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How analytics is helping IT vendors sell actual solutions

Rob Enderle | July 4, 2013
For decades, IT vendors have offered small 's' solutions that were really bundles of hardware, software and services that they wanted to sell regardless of what customers actually needed. Now firms such as Dell, IBM and EMC are using analytics to help customers decide which products are best for their needs. Oracle, HP and others struggling with big 'S' solutions may get left behind.

Why Analytics Makes All the Difference

This got me thinking: What has changed? Why is every major vendor but Oracle and HP on this same page? What made this set of vendors different? Then it hit me: Analytics.

EMC was among the first vendors to use big data analytics to define products and services, and improve customer loyalty. Now IBM and Dell are equally aggressive with internal analytics. Collectively, the three vendors show that numbers can change opinions and approaches.

On the other hand, Oracle can't really spell "analytics" yet, while HP is attempting a very difficult turnaround and hasn't internalized its analytics offerings as much as the other vendors.

To different degrees, the changed market view that analytics has provided Dell, IBM and EMC lets the firms focus much more closely on customers' problems. This is exactly what analytics is supposed to do. It isn't hype. This stuff really works.

The example being set here is that what's good for goose is good for the gander. When a vendor starts using a technology it's pitching internally and can then showcase the competitive advantage it offers, then that same technology is far more viable for the vendor's customers.

Even if you don't get that, understanding that major vendors are shifting to big "S" solutions that will increasingly be tied to your actual problems should give you confidence that your trust in those vendors isn't misplaced.


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