: From client server to cloud and the rise of systems of engagement." With equal doses of humor, insight and energy, Moore provided some much-welcomed guidance and advice to IT managers.
There's no doubt that they need it. While well-funded business managers chomp at the bit to build more customer-centric solutions and users work and play in social, on mobile and in the cloud, IT struggles to keep up amid a dizzying array of new vendors, tools and technologies.
"The new generation went to school in tables of four," he said. "Collaboration doesn't slow things down, ti's the way they get things done."
Moore illustrated how every layer of the IT stack and the discrete functions within each is now is now being disrupted, transformed, or replaced outright by innovations in and users of mobile, social and cloud computing. For example:
That's not to say that those investments - representing, according to Moore, some trillion dollars over the last decade - didn't do their jobs. As Moore observed, the client-server era drove dramatic improvements in personal productivity, organizational efficiency, transformed commerce and let India and China join the global community. "These are amazing accomplishments."
Nor do these systems - now dismissed as merely "legacy systems" continue to perform an important role. Now driven largely by a few key vendors (including IBM), these systems continue to power the mission-critical applications and processes of the global economy. "Legacy is a powerful word," said Moore. "Customers have said 'these are the foundations of our world.'"
The reality, though, is that these Systems of Record no longer provide the competitive advantage they once did. According to Moore, most organizations have realized 90 percent of their value. Business owners aren't interested in funding them.
On the other hand, they've barely scratched the surface of the value of new Systems of Engagement. Mobile, social, highly collaborative and fueled by the cloud, these new Systems of Engagement are driving the next transformation in IT, said Moore. These new Systems are less about capturing what happened in the past than making things happen in the present. They're increasingly key to differentiation and competitive advantage.
Naturally, business owners want to fund them. CEOs are demanding it.
IT wants to build them, said Moore. But it faces a dizzying array of challenges:
To cap it all off, said Moore, "the solution needs to deliver a great user experience. And if there's one thing we've shown, IT is all about building great user experiences."
So what's IT do to?
The truth is that there are no definitive answers - yet. This is an era of tremendous transformation. Nevertheless, there are principles and positions IT can adopt that will increase their chances of success.
Moore concluded his session with this advice:
"It won't be perfect the first time," said Moore. "But act with a good heart and move with a willingness to clean up your messes. That's the approach that will move your business forward."