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SAP partner program strives for long-term relationship with customers

The SAP partner program has undergone a transformation that the company believes makes it more relevant for today’s business and technology environment.

Partners have played a significant role in building the SAP ecosystem by reselling SAP products, providing strategic consulting, system design, application integration and other services. In the on-premises world, partners’ main focus was on selling and implementing SAP systems. However, as SAP’s product portfolio has broadened and the cloud has become critical to SAP’s future, the role of the SAP partner program is shifting away from sales to “customer success.”

SAP still wants its partners to sell SAP products, but in the cloud-centric world, it is pushing them to also build successful applications for customers and to continue that relationship long after an implementation. The new partner model is needed to drive the intelligent enterprise, which SAP defines as an organization that uses next-generation technology to transform processes and business models.

In this Q&A, Karl Fahrbach, SAP chief partner officer, discusses the recent changes in the SAP partner program and its priorities going forward. In March, SAP’s board of directors appointed Fahrbach as SAP’s first chief partner officer, a role designed to formalize SAP’s intentions to be a partner-focused company.

Why has the SAP partner program changed its focus from sales and implementation to ‘customer success?’

Karl Fahrbach: The main model for the partners was implementation, but things have changed a lot in the past 10 years at SAP. We have acquired many companies and have a different vision. We don’t just have one ERP product, we now have the intelligent enterprise with ERP at the core, and we have line-of-business solutions that we run on top of the SAP Cloud Platform.

Karl FahrbachKarl Fahrbach

All of this means that the opportunities for partners have changed. A study we did with IDC said the partner economy will double in the next five years from $100 billion to $200 billion because SAP offers a much bigger portfolio now … but we questioned if our partner program was ready to support that growth and change. So we have created a new, next generation partnering initiative that focuses on making sure that our partners have better access to innovation, a better experience and better economics to be profitable in this new reality.

What does the next generation partner initiative do differently than previous initiatives?

Fahrbach: We still have the PartnerEdge program, where we put the partners in boxes — SIs [systems integrators], VARs [value-added resellers], ISVs [independent software vendors] or startups. But in this new next generation evolution, we’re moving away from putting partners in boxes and looking more at the value that the partner adds to the customer. The new initiative looks at the customer lifecycle and the value that the partner adds in each of those steps. Before, we looked at partners from a sales cycle perspective, which helped us to sell and helped us implement what we sold, but then it stopped. Now in the cloud, the most relevant [key performance indicator] that we have is looking at customer success. 

Will the next generation partner initiative help smaller partners that are often the leaders in innovation?

Fahrbach: If you look at yesterday’s program, the best partner was the one that sold the most. Now we want to look not only at the quantity of the business, but the quality. One big change in the new partner program is that it will benefit the smaller firms. If you have a small boutique partner that does a fantastic job helping customers with fast adoption of SAP products, we want to reward it accordingly, even if it’s not selling the products. In the past, this partner was maybe not as relevant for us because it wasn’t selling, but now we’re looking at different metrics.

How are you tracking these new metrics?

Fahrbach: We’ve changed the way that we get feedback from partners, and we’ve also established a partner advisory council, with everyone from the big SIs to small boutique partners. We’re working on ways to provide a better partner experience and better access to innovation technologies.

Why did the SAP board create the role of chief partner officer, which is fairly unique in the software industry?

Fahrbach: The board considered the partner business as something that was going to be the innovation driver for SAP. If you look at SAP in the last 10 years, we have developed many innovative products. But when you look at the speed of innovation, we need to do something different to keep up with this pace without adding more developers. So we decided the key driver for innovation will be to work with partners. The board realized this and decided that we need to double down on the partner focus in the ecosystem. So they created the role of chief partner officer. It sends a very strong message to the market that we are a partner-led company, and we want the partners to be successful.

Will this new partner model continue given the changes in the SAP board and executive leadership this year?

