Dell recently held its Technology Camp 2013 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.TechSmart was there to hear about the company's strategy with regards to enterprises.
The company also highlighted several of its technologies and explained how the various acquisitions Dell has made all enable it to respond to the changing business landscape.
Tom Kendra, the vice president and general manager of Dell Software Group, began the event by explaining that the company was implementing a strategy of being a provider of end-to-end services for the enterprise. With this in mind, he revealed that Dell had invested some $10 billion (R90 billion) in acquisitions over the past five years.
Kendra continued that the trends that were shaping the industry included the cloud, mobility, as well as data. With regards to the latter, he explained that, while it was well known that the amount of data was expanding exponentially, key to this explosion of data is being able to aggregate it, search it and then use it to add value to a business’s bottom line.
Not coincidentally, several of the companies that Dell had acquired over the past few years, such as Kace, SecureWorks and Gale Technologies, were in some way leading innovators in the fields of cloud computing, security, data, mobility or data accessibility.
Tom Kendra, vice president and general manager of Dell Software Group
It's all about the customer
One of the standout themes of the Dell Technology Camp, was just how customer-focused the company is becoming. Over the course of several presentations, one point was stressed over and again – the company’s concerted, even intense focus on adding value to its customers.
Aongus Hegarty, the president of Dell for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) asserted that Dell had the technology and the solutions to meet its customers’ needs in the EMEA regions.
He added that Dell’s ability to offer end-to-end solutions to small, medium and large organisations, not only put it in a good position as compared to its competition. Rather, it further enabled the company to work with and help its customers. More tellingly, he reported that he found the company’s customers increasingly desiring Dell to work with them to meet their challenges and goals.
According to Tony Parkinson, vice president of Dell Enterprise Solutions, this greater intimacy with companies that rely on Dell, was practically a phenomenon in its own way. He explained that while Dell had always had a strong relationship with its customers, it has more recently upped this to a new level, and explained that selling companies’ notebooks and workstation was not quite as profound as being entrusted with a company’s data.
Indeed, this deeper relationship with customers follows some guidelines common to all kinds of relationship; foremost amongst these, is honesty. While the company‘s main aim moving forward is to offer an end-to-end solution to customers, Parkinson stressed that Dell remained open with its customers, and if it could not meet all their needs, it would admit this and try find them alternative solutions.
Tony Parkinson, vice president of Dell Enterprise Solutions.
More difficult for smaller companies
Parkinson added that it was the small and medium businesses which were facing greater difficulty in meeting the challenges posed by new technology, as compared with large enterprises, as these typically have large teams or departments dedicated to managing information technology (IT).
Additionally, he pointed out that larger businesses tend to have a better understanding of IT than small and medium ones. However, clearly embracing IT was becoming not just important, but essential, for businesses regardless of their size.
The reason for this is simple: in a distressed economic environment, savings, profitability and financial efficiency are essential and rapidly reach the forefront of any business’ priority list.
According to Marius Haas, the president of Dell Enterprise solutions, Dell can help companies deal with the economic pressure being placed on businesses in general. He added that the savings that a business could enjoy from taking advantage of Dell’s offerings to meet its data centre needs timeously, could be substantial.
As an example, he cited an unnamed customer, which had managed to save in the order of $75 million. This was due to Dell’s ability to fulfil an order for thousands of servers in one month, rather than 90 days.
To the point
The Dell Technology camp was not just about strategy or the importance of the customer. It was also host to several new and important announcements and revelations from the company.
In part two of this exploration, we look at Dell’s new product announcements and how they are optimised according to a company’s workload; the role the cloud and design play in the data centre; and finally, we consider Dell’s approach to change, and what it can mean for other IT leaders.