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Posts tagged ‘Software-as-a-Service’

How Artificial Intelligence Is Revolutionizing Enterprise Software In 2017

future-of-artificial-intelligence-and-big-data

  • 81% of IT leaders are currently investing in or planning to invest in Artificial Intelligence (AI).
  • Cowen predicts AI will drive user productivity to materially higher levels, with Microsoft at the forefront.
  • Digital Marketing/Marketing Automation, Salesforce Automation (CRM) and Data Analytics are the top three areas ripe for AI/ML adoption.
  • According to angel.co, there are 2,200+ Artificial Intelligence start-ups, and well over 50% have emerged in just the last two years.
  • Cowen sees Salesforce ($CRM), Adobe ($ADBE) and ServiceNow ($NOW) as well-positioned to deliver and monetize new AI-based application services.

These and many other fascinating insights are from the Cowen and Company Multi-Sector Equity Research study, Artificial Intelligence: Entering A Golden Age For Data Science (142 pp., PDF, client access reqd). The study is based on interviews with 146 leading AI researchers, entrepreneurs and VC executives globally who are involved in the field of artificial intelligence and related technologies. Please see the Appendix of the study for a thorough overview of the methodology. This study isn’t representative of global AI, data engineering and machine learning (ML) adoption trends. It does, however, provide a glimpse into the current and future direction of AI, data engineering, and machine learning.  Cowen finds the market is still nascent, with CIOs eager to invest in new AI-related initiatives. Time-to-market, customer messaging, product positioning and the value proposition of AI solutions will be critical factors for winning over new project investments.

Key takeaways from the study include the following:

  • Digital Marketing/Marketing Automation, Salesforce Automation (CRM) and Data Analytics are the top three areas ripe for AI/ML adoption. Customer self-service, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Human Resource Management (HRM) and E-Commerce are additional areas that have upside potential for AI/ML adoption. The following graphic provides an overview of the areas in software that Cowen found the greater potential for AI/ML investment.

Artificial Intelligence: Entering A Golden Age For Data Science

  • 81% of IT leaders are currently investing in or planning to invest in Artificial Intelligence (AI). Based on the study, CIOs have a new mandate to integrate AI into IT technology stacks. The study found that 43% are evaluating and doing a Proof of Concept (POC) and 38% are already live and planning to invest more.  The following graphic provides an overview of company readiness for machine learning and AI projects.

How Artificial Intelligence Is Revolutionizing Enterprise Software In 2017

  • Market forecasts vary, but all consistently predict explosive growth. IDC predicts that the Cognitive Systems and AI market (including hardware & services) will grow from $8B in 2016 to $47B in 2020, attaining a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 55%. This forecast includes $18B in software applications, $5B in software platforms, and $24B in services and hardware. IBM claims that Cognitive Computing is a $2T market, including $200B in healthcare/life sciences alone. Tractica forecasts direct and indirect applications of AI software to grow from $1.4B in 2016 to $59.8B by 2025, a 52% CAGR.

Artificial Intelligence: Entering A Golden Age For Data Science

  • According to CBInsights, the number of financing transactions to AI start-ups increased 10x over the last six years, from 67 in 2011 to 698 in 2016. Accenture states that the total number of AI start-ups has increased 20-fold since 2011. The top verticals include FinTech, Healthcare, Transportation and Retail/e-Commerce. The following graphic provides an overview of the AI annual funding history from 2011 to 2016.

Artificial Intelligence: Entering A Golden Age For Data Science

  • Algorithmic trading, image recognition/tagging, and patient data processing are predicted to the b top AI uses cases by 2025. Tractica forecasts predictive maintenance and content distribution on social media will be the fourth and fifth highest revenue producing AI uses cases over the next eight years. The following graphic compares the top 10 uses cases by projected global revenue.

ai-use-cases

  • Machine Learning is predicted to generate the most revenue and is attracting the most venture capital investment in all areas of AI. Venture Scanner found that ML raised $3.5B to date (from 400+ companies), far ahead of the next category, Natural Language Processing, which has seen just over $1Bn raised to date (from 200+ companies). Venture Scanner believes that Machine Learning Applications and Machine Learning Platforms are two relatively early stage markets that stand to have some of the greatest market disruptions.

Artificial Intelligence: Entering A Golden Age For Data Science

  • Cowen predicts that an Intelligent App Stack will gain rapid adoption in enterprises as IT departments shift from system-of-record to system-of-intelligence apps, platforms, and priorities. The future of enterprise software is being defined by increasingly intelligent applications today, and this will accelerate in the future. Cowen predicts it will be commonplace for enterprise apps to have machine learning algorithms that can provide predictive insights across a broad base of scenarios encompassing a company’s entire value chain. The potential exists for enterprise apps to change selling and buying behavior, tailoring specific responses based on real-time data to optimize discounting, pricing, proposal and quoting decisions.

