Cloudy days…..

Back in 2009 I penned a piece for the User Group about cloud computing. That was 8 years ago and some of the same discussions are still being held.

The fact of the matter though is that cloud computing is being provided to all of us every day in nearly everything we do today. It’s interesting how things go through cycles – fashion being one of the most obvious ones. But in computing we had the mainframe, essentially a screen connected to a central computer somewhere, then we went client server where some of the compute was taking place on the client machine with server largely being a data repository. And now we have cloud where there are 2 schools operating – the browser to cloud, and the app to cloud. The browser to cloud is so similar to mainframe!

But the obsession with cloud computing obscures what is really going on. The digital revolution. It’s as big as the so called “Industrial Revolution”. What is the Digital revolution? The best way to describe this is to consider the concept of analogue television to digital television. In analogue days you watched it now, if you didn’t you missed it and there were 4 channels. In digital days you can watch it now, replay it, store it – watch it on tablets, phones, computers and TV’s on hundreds of channels. And therefore the choice moves from the provider to the consumer.

So there is a digital transformation underway, aided by ever cheaper and more powerful technology. The internet has provided a backbone to connect everything, and I mean everything. And this digital capability is no longer confined to business, it’s in the home, it’s in your school, it’s everywhere. In fact the digital transformation is being demanded and shaped by the consumer, not business.

This key change, where the consumer leads, is sadly not understood by everyone. Businesses can no longer drive, they have to predict. They have to establish intelligence that sets them up in the way the consumer demand is going to go. Only the very lucky will be able to pull the customer along with them.

And this is now 365/24 – the always on and available culture that is becoming the norm. There will be some brakes in the ecosystem – internet availability – cabling and fibre are likely to be surpassed by mobile with 5G on its way giving mobile 1GB per second speeds along with 5ms response speed. And then people – and this is the part that seems to get overlooked.

For some areas people will actually not want an always on culture – most likely in the work arena. All work and no play makes Jack and Jill dull people, so expect some legislation starting to segregate work and home life.

This people culture change is the largest of the black holes in the digital transformation roadmap. No longer can companies dictate to their staff that this is what is going to change from upon high if they want success. It has to be a hearts and minds approach, so if you are starting your digital transformation then you need to have proper people change management strategies and processes in place. Ignore this at your peril.

Now remember I said that the consumer was leading this transformation? That is also something you have to understand. The consumer is split into many groups, by ability to change, willingness to change, and fear of change. These are not always age related but can be……… So you have several streams to contend with which is why I believe there will be hybrid solutions primarily adopted out there. The same inevitably applies to your own workforce.

Some companies get it….I’m quite impressed with the Digital Eagles campaign. So yes Barclays are being nice to their customers to help them get digital, but it’s really about them having recognised that to get their consumers through their (Barclays) digital transformation they need to help them. Change management!

This Digital Revolution is the biggest change to our world since the Industrial revolution. And it offers so much to so many….if it is done properly.

 

 

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Nearly there…..

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There is hope that when your MP writes this sort of letter that the campaign by people effected may be getting towards resolution. Sterling work by Jody Clark and her colleagues, not to mention the over 10,000 people who have protested on the streets (many times) as well as undertaken reasoned, sensible argument for over a year. Simply put we are a community in one of the biggest counties in England that is growing, and scheduled to grow under government plans, and we should retain, deserve, and continue the A&E facilities that we had.

There have been a number of community protest marches, clearly voicing the views of the wider community. In all weathers they came and marched, thousands of people.

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In all weathers – the British brolly persevering……

 

Traffic had to stop, but there was no frustration…..just car drivers sounding their support. Something that had to be listened to.

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It brought together people of all race, religion, age and politics – for a common cause. Truly mind boggling……and a lesson to all the politicians.

And every Wednesday night there is a vigil outside our hospital as we wait to get the services reinstated……..throughout the year.

Parliament was visited ……..and MP’s consulted, including the secretary of state for Health, with questions being raised in parliament, even at Prime Minister’s questions.

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Social media has been key so far for keeping the message out there and our elected representatives accountable. And the local clergy volunteered the biggest church in Lincolnshire to host a discussion group with the Trust at which media attended.

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And now we wait….because on November 7th the NHS trust ULHT (United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust) will discuss the actions it is going to take. Nye Bevan, the health minister who set up the NHS after the 2nd World War has it spot on…..

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SAP reveals more in South Africa….

SAP promised to reveal the results of its internal investigation at the end of October, and it seems there was fire behind that smoke. The South African headlines with “SAP apologises to South Africa, reveals truth over SOE and Gupta dealings”.

SAPs statement reads ““The investigation has not revealed any evidence of a payment to a South African government official, including Transnet and Eskom employees. It has, however, uncovered indications of misconduct in issues relating to the management of Gupta-related third parties. To this end, SAP has instituted formal disciplinary proceedings, in accordance with South African labour law, against three employees who were placed on administrative leave at the beginning of the investigation. SAP has been clear from the outset that it will not tolerate misconduct or wrongdoing.”

All credit for SAP for bringing in an independent team to review and more credit for introducing a policy of no sales commission will be paid in any countries where there is a perception of corruption score below 50 based on Transparency Internationals published league table of corruption which basically means that nearly two thirds of the worlds 176 countries drop into that category.

SAP Q3 Results are out…..rounding up what some of the press says.

The Register in it’s typical style, suggests some challenges “SAP reassures market: Cloud is sustainable, just don’t look at our wheezing bookings

Whilst Reuters highlights below market expectations and the reassurance that Q4 will be good   “Just relax, Europe’s tech leader SAP tells investors, fourth quarter will be dynamite“.

The FT though focuses on warnings of the impact of the strength of the Euro on SAP earnings “SAP leads warnings on euro strength hit to earnings”

My POV – Q4 is always a strong quarter for any software vendor, it’s when the deals are made and the discounts applied. The underlying interest is cloud sales as a percentage of the SAP business and what impact it has on licence revenue. The 2 key questions being, firstly is SAP getting new revenue from the business that it is putting all its effort into (Cloud and HANA)? And secondly is SAP adding to the revenue base with service subscriptions? And the answer…..probably too difficult to say.

I don’t normally do this….but

Someone reminded me it’s Christmas in just  10 weeks….again. And the retailers have started their stocking of the shelves and offers are starting to appear. Also today my Facebook page reminded me that last year a local A Capella group released a video for Christmas. I watched it again and it was still as good as last year, and I wanted to see how many of you would watch it on YouTube. See what you think click here.

This could get very messy……

I mentioned a growing scandal in South Africa a number of days ago. Well it seems that now others are concerned that links with those either under investigation or investigating, might drag them in and their links to those companies are now being questioned. It remains to be seen how this will be untangled, but there are some nervous corporates out there. Standard Bank is now considering its links to McKinsey and SAP and also having conversations with KPMG. As the old saying goes “there’s no smoke without a fire”. Question is where and what is the fire? Everyone is keeping very tight-lipped about it.

I like the video clip…..

Every day we are all bombarded with marketing clips and then one comes along that catches your attention….in this case for me it’s an SAP one. My view is that this is slick and good marketing……doesn’t tell you that much but works exceptionally well as a teaser, and does what it says on the tin. It gets you thinking.

Click here.