Enterprise hits and misses - cloud costs get scrutiny, B2B brands meet TikTok, and workplace learning needs a rethink
- This week - cloud costs get a hard look, thanks to a viral blog post. B2B brands face the TikTok challenge, learning management systems stink, and a diginomica colleague stokes my metaverse ire.
Lead story - Do we need an urgent rethink of workplace learning?
Do learning management systems stink? That's the blunt conclusion of Valoir Research's Rebecca Wetteman, upon the release of a startling survey. As Stuart reports:
It's time to rethink the approach taken to learning in the workplace.
So what's the problem? In a nutshell, learning management systems do an okay job of training for a particular role, but they fall woefully short in professional development. COVID and remote work added another obstacle. Stuart quotes Wetteman:
When everything happens digitally and we don’t have the informal networks and connections for learning that we have when we’re all in the office together, two things happen. Those outside of informal networks (like new hires) don’t get the coaching and mentoring they need, and workers go elsewhere for training and career advancement – which may increase their skills and abilities, but also increases their mobility and reduces their engagement with their employer.
"Increases their mobility and reduces their engagement"? So much for "employee experience." How to fix? Valoir advises tactics like micro-learning, in-application training, and other new approaches that don't disrupt the flow of work. Agreed. Still, there's an unresolved issue with the unequal distribution of coaching and mentoring, particularly of younger/remote employees. Creative ideas needed.
Diginomica picks - my top stories on diginomica this week
- Can ASOS fashion an e-commerce future in the Vaccine Economy? Here's the (fishy) plan - Can a pandemic e-commerce favorite (re)find its mojo in a skittish economy? Stuart breaks it down.
- B2B brands should be thinking about TikTok - here's why - Bet you're thinking I'd pile skepticism on Barb's post, but after reading it, I'm not going to. What I see here is not just a case for TikTok, but for short-form video. You'll get no arguments from me. I would just caution brands: there is no long tail in these short-form video algorithms, so you'll have to keep cranking them out a furious pace.
- Culling with kindness - the right way to go about making redundancies in the tech sector - Layoffs always sting, but is there way to do it (more) humanely? Cath makes the case.
- The view from India's services giants - digital transformation appetite is still strong, but there's a new reality taking shape - Another important piece from Stuart this week: "Three of India’s top services giants have turned in decent numbers in recent days, but all are casting a wary eye at the wider macro-economic environment and how US and European customers are likely to react."
Vendor analysis, diginomica style. Here's my three top choices from our vendor coverage:
- IBM CEO Arvind Krishna pitches "the two most transformational enterprise technologies of our time" - Stuart on an upbeat(!) IBM earnings report, spurred by AI and the so-called "hybrid cloud."
- IFS Unleashed - shaping up to fit the servitization needs of asset-centric industries - Phil assesses IFS' recent user event in Miami.
- ServiceNow orchestrates work at Astellas to help drive automation and efficiencies - Derek's ServiceNow use case, this one from a healthcare giant.
Oracle CloudWorld 2022 is a wrap. Here's a few picks from our diginomica analysis and use cases - there's more if you fancy it.
- Inside Oracle's B2B commerce and apps platform news - Customer and partner impact - by me. I also filed my view on Oracle's cloud customer transformation stories.
- Heathrow Airport takes off with Oracle Fusion apps - One of several notable use cases filed by Derek. A little birdie told me Derek has an Oracle industries/healthcare piece in the hopper also.
- Oracle HCM steps up personalization of the employee experience with new recruitment tool - Phil
- What I’d say to me back then – Oracle UK Country Leader Siobhan Wilson on banishing doubts - Madeline
A couple more vendor picks, without the quotables:
- Sage Intacct Manufacturing makes noise at Sage Transform - but why cloud manufacturing, and why now? - Jon
- TUI smiles on Snowflake to give business users timely access to business-critical data - Mark
Jon's grab bag - Chris found mixed reviews (by region) in a fresh AI report (AI progress report exposes regional gaps - good for India, not so hot for the UK). Meanwhile, Phil pressed my hits/misses buttons with Meta brings VR to business meetings - is this the enterprise gateway to the metaverse?