Artificial Intelligence: Entering A Golden Age For Data Science

  • According to angel.co, there are 2,200+ Artificial Intelligence start-ups, and well over 50% have emerged in just the last two years. Machine Learning-based Applications and Deep Learning Neural Networks are experiencing the largest and widest amount of investment attention in the enterprise.
  • Accenture leverages machine learning in 40% of active Analytics engagements, and nearly 80% of proposed Analytics opportunities today. Cowen found that Accenture’s view is that they are in the early stages of AI technology adoption with their enterprise clients.  Accenture sees the AI market growing exponentially, reaching $400B in spending by 2020. Their customers have moved on from piloting and testing AI to reinventing their business strategies and models.
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Roundup Of Cloud Computing Forecasts, 2017

  • Cloud computing is projected to increase from $67B in 2015 to $162B in 2020 attaining a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19%.
  • Gartner predicts the worldwide public cloud services market will grow 18% in 2017 to $246.8B, up from $209.2B in 2016.
  • 74% of Tech Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) say cloud computing will have the most measurable impact on their business in 2017.

Cloud platforms are enabling new, complex business models and orchestrating more globally-based integration networks in 2017 than many analyst and advisory firms predicted. Combined with Cloud Services adoption increasing in the mid-tier and small & medium businesses (SMB), leading researchers including Forrester are adjusting their forecasts upward. The best check of any forecast is revenue.  Amazon’s latest quarterly results released two days ago show Amazon Web Services (AWS) attained 43% year-over-year growth, contributing 10% of consolidated revenue and 89% of consolidated operating income.

Additional key takeaways from the roundup include the following:

  • Wikibon is predicting enterprise cloud spending is growing at a 16% compound annual growth (CAGR) run rate between 2016 and 2026. The research firm also predicts that by 2022, Amazon Web Services (AWS) will reach $43B in revenue, and be 8.2% of all cloud spending. Source: Wikibon report preview: How big can Amazon Web Services get?
Wikibon Worldwide Enterprise IT Projection By Vendor Revenue

Wikibon Worldwide Enterprise IT Projection By Vendor Revenue

Rapid Growth of Cloud Computing, 2015–2020

Rapid Growth of Cloud Computing, 2015–2020

Worldwide Public Cloud Services Forecast (Millions of Dollars)

Worldwide Public Cloud Services Forecast (Millions of Dollars)

  • By the end of 2018, spending on IT-as-a-Service for data centers, software and services will be $547B. Deloitte Global predicts that procurement of IT technologies will accelerate in the next 2.5 years from $361B to $547B. At this pace, IT-as-a-Service will represent more than half of IT spending by the 2021/2022 timeframe. Source: Deloitte Technology, Media and Telecommunications Predictions, 2017 (PDF, 80 pp., no opt-in).
Deloitte IT-as-a-Service Forecast

Deloitte IT-as-a-Service Forecast

  • Total spending on IT infrastructure products (server, enterprise storage, and Ethernet switches) for deployment in cloud environments will increase 15.3% year over year in 2017 to $41.7B. IDC predicts that public cloud data centers will account for the majority of this spending ( 60.5%) while off-premises private cloud environments will represent 14.9% of spending. On-premises private clouds will account for 62.3% of spending on private cloud IT infrastructure and will grow 13.1% year over year in 2017. Source: Spending on IT Infrastructure for Public Cloud Deployments Will Return to Double-Digit Growth in 2017, According to IDC.
Worldwide Cloud IT Infrastructure Market Forecast

Worldwide Cloud IT Infrastructure Market Forecast

  • Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) adoption is predicted to be the fastest-growing sector of cloud platforms according to KPMG, growing from 32% in 2017 to 56% adoption in 2020. Results from the 2016 Harvey Nash / KPMG CIO Survey indicate that cloud adoption is now mainstream and accelerating as enterprises shift data-intensive operations to the cloud.  Source: Journey to the Cloud, The Creative CIO Agenda, KPMG (PDF, no opt-in, 14 pp.)
Cloud investment by type today and in three years

Cloud investment by type today and in three years

AWS Segment Financial Comparison

AWS Segment Financial Comparison

  • In Q1, 2017 AWS generated 10% of consolidated revenue and 89% of consolidated operating income. Net sales increased 23% to $35.7 billion in the first quarter, compared with $29.1 billion in first quarter 2016. Source: Cloud Business Drives Amazon’s Profits.
Comparing AWS' Revenue and Income Contributions

Comparing AWS’ Revenue and Income Contributions

  • RightScale’s 2017 survey found that Microsoft Azure adoption surged from 26% to 43% with AWS adoption increasing from 56% to 59%. Overall Azure adoption grew from 20% to 34% percent of respondents to reduce the AWS lead, with Azure now reaching 60% of the market penetration of AWS. Google also increased adoption from 10% to 15%. AWS continues to lead in public cloud adoption (57% of respondents currently run applications in AWS), this number has stayed flat since both 2016 and 2015. Source: RightScale 2017 State of the Cloud Report (PDF, 38 pp., no opt-in)
Public Cloud Adoption, 2017 versus 2016

Public Cloud Adoption, 2017 versus 2016

  • Global Cloud IT market revenue is predicted to increase from $180B in 2015 to $390B in 2020, attaining a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 17%. In the same period, SaaS-based apps are predicted to grow at an 18% CAGR, and IaaS/PaaS is predicted to increase at a 27% CAGR. Source: Bain & Company research brief The Changing Faces of the Cloud (PDF, no opt-in).
60% of IT Market Growth Is Being Driven By The Cloud

60% of IT Market Growth Is Being Driven By The Cloud

  • 74% of Tech Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) say cloud computing will have the most measurable impact on their business in 2017. Additional technologies that will have a significant financial impact in 2017 include the Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence (AI) (16%) and 3D printing and virtual reality (14% each). Source: 2017 BDO Technology Outlook Survey (PDF), no opt-in).
CFOs say cloud investments deliver the greatest measurable impact

