The Service-Oriented Business: Part 2

Fast forward four years. It’s 2009. Remember that you’re Sara, the CIO of a mid-to-large retail company. You have many accomplishments that the business leadership team (and Board of Directors) has recognized: a streamlined supply-chain management system that reduces costs and out-of-stock conditions in stores, expanded your ecommerce presence to Europe, and improved the service…


The Service-Oriented Business: Part 1

It’s 2005 Imagine you’re Sara, the CIO of your retail company with 10,000 employees. You have 500 employees within IT reporting to you. Your manager, Fred, the CFO, calls you into your office and asks: “Sara, how many applications does IT support?” My first thoughts (as Sara) are: “why is he asking? Is there a…

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Using metrics to, you know, actually measure stuff?…that’s crazy talk!

A fundamental part of the work we do on our team is to measure things: the costs of deploying desktops, the business value of an application lifecycle management solution, the costs of managing a virtualized server environment, etc. In doing this, we aim to drive scenarios that amplify the value that our future products will…

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Information Management – what do the real costs look like ?

As the cloud environment moves from its conceptual state to a real living breathing reality, it brings with it a deep dependency to an area of IT that I predict will become central to how effectively the capability of the cloud is utilized. This same dependency underpins datacenter growth and change as well. That area…

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“Tier 1” Apps are Special…But At What Cost?

Greetings everyone, and happy-almost-spring. Lately I’ve been focusing on understanding the costs (in all its forms) of delivering and managing Tier 1 applications. For the sake of discussion, let’s define a “Tier 1” app in terms of reliability or “quality of service”. In a previous post, I discussed four tiers of criticality for enterprise applications….

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IT Maturity Is More Than Process Improvement

For years, IT industry consultancies as well as hardware and software vendors have talked about people, process, and technology as the three corners of the success triangle within an IT shop. And yet the various maturity models that exist haven’t yet married these three elements with the levels of maturity they describe. IT Maturity is…

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Practices vs. Processes

In the world of IT as in most industries, the term “Best Practice” is often used to describe a set of activities that a business would consider as representing the most effective set of activities for achieving a particular goal. But what about all those other activities that are not considered “best practice”? I would…

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Application Criticality

I recently completed a study of over 500 US-based customers in which I wanted to understand: what types of applications are being delivered and managed generally, how much does it cost to deliver and manage those applications how are web services being used how well are cloud computing solutions being adopted In my first post…

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Managing Services, not Apps

I’m currently conducting a study that looks at understanding how enterprise businesses build, deploy, and manage their line-of-business applications. As part of the study, I interchange the notion of an “Application” with a “Service”. The two are not really the same; in my world a “service” is an application that has added customer-focused attributes such…

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Web Services Adoption Increases – Management Focus Does Not

In a recent study of enterprise customers, I found that most reported an increase in the adoption of web services in the coming year. While that may not be a big surprise, what I found surprising was the lack of a commensurate focus on management practices of those services. Activities such as service discovery, implementations…

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