The WSJ recently ran an interesting article on the key challenges of moving to the cloud.
“When on-demand enterprise applications emerged about a decade ago, they were touted as a cheap and more flexible alternative to buying software outright – a move that comes with upfront infrastructure and licensing costs, on top of ongoing fees for maintenance, support, and upgrades. But in practice, these promises have been hard to fulfill”.
As part of my family’s annual exercise, I’ve spent the last couple of weekends doing some spring cleaning. As I remove loads and loads of accumulated junk at home, I cannot but wish I had stayed lean and had to manage less. This is a sentiment I’m sure most IT managers echo when they look at their portfolio. Cloud and subscription however, are changing that. Let us examine the effects of going to cloud licensing in the context of spring cleaning: staying lean, nimble and flexible.
Running Monetization? Let me explain.
My professional life is focused on software monetization; providing software companies with solutions to further monetize on their software offering. In my personal life, my hobby is running. I’m the traditional ISV of running. I started in primary school when I realized that I was born with a Unique Selling Proposition: endurance. While others would collapse on the sidewalk trying to release a side cramp, I just endured and came first.
Earlier today, SafeNet issued the following press release:
Sentinel® Products and Services Provide Developers with an Easy, Flexible Migration Path for Transitioning from On-Premise-Only to Hybrid or SaaS-Only Delivery Models
Ever since software systems have been around, people have been working to connect them together to get added benefit. Sometimes that leads to large integrated all-in-one systems, sometimes it leads to efforts to standardise API’s and communications protocols and it almost always leads to lots of professional services.
In the cloud though, that’s changing. One of the most innovative companies I have seen is Boomi (now Dell Boomi). Their website does a better job of explaining their value proposition, but essentially it translates communications between systems – kind of like the Babel Fish (from HHGTTG), but for software.
Great companies consider and plan for the whole user experience – the product, its price, how its purchased, updates through its life and the service and support provided.
In the days when products were purchased up front – and the monetary relationship came to a close – all the burden was on the buyer to research, plan and hope that, after parting with their money (monetization ends), the product will have met and continued to meet or exceed their expectations. Because the customer experience often falls below this mark – and yes, sometimes with enterprise software – the dynamics of the buyer/vendor relationship are changing.
Two recent events caused me to stop and consider whether piracy could be considered good for business.
The first example involves a children’s book. You may have heard of this particular book as it’s causing something of a stir. “Go the XXXX to Sleep” is written as a humorous book (a “Children’s book for Adults” per the author) that focuses on the difficulties some parents face when it comes to getting their children to sleep.
What’s remarkable is that it managed to grab the number 1 slot on Amazon’s bestseller list – a month before release. However, what makes it even more remarkable is
“It works, but it is old school”. That is how I’ve heard many business leaders describe their longstanding licensing implementations lately. So what is next for this space? As a long time software licensing business and implementation consultant I have the opportunity work with some of the industry’s leading minds in this area and can confidently say that I have seen the future of software license enforcement and it revolves around, you guessed it, the cloud.
In March we officially released Sentinel Cloud Services, the industry’s first and only software licensing and entitlement management solution delivered “from the cloud for the cloud”. In prior issues I have discussed some of the growing trends toward SaaS-based applications and the shift away from on-premise software from both an internal perspective and end user experience. At this moment, I want to assume that a large percentage of our customers have already embraced the benefits of SaaS and are beginning to think about transitioning some of their offerings to the cloud.