CFOs say cloud investments deliver the greatest measurable impact

Cloud investments are fueling new job throughout Canada

Cloud investments are fueling new job throughout Canada

  • APIs are enabling persona-based user experiences in a diverse base of cloud enterprise As of today there are 17,422 APIs listed on the Programmable Web, with many enterprise cloud apps concentrating on subscription, distributed order management, and pricing workflows.  Sources: Bessemer Venture Partners State of the Cloud 2017 and 2017 Is Quickly Becoming The Year Of The API Economy. The following graphic from the latest Bessemer Venture Partners report illustrates how APIs are now the background of enterprise software.
APIs are fueling a revolution in cloud enterprise apps

APIs are fueling a revolution in cloud enterprise apps

Additional Resources:

Five Ways CPQ Is Revolutionizing Selling Today

CPQ, Salesforce CPQ, enosiX SAP to Salesforce Integration Configure-Price-Quote (CPQ) continues to be one of the hottest enterprise apps today, fueled by the relentless need all companies have to increase sales while delivering customized orders profitably and accurately. Here are a few of the many results CPQ strategies are delivering today:

  • Companies relying on CPQ are growing profit margins at a 57% greater rate year-over-year compared to non-adopters.
  • 89% improvement in turning Special Pricing Requests (SPRs) into sales by automating them using a cloud-based CPQ system.
  • 67% reduction in reworked orders at a leading specialty vehicle manufacturer due to quotes reflecting exactly what customers wanted to buy.
  • 23% improvement in upsell and cross-sell revenue by having the CPQ system intelligently recommend the optimal product or service that has the highest probability of purchase and best possible gross margin.
  • CPQ strategies excel when they are designed to reach challenging selling, pricing, revenue and operational performance goals versus automating existing selling workflows.

Another factor fueling CPQs’ rapid growth is how quickly results of a pilot can be measured and used for launching a successful company-wide launch.  Pilots often concentrate on quote creation time, quoting accuracy, sales cycle reduction, automating Special Pricing Requests (SPRs), up-sells and cross-sells, perfect order performance, margin improvements and best of all, winning new customers. These are the baseline metrics many companies use to measure their CPQ performance. Throughout 2017 these metrics across industries are accelerating. There is a revolution going on in selling today.

5 Ways CPQ Is Revolutionizing Selling Today

Cloud- and SaaS-based CPQ solutions are quicker to implement, easier to customize to customers’ requirements, and available 24/7 on any Internet-enabled device, anytime. Many are designed to integrate into Salesforce, further accelerating adoption seamlessly.  The following five factors are the primary catalysts revolutionizing selling today:

  1. Designing in excellent user experiences (UX) is the new normal for CPQ apps – CPQ vendors are competing with the quality of user experiences they deliver in 2017, moving beyond packing every feature possible into app releases. This is having a corresponding impact on adoption, increasing the number of sales representatives and entire teams who can get up and running fast with a new CPQ app. The net result is reduced sales cycles, growing pipelines, and more sales reps actively using CPQ apps to increase their selling effectiveness.
  2. Integrating with legacy CRM, ERP and pricing systems in real-time are using service-oriented frameworks gives sales teams what they need to close deals faster – Legacy CPQ systems in the past often had very precise field mappings to 3rd party legacy CRM, ERP and pricing systems. They were brittle and would break very easily, slowing down sales cycles and making sales reps resort to manually-based approaches from decades before. In 2017 there are service-oriented frameworks that make brittle, easily broken mappings thankfully an integration practice in the past. With a loosely coupled service framework, real-time integration between CRM and ERP systems can be quickly be implemented and sales teams can get out and close more deals. Leaders in the area include enosiX, who are enabling their customers’ sales forces to enter sales orders into SAP directly from Salesforce, saving valuable selling time and increasing order accuracy.
  3. Competing for deals using Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning and Intelligent Agents are force multipliers driving greater salesSalesforce’s Einstein is an example of the latest generation of AI applications that are enabling sales reps and teams to gain insights that weren’t available before. Combining customer data with these advanced predictive data analytics technologies yields insights into how selling strategies for different accounts can customize to specific prospect needs. Selling strategies are more effective and focused when AI, machine learning, and Intelligent Agents are designed in to guide quoting, pricing and product configuration in real-time.
  4. CPQ apps optimized for mobile devices are enabling sales reps to drastically reduce quote creation times, sales cycles and increase sales win rates – For many companies whose sales teams are in the field calling on accounts the majority of the time, mobile-based CPQ apps are how they get the majority of their work done. Salesforce’s Force.com is one of the leading platforms CPQ software companies are relying on to create mobile apps, further capitalizing on the already-established levels of familiarity sales teams have with the Salesforce platform.
  5. The vision many companies have of synchronizing multichannel and omnichannel selling as part of their CPQ strategies is now attainable – One of the greatest challenges of expanding sales channels is ensuring a consistently high-quality customer experience across each. With on-premise CPQ, CRM and ERP selling systems, this is very challenging as there are often multiple database systems supporting each. This is a breakout year for omnichannel selling as cloud-based CPQ systems and the platforms they are built on can securely scale across all selling channels a company chooses to launch. Being able to track which CPQ deals emanated from which marketing program, and which channels are the most effective in closing sales is now possible.

