Five Shades Darker? – What The Diageo “Indirect Access” Judgement Really Means For SAP Customers

Duncan Jones

At last, exactly two years later, the long-awaited sequel to my hit, if overly censored, blog post: Five Shades Of Grey (How software buyers and license managers should be compliant without being submissive). The trigger is the SAP vs Diageo verdict, which generated a lot of hysterical blogging and tweeting with dire predictions for SAP customers. IMO most commentators have overlooked the crucial parts of the judgment and therefore significantly overstated the case’s negative implications for SAP customers. I believe the judgement has actually made this grey area slightly more black-and-white. My analysis, subject to the usual IANAL disclaimer, is that the real implications are:

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What Exactly The Heck Are Prescriptive Analytics?

Mike Gualtieri

Prescriptive analyticsPrescriptive analytics is about using data and analytics to improve decisions and therefore the effectiveness of actions. Isn’t that what all analytics should be about? A hearty “yes” to that because, if analytics does not lead to more informed decisions and more effective actions, then why do it at all? Many wrongly and incompletely define prescriptive analytics as the what comes after predictive analytics. Our research indicates that prescriptive analytics is not a specific type of analytics, but rather an umbrella term for many types of analytics that can improve decisions. Think of the term “prescriptive” as the goal of all these analytics — to make more effective decisions — rather than a specific analytical technique. Forrester formally defines prescriptive analytics as:

"Any combination of analytics, math, experiments, simulation, and/or artificial intelligence used to improve the effectiveness of decisions made by humans or by decision logic embedded in applications."

Prescriptive Analytics Inform And Evolve Decision Logic Whether To Act (not not act) And What Action To Take

Prescriptive analytics can be used in two ways:

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Scifi Version Of AI Is Not Available Yet

Mike Gualtieri

Spark Summit East came to Boston this year and I was there to enjoy it including being interviewed by Dave Vallente and George Gilbert about Apache Spark and AI on The Cube. We talk about the waning of the term "Big Data" , but get quickly into the future of AI and Apache Spark.

Get ready for Business Intelligence market next wave of M&A

Boris Evelson

Business intelligence (BI) is a runaway locomotive that keeps picking up speed in terms of enterprise interest, adoption, and spending levels. The result: Forrester now tracks 73(!) vendors in the segment. Their architectures and user interfaces vary, but they support similar use cases. Forrester started the original research with fewer than 30 vendors in 2014 and ended up with 73 in the current 2017 update. Expect this dynamic to continue for the foreseeable future. Even though the BI market is quite mature from the point of view of the number of players and breadth and depth of their functionality, it is still quite immature regarding business and technology maturity, adoption, and penetration levels in user organizations. Vendors will continue to seize this opportunity — new players will keep springing up, and large vendors will continue to acquire them.No market, even a $16.5 billion market, can support 73 vendors.

Futurology Episode 4: The Future of The Connected Workplace

Michael Facemire

This post was authored by Claudia Tajima, Researcher at Forrester.

 

On the second part of the forth episode of our Futurology webinar series, Mike Facemire, Julie Ask and James McQuivey convened to discuss the future of the connected workplace. Looking forward, they discussed what change in the workplace will look like and what it will take to get there.

See WEBINAR: Forrester Futurology Episode IV: The Future Of Me (Part 2).

 

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This Valentine’s Day, Pause and Appreciate Flower Logistics...

Phoenix Zhang

Over the past few days, Boston has been slammed by multiple snow storms.  This causes challenges for my pending flight to San Jose, but another deadline looms:  some roses might not be able to make it to Boston on time for Valentine's Day. Only someone deeply concerned with Supply Chain and Logistics worries about delivery time on Valentine’s Day. But perhaps we all should:  it could very easily shape whether you get a kiss or the cold shoulder for Valentine’s Day tomorrow.

According to IPSOS floral tracking study, cut, fresh flowers take center stage for three holidays:  Christmas, Mother's Day and Valentine's Day[i].  The US imported 976 million cut flower stems in advance of Valentine’s Day last year, between January 1 and February 14.[ii] You might guess these flowers are from the Netherlands. However, the Netherlands supplied only 2% of all imported volume. Seventy-one percent of Valentine's Day flowers came from Colombia alone and 19% from Ecuador. 

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Will The RSA Conference 2017 Make You A Better Security Pro?

Chris McClean

Today kicks off what’s always an exciting week for the infosec industry; in between meeting old and new friend at the RSA Conference, we’ll hopefully hear about practical new ideas, technologies, and opportunities for better managing information risk. Coincidentally, I’m proud to announce a new report highlighting the best tactics CISOs and security leaders are using to elevate their game:  How To Become A Superstar Security Leader. Will we hear any practical advice like this at the conference?

