Machen Sie den Kostencheck: Virtuelle Desktop-Landschaft aus der Cloud oder traditioneller Eigenbetrieb?

Experton Group / ISG launcht Cloud Workplace Kalkulator für Unternehmen Experton Group/ISG und der Cloud Provider Pironet starten zur CeBIT 2017 den „Cloud Workplace Kalkulator“. Mit dem intuitiven Online-Tool identifizieren Unternehmen blitzschnell ein mögliches Einsparpotenzial durch die Einführung einer virtuellen Desktop-Landschaft aus der Cloud – im Vergleich zum traditionellen Eigenbetrieb (On-Premise). Die Bedienung ist kinderleicht […]

Die Implementierung des Internet of Things – grundlegende Erfolgsfaktoren

Auch IoT-Projekte sind nicht frei von Misserfolg. Im Gegenteil, sie sind oft hochkomplex, betreffen mehr als andere mehrere Abteilungen und sehr spezifisches Wissen, und das Thema IoT ist für viele Unternehmen immer noch Neuland. Was kann man nun neben den üblichen Vorkehrungen, die man bei IT-Projekten trifft, noch tun, um den Erfolg sicherzustellen? Wir möchten […]

NRF 2017 – Four Critical Digital Developments for Retail Success

What is Happening?

Several ISG advisors participated in the annual NRF Retail’s Big Show, January 15 to 17, 2017 in New York City. The conference showcased how retail technologies and innovations are core to the industry. The show also highlighted disruptions – not only technological but also political – and how they form a challenging environment for retailers. But it’s clear that customers are the source of the most disruption – they expect a connected, fun, consistent brand experience.

ISG came away from the NRF show with four main themes that retailers and their technology partners should consider, as follows:

  1. Retailers need customer-centric and integrated digital platforms;
  2. The store still matters (as long as it’s connected);
  3. Analytics must drive actionable insights; and
  4. Blockchain is significant beyond payments.

Why is it Happening?

Today’s customers need new ways of engaging with buying and digital technologies have raised the stakes for the customer experience. These pressures are driving change within retail business models, forcing retailers to create new customer-centric operating models, and make dramatic shifts to technology investment strategies. These strategies connect and cross customers, the supply chain, and retailer departments, forming a “Digital Fabric” (Figure 1).

ISG Digital Fabric

Figure 1: ISG Digital Fabric. Source: ISG

1. Retailers need customer-centric and integrated digital platforms. While front-end digital user interfaces garnered much attention from their “cool” factor, there was less buzz around such “bright shiny objects” at this year’s show than in the past. Retailers and vendors all recognize what goes into the effort to implement an omni-channel digital platform: it requires implementing a customer-centric technology platform.

Intel’s introduction of its new Responsive Retail Platform (RRP) reflects the need for integrated digital platforms. At the show, Intel announced plans to invest more than $100 million over the next five years in RRP. The platform connects disparate islands of in-store technology and makes it easier to develop and deploy Internet of Things (IoT) software and services by bringing together retail hardware, software, APIs, and sensors.

2. The store still matters (as long as it’s connected). The continued growth of online purchasing at the expense of physical stores seems irreversible. But retailers are once again recognizing stores for what they can be – a valuable asset for differentiating their brands. The emphasis at the show was not about transforming the brand to become an online retailer, but rather about the convergence of the brick-and-mortar and the digital worlds and the breaking down of barriers between channels. To address that need, Samsung and SapientRazorfish introduced IoT tools to bridge online and in-store shopping activities.

We talked with many vendors showcasing facial recognition technology, interactive store applications, Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), and wearables. ISG’s research shows that these solutions are gaining faster adoption in enterprise applications. But while these emerging technologies all fit into the category of capabilities that improve the consumer experience and employee productivity, retailers need to focus their investments on consumer engagement technologies that blend the physical and digital touch points along the customer journey.