CIO’s Guide To The New Economics Of Real-Time Integration

CEOs’ decisions today to pursue digital-first strategies for greater revenue growth are defining their company’s competitive strengths in the future. CIOs and their teams are being challenged to drive a larger percentage of revenue growth in 2017 than ever before by providing IT-based insights daily.

  • Enabling faster revenue growth, improving products and replacing obsolete technologies are the top three CEO priorities have for CIOs in 2017.
  • 42% of CIOs say “digital first” is their company’s go-forward strategy for IT investments in 2017 and beyond.
  • 33% of CIOs consider revenue growth as their primary metric for measuring success with their digital business strategies.

The New Economics Of Real-Time Integration

IT teams are taking on the challenge by concentrating on those areas that can scale the quickest and deliver measurable revenue results. They’re finding that the integration approaches taken in the past don’t match the speed that customers, sales, suppliers and senior management need today. A key takeaway from CIOs’ initial efforts includes the finding that making small improvements in data latency can increase sales win rates in 90 days or less while improving cost controls.  Improving data latency is one of the key factors driving the new economics of real-time integration, which is defined below.

  • Integrations’ Inflection Point Has Arrived – Digital-first initiatives for defining new channel, selling and product strategies require more speed than batch-oriented integration can deliver. Customers now expect real-time response across all sales and support channels on a 24/7 basis. The pressure to drive greater revenue through digital channels and deliver a consistently great customer experience are forcing an inflection point of integration technologies today.
  • Batch-oriented approaches to integration fit well in an era of transaction-centric IT. Asynchronous, tightly-coupled, and relying on ETL for moving data around an enterprise network, these approaches were better suited for more predictable revenue strategies.  In contrast, going after new digital channels is unpredictable and requires real-time integration to deliver excellent customer experiences. Service-oriented frameworks that support synchronous data consumption and have low latency are emerging as a better choice for digital-first revenue strategies. Based on loosely-coupled integration points, these frameworks are capable of quickly adapting to new business requirements. Companies including enosiX are revolutionizing services-oriented frameworks by removing the roadblocks legacy integration approaches created.  The following graphic illustrates integrations’ inflection point and how past approaches to integration are giving way to more synchronous, loosely- coupled service-oriented frameworks capable of scaling faster to drive greater revenue.

  • And it’s fueling faster development cycles, reducing time-to-market and improving app and web services quality. The apps, web services, and APIs needed to launch a digital-first strategy don’t exist off-the-shelf, ready to be deployed for the majority of companies. Every company needs to create customizations to existing apps and web services, or create entirely new ones to support digital revenue strategies. Availability of real-time data through service-oriented frameworks is revolutionizing how apps, web services, and customizations get built. With real-time data designed in, it’s possible to test new apps across more use cases and ensure higher quality too.
  • While also enabling IT teams to exceed stakeholder expectations and their goals for digital-first strategies. Integrations’ inflection point is the most visible in how CIOs are now considered more responsible for revenue than ever before. From the initial revenue strategy definition through project managing apps and web services to delivery and producing revenue, CIOs and their teams who see themselves as business strategists excel in their roles. IT teams and the CIOs who lead them are seeing signs of integration’s inflection point every day. They’re seeing just how urgent the inflection point is, and how it’s redefining the economics of how they orchestrate systems together to attain revenue growth.  The insights and expertise CEOs, VPs of Channel Strategy, Marketing, Cloud & IT Infrastructure, and other senior management team members have needed to get quickly translated into apps, web services and digital first strategies that capitalize fast on new opportunities. Only through the use of service-oriented frameworks that can scale to support new revenue processes can any company compete in 2017 and beyond.

 

Business Intelligence And Analytics In The Cloud, 2017

  • 78% are planning to increase the use of cloud for BI and data management in the next twelve months.
  • 46% of organizations prefer public cloud platforms for cloud BI, analytics and data management deployments.
  • Cloud BI adoption increased in respondent companies from 29% to 43% from 2013 to 2016.
  • Almost half of organizations using cloud BI (46%) use a public cloud for BI and data management compared to less than a third (30%) for hybrid cloud and 24% for private cloud.

These and many other insights are from the BARC Research and Eckerson Group Study, BI and Data Management in the Cloud: Issues and Trends published January 2017 (39 pp., PDF, no opt-in). Business Application Research Center (BARC) is a research and consulting firm that concentrates on enterprise software including business intelligence (BI), analytics and data management. Eckerson Group is a research and consulting firm focused on serving the needs of business intelligence (BI) and analytic leaders in Fortune 2000 organizations worldwide. The study is based on interviews completed in September and October 2016. 370 respondents participated in the survey globally. Given the size of the sample, the results aren’t representative of the global BI and analytics user base. The study’s results provide an interesting glimpse into analytics and BI adoption today, however. For a description of the methodology, please see page 31 of the study.