Fahrbach: Yes, this will continue and the board is committed to the partner business. Both of the co-CEOs, Jennifer Morgan and Christian Klein, really care about the partner business and want to make sure that the partners contribute even more to the SAP business. Adaire Fox-Martin [head of SAP global customer operations], who I report to on the board, runs the partner business and the customer business, and she really cares as well about the partner business. Even though there have been changes, we see more commitment in the board for the partner business. It’s good to change the mindset and that’s something that needs to happen as well in SAP. Ten years ago we were direct, and would leverage the partners to implement systems or serve markets that were new for us or we couldn’t really touch, like the SME segment. Now the partner business is where the partner will be always involved in creating value for the customer. That’s the mindset that we’re trying to shift to.

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3 secret virtues of a great IT practitioner

What makes a great IT practitioner? Danny Brian, a Gartner vice president and fellow, suggested it’s the ability to embrace one’s vices.

At Gartner Catalyst 2018, Brian named laziness, impatience and hubris as the three secret virtues of a great IT practitioner — borrowing them from acclaimed programmer Larry Wall. In Wall’s 1991 book Programming Perl, the virtues were aimed at programmers. But Brian made the case they can help all IT practitioners succeed in today’s digital business age — and contribute to the bottom line.

Laziness

In Wall’s book, laziness is defined as “the quality that makes you go to great effort to reduce overall energy expenditure.” In other words, lazy IT practitioners continually seek out the easiest, most efficient ways to complete a task.

“If necessity is the mother of invention, then maybe laziness is the mother of innovation,” Brian said.

As an example, he pointed to computer programming pioneer Grace Hopper. The inventor of one of the first compiler tools — i.e., software that transforms computer code from one programming language into another — Hopper credited laziness as the impetus for her accomplishment.

Laziness, Brian said, also requires an enormous amount of planning and foresight.

“You don’t want to just be lazy now; you want to be lazy tomorrow and the day after that,” Brian said. “And if you want to enable other people to be lazy, it takes even more thought and preparation.”

He listed specific examples of what true laziness requires of an IT practitioner:

  • not repeating yourself;
  • not reinventing the wheel — utilizing the best frameworks and tools to save time and effort;
  • focusing on the most important problems;
  • knowledge and recognition of design patterns, which avoid solving the same or similar problems multiple times;
  • ensuring test-driven development in order to avoid hours spent later in panic mode trying to figure out what broke;
  • developing processes and procedures that actually help people short cut their tasks, rather than creating standards for standards’ sake; and
  • documenting everything — as close to the activity as possible — in a way that is easy for others and for your future self to understand.

Impatience

If necessity is the mother of invention, then maybe laziness is the mother of innovation.
Danny Brianvice president and fellow, Gartner

Every religious tradition in the world espouses patience as a virtue, Brian said, but the truth is the world is growing more impatient, in part, because of technology.

“If you think you want patient people working for you, I’d ask, ‘What about all that technology influence that’s creating more and more impatience in the world? Don’t you want people who recognize that and are ready and willing to respond to it?'” he said.

Indeed, patience could even pose a threat to organizational efficiency.

“Patience can lead to inaction, if you think about it. Patience can quickly become apathy or complacency — or at least appear to be those things,” he said.

The impatience Brian exalted is the general impatience that drives people to get things done and fix things that are broken or problematic. While laziness is about overall energy expenditure, impatience is all about the emotion — specifically anger at a slow program or process.

“It’s fixing a problem not because practitioners have to, but because it bugs them; not because there’s a ticket open, but because it’s really annoying and they’re impatient users,” Brian said.

This is where practices like continuous integration come in, Brian said. Along with having tests run on a regular basis so they can know as soon as a problem occurs, impatient IT practitioners are also continuously exploring — and integrating — new and better tools.

Impatience is also key to Agile development, Brian said.