3. Analytics must drive actionable insights. Session presentations and our other interactions at the show indicate that retailers are getting smarter about Big Data. Top priorities include better data management, improved and actionable analytics, and leveraging sensors to better engage consumers and improve productivity of employees and assets. But the deluge of data makes actionable insights difficult to obtain. We heard from many at the show that integrating artificial intelligence (AI) in systems is the next logical action for retailers looking to deliverable actionable insights and improve performance across customer engagement, omni-channel commerce, and supply chain. Some of the providers with predictive analytics and AI-based offerings for the Retail sector include BlueYonder, Jetlore, CognitiveScale, and r4 Technologies.

IBM via its Watson cognitive computing / AI suite continues to deepen its capabilities and extend them across its commerce, marketing, and supply-chain applications. Other companies also offer credible AI systems to market – and not just traditional software providers. For example, Cognizant’s Intelligent Process Automation Framework applied to its RetailMate, HCL DRYiCE, Infosys Mana, TCS Ignio, and Wipro HOLMES AI platforms are from the outsourcing community. AI also has a clear role in customer engagement (e.g. chatbots) and insight as well as in support of knowledge worker productivity and efficacy.

4. Blockchain is significant beyond payments. Blockchain has the potential of having a significant impact on the retail industry well beyond secure transactions. Today’s “always on” consumer brand loyalty is directly impacted by their appetite for information and a demand for transparency. Blockchain can enable this transparency, allowing all parties—supplier, manufacturer, retailer, and end consumer—to trace a product’s journey. In addition to traceability, connecting all members of a supply chain to the decentralized blockchain allows for a direct exchange of bill of lading documentation between parties, potentially solving one of the shipping industry’s largest problems. There are also applications in warranty claims and counterfeiting.

As an example of a potential use of Blockchain in retail, Microsoft hosted a solution from partner Mojix at its NRF booth. The Mojix RFID and IoT platform solution, based on Microsoft’s Azure Blockchain-as-a-service, automates a retailer’s supply chain enabled by blockchain-based smart contracts between the retailer, its suppliers, and logistics providers.

Net Impact

An integrated digital platform – for retailers can and must provide an integrated infrastructure, and a set of core digital business processes in which common tools, capabilities, and data are transparent and shared, not duplicated. Such a digital fabric for back-end services allows a retailer to create a digital consumer engagement seamlessly across all channels. But putting the pieces in place requires making sense of the many choices of platforms, tools, and services.

Blockchain’s chain-of-custody record will aid in tracking product journeys as well as reducing counterfeiting for luxury items. Goods can be certified with a Blockchain’s digital ledger record, to more easily identify stolen merchandise. But Blockchain is still poorly understood and not widely trusted. So we think broad market adoption is beyond 2017, but Blockchain’s future applications will sweep across many aspects of Retail. Clients of ISG’s subscription research services will see further analysis of business uses of Blockchain and examinations of leaders and disruptors in future research publications.

To varying degrees, the analytics vendors at the show demonstrated capabilities to understand varied content and then reason through disparate data to draw conclusions and recommendations, learn as they go, and interact with knowledge workers and customers. In upcoming research we will cover more about the importance of advanced customer analytics and the role of AI.

Lastly, retailers should make sure emerging technologies under consideration have staying power, and determine whether they fit within the strategy for an end-to-end customer-centric operating model. Instead of being about disconnected or loosely connected, as we discussed about the innovations showcased at the CES 2017 show, retail technologies are bellwethers of where user experience technology innovation is going, using the convergence of data, devices, immersive connectivity, and artificial intelligence to improve customer engagement. Look for additional ISG research about the digital fabric of retail business.

Strategiepapiere zum Thema Social Business: GIS & United Planet im Fokus

Mit dem Ende letztens Jahres vorgestellten „Social Business Vendor Benchmark 2017“ veröffentlichte die Experton Group die vierte Auflage des Anbietervergleichs zu dem Trendthema Social Business. Die Studie gibt Entscheidern in Anwenderunternehmen einen detaillierten und differenzierten Überblick zu den wichtigsten Social-Business-Anbietern im deutschen Markt. Das Thema wird jedoch zunehmend im größeren Zusammenhang des Digital Workspace gesehen, […]

Save the Date: Expertonale 2017

Jürgen Brettel

Jürgen BrettelUnsere diesjährige Jahreskonferenz, die Expertonale 2017, am 24. Oktober im Hilton Frankfurt Airport, The Squaire, Frankfurt/Main, richtet sich an ICT-Anwender, -Hersteller und -Dienstleister.