Key insights from the study include the following:

  • Public cloud is the most preferred deployment platform for cloud BI and analytics, and the larger the organization toe more likely they are using private clouds. 46% of organizations selected public cloud platforms as their preferred infrastructure for supporting their BI, analytics, and data management initiatives in 2016. 30% are relying on a hybrid cloud platform and 24%, private clouds. With public cloud platforms becoming more commonplace in BI and analytics deployments, the need for greater PaaS- and IaaS-level orchestration becomes a priority. The larger the organization, the more likely they are using private clouds (33%). Companies with between 250 to 2,500 employees are the least likely to be using private clouds (16%).

grouped-bi-cloud-platform-graphic

  • Dashboard-based reporting (76%), ad-hoc analysis and exploration (57%) and dashboard authoring (55%) are the top three Cloud BI use cases. Respondents are most interested in adding advanced and predictive analytics (53%), operational planning and forecasting (44%), strategic planning and simulation (44%) in the next year. The following graphic compares primary use cases and planned investments in the next twelve months. SelectHub has created a useful Business Intelligence Tools Comparison here that provides insights into this area.

cloud-bi-use-cases

  • Power users dominate the use of cloud BI and analytics solutions, driving more complex use cases that include ad-hoc analysis (57%) and advanced report and dashboard creation (55%). Casual users are 20% of all cloud BI and analytics, with their most common use being for reporting and dashboards (76%). Customers and suppliers are an emerging group of cloud BI and analytics users as more respondent companies create self-service web-based apps to streamline external reporting.

cloud-bi-power-users

  • Data integration between cloud applications/databases (51%) and providing data warehouses and data marts (50%) are the two most common data management strategies in use to support BI and analytics solutions today. Respondent organizations are using the cloud to integration cloud applications with each other and with on-premises applications (46%).  The study also found that as more organizations move to the cloud, there’s a corresponding need to support hybrid cloud architectures. Cloud-based data warehouses are primarily being built to support net new applications versus existing apps on-premise. Data integration is essential for the ongoing operations of cloud-based and on-premise ERP systems. A useful comparison of ERP systems can be found here.

cloud-data-integration

  • Data integration between on-premises and cloud applications dominates use cases across all company sizes, with 48% of enterprises leading in adoption. Enterprises are also prioritizing providing data warehouses and data marts (48%), the pre-processing of data (38%) and data integration between cloud applications and databases (38%). The smaller a company is the more critical data integration becomes. 63% of small companies with less than 250 employees are prioritizing data integration between cloud applications and databases (63%).

use-cases-of-cloud-management-by-company-size

  • Tools for data exploration (visual discovery) adopted grew the fastest in the last three years, increasing from 20% adoption in 2013 to 49% in 2016. BI tools increased slightly from 55% to 62% and BI servers dropped from 56% to 51%. Approximately one in five respondent organizations (22%) added analytical applications in 2016.

bi-tools-growth

  • The main reasons for adopting cloud BI and analytics differ by size of the company, with cost (57%) being the most important for mid-sized businesses between 250 to 2.5K employees. Consistent with previous studies, small companies’ main reason for adopting cloud BI and analytics include flexibility (46%), reduced maintenance of hardware and software (43%), and cost (38%). Enterprises with more than 2.5K employees are adopting cloud BI and analytics for greater scalability (48%), cost (40%) and reduced maintenance of hardware and software (38%). The following graphic compares the most important reason for adopting cloud BI, analytics and data management by the size of the company.

most-important-reason-for-adopting-cloud-bi-and-data-management

2017 Is Quickly Becoming The Year Of The API Economy

Shanghai is a high-rise buildings, the rapid development of the city.

This year more CIOs will have their bonuses tied to how many new business models they help create with existing and planned IT platforms than ever before. This trend will accelerate over the next three years. CIOs and IT staffs need to start thinking about how they can become business strategists first, technicians and enablers of IT second. CIOs must create and launch new business models faster to keep their companies competitive. APIs are the fuel helping to make this happen.

The Urgency To Create New Business Models Is Driving API Proliferation

APIs (Application Programmer Interfaces) are the components that enable diverse platforms, apps, and systems to connect and share data with each other.  Think of APIs as a set of software modules, tools, and protocols that enable two or more platforms, systems and most commonly, applications to communicate with each other and initiate tasks or processes. APIs are essential for defining and customizing Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs) too. Cloud platform providers all have extensive APIs defined and work in close collaboration with development partners to fine-tune app performance using them. Amazon Web Services, Facebook, Google, Marketo, Salesforce, SAP Hybris, Twitter and thousands of other companies have APIs available. As of today, the Programmable Web lists 16,590 APIs in its database.

Removing The Hype By Benchmarking API Maturity

Senior management teams need to de-hype the entire issue of APIs as part of their broader business strategies before jumping in to create some of their own. In reality, many APIs are still nascent, emerging from a regular series of test and development cycles with developer partners. APIs also vary drastically regarding stability, reliability, and quality. The majority are aggregations of binary, relatively straightforward commands as they are the easiest to create.

Customer needs are driving the most efficient API development programs. Having a strong focus on the customer and being accountable for how the API’s quality turns out is essential. Customer-centric development is also forcing APIs to scale up faster, providing contextual intelligence and insight over completing simple tasks. These customer-centric APIs are driving greater maturity into development cycles, enabling quicker maturity of API code bases across the board. The following Cloud Platform API Maturity Model provides the context of how APIs must progress to provide greater contextual intelligence to enable prescriptive and cognitive workflows.

api-fuel

What’s Driving 2017’s Ascent To Year Of The API Economy 
The factors driving 2017 to be the year of the API economy are larger than any pending IPO, recent acquisition or merger. They’re the shifts occurring in how APIs are consumed, integrated into platforms and enriched with greater potential to provide contextual intelligence for customers.  The following factors are contributing to APIs rapidly maturing in 2017:

