Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Hewlett Packard Enterprise - 1 Year On

If you work within the IT industry and didn’t hear about the HP split last year then you must have been either ridiculously busy or living under a very large rock…on an island…somewhere in the South Pacific. 

If though you’re like the rest of us, then you would have no doubt been waiting for the inevitable stumbles, disruptions, delays and apologies that an undertaking of such enormity should by all rights bring, and were most likely as surprised as we all were when everything went remarkably smoothly.

So then we’re now 12 months on and as HPE celebrates its first official Birthday I think we can all agree to doff our collective caps to Meg Whitman and her executive team for not only delivering the dictionary definition of a smooth transition, but also presenting their Partners and Customers with a clear roadmap and some pretty impressive innovations in the first year.

There has been a radical shuffling of the portfolio deck with some notable acquisitions alongside some equally notable sell-offs, all off which even the most cynical of channel veterans has to admit would appear to have been well thought through with an overall strategic goal in mind.

HPE, it seems, has recognised the seismic shift that everything “IT” is going through right now and have positioned themselves with the skill of a chess champion with solutions and services that seem custom made to ride the crest of the new wave.

This was articulated to an eager audience during the Global Partner Conference in Boston recently, and as the largest HPE Value Add Distributor in the UK & Ireland the team from Westcoast were front and centre during the main sessions.

After they had recovered from jet lag and caught up on email, they were asked to sum up their time in Boston. Here’s what they had to say:

  • “HPE’s Expanded Flexible capacity offering is now better aligned to the channel, helping partners to offer the best of both worlds for customers that want both on premise IT and the benefits of the cloud.
  • During the UK&I keynote Marc Waters’ message was clear - the spin mergers of the Non-core Software assets and Enterprise Services business would mean a better focus from HPE and bring increased speed and agility for their partners and customers. 
  • New partner competencies should help partners that have created their own Solutions aligned to HPE technology to differentiate themselves and receive other benefits from HPE.” 

3 days condensed down into 3 paragraphs might suggest many hours spent loitering around the halls of the Boston Convention Centre, but read between the lines and what it actually shows is that single coherent strategy that I spoke of earlier. HPE call it the Ideas Economy but whatever this revolution ends up being known as it will be built on one fundamental block, and that block is data.

Data will be the cornerstone of the ideas economy, it’s the single most valuable asset that many companies have and the success of any organisation with ambition to grow will , in a large part, be dependent on how well their people and applications can access, interrogate, update, analyse and secure that data.

The IT industry has come up with a veritable smorgasbord of buzz words and acronyms for the processes and products designed to achieve these 5 fundamental requirements, and words like Hybrid IT, Convergence and Hyper convergence, Software Defined, Big Data, Flash storage and many others have entered the IT and, more importantly, the Business vernacular, for decisions on technology infrastructure are no longer just the domain of the IT department.

Consider this…Ask any IT Manager, Director or CTO and they will tell you for the most part that their IT budget is being squeezed or cut back, but this is happening at the same time that overall IT spend is on the rise…how do we explain this paradox? Could it be that IT has finally moved out of the basement and into the boardroom perhaps? And if so why?

The answer has to be that IT has proven its value and is now entirely integrated into the strategic business plans of every Enterprise level organisation, as well as more and more SMB’s so easy of access and reliability are now at least as important raw power or speed.

This is where HPE have made the breakthrough…Rather than starting with technology and then searching for real world applications, they have started with real world needs and aspirations and created technology to address and enable them. A company well known for its products has now given those products context and direction and all that has been achieved in 1 year.

As with everything it’s only really time that will tell whether the decision to split will be entirely vindicated, but the signs are good and so far as Company launches go this has been a very successful one and the future would appear to hold a lot of promise for both HPE and the Channel.

They obviously need to build on this solid start and make sure they continue to bring their partners along for the ride, but the direction of the market and underlying technology trends indicate a fair wind is blowing for the good ship HPE and all who sail with her.

If you were unable to make it over to Boston then you can see the key sessions by clicking here and don’t forget that you can contact Westcoast at any time to discuss anything you need around HPE going forward on 0118 912 6000 or visit our dedicated HPE portal here.

No comments:

Post a Comment