Im Laufe der Expertonale werden wir über die aktuellen Trends und Best Practices berichten, einen Ausblick auf die Kernthemen für 2018 geben und themenübergreifend neutrale und unabhängige Handlungsempfehlungen aussprechen.

Die Veranstaltung soll Ihnen als Informationsplattform dienen und zusätzlich den Kontakt und Austausch mit anderen ICT-Verantwortlichen ermöglichen.

Im Rahmen der Konferenz haben Sie zudem die Möglichkeit, mit unseren anwesenden Advisorn Einzelgespräche zu Ihren Themen und Fragestellungen zu führen. Nutzen Sie die Gelegenheit für kurze, intensive Beratungssessions.

Hilton Frankfurt Airport

Veranstaltungsort:

HILTON FRANKFURT AIRPORT THE SQUAIRE
Am Flughafen
60549 Frankfurt

t: +49 (0)69 2601 200 2253  f: +49 (0)69 2601 200 6020

hilton.de/frankfurtairport

Klicken Sie hier, um den Termin direkt in Ihren Kalender einzutragen:

24.10.2017, 09:00 bis 18:00 Uhr

IT Providers and the Enterprise Digital Leadership Challenge

Bruce Guptill, Charlie Burns Research Alerts

What is Happening?

Conversations at the January ISG Executive Provider Summit with CEOs, CTOs and global product/service leaders of leading IT providers Cognizant, HCL, Hexaware, NTT DATA, Inc., and Softtek have helped us to crystallize core trends and market developments that we’re seeing in our work with enterprise and provider clients alike.

The net takeaway is this: Providers “get” Digital Transformation. They understand what enterprises are trying to accomplish, and the resulting need to change what they themselves do and how they do it.

But while providers are taking important steps in the right direction, each also faces substantial challenges in balancing their own and enterprise clients’ current interests and capabilities, versus what is in the best interests of both parties over the long term.  It is a complex, costly, and potentially dangerous cycle wherein providers are re-inventing themselves and clients, while clients re-invent themselves and providers.

Why is it Happening?

Let’s start with an important position statement: IT providers demonstrate more digital transformational knowledge and technology leadership than the vast majority of enterprise business and IT leaders. They know how to “do digital” better than most of their clients. They understand the strategic point of view and the required planning and management. They are bringing to market a wealth of digital business consulting and planning capabilities, and improving on these through strategic acquisitions and partnerships.

Meanwhile, most enterprises want, and are trying to, develop and pursue key aspects of digital transformation on their own. Most also report initial success. However, we know from our research that these successes are mostly minor and fleeting, because of two factors. First, the vast majority of digital initiatives to date are tightly-focused, small in scale, developed without an integrative strategy, and not measured effectively. Second, digital is still so new that enterprises leaders lack the experience and knowledge required to develop effective, unifying strategies. And it is still rare to find the CEO and CIO who recognize that they cannot do it all themselves – that they need to be led. So, while we see more IT providers like Cognizant, HCL, Hexaware, NTT DATA, and Softtek developing and bringing to market a range of what can best be called “digital leadership” services, we don’t yet see a critical mass of enterprise leaders able or willing to take advantage of these.

Forward-looking IT providers understand this, and so continue to develop IP-led capabilities to address the more focused, tactical digital improvements that most enterprises are aware of and capable of benefiting from. This includes putting together IP based on existing technologies and weaving in more emerging technologies, really moving far beyond traditional IT services in more ways. So we see more providers investing in IP, especially for industry-specific digital business process improvement. And because enterprise clients today tend to focus on tightly-focused digital improvements, there is more interest in “outcome-based” contracting aligned with specific business or IT operations and processes. And we see increased and accelerating provider investment in market-specific knowledge and capabilities through partnering with and acquiring market-, operation-, and process-specific technology, software, and services providers.

Net Impact

The range of what enterprises want and require for digital transformation is increasingly complex. This is forcing re-invention of provider-side portfolios and business models well beyond the changes already being forced by evolving IT sourcing practices and patterns.