  • Organizations and their IT teams are starting to focus more on unique API consumption strategies first. Being able to orchestrate different APIs together and enable entirely new business processes and models fast is what matters most. Orchestrating APIs and create real-time integration is a challenging task, however, especially between on-premise, legacy systems and cloud platforms and apps. A noteworthy company to watch in this area is enosiX who has proven expertise in providing real-time integration between Salesforce and SAP enterprise systems.
  • APIs are becoming enablers of omnichannel selling and service business models quickly. The most complex APIs are being built within B2B companies who have the goal of providing a contextually intelligent real-time experience across all the channels they sell through. This is a daunting task and one that would be more efficient if each channel’s unique needs to the persona level were taken into account first.
  • The best APIs are starting to reflect requirements to the persona and customer journey level. Individual persona needs must drive API development, and this encompasses the device(s) they use, apps they regularly work with and the workflows across all apps on a platform. When an app or platform provider has anticipated the persona needs and charted customer journeys, it shows in the APIs created. The APIs reflect customer preferences much more clearly and are more efficient in delivering great apps as a result. Providing an API code base that has these features accelerates new app development and opens entirely new channels for selling.

Bottom Line: APIs are most valuable for creating new business models and streamlining selling strategies across all channels. The greatest revenue potential they provide is removing barriers to growing revenue by integrating platforms and apps so organizations can quickly launch new business models and scale fast.

Five Reasons Why Every CIO Needs An Integration Roadmap In 2017

The difference between CIOs who lead and those caught in never-ending reactionary cycles is often a strategic IT plan and integration roadmap. It’s the CIOs who take the time to create and pursue an integration roadmap that has the greatest chance of breaking out of always reacting to IT projects and leading them instead. That’s because the majority of inbound requests center on data, reports or analysis only deliverable by integrating two or more systems together.

Five Ways Integration Roadmaps Are Putting CIOs Back In Control

Based on conversations with CIOs across a variety of industries including manufacturing, distribution, aerospace, financial services, and retailing, five factors emerged that led to creating integration roadmaps and getting in control of IT spending and priorities. I’ve summarized these five factors below:

  1. Integration roadmaps are proving to be an effective catalyst for driving purpose-optimized integration strategies, reducing middleware costs in the process. CIOs who create and continually improve their integration roadmaps are prioritizing purpose-optimized integration strategies to more efficiently scale global operations. Creating real-time integration links between SAP and Salesforce is one example of how CIOs are using purpose-driven integration to reduce customer response times for information, improving customer satisfaction in the process.  Enabling real-time, bi-directional data updates without requiring complex middleware coding and mapping of data is a challenging task, and innovative startups including enosiX are excelling in this area today.
  1. Defining a path for reducing ETL spending and dependence on logs to troubleshoot errors and measure performance.Reducing their dependence on ETL is giving CIOs and their teams much more flexibility in how they manage IT It is also freeing up system analysts to work on new projects instead of troubleshooting integration issues. With no automated error handling or recovery mechanisms, many CIOs are gradually phasing ETL out for more modern integration technologies that eliminate error logs altogether.
  1. Investing in the latest technologies that enable business process and application logic is making IT more responsive, helping them break out of a bureaucratic reputation. When I asked CIOs about the best way to increase responsiveness to internal customers, they wanted integration technologies capable of scaling across the back office and selling systems to make them more responsive. By having integration technologies that enable business process and application logic, the time-consuming, and often error-filled, the task of enabling new business processes manually goes away. And, when IT can react faster, their bureaucratic reputation is also on the way out too.
  1. Choosing to reduce and eliminate hand-built adapters and connectors from their IT infrastructures to free up support funds and time on urgent IT project needs today. One large-scale industrial equipment manufacturer has a staff of software developers and engineers who do nothing but keep adapters and connectors written in ABAP running across their ERP, Manufacturing Execution Systems, quality management, and supply chain systems. With production centers in the Midwestern US, China, and Europe, the ABAP team is always busy but never innovating. They are just ‘keeping the lights on.’ Having an integration roadmap is going to get this manufacturer out of the situation they are in today, which is draining dollars and time from IT.
  1. Move closer to quantifying the value IT delivers by showing how an integration roadmap provides support for cutting maintenance costs, consolidating apps and introducing new platforms. The ROI of IT often hinges on how effective CIOs are at reducing costs and still delivering a median or average level of service. By having a plan in place to attack integration challenges and costs, CIOs can immediately prioritize steps to improve service, reduce costs, and attain department and corporate goals.

Originally published on the enosiX blog, Five Reasons Why Every CIO Needs An Integration Roadmap In 2017. 

Analytics, Data Storage Will Lead Cloud Adoption In 2017

  • cioU.S.-based organizations are budgeting $1.77M for cloud spending in 2017 compared to $1.30M for non-U.S. based organizations.
  • 10% of enterprises with over 1,000 employees are projecting they will spend $10M or more on cloud computing apps and platforms throughout this year.
  • Organizations are using multiple cloud models to meet their business’s needs, including private (62%), public (60%), and hybrid (26%).
  • By 2018 the typical IT department will have the minority of their apps and platforms (40%) residing in on-premise systems.

These and many other insights are from IDG’s Enterprise Cloud Computing Survey, 2016. You can find the 2016 Cloud Computing Executive Summary here and a presentation of the results here.  The study’s methodology is based on interviews with respondents who are reporting they are involved with cloud planning and management across their organizations. The sampling frame includes audiences across six IDG Enterprise brands (CIO, Computerworld, CSO, InfoWorld, ITworld and Network World) representing IT and security decision-makers across eight industries. The survey was fielded online with the objective of understanding organizational adoption, use-cases, and solution needs for cloud computing. A total of 925 respondents were interviewed to complete the study.

