The Future of Innovation is Tied to the Cloud


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One of the aspects I enjoy as the leader of a great software company is that, on occasion, I get to be part of key industry initiatives and gatherings.  To that end, I had the unique opportunity to get together with some of the most innovative minds in technology led by Michael Skok at North Bridge.  On the heels of MassTLC Cloud Summit on Friday, Michael walked a group of us through his Future of the Cloud industry collaboration, where close to 800 industry professionals chimed in on the future of the cloud and its profound effect on software, business, future ecosystems and collaboration.    

There is no doubt that SaaS spending is outpacing all other software spending – six-fold according to the Future of the Cloud results, and indeed, cloud is changing software – including on-premise footholds such as CRM and ERP.  But what caught my attention this time (I covered the findings of the Future of the Cloud survey in a previous post), were the drivers of cloud adoption – namely, scalability and business agility.  This made me think about innovation in a broader sense – and revisit Booz &Co The Global Innovation 1000 report published at the beginning of this year.  This report identifies three types of innovation leaders based on their business strategy:

  • Need seekers – companies who actively engage both current and potential customers to help shape new products and services, often addressing unarticulated needs. Examples of Future of the Cloud supporters include Actifio and Rackspace.
  • Market Readers- companies that closely monitor their customers and competitors, and help to build strong ecosystems around them.  Examples of such companies who collaborated in the Future of the Cloud initiative are MicrosoftSAPAcquia and Demandware (and I would put Scribe Software in that category too.)
  • Technology Leaders that leverage sustained investments in tech R&D to drive both breakthrough innovation and incremental change. No doubt companies in this segment include leaders such Amazon, but also innovation up-and-comers such as Apperian, who are defining the mobile experience in the enterprise.

I believe that innovation diffusion starts with the technology leaders, who enable the need seekers to meet future customer demand in unique and creative ways.  Market readers then come in to galvanize the ecosystem, and help transform industries.  As Michael Skok shared, the $2.4 billion investment in cloud software to date, representing 75% of all new software delivered, is a telltale sign that unless it is cloud, it is not worth betting on. It sure looks like it – and the things I wonder about include, how will the journey develop from on-premise applications to cloud services and will firms like Scribe be able to make it easy for these leaders, along with the relevant ISVs and Sis, help accelerate the pace of business through better integration.


Lou Guercia
As President and CEO for Scribe Software, Lou is responsible for Scribe's direction, continued growth as a leader in mid-market and enterprise integration as well as the company's entry into the cloud through integration-as-a-service (IaaS) offerings. He is a member of the SIIA Software Board of Directors and the MassTLC Cloud cluster.


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