In part two of their talk on the dilemmas of the modern enterprise buyer, Jon Reed and Hank Barnes of Gartner dive right into Barnes' latest research on reaching enterprise buyers, and the strengths and flaws of reaching buyers with content. Other surprising Gartner data is discussed, including the surprising role of vendor responsiveness and why that is overlooked. The guys also hit on peer reviews and the problem of attempting to game buyers with positive reviews. The conversation is framed with this question: how we can serve buyers better, and reduce the amount of flawed and troubled projects? The final section includes advice for customers on navigating buying complexity. This podcast references recent blog posts by Hank Barnes. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In part one of his first-ever podcast with Hank Barnes of Gartner, Reed and Barnes revisit their multi-year dialogue on the dilemmas of the modern enterprise buyer. Barnes has fresh research on modern buyers, including unsettling updates on project failures and buyer complacency. He also has fresh buzzwords for Jon to call out and break down, including "continuous buying" and "continuous customer behaviors." The guys also debate just how informed the modern buyer is, with Barnes landing on the side that "informed buyer" is aspirational at best. They both agree the vendors lack control - but still need to engage, but on new terms driven by customer needs.
In this live chat from Salesforce Connections, Jon catches up with pesky questions specialist and CX analyst Nicole France of Constellation Research. Nicole shares her approach to analyzing vendors and why we need to press vendors on their CX approach. She also sheds light on the motivations behind her recent blog post, 10 Signs You Have a Customer Understanding Deficit and Three Things to Do About It. Nicole, who just got her pilot's license and, in theory, can now fly herself to enterprise events, makes her debut on Jon's diginomica podcast episode here. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
Putting digital transformation and cloud to the project test - a chat with Belden and Mansfield of UpperEdge
During Jon's latest trip to Boston, he crashed the new offices of UpperEdge, an independent enterprise and IT advisory firm with strong views on the potent topics of digital transformation and getting value of out cloud. During this unscripted, 45 minute dialogue, Jon talks with UpperEdge's John Belden and Adam Mansfield about the problem of digital transformation in the real world. The guys shift into cloud issues, and why customers are wary that SaaS can be just another form of lock-in, with the same licensing headaches. The conversation wraps with a freewheeling review of the latest cloud news, from Salesforce acquiring Tableau to Google Cloud's ups and downs in its enterprise push. The Bruins game seven loss the night before is almost totally avoided, but not quite. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
As PowerPlex 2019 - the Plex Manufacturing Cloud user conference - kicks off, Jon Reed and Brian Sommer claim a quiet spot for an in-depth talk on why he finally wrote a book - Digital with Impact. After pressing Brian on why he entered the overhyped book area of digital transformation, Jon and Brian turn their attention to the exercises in the book. What has Brian learned by using these these exercises on project sites? How can you use Digital with Impact as a workbook to spur the cultural change needed to make digital stick? Brian also shares his recent chat with Geoffrey Moore as they contrasted their views on digital change. The guys also get into how to balance the challenge of a long term transformation with the quicker wins needed to ensure buy-in. One key theme? Overcoming the quicksand of technical debt. Note: Den Howlett has also authored a book review of Digital with Impact on diginomica.com. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
Taping outside this year with a fountain percolating behind them, Jon Reed of diginomica talks with Dick Hirsch about why Sapphire Now felt different this year. Hirsch talks about SAP's changing views on the cloud and their relationship with hyperscalers like AWS, Google Cloud and Azure. The guys hit on some big themes of a show with little hard news but many big storylines, from the impact of Qualtrics to why integration and master data are becoming huge topics for SAP its user groups. Issues from S/4HANA to indirect access and licensing news to the activist investor backdrop are discussed. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In this special "jokes included" edit of their Oracle CX and MBX 2019 review, Jon Reed and Brian Sommer, lead off with a few Vegas-inspired jokes, including the "manel" - all male conference panel - before diving into the Oracle CX/MBX shows. The guys vent their customer experience grievances along the way, but also talk about an inspiring Oracle customer that is pushing the AI limits in the service of the visually impaired. They touch on Brian's new book, Digital with Impact, and why technology is longer the constraint it once was. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