Key takeaways include the following:

  • The cloud is the new normal for enterprise apps, with 70% of all organizations having at least one app in the cloud today. 75% of enterprises with greater than 1,000 employees have at least one app or platform running in the cloud today, leading all categories of adoption measured in the survey. 90% of all organizations today either have apps running in the cloud are planning to use cloud apps in the next 12 months, or within 1 to 3 years. The cloud has won the enterprise and will continue to see the variety and breadth of apps adopted accelerating in 2017 and beyond.

use-of-cloud-technology-continuously-expanding

 

  • Business/data analytics and data storage/data management (both 43%) are projected to lead cloud adoption in 2017 and beyond. 22% of organizations surveyed are predicting that business/data analytics will be the leading cloud application area they will migrate to in the next twelve months. 21% are predicting data storage/data management apps are a high priority area for their organizations’ cloud migration plans in 2017. Three of the market leaders in analytics are Tableau, QlikView and Microsoft Power BI. They are analyzed in this recent post from SelectHub, accessible here.

data-storage-and-analytics-moving-to-the-cloud

 

  • 28% of organizations’ total IT budgets is dedicated to cloud computing next year. Of that, 45% is allocated to SaaS, 30% to IaaS and 19% to PaaS. The average investment organizations will make in cloud computing next year is $1.62M, with enterprises over 1,000 employees projected to spend $3.03M. The average investment in cloud computing remains constant in organizations with $1.62M invested in 2014, $1.56M in 2015 and $1.62M in 2016. 10% of enterprises with over 1,000 employees are projecting they will spend $10M or more on cloud computing apps and platforms throughout this year.

cloud-budget

 

  • CIOs, IT architects and IT networking/management control cloud spending in the enterprise. In contrast, CEOs, CIOs, and CFOs are driving small and medium business (SMB) cloud spending this year. The following graphic compares how influential the following groups and individuals are in the cloud computing purchase process.

cloud-investment

 

  • Just 46% of organizations are using Application Programmer Interfaces (APIs) to integrate with databases, messaging systems, portals or storage components. 40% are using them for creating connections to the application layer of their cloud and the underlying IT infrastructures. The following graphic provides insights into how APIs are being used and which teams see the most value in them.

apis

 

  • In 18 months the majority of organizations’ IT infrastructures will be entirely cloud-based. IDG found that in 18 months nearly one-third (28%) of all organizations interviewed will be relying on private clouds as part of their IT infrastructure. Just over a fifth (22%) will have public cloud as part of their IT infrastructure, and 10% will be using hybrid By 2018 the typical IT department will have the minority of their apps and platforms (40%) residing in on-premise systems.

it-shifts-to-the-cloud

 

  • Concerns about where data is stored (43%), cloud security (41%) and vendor lock-in (21%) are the top three challenges organizations face when adopting public cloud technologies. Private and hybrid cloud adoption in organizations is also facing the challenges of cloud security and vendor lock-in. Private and hybrid cloud adoption are being slowed by a lack of the right skill sets to manage and gain the maximum value from cloud investments.

challenges

Five Strategies For Improving Customer Relationships Using Salesforce Integration

Bottom line: Defining salesforce integration strategies from the customers’ perspective that streamline every aspect of their relationship with your company drives greater revenue, earns trust and creates upsell and cross-sell opportunities in the future.

In the most competitive selling situations the company that has exceptional insights into what matters most to prospects and customers win the most deals. It’s not enough to just have a CRM system that is hard-wired into the core customer-facing processes of a business. To win more sales cycles companies are getting the most from every system they have available. From SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems to legacy pricing, operations, services, pricing, and CRM systems, companies winning more deals today can use Salesforce integration as a catalyst for driving more revenue.

Five Strategies For Improving Customer Relationships Using Salesforce Integration

  1. Making the Configure-Price-Quote (CPQ) process more efficient for customers and prospects by integrating ERP data into every quote. Today speed is a feature every system must have to stay competitive. Being able to create quotes that include the date the proposed configuration will ship and coordinate with services and programs delivery while providing order status from ERP systems is winning deals today. The tighter the ERP system integration, the better the quote accuracy in a CPQ system and the higher the chance of winning a sale. The following table shows the many benefits of having a well-integrated CPQ process.