“You should never hear the words from an Agile team, ‘We are waiting on X from X,'” Brian said. “They’re not Agile unless they can meet all of their dependencies and never be waiting on another team to get things done. And that’s what real impatience should look like.”

He listed specific examples of what true impatience requires of an IT practitioner:

  • a sense of urgency;
  • automating everything automatable;
  • constantly watching for better workflows, tools and methodologies;
  • continuously integrating so you never feel behind;
  • utilizing wikis, because we need to edit that right here and now;
  • empathizing with impatient end users;
  • having empowered teams with the resources necessary to push projects through to completion;
  • the ability to use cloud services, or any service that is the best tool for the job; and
  • strong communication skills from all contributors and sponsors.

Hubris

Wall defined hubris as “excessive pride — the sort of thing that Zeus zaps you for. [It’s] also the quality that makes you write and maintain programs that other people won’t want to say bad things about.”

In that vein, Brian refers to IT-practitioner hubris as the pride one takes in a well-crafted product and the drive to succeed where others have failed.

“[It’s] that total sense of ownership that doesn’t come without opening things up and allowing themselves to be impatient and lazy in this case,” he said. “It’s also knowing enough to know what you don’t know, which brings confidence with experience.”

This brand of hubris requires not only a conviction that one is right, but an ability to make the case to the CIO and the business, Brian said.

“A big part of this is for the technical folks to learn to not speak like coneheads,” he said.

Brian noted that novice IT practitioners can’t really have true hubris — yet.

“New practitioners can be lazy, and they can be impatient. But they can’t have hubris in the effective way,” Brian said. Hubris takes time, experience and success. “Real hubris is being an expert.”

He listed specific examples of what else true hubris requires of an IT practitioner:

  • pride in yourself and in your work;
  • zero fear of new technologies — the ability to dive in and emerge an expert;
  • attention to details, such as design, documentation and code formatting;
  • flexibility to adjust to changing requirements and user needs — a “we can do that” mentality;
  • owning the results of your work — releasing, maintaining and improving a service;
  • knowing what “good” looks like and how to get it;
  • going above and beyond, even when it is not requested;
  • constantly retraining yourself; staying abreast of new technology developments; reading technology books; attending conventions and workshops; and subscribing to training sites, like Lynda.com, Udemy, Pluralsight or Codecademy; and
  • a craftsmanship mentality — seeing your job as creating solutions for people and the business, rather than racking servers or writing code.

Brian ended with a warning to IT practitioners: Don’t let any one of these three qualities outweigh the others; they must coexist and balance each other out. Practitioners ruled by laziness — efficiency obsessives — will try to suss out and prematurely optimize any problems that might come in the future.

“If they’re too impatient, they’re going to be quick to adopt the wrong solutions … and just incur technical debt over time,” Brian said. “Too much hubris, and they are going to be perfectionists that can’t ever recognize when good is good enough and [the need to] sacrifice the good for the perfect.”

For Sale – Acer Revo One RL85 i3, 4GB Ram, 2TB HDD

Hi everyone,

I have for sale an Acer Revo One RL85 which makes a great HTC and Plex Server.

The spec is the following:
Intel Core i3-4005 1.7 GHz
4 GB RAM
2TB HDD
Windows 10 Home upgraded from Win8

Great condition with a few marks and no box unfortunately.

If you have any questions please do let me know.

Many Thanks

Price and currency: £220 or sensible offers
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: PPG or BT
Location: West London
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

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For Sale – Acer Revo One RL85 i3, 4GB Ram, 2TB HDD

Hi everyone,

I have for sale an Acer Revo One RL85 which makes a great HTC and Plex Server.

The spec is the following:
Intel Core i3-4005 1.7 GHz
4 GB RAM
2TB HDD
Windows 10 Home upgraded from Win8

Great condition with a few marks and no box unfortunately.

If you have any questions please do let me know.

Many Thanks

Price and currency: £220 or sensible offers
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: PPG or BT
Location: West London
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

______________________________________________________
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  • Name and address including postcode
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DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.

