It’s time for resolutions and predictions…

January 15, 2013

HappyNewYearNot keeping up with it has not stopped anyone from making new year’s resolutions! Similarly fear of failing is not going to stop me from making new year predictions! 🙂 So here are my predictions for the new year, 

Suhas’ IT Predictions for 2013 (and beyond)

More Focus on Driving Business through Innovation

Until now enterprise IT has been busy making itself more relevant to business. This is why we would always see “better align IT with the business” listed as one of the top five goals in CIO surveys. 2013 will be the year where IT will have to step up from worrying about better alignment with the business and move on to driving more business through innovation. The role of Chief Information Officer needs to evolve into Chief Innovation Officer, a role that will prove very strategic for taking organizations to the next level. Successful CIOs will make this transition and use analytics to map future needs of the business.

IT Becomes Invisible and Magical

Running an IT organization today is in many ways like flying an aircraft. There are hundreds of controls and levers and it requires specialized knowledge and expertise. However, passengers that are flying in that plane want a very  simple, on demand, rich user interface to the services they desire. Most planes today have mastered the on-demand experience for the passengers but the pilots still deal with a complex cockpit. Wouldn’t IT be nice if the cockpit also evolves into a dashboard of a modern car? That way IT administrators are not having to look at hundreds of controls and are able to run IT with minimal effort. At the same time, we want to make the overall experience for the end users so seamless that they don’t even realize that there is an IT organization behind everything that they are consuming. This is what I call invisible IT, where for the end user, IT is almost not there because things just seem to work like magic. And for the IT professional, IT is simplified and easier to run! So my prediction, if you look beyond 2013, is that in next 10 years most IT departments as we know of them will not exist. They will become so good that they will become invisible and almost magical! 


A CTO’s global test drive

January 15, 2013

 

This article was published in CIO New Zealand. The link to this article is here, http://cio.co.nz/cio.nsf/news/a-ctos-global-test-drive

CIO-NZ

Some times these articles are no longer accessible on the main publisher web site. Hence I am reproducing it here for my readers,

A CTO’s global test drive By Divina Paredes

A challenge keeps cropping up each time Suhas Kelkar has to work in an offshore office of BMC.

“Where are the meeting rooms, where are the printers? What is the wi-fi setting?” says Kelkar, Asia Pacific chief technology officer for the software company and head of its global incubation team.

“These are common IT challenges employees face because they are now becoming more and more mobile,” says Kelkar.

Mining his experience and those of his IT colleagues, BMC’s global incubation team took on this issue. Kelkar says the team also factored in what he calls a “collision path” between enterprise IT users and the evolution of IT services they use.

People are bringing their expectations of consumer technology into enterprise IT, he says. “Enterprise IT is struggling to keep up with those expectations.”

This is confirmed by Joe Pucciarelli, vice president and IT executive advisor at IDC, who says the best consumer IT companies have taught people to expect a lot from their IT experience. But much of that is lost as companies strive to balance access with risk, and often without adequate resources.

“What employees receive instead is often compromised in comparison to what they have in their personal lives,” says Pucciarelli. This results in an “IT friction” which he says can add up to 20 percent of employee workload.

The incubation group at BMC worked on what it calls MyIT app which Kelkar says is now on a ‘test drive’ with his team, and then to the company’s 6000 IT staff across the globe before the year end. Commercial customers will be able to obtain it in April 2013.

Related article: The eternal startup

He says the app is highly personalised, location aware and “smart enough to know” what solutions are needed by the individual user. “They don’t feel they are not leaving the consumer world.”

He says merging the two processes is like “giving a facelift to enterprise IT”.

Kelkar says for the past 10 to 15 years, the company has been working on “industrialising the back end” of IT, standardising and automating IT practices.

“What we recognise in recent years is that we also now have to focus on the front end, the end users, because that is where the consumerisation of IT is happening.”

“Employees want IT organisations that provide a modern ‘store front’ for IT services and information delivery and a ‘genius bar’ ability to manage and control the IT services and information they need to do their jobs. IT organisations must respond to this change,” he says.

Kelkar says the uptake of mobile devices has highlighted this trend. “Everyone is adding more devices to their lives, and they all want to bring these into their work life. It is putting a lot of pressure on CIOs around the world” to meet these user expectations.

“It is consumerising the front end for enterprise IT, he says. “Most organisations are struggling and trying to do something in this space,” says Kelkar.

As an early user of MyIT, he says that whenever he walks into any BMC office across the globe, the wi-fi configuration and local office map get pushed out to him. The configuration of the local printer is also done automatically.

In the past, he says, he has to request for a service as simple as setting the wi-fi or printer.


Will your IT be as good as MyIT?

January 15, 2013

I had a chance to be part of an exciting world wide launch of MyIT. You can check out all about it at, http://myit.bmc.com. Here is my on-air live interview regarding MyIT, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pf8uFt-RphI

SkyBusinessNews


Learnings from the VCs

April 8, 2009

I had an opportunity to meet up with bunch of VC folks in BLR area. Here are my notes from those discussions.

  • dollar-signWhen funding VCs look for the core team to be in one place. It has been proven time and again that when the core team is together, success rates are higher.
  • 2/3rd of the companies that get VC funding don’t even return their capital money. This means that 7 out of 10 companies fail. This is actually an optimistic number than what I had read about Bay area startups which had a failure rate of 9 out of 10!
  • In most cases, VCs are interested in funding a company and exit in 4-5 years timeframe. As such they are looking to build a company that becomes a good acquisition target
  • VCs tend to invest in growing markets and also in larger markets! Market size should be more than $2-2.5 billion for VCs to get interested in it.
  • As per VCs, product companies should own IP. This means having patents!
  • VCs want to make $5-15 million investment and wants to know how you will reach $75-100 million mark!
  • Usually raising capital takes about 6-12 months time!

Some words of wisdom from a reputed VC from a reputed global VC company out of BLR

  • Articulate why you exist and then articulate why would you exist 5 years from now!
  • Parallelize Sales and Marketing Geographics first rather than build next set of features.
  • Have a 10 page price list. Longer price list means you have given enough thought to how to sell your product in various situations.
  • Always increase price with every new customer! The VC gave an example that after funding a start up they immediately doubled their product license price. Customers did not flinch and continued to flock. As per VCs, more often than not, founders tend to under price their products.
  • Rule of thumb for pricing discounts, if it costs $1 in US, then it should be priced 1 pound in UK, 1 euro in Europe and $0.60 in India/APAC
  • Don’t build a product because you love it. Build a product because your customers love it.
  • Second round of financing hurts founders more than the first round VCs

If you want to further look into what VCs are looking for then visit this link. It has point by point description of what VCs are looking for when evaluating an idea. Good luck for your next venture!