Ok. That probably got your attention! Thomas Wailgum’s recent post entitled Wake Up People! Forget Twitter and iPhone Apps, and Focus on SAP and ERP Apps had the same impact on a few of us here in the office at MiPro Consulting.
Wailgum’s title is provocative. More importantly however, his blog’s point is on target. Reading CIO, Fortune, Forbes and the like you will see all sorts of articles and commentary about the new darlings of the tech media. And to be sure, these firms are introducing some transformative technologies. Not enough conversation, however, is centered on how companies can be using their existing IT assets to help them navigate these unique and interesting times. (Sidenote… MiPro is embracing new social media tools like Facebook, Linked-In and Twitter. We see value in them as a part (but not the whole) of our customer conversation strategy.)
I couldn’t agree more with Wailgum’s contention that enterprise applications from ERP/BI vendors Oracle and SAP as well as SaaS leaders like Workday and Salesforce.com are more important than ever. Unfortunately this point seems to be lost as the tech media salivates over social networking technology.
These are unprecedented times. Now more thanever it is important for companies to focus on operational initiatives such as:
- Improving cash flow and liquidity (i.e.…optimize your inventory (thanks enterprise software!)
- Focusing on customer intimacy (i.e.…customer analytics (enterprise software…you’re the best!
- Driving operational excellence (i.e.…procurement excellence (I love you enterprise software!)
Before I get overrun by Twitter nation— let me acknowledge that Twitter, Facebook, and Linked-In are emerging powerhouses in their own right. Their role in the corporate IT landscape is in its infancy and their ability to have a positive impact on your business shouldn’t be ignored. That said, I am highly skeptical that you can tweet your way to greatness in 2009. There is too much dialogue on these technologies and not enough on enterprise technology.
The CIO’s we talk too are less concerned about how many followers they have attracted on Facebook and are more concerned about how to be able to keep up with increasing demands from their internal customers while having to cut internal IT costs. I believe that the corporate IT world would benefit from more conversation focused on how companies can OPTIMIZE their enterprise software, more conversation about the value of on-demand business services, and more conversation about how to get valuable insight into your current business operations.
Oh…by the way. As I write this Workday has announced that their customers will now be able to access their enterprise systems via the iPhone. Congrats Workday!