For Sale – Acer Revo One RL85 i3, 4GB Ram, 2TB HDD

Hi everyone,

I have for sale an Acer Revo One RL85 which makes a great HTC and Plex Server.

The spec is the following:
Intel Core i3-4005 1.7 GHz
4 GB RAM
2TB HDD
Windows 10 Home upgraded from Win8

Great condition with a few marks and no box unfortunately.

If you have any questions please do let me know.

Many Thanks

Price and currency: £220 or sensible offers
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: PPG or BT
Location: West London
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

______________________________________________________
This message is automatically inserted in all classifieds forum threads.
By replying to this thread you agree to abide by the trading rules detailed here.
Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:

  • Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
  • Name and address including postcode
  • Valid e-mail address

DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.

For Sale – Acer Revo One RL85 i3, 4GB Ram, 2TB HDD

Hi everyone,

I have for sale an Acer Revo One RL85 which makes a great HTC and Plex Server.

The spec is the following:
Intel Core i3-4005 1.7 GHz
4 GB RAM
2TB HDD
Windows 10 Home upgraded from Win8

Great condition with a few marks and no box unfortunately.

If you have any questions please do let me know.

Many Thanks

Price and currency: £220 or sensible offers
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: PPG or BT
Location: West London
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

______________________________________________________
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Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:

  • Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
  • Name and address including postcode
  • Valid e-mail address

DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.

For Sale – Desktop Pc – Fractal – 16gb – Low Power

Hi there,

I have for sale this desktop Pc unit, It makes a great lite gaming or video/photo editing system… It includes:

– Fractal design core 1000 case
– GIGABYTE GA-F2A68HM-HD2 Motherboard
– Amd A8 7600 + r7 integrated graphics
– 16gb ddr3 ram (2x8gb)
1tb Hdd
– Psu
– Dvd rw
– Wifi
– Free Rii LED mechanical keyboard and mouse.

The PC will come installed with a fresh copy of Windows 10. If you come and collect i’ll throw a free monitor in as well. Collection is preferred but postage is no problem.

Thanks for looking!

Price and currency: £140
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: BT
Location: Lancs/Manchester
Advertised elsewhere?: Advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I prefer the goods to be collected

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  • Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
  • Name and address including postcode
  • Valid e-mail address

DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.

For Sale – Acer Revo One RL85 i3, 4GB Ram, 2TB HDD

Hi everyone,

I have for sale an Acer Revo One RL85 which makes a great HTC and Plex Server.

The spec is the following:
Intel Core i3-4005 1.7 GHz
4 GB RAM
2TB HDD
Windows 10 Home upgraded from Win8

Great condition with a few marks and no box unfortunately.

If you have any questions please do let me know.

Many Thanks

Price and currency: £220 or sensible offers
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: PPG or BT
Location: West London
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

______________________________________________________
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By replying to this thread you agree to abide by the trading rules detailed here.
Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:

  • Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
  • Name and address including postcode
  • Valid e-mail address

DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.

Vendors vie for a piece of the SD-WAN market share pie

Most industry watchers still consider the software-defined WAN market an emerging one. This makes sense, given SD-WANs currently account for only a small percentage of enterprise networks. There are signs SD-WAN market share is increasing and maturing, however. The first is the recent merger-and-acquisition activity: Cisco acquired Viptela, and VMware scooped up VeloCloud. The other sign is the vendor landscape has started to settle down, with a few clear leaders in the pack.

Recently, Cliff Grossner, senior research director of cloud, data center and SDN at London-based IHS Markit, released his data center networking equipment quarterly market tracker for the first quarter of 2018. This report covers a wide variety of technology, including SD-WAN.

Editor’s note: The IHS report referenced in this article focused on the SD-WAN vendors that sell SD-WAN appliances and accompanying control and management software to gain revenue, excluding those that offer subscription licensing or software-only approaches. The total SD-WAN market share for the first quarter of 2018 reached $162.1 million.

