Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion. - Jack Welch
A technologist at my core, I'm rarely impressed with some of the "innovation" that is pumped out and promoted each day from Silicon Valley. But, a few years ago, I stumbled upon a technology that fundamentally changed the economics of a business, demonstrating real business impact in a way that I'd never seen before. I knew that Delphix was onto something...but I wasn't sure if people were ready.
Why? The fact is that, as people yearn to reduce cost and improve overall efficiency, they can often lose focus of the bigger picture.
I work with a lot of major corporations and what I hear often is, "We need to show hard cost savings to make a purchase of technology like Delphix." Delphix can surely show hard cost savings in storage, server, and database license utilization, but is that really where the biggest savings are realized? As an industry, we have spent a lot of time over the past decade squeezing every last dime out of infrastructure with virtualization technology.
It's the data that has been left behind.
Is a focus on hard cost savings causing you to miss out on the mother lode, to not see what can be? For most companies with whom I have worked, the answer is yes. In today's world, every corporation needs to be a software company to remain competitive. Getting new enhancements to market or creating revenue-impacting functionality becomes even more critical. To take it a step further, there are a number of areas in which businesses feel constrained in this Software Economy. Examples might include a DBA looking to recover from user corruption, the need for applications DBAs to serve up environments with limited resources, slow and painful access to data for developers, or a senior manager worried about all these things that needs to ensure data that is delivered quickly and securely. It can seem overwhelming, but it doesn't have to be.
It seems no matter what we do, data is always the slowest gear in the corporate machine; yet, ironically, it is without a doubt the most critical asset to survival. And you can generate big savings when you let data move at the speed of your other business functions.
This transformation has benefits that far exceed the savings realized with infrastructure reduction. When you can deliver applications faster with higher quality and eliminate the constraints that data has historically provided, everything becomes more efficient and everyone moves faster. This is the mother lode. Information technology leaders need to have vision for transformation from the outset, focused on continuous improvement that has real impact on on the business.
Part II: Through Transformational Leadership, You Can Change the Game
If you look up the Wikipedia definition of transformational leadership, it is described as, "A style of leadership where the leader works with employees to identify the needed change, creating a vision to guide the change through inspiration, and executing the change in tandem with committed members of the group."
Does your organization have such a leader? Is this person able to recognize the challenges - and opportunities of data? Can s/he understand the need to change the way data is managed, secured, delivered, and used throughout the organization? If they recognize this need, now we must see if they have vision. You need to test their vision and their commitment to change that makes a difference. But, how can you tell if they are really on board?
Start by explaining that you have identified a technology that can take in source data from production databases, files and applications. It can keep them in sync with production. The data can be secured and served out to anyone in the enterprise or in the cloud in minutes. It can be assigned to end-users as a federated unit who are given the power to bookmark, branch, share, reset or refresh without a ticket or involvement from IT. Anyone in the organization who relies on data to perform their daily functions basically has a DVR for data and it can all be accomplished while decreasing the infrastructure footprint and improving operational efficiency.
If your enterprise is missing this type of transformational leadership, maybe it should looked at it as an opportunity. Even with the vision there still needs to be a leader who can inspire and execute on vision. Opportunity is knocking at your door and all you need to do is open it.
Once Delphix is a part of your organization, you will begin to notice a fundamental shift from "business as usual." You begin to see data flowing freely like water, available to anyone in any place at any time on-demand. You can see that immediately you eliminate the need for environment build and tear down. You eliminate the need for backups/restores or export/import to populate an environment post build. You immediately eliminate the need for tickets from end-users looking for an environment refresh or backup, or the need for IT to even be involved. You have a data platform that can secure and manage all the data for the enterprise, whether on premise or in the cloud. You have turned an obstacle into an opportunity.
The vision only gets better. Achieving complete end to end automation, you have changed the way the team works and what the business is capable of. With full RESTful API's, all the time previously spent on data management and delivery can now be redeemed on end-to-end automation with integration into ticketing, compliance, DevOps, BR/DR, governance and IT reporting systems.
At our company kick off event recently, we had the pleasure of having Scott Spradley, the CIO of HP Enterprise, speak. He used Delphix to accelerate the splitting of a 100-Billion-dollar business into two 50 Billion dollar companies. He said that accomplishing this split could not have been completed in the time it was without Delphix. Read the story HPE Wins the CIO100 award using Delphix Technology. This is real impact. He also made a statement that anyone out there who considers themselves a visionary and innovative technologist should be paying attention to. "Everyone in IT should have Delphix".
Bottom line, technology that solves data constraints can truly transform a business, and Delphix is the enabler for this transformation. Removing data as a constraint provides the benefits of fast, reliable, secure data, something worth its bytes in gold. In a world where businesses rely on data to compete - and win - no organization should be without Delphix.