During this first-ever sit down with Joe McKendrick, live from the MariaDB user conference, Jon talks with Joe about his recent articles on the impact of DevOps, agile, and digital transformation on IT - and the obstacles in the path. The guys talk about Joe's recent ZDNet articles and why over-hyped technologies like AI and machine learning fall short without a concerted change effort. Jon keeps his potshots about ZDNet's autoplay videos to a minimum as the guys move into a discussion of the new IT professional, and the rare combination of skills that the best IT pros need today. Note: original podcast file edit by Den Howlett. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In Jon's first ever podcast from NRF's retail "Big Show," Jon sits down with Joachim Klein of ThreeKit, where the two overcome NRF sounds to break down the key trends of the show, before the podcast is finally vanquished by a vacuum cleaner. The guys discuss the next-gen tech at the show, including robotics, facial recognition, and virtual fashion assistants, before digging into the problem of personalization and the opportunities retailers have if they can conquer their data problems. Klein then shares ThreeKit's go-to-market plan, and why these seasoned retail executives have banded together and put skin in the game. Their goal: bring augmented reality, visual commerce, and 3D product configuration into the same platform. End note: apologies for the background noise, the quietest place we could find at NRF was not terribly quiet, even with lavalier mics. SOUND UPDATE: my colleague Den Howlett has edited out as much background noise as possible in this new mix. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
"Up to 2/3 of all enterprise software projects fail to deliver their expected value. Will your project be one of them?" That's the basis for Jon's first-ever podcast with analyst and ProQ founder Josh Greenbaum. On some hidden bean bag chairs in the basement of SAP TechEd, the guys discuss the multiple ways that enterprise projects can fail or underperform, and why early interventions can change outcomes. Greenbaum explains why ProQ's approach, by providing a way of measuring teamwork and project health, can have impact. The guys also talk about other efforts to disrupt and improve the consulting industry, including Raven Intel. Note: while this was taped at SAP TechEd, SAP is not the topical focus on this podcast. Check Jon's recent TechEd wraps for your SAP analysis fix. Bonus: the guys are interrupted at the 22:00 mark by disruptive window tape measurers. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
The Sage Intacct Advantage Review - CFOs, finance transformation and the Gaylord hotel experience - with Brian Sommer
In this review of Sage Intacct Advantage 2018, Brian shares his undying love for the baffling labyrinth of exquisite possibilities known as the Nashville Gaylord Opryland Hotel. The guys quickly move on to the matter at hand - assessing Intacct now that the acquisition by Sage is in year two. They guys discuss new product announcements, and mix in views on other vendors given that the fall conference season is finally, mercifully winding down. They also hit on the impact of "vertical ERP" and how Intacct approaches it. The backdrop of the talk is the transformation of finance, and whether Sage has been an asset or hindrance to Intacct since the acquisition. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In an SAP TechEd special, Jon Reed is joined by SAP Mentor Graham Robinson in the lost Vegas corridors to hash out what they learned behind the scenes - and how that stacks up with SAP's news announcements. Graham, who is an independent consultant and expert SAP developer, has plenty to say about SAP's ABAP PaaS announcement, and how ABAP on the SAP Cloud Platform impacts developers and customers. The guys also hash out the "serverless ERP" annnouncement, and how ERP functions as a service could play into running the SAP Cloud Platform at scale. The highs and the lows of the show are covered, including the keynote, and a surprise challenge to Jon by SAP CTO Björn Goerke in response to his diginomica show review. The guys reflect on SAP's change in community leadership - and the future of TechEd as SAP attempts to turn community into an edge again, after some down years. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
What if HR customers had a way of assessing the quality of the partners servicing their implementations? Would less projects run into budget and scope problems - or outright failure. Well, now they do, thanks to the upstarts at Raven Intel. During "HR tech week" in Las Vegas, at SuccessConnect 2018, Jon sat down with Bonnie Tinder and Michele of Raven Intel on the day of their official launch to dig into the motivations behind their mission - and business model. To coincide with their launch, Raven Intel released a study of 100 initial SAP customers and their experiences with consulting partners and HR vendors (see: HCM Implementation Report, 2018). Jon asks Bonnie and Michelle about the lessons they took from their study, and how troubled HR tech projects can become better HR tech projects. Bonnie and Michele explain why their approach is different than the big vendor peer review sites that are picking up steam. Jon also asks about the challenges they may face as they get customers to evaluate major consulting partners that aren't used to being publicly evaluated. Sidenote: Bonnie and Michele are childhood friends who have always wanted to work together - now they get their chance. Of the two, Bonnie speaks first on the podcast. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In their first online talk in several years, Jon Reed of www.diginomica.com is reunited with one of his old school guests for a fresh talk on the problem of hiring data science skills - and what to do about it. Vijayasankar details the types of data science skills that a data science team needs, and where the hiring gaps are. There's plenty of advice for individuals on how to fill those gaps. The guys also hit on the problem of algorithmic bias, and issues of diversity in data science. Note: this is the audio-only version of this chat. You can catch the video version on Jon's youtube: youtube.com/jonathanwreed. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In this in-depth on-site conversation, Jon Reed and SAP SuccessFactors expert and customer advocate Jarret Pazahanick break out what they've learned from a hectic two days in Vegas. The guys hit on the show's highs and lows, from news to executive keynotes to a powerful closer from Michael J. Fox. Jon asks Pazahanick to elaborate on his critique of the SuccessFactors partner and certification approach - and what needs to change. The 60 minute talk is a gut check from what Pazahanick heard at the SuccessFactors influencer event last spring, and where we are now. Jon asks Jarret to address the "Jarret is a Workday fanboy" jabs he gets from time to time. The guys leave with a view of where SuccessFactors needs to go from here, and some continuing mysteries around payroll as a cloud service - something Jon will be addressing more fully in an upcoming diginomica article. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In their last sit-down of the spring event season, Brian and Jon huddle in the Alexa-free environment of FinancialForce Community Live 2018 to break down FinancialForce's goals and obstacles. Topics include the push for modern ERP and servitization, the pros and cons of their Salesforce platform play, and the keys to their current growth rate. The guys break out their talks with FinancialForce executives and customers and talk about what needs to happen next. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In this impromptu/underground recording with the implausible Esteban Kolsky, the guys grab some time as Salesforce Connections to discuss the future of the enterprise. Two Kolsky blog posts are up for consideration, one on his enterprise software priorities, the other on AI misconceptions. Since this taping is at a CX event, the guys also get into the epic problem of delivering a halfway-decent customer experience across channels. Doing their best with Jon's backup recording, Jon also takes the chance to ask Esteban the burning question: why are you such a grouchy *!*. That leads into a discussion of the vital role of the enterprise idealist/curmuedgeon, or, gadfly. At the end of the thirty minute chat, the meaning of the "implausible" Esteban Kolsky is revealed. Producer's note: this had to be taped on the backup of Jon's backup recorder, but hopefully the listening experience was improved decently for you during production. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
Practical AI in focus - a chat on customer use cases and AI hype overload with Brian Dennett of Enable AI
In their second podcast from Sapphire Now 2018, Jon Reed and guest Brian Dennett move on from SAPpy talk to discuss Brian's startup, Enable AI, and why they are taking a practical approach to AI as augmented intelligence. Brian shares his view on why AI and ML are getting market traction, and the customer problems that Enable AI is tackling. Brian also advises on how companies should get started with "AI," and why data scientists are not necessarily required. Though this is not an SAP-focused podcast, the guys briefly touch on how customer-focused AI projects tie into a C/4HANA and Leonardo context at one point or another. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In Jon's annual Sapphire Now event review, he has a new guest, Brian Dennett of Enable AI, who was also part of the SAP blogger program coverage. Jon and Brian hash out the messages of the show, including the "intelligent enterprise" messaging and whether the Leonardo aspects actually made sense this year. They discuss Brian's pick for the sleeper announcement of the show, Master Data Management as a service, and why it matters. The guys share their findings from their often-spirited blogger sessions; Brian explains why has a philosophical difference with SAP on their "AI" approach. The guys wrap by giving their letter grades for the show, and Jon airs a couple of SAP gripes. Note: this recording was made on Jon's backup recording rig due to a microphone failure. Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.
In this lightly-edited version of Jon's Western Mass Podcamp 2018 workshop discussion, Jon presents his advanced content method for using deep work as a way of differentiating your business. This interactive content strategy session builds on themes of content positioning, avoiding social media marketing overdose, the power of curation, and earning sustained attention by building opt-in communities. Audience members pose questions and Jon provides some coaching on content and business challenges, from content formats to ebooks to SEO. This is the second of two related podcasts - the first one covered how to reach today's informed buyer (and their networks). Yes, you can get Busting the Omnichannel on iTunes.