So far, so good. This morning in Moscone West, I already heard some great stories of cooperation at the Practical Intelligence Sharing: ISACs and ISAOs sessions, with a kick off from our own Laura Koetzle. In the (14!) years I’ve been to RSA previously, I’ve seen far too many technology vendors touting new partnerships and technical cure-alls and far too few case study examples like this of innovation helping CISOs do their jobs better. I’m cautiously optimistic things will be better this year.

So for the rest of the week, I’ll be looking past announcements of new products, acquisitions, and alliances; keeping an eye out instead for real-world examples and results. If you’re interested to hear Forrester’s take on the most interesting things we hear at the conference, register for our webinar here: Top Security Trends From The RSA Conference 2017.

And throughout the week, if you see or hear anything you think we should look into, please let us know!

Top Trends For CRM In 2017 - It's All About Differentiated (Digital) Experiences

Kate Leggett

We’re firmly in the age of the customer, where customers - not executives - decide how customer-centric their companies are. And while good customer experiences can help control costs, executives are more interested in their potential to fuel sustainable top-line growth.

Forrester defines CRM as:

The business processes and supporting technologies that support the key activities of targeting, acquiring, retaining, understanding, and collaborating with customers.

CRM is the foundational building block of a company's customer experience strategy to win, serve, and retain customers. It enables new business strategies, integrates to many technologies and is constantly rejuvenated by new trends. Here are 4 of the 10 trends that we see in CRM in 2017.

Customers want to easily connect with, interact with, make purchases from, or get service from a company.  For example, 72% of customers say that valuing their time is the most important thing that a company can do to provide them with good service. Companies must offer customers ways to easily engage with them to foster an ongoing omnichannel dialogue and relationship that strengthen loyalty and retention. And they will reap the rewards: Omnichannel customers are more active, spend more, and are less expensive to support than single-channel customers.

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Forrester’s First CPQ Wave Addresses The Tech Needs Of The Empowered Buyer

John Bruno

If you’re in a B2B environment, you’ve undoubtedly noticed the changing behaviors of your customers in recent years. As a result, technologies have shifted their focus to get closer to the customer and I'm not talking about just CRM or SFA. With a flurry of acquisitions and new entrants to the CPQ market popping up regularly, we decided to tighten the aperture and evaluate the top 11 CPQ vendors in The Forrester Wave™: Configure-Price-Quote Solutions, Q1 2017. These vendors do the most to address the rising, empowered B2B buyer. Below are some of the key findings from the report:

  • Customer and buyer experiences become a priority. CPQ is not about engineers. It’s not even about sellers anymore. CPQ is about the customer, and in this case that means both the end buyer of your products and the customers of your technology (indirect channels selling on your behalf) expect easy and effective interactions. CPQ is now a key enabler to delivering a high quality customer experience.

  • CPQ has no channel limitations. CPQ is not, I repeat, is not a back office solution anymore. It’s long addressed the needs of front line sales reps, and now it extends its functionality to all available channels. This means companies can extend the same business rules and logic to indirect channels (i.e. partners, dealers, distributors, etc.), customer service reps, eCommerce sites, and even emerging channels like IoT devices.

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I'm Starting An Insight Platforms-as-a-service Wave - Who Should Be Included?

Brian  Hopkins

Technology buyers have made it clear to us they want platforms for building data analytics applications. I call these insight platforms, and they were the No. 1 emerging technology of interest for enterprise architects in 2016.  Understanding why is easy — insight platforms provide a common toolset and a place to run what you have built. They accelerate both time-to-value and agility, which are crucially important for keeping up with markets and customers. See Tame The Beast: Forrester's Insight Platform Vendor Landscape and Want To Create Action From Big Data? Look At Enterprise Insight Platform Suites for more information.

Since using more public cloud is the No .1 big data priority, according to our 2016 survey of 3,000+ data and analytics decision makers, Insight Platforms-as-a-Service are next on my Forrester Wave™ agenda. We define Insight Platforms-as-a-service at multitenant platform-as-a-service cloud offerings that include tools for data management, several types of analytics and technology that help firms operationalize insight in other software and processes.

I already know the biggest players - Google, Amazon, Microsoft, IBM and Oracle - but I’m also looking for other providers who want to give them a run for their money. Who else I should look at? For example, should I include:

  • Business service providers like FICO? They can lay claim to having an insight PaaS, and they definitely want a piece of Amazon’s cloud business.
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