Err, no. The ridiculously flogged "metaverse" term is borderline irrelevant to the enterprise. As Phil rightly asserts, it's a wholly unnecessary term. What is relevant? The maturity of AR and VR use cases, across industries. This was happening before Meta placed its bets, and tried to justify the magical metaverse with innovations that were well underway.
I guess meetings could be a so-called "metaverse" gateway, but only because employers could force employees to don headsets. I own a Quest headset - the setup and continued bandwidth/hardware needed to operate them is no small thing, not to mention that rollercoaster feeling afterwards. I don't see one killer "metaverse" app conquering the enterprise or opening gates. I see AR and VR use cases continuing to evolve - not the least of which is digital twins. To paraphrase what I wrote a few weeks ago:
Metaverse as a term has been specifically promoted to imply a technology revolution, spurring vast economic growth. Training some people with headsets just doesn't vindicate those pronouncements...
Same goes for meetings. But hey, if everyone starts requiring Quest headsets for meetings, at least I'll have more free time...
Best of the enterprise web
My top seven
- How AI and machine learning are changing the phishing game - I poked fun at this article in the whiffs section (scroll down to see why). Still, we do need vigilance on such topics.
- Why we're leaving the cloud - This is a simplification of the potential business value of cloud, but: we're going to hear more of this as the economy tightens and cloud costs escalate. Savvy IT departments with deeper skills can absolutely run their own data centers.
- 3 Keys to Negotiating Successful Cloud Agreements - Speaking of cloud costs, it's a good time for UpperEdge to chime in with another useful piece on cloud negotiations, this one by Adam Mansfield.
- Business development in consulting - Vijay Vijaysankar issues some trenchant/timely advice for consultants. I especially liked the last point: "They present the solution with clarity and they are not afraid to push back at clients professionally with facts and logic." Yep, that's not easy, but you can do it, you're a true consultant.
- Building a mentally resilient workforce - I'm glad this topic is getting more mainsteam attention; it comes at the right time.
- How technology teams keep America's largest bank on a digital course - Joe McKendrick with an interesting use case from Chase Bank: "Chase Bank puts its tech professionals in front of 60 million digitally active customers -- and this is also a recruiting tool for tech talent."
- Claims AI can boost workplace diversity are 'spurious and dangerous' - the (mis)use of AI for hiring is one of my least favorite AI use cases; this article does a good job of illuminating the problems.
So I had an unusual networking encounter:
Pro tip - when networking with other tech peeps, if they ask you about your projects, don't say
"If I told you, I'd have to kill you."
I don't care if you have more security clearances than I have flight vouchers.... you haven't passed clearance to network with other humans
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) October 24, 2022
Can't lie: I have a journalistic axe to grind about "How AI can help/how AI can hurt" switch hitting:
How AI and machine learning are changing the phishing game https://t.co/fEQ1h4ysxR
-> tomorrow we'll get an article about how AI is helping us to identify phishing. So, which is it?
MyPOV: it's a zero sum game with an edge to the bad peeps and rogue states pushing the edge
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) October 24, 2022
Did you know that AI podcasts simulating celebrities (living or dead) is a thing?
This podcast brings Steve Jobs back to life, thanks to AI https://t.co/v0XOeVuScR
"both of who seem to have bursts of cynical laughs at the beginning of the episode for no specific reason. "
-> I'm sure it's a quite illuminating conversation between two sentient bots lmao.
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) October 24, 2022
I'm so curious about how godawful this could be, I just might give it a listen when planes land. Speaking of nostalgia, did you know Windows nostalgia is thing?
98.css - -- https://t.co/I106mVVTbb
"98.css is a CSS library for building interfaces that look like Windows 98."
-> when tech nostalgia turns diabolical. Only thing I dread more than Windows 11 is Windows 98
— Jon Reed (@jonerp) October 23, 2022
Now if we're talking Windows 95, I might be in. See you next time... If you find an #ensw piece that qualifies for hits and misses - in a good or bad way - let me know in the comments as Clive (almost) always does. Most Enterprise hits and misses articles are selected from my curated @jonerpnewsfeed.