Jadore-RougeInformation management has rapidly developed into an enterprise discipline that attracts business and IT management attention, and consequently, budgets. Proliferation of technology enabled habits and process flow changes mean corporate information assets now reside not only in enterprise databases but also the cloud, email and instant message archives, video and audio recordings and social media accounts. Traditional approaches to steer corporate information development have struggled to keep up with the pace of changing patterns across creation, analysis and sharing. Most organisations now accept they need to tackle the issue at multiple fronts. At HP’s Services update last week, we were struck by the stark reality of what this means for engagements.

In an earlier analysis, we discussed HP’s heritage of meeting storage demands on various platforms and with a choice of QOS. Not surprising then that its storage consulting portfolio is fully formed, and comprises:

  1. Strategy and discovery – as part of the infrastructure service portfolio, HP targets lower costs and higher operational efficiency through design support that covers storage infrastructure renewal, secure data back up and archiving to keep up with compliance requirements and tiering data.
  2. Planning and assessments – In our storage hypervisor study user interviews thus far, fear of risk during migration was the most cited reason for postponing storage upgrades. It bodes well for HP that migration is a key focus. It provides consulting and support for customers to collect data about pre-migration environments to create live Blueprints, identifying required upgrades and crucial linkages, developing migration plans that preserve organization productivity during change.
  3. Big data services – the influence of Autonomy, though Hadoop had top billing. This service includes updating infrastructure to facilitate quick search and indexing unstructured data.
  4. Residencies. The catch-all option where HP storage consultants, architects, programme managers and implementation experts become a part of the client’s extended team to help solve any storage related problem. We like this; it supports the need for flexible access to expertise that infrastructure managers seem to yearn for.

For customers who wish to tackle performance issues arising from repeated querying on large SAP data sets, HP offers AppSystem for SAP. HP’s long term alliance with SAP led to its early involvement with HANA developments and today is in a position to boast completed implementations across several vertical segments. HP’s range of services include POC and trials to satisfy discovery, assessments and roadmaps for better planning, industrialised delivery for faster build and lifecycle support services. This solution works for enterprise application managers who need to satisfy demand for analytics support.

Perhaps the most valuable impact of information management is in creating new revenue streams. HP’s enterprise services consultants have been working with communication service providers(CSP) to analyse subscriber behaviour and use insights to create new products such as monetizing location-sensitive search, tailored access to data services (e.g. day passes) and personalised app stores. No doubt there will be similar examples across other vertical segments. Engagements at the business/revenue stream level are led by the enterprise solutions team, with capability to facilitate corporate strategy discussions. Quite distinct from the previous two offerings.

Information optimisation is one of three streams that represent HP’s go-to-market leads, the others are cloud and security. These three stream cut across the infrastructure, software, services and solutions businesses. Under Meg Whitman, this company has been streamlined and continues to aim for focus. Not an easy task when the huge installed base of customers with divers requirements and a natural expectation that HP can satisfy. The snapshot of fragmented purchase points we saw above is a typical example of the pressure any sizeable services business faces. Balancing business focus with customer satisfaction will be a tough tightrope for HP’s services leadership to negotiate.

Image credit: J’adore Rouge by Claudia Gaiotto

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