The first Dell EMC World concluded last week. The level of enthusiasm and excitement in the hallways was truly overwhelming. After only six weeks operating as one combined company, we made an incredibly fast and strong start by announcing a wave of new products and solutions that combine industry-leading technologies from the Dell Technologies family.The announcements, keynotes, breakout sessions, and our customer, partner and influencer conversations all centered on Digital and IT Transformation. It’s now common knowledge that all industries are facing digital disruption as technology rapidly changes the way we work and live. With this tremendous digital opportunity comes a “digital fear” as organizations wrestle with how to drive opportunity, participate and succeed in a new digital era. Every type and sized organization in every industry is feeling pressure to become a digital enterprise.This is demonstrated in a recent Dell Technologies study, in which nearly half of global business leaders from mid-size to large enterprises confessed to being unclear about what their industry would look like in three years. These leaders also believed that moving toward a cloud model, expanding software development capabilities and enabling faster innovation and deeper insights from data will be crucial to achieving digital transformation. There was also a revelation that the majority of organizations are struggling to evolve their data centers, with 69% saying they are being held back by too many traditional applications. They also face the challenge of reducing sprawl and spend, while bringing systems up-to-date.How did the IT industry find itself in this position? And, what comes next?Everything in IT is accelerating exponentially. Moore’s Law continues to hold true, as technology capabilities advance 10X every 5 years. That means that fifteen years ago, everything was 1000X slower than it is today. During this client-server era, IT focused on automating the back office, middle office and end users. IT systems-of-record were implemented with an emphasis on process, efficiency and reliability. Also, most of IT’s time was spent on implementing packaged traditional applications, instead of writing software.Now, fast forward 15 years from today and you can expect to see technology capabilities to advance another 1000X. The implication will create a dramatically different era of IT. The Internet-of-Everything is quickly leading us down the path to IT-enabled businesses and economies.There’s another profound shift happening: IT will move from supporting the business, to becoming the business.Technology will be inherent in every part of the business. There will be a shift beyond systems of record, to systems of engagement and systems of insight that are focused on using IT Innovation for building new products, offerings and services. With this shift comes a renewed desire and requirement to write software that will lead to differentiating from – or displacing – competition. The ability to differentiate with software will continue to create winners and losers in every industry.Most of my conversations with customers focus on how IT can affect and afford transformation.The client-server era of spending has peaked at $2.7 trillion, according to analyst estimates. This was spent on traditional client-server applications that run today’s businesses, the traditional applications that are not going away any time soon.As IT budgets are not growing exponentially, IT must focus on optimizing traditional applications and infrastructure to run traditional enterprise applications, like SAP and Oracle, more efficiently. By taking cost out of traditional IT, new digital initiatives may be funded more easily.These new digital initiatives will be powered by cloud-native applications. The characteristics of these cloud-native applications are radically different in every way. They’re stateless, distributed and scale-out in nature, with resiliency built into the application, leveraging a DevOps development process. In addition, these applications have 1,000 more users per application, with each user generating 1,000X more data, leading to data sets that can be 1 million times larger than traditional environments.For IT this presents a dual challenge: accelerate digital transformation to support the requirements of new cloud-native applications, while supporting the traditional applications that run today’s business. IT must be an expert and thought leader in both distinct architectural and operational paradigms.The clearest path forward to transform IT and solve for this dual challenge is through a hybrid cloud strategy, which we believe will leverage multiple hybrid clouds.The first move to achieve this is to modernize the data center. Technology tenets like scale-out, flash, software-defined, and cloud-enabled are fundamental to a modern data center.Once a modern data center and its infrastructure have been established, the next step is to automate. Enabling a frictionless and self-service environment allows organizations to scale an operation and maintain reliability.And finally, transform to an IT-as-a-Service model.Dell EMC is committed to innovating so that customers have the infrastructure needed to transform, while juggling an increasingly diverse set of priorities.Let the transformation begin…
The conversation on digital transformation in government is building and we’re excited to hear it and add to the noise. We value the thoughtful exchange of ideas and exploration of issues — it’s one of the traits that keeps Dell EMC innovative.At the recent Dell Technologies Digital Transformation Summit in Washington, D.C., we brought together leaders from industry and the federal technology community to discuss how agencies can take action now to make digital transformation a reality. There were many great conversations, but I’d like to highlight four key takeaways from government IT leaders at the event.Workforce Transformation —Tapping New Talent and Technologies to Enable Mission Accomplishment Just like any business, government depends on the talent of its workforce to thrive. Several panelists focused on the need to attract more great minds, particularly millennials, into federal government service. It’s acknowledged that federal pay and perks are not what millennials could command in the private sector. To compete, government has to offer something more. Federal service, if powered by the right technology, appeals to millennials’ sense of mission, desire to tackle big challenges and determination to help a greater cause, whether that’s providing aid following a natural disaster or helping America win in the cyber war. Technology enables this, making information easily accessible on mobile devices, supporting quick data analysis and more, so employees can quickly make informed decisions and take action.Technology can also elevate roles across the workforce. Andrew Hallman, head of the CIA Digital Innovation Directorate, looked