This is much more than weaving automation, analytics and autonomics into specific, digital-supportive solutions. It is an increasingly complex and shifting mix of provider- and client-side technologies, business models, and relationships. Things can quickly get more costly than anticipated. It is a real danger for providers, even those who “get” what digital means strategically while understanding and addressing typically tactical enterprise digital requests. We see a significant likelihood of providers’ stumbling on the digital journey, despite the current  clarity of vision and intent.

That being said, the spreading scope of digital-driven business and IT complexity will give rise to one of the greatest long-term opportunities for both providers and enterprise clients: re-invented integration. To make digital business work in the long term, enterprises will need an integrative business+IT strategy and rapidly-improving and expanding integration capabilities across potentially thousands of digital project instances. Such strategic and integrative capabilities will be the purview of the re-invented IT providers as they shift toward:

  1. A broader systems integration role that focuses on more complex and comprehensive projects such as infrastructure transformation; and
  2. A business integration role that focuses on measurable enterprise business transformation and improvement over time.

Such a shift, or series of shifts more likely, raises further questions that we will continue to address for our subscription research and advisory clients, including the following:

  • If, as part of their emerging digital transformation roles, IT providers take over more business IT planning, delivery, and leadership, what becomes of the CIO’s job?
  • And if outsourced IT development, delivery, and execution are increasingly correlated to specific business outcomes, what becomes the primary value of the enterprise IT organization?
  • What are the next critical changes that IT and services procurement leaders and organizations need to consider – and how quickly?

We’re not putting the cart before the horse. Anyone who spends any reasonable amount of time within or around enterprise IT understands the inherent, massive complexities that effectively limit the pace and amount of change that is possible in a given amount of time. We cannot forget or discount the traditional business of IT providers and the reasons for enterprise outsourcing. As one CIO now working in the sourcing industry recently told us, there is “still a ton of blocking and tackling and drudge work” going on, and that will remain the “meat and potatoes” of IT provider business for the near future. There is still a long, long way to go for most enterprises in transformation, and therefore also for IT providers. So providers will be tested as they remain in multiple cycles of re-invention that are developing at differing speeds. They face multiple, competing and overlapping business models, resource requirements, and timeframes. Success will come from balancing a focus on “point solution” enterprise transformation and modernization, typically of specific IT functions, operations, and outputs, while investing more over time in strategic, bespoke business and IT consulting capabilities. The greatest challenges will come in determining how much, and when, to shift investment from traditional business or tactical digital initiatives to tactical initiatives or strategic services.

Die Cloud-Trends für 2017

Für den Themenbereich Cloud Computing hat die Experton Group einige Schwerpunkte identifiziert, die 2017 eine große Rolle spielen oder an Bedeutung gewinnen werden. Wichtige Trends im Kontext Cloud Computing, als Basis für das Internet der Dinge, sind die Sicherstellung der Elastizität und die erhöhte Modularität auf Basis notwendiger Standardisierung und „Containerisierung“. Dies ist immer häufiger […]

Das Internet of Things ist keine Technologie, sondern eine neue Denkweise

Deutsche Unternehmen hinken in der Digitalisierung hinterher. Und auch bei der Einführung des Internet of Things (IoT) sind sie eher zögerlich unterwegs. Als Berater ist man dabei verwundert und fragt sich, woher diese schon gefährliche Zurückhaltung von CEOs und CIOs bei diesen überlebenswichtigen Themen denn kommen kann. Bei genauerer Betrachtung des Themas „Internet der Dinge“ fällt […]

Die Transformation der eigenen IT-Infrastruktur zu einem Colocation-Dienstleister ist eine attraktive Alternative zum eigenen Rechenzentrum

Viele Rechenzentren in Unternehmen sind inzwischen in die Jahre gekommen. Durch Virtualisierung auf allen Ebenen und einer damit möglichen reduzierten Anzahl von physikalischen Infrastrukturkomponenten wurde zwischenzeitlich für Entlastung gesorgt. Inzwischen kommen die Rechenzentren aber häufig wieder an Kapazitätsgrenzen (Platz, Stromversorgung, Kühlung etc.), so dass über eine Ertüchtigung oder einen Neubau des Rechenzentrums nachgedacht werden muss. […]