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This week BMC launched an initiative called New IT, which takes a set of integrated layered services and positions them as a way to recreate IT support using social and game tools.
This isn’t the kind of offering from a company that does mainframe related software and, in fact, that’s an ever smaller part of BMC’s business. The firm is transitioning itself, but will IT pros see the potential that BMC offers as a changed company to make IT more trendy? Or will IT continue to see BMC as it was and thus not recognize this new offering for what it is?
Perception is an interesting thing and the perceptions that surround BMC were hard won, but now work against the company as it moves to transition to new offerings and opportunities.
Let’s talk about that this week.
Technology is changing at a massive rate and both IT and the vendors that serve IT customers are often found struggling to keep up with those changes. BMC fell behind a few years back and has made a massive effort, in order to survive, to change its focus from the market that was to the market that is emerging.
The old market was rigid and focused on control; the new market is suddenly flexible, social, and far more dynamic than it was. Just like BMC, IT is under siege by services like Amazon Web Services which move to supplement and replace IT – often without IT’s permission or involvement – and devices coming under a wave called BYOD (Bring Your Own Device).
The end result is that BMC realized that not only did it need to change and change massively, if they were going to continue to serve IT they had to also assure that the IT model survived. This set in place a product plan focused on making IT more agile, relevant, and far more competitive with the wave of cloud services that are challenging all of the old models.
Their latest effort is called New IT and it encompasses a series of layered services that allow IT and its customers to embrace social networking to improve both customer satisfaction and service quality while dramatically lowering cost, using a derivative of the Apple model we used last decade.
That model had users networking to support other users and we found that, when done right, these user support networks improved user satisfaction and productivity while lowing support costs. Applying this to the wave of devices coming in seemed natural, and that is the direction BMC took with New IT.
Deployed properly it could go a long way to positioning IT for a future of ever more device variety while containing costs and maintaining customer satisfaction.
New BMC Image
But to truly be successful BMC must be viewed as a new BMC, a firm that leads in this IT transition and is not tied to its past mainframe focus. The same concepts it is enabling for other firms must be used widely inside the company, which must be the strongest demonstration of the benefits of using social networks and gamification broadly.
This can’t be something the company pitches but doesn’t itself do because the change is too great, and those that sell and support the tool must themselves be believers. BMC’s success will also be tied to the advocates that surround the service and share the benefits they have achieved, showcasing that the same tools that make IT more responsive can make BMC more successful.
In the end this is more than a change in product. This has to be a fundamental change in BMC and the way the firm is perceived to be successful.
BMC’s New IT offering could very well change IT from the stuck-in-the-mud organization that users often perceive, to the agile and responsive organization that current tools will allow it to be. But this will only happen if BMC becomes its own greatest example of success and people see BMC not for what it was, but for what it is becoming. A very different software and cloud services company.
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