at how artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning would revolutionize the agency’s intelligence-gathering capabilities, in turn eliminating some of the more time-consuming tasks of intelligence analysts’ jobs. Instead, analysts can now focus their attention on deriving actionable insights from the data.IT Transformation…Ongoing Process, Not One-time Event Summit participants continued to urge federal agencies to take their own IT transformation journey. Washington, D.C. Chief Technology Officer Archana Vemulapalli contributed an insightful perspective on this process.Vemulapalli recognized digital transformation is an ongoing process that is sustained over time, but said too many government agencies consider it a single event. Other types of infrastructure, like our transportation systems, are built with an understanding that ongoing, regular maintenance is a given and that roadways will need to scale to changing population needs. As Vemulapalli noted, roads are built, fixed and repaved regularly. In contrast, IT systems are acquired, installed and operated, and 15 years or more may pass before they are replaced. While the gaps left by aging IT systems are different from potholes in the road, the consequences can be much more damaging, creating cybersecurity gaps that could leave citizens’ personal information or even national security at risk. Government leaders recognize this challenge and are ready to take action.Security Transformation—Public and Private Sectors Need to Join Forces This leads us to one issue that can’t be ignored in any federal IT discussion – cybersecurity. Grant Schneider, acting CISO and senior director, National Security Council, focused on cybersecurity from a unique angle, namely, service provider expectations and the technologies that underpin federal cybersecurity strategy.A key takeaway? Effective cybersecurity requires a public-private partnership. Schneider added a perspective on how private companies can provide the best value to government in the partnership. He looks for five things from service providers. First, technology must be simple. He added that tools must be agile enough to solve next week’s issue, but still capable of integrating seamlessly with existing tools. Schneider also stressed the need for affordable solutions. Finally, he said that securing systems is essential, but they must also be easy to use. Employees bypassing security controls is too common as they seek to get work done. The integration of security platforms must be seamless. Making Transformation a Reality—It Requires DisciplineAnother common thread throughout the discussion was the recognition that the technology agencies need in most cases is there, but that culturally agencies are being held back. Speakers offered solutions to drive action from this perspective as well.Great ideas can be simple and obvious. And so is Army Chief Data Officer Thomas Sasala’s common-sense approach to transformation. He noted the key to making things happen starts with discipline. Once a decision to shut down a legacy system is made, it must be executed. For the Army, he added, the big test is how to keep critical systems operating while also upgrading IT.It’s essential to hear from IT leaders on the front lines of agencies’ digital transformation efforts. They inspire us and can help us map out the right solution to accomplish mission needs. As their trusted advisors, we are determined to support their critical work. At Dell EMC, we’re committed to empowering these outstanding public servants to lead their agencies to success.Were you able to join us at the Dell Technologies Digital Transformation Summit? Let us know what you took away from the event.
Having worked in tech for the last 25 years, I have geeked out on my fair share of new devices. But nothing gets me more excited than the opportunity to deploy tech in ways that can solve real challenges.This week in partnership with the Basel Action Network (BAN), I’m thrilled to introduce a new pilot program that will use global tracking technology utilized by BAN to provide greater transparency into our own US electronics recycling programs. As part of BAN’s new EarthEye tracking service, the trackers will be placed on non-working electronics that enter our consumer takeback programs and follow the equipment over the next 12 months to ensure the materials are recycled responsibly.It’s no secret that the growing appetite for new gadgets is causing a growing e-waste challenge. According to Earth911, the US produces approximately 9.4 million tons of e-waste every year, and less than 15 percent is responsibly recycled. We as consumers and producers must do better.As Ben Von Wong so beautifully conveys in the below video, recycling electronics has far-reaching benefits including the opportunity to recover precious materials for reuse in things like jewelry and new Dell products. It also saves energy: recycling one million laptops saves the energy equivalent to the electricity used by 3,657 U.S. homes in a year, according to the EPA.For decades Dell has put our muscle behind addressing this issue: we have the world’s largest technology recycling program offering services to customer in more than 75 countries and territories. We were first to ban the export of e-waste, advocate for infrastructure in developing countries and we turn e-waste into a valuable resource that can go back into the economy. To date, we’ve put more than 20 million pounds of e-waste plastics in more than 90 new Dell products since 2013. But there’s always more to do.The project with BAN provides us with greater visibility into our downstream processes and could potentially add an extra layer of transparency to our existing electronics disposition partner audit program. We are open to the fact that we may find some gaps, and we’re fully committed to putting an action plan in place if we do. The important thing is that we’re finding new, hopefully better ways to ensure responsible recycling practices, and in doing so, we set a higher bar for the entire industry.We look forward to reporting out on the results of our pilot with BAN in the next 12 months. In the meantime, please consider taking time this summer to clear out your pile of vintage devices in your closet and recycle them with Dell.
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s parliament has rejected a budget bill proposed by the country’s relatively moderate president, the latest win by the hard-liners in the house. The move is part of a political struggle between moderates and conservative hard-liners ahead of June elections, which hard-liners hope to win. Iranian state TV report said that of the 261 lawmakers who were present in the 290-seat parliament on Tuesday, 148 voted against the bill while 99 lawmakers backed it. The rest abstained. The hard-liners and opponents of President Hassan Rouhani say the proposed budget is unrealistic, lacks transparency and would cause high inflation.