Software Defined Infrastructure – The new WMD

It’s no longer news that Software-Defined Infrastructure SDI has revolutionized IT from both a technology and business perspective.

Some of the effects of the revolution is that it is lowering the barrier to market places in every sector (cost reduction), democratizing innovation and simplifying the path for organizational transformation amongst others. All these are possible as technology becomes a commodity that anyone can lay his or her hands on.

What is news is the enormous disruption that accompanies this kind of revolution. An area of concern (or excitement –depending on how this affects you) is the ripple effects across industries, since it allows   organizations to commoditize those technology that doesn’t differentiate them, and to invest and focus on the ones that does.

Essentially, it turns technology into something more than just a “cost-savings” tool. A Weapon of Mass Disruption (WMD).

wmd-sdn
(Credit -U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Master Sgt. Ray Loyd)

The 2nd Weapons of Mass Destruction Civil Support Team(U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Master Sgt. Ray Loyd) (defenseimagery.mil)

Thanks to SDI and cloud-magic, companies are now using this kind of WMD to undermine the fundamental assumptions that most business models are based on. What is equally interesting is that the “small guys” (Companies that stood no chances of existing 10 years ago) with little to lose, have access to the same WMD as the “large and mighty” that have everything to lose.

I was driving by the old blockbuster store in my area  the other day (its now an Autozone store) and I couldn’t help but think about how a struggling Netflix succeeded in using a WMD to take out an entrenched competitor called Blockbuster.

Unfortunately, most companies are still trying to look at software-defined infrastructure from a “cost savings” or “me too” only prism.Part of this is that traditionally, organizations have mostly focused on total cost of ownership (TCO) when making IT decisions.Most business cases for technology investments can be summarized below  “Dear CFO, I am willing to spend $X to save $Y. please approve”

While a cost orientation is needed to measure the investment in SDI, the picture is incomplete without including value. The new reality requires business decision makers to incorporate a cost and value orientation.

How do you put a price tag on time to market or those intangible competitive advantages you might achieve with a secured SDI? How do you plan to reinvest the time gained by operating a highly dynamic and efficient infrastructure and how does that contribute to your bottom line ?

Disruption is coming to somewhere near you soon. It’s not a matter of when, but how quickly it gets there. Be prepared and don’t let cost be the sole driver that pushes you towards a software-defined infrastructure.

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