business-impact-of-an-integrated-cpq-process

  1. Creating an omni-channel experience for customers needs to start with ERP, legacy, 3rd party and Salesforce integration that sets the foundation to exceed customer experiences daily. Providing a unified experience across every channel is challenging yet attainable, with market leaders using a series of integration strategies to provide this level of insight so customers’ expectations are exceeded in every single interaction. Only by integrating CRM systems including Salesforce with SAP ERP systems can any company hope to deliver a consistent, excellent series of experiences across all channels, all the time.
  1. Set up sales teams for exceptional performance with tightly integrated mobile apps that accelerate sales cycles. By using mobile apps that integrate SAP ERP systems, Salesforce CRM, and legacy systems into simplified, highly efficient workflows, sales teams can close more deals without having to come back to their offices.  Senior management teams can get more done using mobile apps that are an extension of their SAP ERP systems as well. Mobile apps are revolutionizing productivity thanks to SAP and Salesforce integration.
  1. Attaining high product quality levels that exceed customer expectations by providing every manufacturing department real-time visibility into quality inspections and inventory control. By integrating inbound inspection, inventory control, and quality management data across manufacturing, Bunn can deliver products that exceed customer expectations. Bunn’s product quality inspectors can perform and record results right at the machines being tested. The warehouse management system can scan and record inventory counts in real time to SAP. Maintaining high levels of product quality are what make Bunn’s beverage equipment machines a market standard globally today.
  1. Making new product launches more successful by having a tightly integrated approach to selling, producing and servicing new products that are in step with customers’ changing needs. From apparel to high-tech and financial services, customers are rapidly redefining which channels they choose to purchase through, how they choose to customize products, and which services they prefer to bundle in.  Integrating Salesforce, e-commerce and ERP systems into a single, unified workflow that is designed to provide customers exactly what they need is essential for enabling new product launches to succeed. With an integrated system across Salesforce, ERP, distribution and pricing systems, new product launches can scale globally quicker and still allow for personalization to customers’ unique preferences.  Salesforce integration is essential for successful new product introductions as the entire launch process gains speed, scale, and simplicity as a result.

Originally published on the enosiX blog, Five Strategies For Improving Customer Relationships Using Salesforce Integration. 

6M Developers Are Creating Big Data And Advanced Analytics Apps Today

  • analytics-development2M developers are working on IoT applications, increasing 34% since the last year.
  • Over 50% of the developers working on IoT applications are writing software that utilizes sensors in some capacity.
  • 4M enterprise developers play decision-making roles when it comes to selecting organizational IT development resources. Another 5.2 million hold decision-making authority for selecting IT deployment resources.
  • 4M developers (26% of all developers globally) are using the cloud as a development environment today
  • The APAC region leads the world with approximately 7.4M developers today, followed by EMEA with 7.2M, North America with 4.4M and Latin American with 1.9M.

These and many other fascinating insights are from the Evans Data Corporation Global Developer Population and Demographic Study 2016 (PDF, client access) published earlier this week. The methodology Evans Data has created to produce this report is the most comprehensive developed for aggregating, analyzing and predicting developer populations globally. The study combines Evans Data’s proprietary global developer population modeling with the current results of their semi-annual global developer survey.

Key takeaways from the study include the following:

  • 6M developers (29% of all developers globally) are involved in a Big Data and Advanced Analytics project today. An additional 25% of developers, or 5.3M, are going to begin Big Data and Advanced Analytics projects within the next six 13% or 2.6M of all developers globally are going to start Big Data and Advanced Analytics projects within the next 7 to 12 months.  The following graphic provides an overview of the involvement of 21M developers in Big Data and Advanced Analytics projects today. Please click on the image to expand for easier viewing.

involvement in big data analytics

  • 4M developers (26% of all developers globally) are using the cloud as a development environment today. Developers creating new apps in the cloud had increased 375% since Evans began measuring developer participation in mobile development in 2009 when just slightly more than 1.2M developers were using the cloud as their development platform. 4.5M developers (21% of all global developers) plan on beginning app development on cloud platforms in the next six months, and 3.9M (18% of all global developers) plan on starting development on the cloud in 7 – 12 months. Please click on the image to expand for easier viewing.

plans for cloud development

  • 8M developers in APAC (24% of all developers in the region) are currently developing on cloud platforms. 29% of APAC developers are planning to start cloud-based development in six months, and 20% in 7 – 12 months. The following graphic compares the number of developers currently using the cloud as a development environment today and the number who plan to in the future. Please click on the image to expand for easier viewing.

plans for cloud development by region

  • 34% of all Commercial Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) globally today (1.8M developers) are using the cloud as a development environment. An additional 1.4M are planning to begin cloud development in the next six months.  28% of developers globally creating apps in the cloud are from custom system integrators (SI) and value-added resellers (VARs).  23% or approximately 1.2M are from enterprises.  The following graphic compares the percent of developers by developer segment who are currently creating new apps in cloud environments. Please click on the image to expand for easier viewing.

Plans for cloud development by developer segment

  • 30% of developers (6.2M developers globally) are currently developing software for connected devices or the Internet of Things today, with an additional 26% planning to begin projects in 6 months. Evans Data found that this increased 34% over the last year. Also, 2.1M developers plan to begin development in this area within the next 7 to 12 months. The following graphic compares the number of developers globally by stage of development for creating software for connected devices or the Internet of Things. Please click on the image to expand for easier viewing.

Plans for Internet of Things Development

  • 41% of global developers creating connected device and IoT software today are from 27% are from North America, 24% are from EMEA and 7% from Latin America.  There are 6,072,048 developers currently working on connected device and IoT software today globally.  The following graphic provides an overview of the distribution of developers creating connected device and IoT software by region today. Please click on the image to expand for easier viewing.

Development for Connected Devices By Region

  • 34% of developers actively creating software for connected devices or the Internet of Things work for custom System Integrators (SI) and VARs today. ISVs are the next largest segment of developers working on IoT projects (30%) followed by enterprises (21%). The following graphic provides an overview of the global base of developers creating software for connected devices and IoT. Evans Data found there are 6.1M developers currently creating apps and solutions in this area alone. Please click on the image to expand for easier viewing.

Development for connected devices by developer segment 2

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