In my previous post, The Whole Is More Than The Sum Of Its Parts, I began explaining why I feel organizations need to be aware of how they purchase, implement and maintain software in their environments by centering on solutions rather than a number of disparate point products. I explained that, if organizations evaluate their software implementations in this way, they are better serving the needs of their business as a whole by allowing for:
- Provided value to your organization through a more efficient use of technology
- Purchasing under a single (or at least fewer) SKUs
- IT Operational efficiency gains (by leveraging similar product management interfaces)
- Volume licensing discounts
I used the example of Microsoft and specifically System Center 2012, explaining how this solution can provide complete management of an IT environment. Now, I would like to change my focus to end-users and to the soon to be released Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, Windows Surface and the concept of the Unified User Experience. The essential idea is that irrespective of the device the user is accessing their data, the user experience would feel the same, behave the same, and draw on similar usage patterns. Likewise, these devices (because of the unified code base of Windows 8) will all follow a similar design structure and architecture (added efficiencies for application developers and support teams). So in theory (and much of this is possible today even with pre-release versions of the software), this will translate to users being able to start a conversation on their tablet and finish it on their laptop or phone or write a document on their laptop and edit it on the way to work on their mobile device while collaborating (in real time) with co-workers. This will all be done with, essentially, with two tools: 1) Windows 8 and 2) Microsoft Office. What organization wouldn’t want this? I know I want this!
So, now getting back to the point of all this, to …provide value to your organization through the efficient use of technology to solve a business issue or add strategic value. How have we accomplished this? Well, with the use of Microsoft System Center 2012, we have:
- Gained overall operational efficiencies, giving IT staff headroom to be more strategic to drive strategic business value through the internal IT channel. This goes a long way in repositioning internal IT from a cost center to a business unit that adds to the bottom line.
With the future implementation of Windows 8 (on the desktop, companion devices and phone), we have:
- Unified the end user experience, which should decrease the gradient of the learning curve of having to learn to operate different devices with different operating systems and different line of business applications, translating to increased end user satisfaction which equals increase end user productivity.
Even though I live in Seattle, where it’s cloudy (in some form or another) nearly 300 days every year, the future outlook for leveraging technology solutions in enterprises that truly drive value looks pretty sunny.