EMC Leaps To IT-as-a-Service: Redefining the Organizational Model

In describing our journey to Redefine our IT organization at EMC, I told you how we brought in consultants to help us bridge the old IT world with the new, devised a fresh strategy and workstreams to execute on our roadmap and used added insights about our customers to define wins for IT.  What we still needed to do beyond those milestones was to determine what our new organization would look like; we were struggling with several organizational components.

While we had broken down some technology silos in the past, we still had not taken the leap fully into a services-based organizational structure.  We still had “sand in the gears” with respect to how teams worked together.  Each group had its own goals and objectives, and what was important to our end customer was too often getting lost in the “interlock.”

So, we took the leap to a services-based organization. We based our organization construct on the IT-as-a-Service organization model that EMC Global Services prescribes. It consists of Supply Centers (IT’s Product Groups) that develop and deliver services, and Demand Centers that partner with our internal business clients to anticipate and fulfill their needs by reusing existing services wherever possible and feeding demand for new services into the service development pipeline. It also includes a Service Management function that consists of Service Portfolio Management, Service Support, Enterprise Architecture, Digitization and Automation and IT Business Ops.

Over several years, we delivered undeniable benefits to EMC through the power of virtualization, cloud computing, Big Data and trusted IT.  We also acknowledge that there are many things we do that fall far short of perfect, and as an IT organization supporting a Fortune 500 technology leader, we have a responsibility to move even faster than our rapidly-changing industry

We must redefine IT to be more contemporary, agile, innovative and ultimately provide EMC with capabilities that create and sustain a competitive advantage, and in so doing, blaze the transformational trail for EMC’s customers to follow.

While we’ve already made tremendous strides in transforming our infrastructure, we have much more ground to cover in our quest to deliver true IT as a Service and bring unprecedented agility and value to EMC. Our objectives for the IT REDEFINED journey are clear:

  • Align with our business clients and earn their business by enabling the simplification, speed, agility and quality they need, and become a trusted advisor and partner.
  • Evolve our IT-as-a-Service delivery model to meet users’ changing consumption preferences.
  • Innovate to create IT as a competitive advantage for the EMC Federation, and capture our transformation as an IT Proven case study for EMC’s customers.
  • Embrace Third Platform technologies and approaches to enhance our users’ experiences.
  • Invest in our people, develop global leaders and establish EMC IT as a best place to work.

In 2014, we completed the assessment and road-mapping stages of the Redefining IT initiative and subsequently moved into the planning and implementation stage. While we knew we would be driving many important changes in the infrastructure, applications, data and end-user computing domains, the most important and impactful changes would be to the IT Operating Model.

The Operating Model sets us up for success by establishing a framework for organizing and operating more like a business. It consists of service centers, demand centers, and core service management and support functions which are linked to ensure our responsiveness, accountability and ability to deliver predictable, high-quality services.  See the new operating model below.


[Learn more by reading the recently published EMC IT Redefined white paper]

Demand Centers

Building on our Business Technology Group’s (the longstanding IT group which is aligned with core business functions) relationship with EMC’s BU’s, leaders of our Demand Centers are strategically-aligned as trusted advisors to EMC’s business leaders. Their teams are responsible for driving day-to-day delivery of IT services on behalf of the business unit (BU), shaping demand by promoting the use of standardized services and service components.

Demand Centers also proactively help the BU’s optimize the value they derive from their investments in IT capabilities. Demand Centers are the primary connection between the Service Centers and the business for all aspects of service level management, including negotiation, reporting, identification and ultimate resolution of any SLA issues.

Service Centers

Our newly-created Service Centers have end-to-end accountability for services delivered to our Enterprise, BU, and Employee customer segments, and also for component services that are consumed by other Service Centers. The Service Centers develop, deliver and automate value-driven, standardized services that address the majority of IT use cases, and customized services in those use cases for which a standardized service is insufficient. The Service Centers are:

  • Cloud Platform Services – This Service Center is the de facto managed cloud services provider for EMC IT, delivering development and application hosting platforms powered by the enterprise hybrid cloud.  In addition, it operates all existing datacenter and infrastructure solutions and facilitates the migration of legacy solutions to the new hybrid platforms.
  • Security Services – This center assesses risk, and develops the controls and componentized security services that are consumed by cloud, application and consumer service offerings.  Furthermore, it empowers IT to provide secure services through embedding security expertise in service teams.
  • Big Data Services – This center is responsible for turning data into insight; action and breakthrough business performance and provides the data fabric enabling data consistency and easy integration.
  • Third Platform App Development – This is a center for pure application development (mobile and traditional) with a focus on Third Platform application architectures and development methodologies.  Additionally, the team supports and refactors existing apps for the hybrid cloud opportunistically.
  • Enterprise Apps Platforms Center –This center ensures core enterprise mission-critical business processes—enabled by SAP— are working effectively and efficiently.
  • Purchased Applications Services Center – This center configures, deploys and supports business-unit-sponsored SaaS and packaged apps without invasively customizing and supports existing customized apps toward retirement or replacement.
  • Consumer/End User Services Center – This center makes the employee/consumer working experience simple, seamless and productive.

Service Management and Support Functions

These functions enable IT to operate more like a business; supporting IT’s ability to conceive, develop, source, introduce, support, continuously improve and retire services as necessary to meet anticipated enterprise, BU and employee demand.

Service Portfolio Management – This team defines service strategy, service portfolios and service features in support of the IT architecture, and manages services through their lifecycle.

Service Operations – This team is responsible for monitoring services and intervening proactively to maximize service uptime and quality.

IT Management – This team accelerates decision making and execution in pursuit of IT’s mission.

Enterprise Architecture – This team connects EMC’s and IT’s strategy by setting and reinforcing technology standards; establishing and implementing IT architecture; and integrating Federation solutions in support of EMC business objectives.

Digitization & Automation – This team defines, learns, optimizes and improves core processes, governance, and delivery lifecycles/methods to achieve IT’s agility, quality, and operational excellence objectives.  Additionally, it drives automation and digitization of all IT functions and services to minimize manual tasks, improve efficiency, reduce cycle times, and improve the Total Customer Experience.

M&A – This team drives IT aspects enabling timely integration of acquisitions and carve-out of divestitures. It also works closely with EMC’s Business Development function on identifying potential targets based on real-world challenges we face in EMC IT.

With our new ITaaS organization in place, we are continuing to refine our IT transformation to become a true services-based operation. It has been a long and challenging journey that is still unfolding. However, we are confident that we have the structure in place to earn the role of trusted advisor to the business units we serve as well as deliver capabilities that provide a competitive advantage for EMC.

About the Author: Jon Peirce