VMware-VeloCloud and Aryaka battle for the top

The most notable point in the IHS report is a two-horse race is emerging. This quarter showed VMware-VeloCloud with 19% of SD-WAN market share — the same it had in the fourth quarter of 2017. In the meantime, Aryaka — an SD-WAN provider with its global private network — moved to 18%, up 1% from last quarter.

With only 1% separating the two, VMware and Aryaka are now neck and neck for market leadership. It would be easy to assume VMware’s size and channel would allow it to break away from the competition, but VMware has stumbled in networking since it acquired SDN vendor Nicira. The company wisely left the VeloCloud brand in place, as it was one of the premier names in the SD-WAN space.

Aryaka has a solid grip on the No. 2 spot in the SD-WAN market and has a chance to jump into the top spot if VMware-VeloCloud stumbles with any integration challenges. Aryaka has a unique offering that uses its global private network instead of the public internet, making it the product of choice for global companies.

One of the perceived advantages of SD-WAN is its use of internet connectivity for transport. This might work when connecting from New Jersey to Chicago, but a global company that needs to make a Dubai-to-Seattle video call will experience much better quality riding Aryaka’s private network, compared with making a bunch of internet jumps. In his report, Grossner pointed out that Aryaka customers have seen a significant performance boost for cloud-based applications, like Office 365.

Silver Peak and Cisco-Viptela vie for position

Expect to see this as a highly contested market over the next few years.

Silver Peak edged Cisco-Viptela out of the No. 3 spot in the SD-WAN market, with just under $1 million more than Cisco in first-quarter 2018 revenue. There’s no question Silver Peak has done a great job of making the pivot to SD-WAN from WAN optimization and is all-in on SD-WAN. Its EdgeConnect product lets customers move to a hybrid network, then quickly migrate to an all-broadband WAN. Most of Silver Peak’s revenue comes from enterprises, but it has been building a stronger book of business with service providers.

Cisco’s position in SD-WAN is curious, as its success with Viptela is bad for its Integrated Services Router (ISR) business unit — one of the largest revenue sources for the company. In the past, Cisco would have done everything in its power to fight the SD-WAN tide, but CEO Chuck Robbins is directing Cisco to be much more in tune with what customers want versus what Cisco wants customers to want. I believe Cisco will be willing to cannibalize its ISR base to win SD-WAN business. Currently, Cisco has only 12% of SD-WAN market share, but I expect it to be a major player over time.

These four vendors are the only ones with at least 10% of the SD-WAN market share, according to IHS. Outside of these four, the largest amount of revenue in Grossner’s numbers comes from the “other” category. I expect to see more consolidation in that area, with one of the current leading vendors — or perhaps another following behind — rolling up several smaller vendors to gain share.

For now, VMware remains in the top spot, with Aryaka nipping at its heels. Expect to see this as a highly contested market over the next few years. This should benefit customers, as the vendors will push each other on innovation and bring more features to market faster. The SD-WAN market is real, and it is showing signs of maturity, but don’t expect it to slow down.

For Sale – Acer Revo One RL85 i3, 4GB Ram, 2TB HDD

Hi everyone,

I have for sale an Acer Revo One RL85 which makes a great HTC and Plex Server.

The spec is the following:
Intel Core i3-4005 1.7 GHz
4 GB RAM
2TB HDD
Windows 10 Home upgraded from Win8

Great condition with a few marks and no box unfortunately.

If you have any questions please do let me know.

Many Thanks

Price and currency: £220 or sensible offers
Delivery: Delivery cost is included within my country
Payment method: PPG or BT
Location: West London
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I have no preference

______________________________________________________
This message is automatically inserted in all classifieds forum threads.
By replying to this thread you agree to abide by the trading rules detailed here.
Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:

  • Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
  • Name and address including postcode
  • Valid e-mail address

DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.