A few weeks ago government officials from all over the world gathered in Paris for a final push on a new global climate agreement known as COP21. This gives me the chance to highlight a favorite video clip from one of my heroes Neil deGrasse Tyson.
The video uses an analogy of a man and dog walking along a beach. It can be “almost impossible to predict what attracts the interest of the dog next” but De Grasse Tysone tells us if you want to observe the underlying pattern then “keep your eye on on the man, not the dog.”
Businesses are seeking new opportunity everywhere
So other than sharing a cool video what has this got to do with cloud platforms? Well dogs sniffing here, there and everywhere seems a very good analogy for how businesses are hunting for new opportunity in the new services economy we see all around us. But it feels like the early adoption of cloud apps has been like letting the dog off the leash. We’ve seen rapid adoption of new solutions but each one had different cloud technologies, security models, user interfaces and reporting tools – yes lots of running all over the beach but where was the man defining and controlling the overall direction? What should have been a rewarding journey along the beach turned into an uncontrolled, sometimes scary, free-for-all.
Platform provides the backbone
In this new age of digital disruption and rapidly changing markets, the IT strategy of a business needs to support quick reactions and speed. However, at the same time IT needs to provide the secure, scalable architecture to support growth over the long term. Quite simply the platform needs to be “the man” and provide the overall direction whilst enabling all parts of the company to keep hunting for new and better ways to do business.
The Salesforce platform allows our customers to handle that balance between enabling business agility while at the same time providing a shared set of common services on which the business can grow and evolve with Cloud ERP. Those common Salesforce services cover fundamentals such as:
- Identity, user access and two-factor authentication
- Single data security model across all apps
- Automated industrial strength audit trails
- Centralized approvals and workflow
But also the Salesforce platform provides services that are supporting innovation and new business models such as:
- Mobility of all data on smartphones and tablets.
- Embedded Chatter social feeds used across departments
- “Clicks not Code” in-house development tools
- Advanced analytics to identify trends and anomalies
A strategy to enable agility but keep on track
It might be impossible to predict what catches the attention of your business next but the Salesforce platform can provide the foundation to support wherever your company chooses to sniff out the next opportunity.