While Las Vegas is known for its bright lights, vibrant atmosphere and clattering casino sounds, I was most enamored and impressed with the energy and enthusiasm at my very first EMC World conference.
I spent my first 120 days with the company drinking from the proverbial fire hose – getting to know the company’s employees, business units and products and services. However, I was equally inspired by the unvarnished conversations I had with the more than 70 CIOs attending EMC’s CIO Summit at EMC World.
As a former EMC outsider and host of the Summit, I understand and empathize with the challenges and opportunities facing CIOs today. After all, I have walked a mile (or two) in their shoes as a CIO over the last 20 years. Sure, there was excitement around the latest product news during the conference, but a lot of our conversations revolved around how we, as CIOs, should approach the 3rd platform, defined by IDC as the next-generation compute platform comprised of mobile, cloud, big data and social media.
While the panels and discussions delved into the practical and tactical, there were a few major themes that rose to the top for me.
- Now more than ever, CIOs are under pressure to get the most out of resources and rein in operational expenses. Like most of the CIO Summit attendees, EMC’s IT organization turned to virtualization, converged infrastructure, consolidation and cloud computing to tackle this challenge.
- Although return on investment (ROI) is always a critical measure, today’s CIOs must find ways to reduce disruption, increase IT effectiveness and improve an organization’s time-to-value. Behind the scenes, we are striving to be highly automated while embracing IT Service Management and offering IT as a Service.
- CIOs have always grappled with getting the most value from data. However, telemetry data generation is exponentially outpacing traditional data growth, so we must embrace new technologies and approaches to unlock the potential of Big Data analytics for speeding time-to-market and time-to-value.
- The 3rd platform is all about delivering a high quality experience for our data-driven mobile and social users. For CIOs, this means enabling users’ freedom and agility, while continuing to secure your company’s intellectual property. The future is still being written in this area, but it is sure to be a compelling topic in 2013 and 2014.
- Last, but not least, CIOs must navigate the organizational evolution that accompanies our journey to the 3rd platform. This includes advancing the skills and capabilities we have throughout the IT organization to meet the needs of tomorrow, as well as establishing executive-level rapport and relationships to dynamically evolve to meet the needs of the business.
Ultimately, the CIO Summit at EMC World offered me an oasis from the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas to focus on what is on the mind of like-minded CIOs. It was also a pleasant reminder that I am not alone on this journey. Together, we can break the confines of traditional IT and share best practices to contemporize IT and drive real world and real-time business results.