Windows patches

A customer called me today to discuss about software alternatives related to future microsoft-patch-dayenvironment for a shop floor solution they have. We reviewed the main requirements and during the conversation we talked about different major environments. Suddenly we did a stop on .NET, and this was what happened.

We are running a shop floor solution that is today is available 24×7, we do not stop. I cannot go to the business and say: we have a solution that is so “cool” but we will have outages. Our 25 years old solution has not outages, I cannot propose a new solution with this basic hurdle.

Windows patches are a stopper when deciding on the use of .NET framework. You have to stop the machine and apply security patch or an upgrade or whatever.

  • Why don’t use a cluster? it’s too expensive.
  • Why don’t implement the solution on the cloud? they cannot rely on network, it’s more investment to ensure availability.

After that, we continued talking about Open Source solutions.

 

SalesForce Trailhead Developer Beginner

During these last 7 days I have been using my free time to complete the Developer Beginner training from SalesForce.

I have worked in Lotus Domino world during some years and so much of the concepts implemented in SalesForce have the same vision of Lotus Notes; the difference is for sure there are 20 years difference in the technology to implement that vision.

The similarities in the concepts with Lotus Notes made me to go quickly on the training sessions. The most useful part are the challenges and the code you can test at the same time you read the lesson. The usability and the way to acquire concepts is so good, the timing of 20 – 25 minutes is also good.

Do I recommend to go through this training? yes and no.

  • If you want to understand the basic concepts of the SalesForce platform and understand how powerful it is, YES.
  • If you loved Lotus Domino and miss to work on a platform as that, YES.
  • If you are a pure programmer that comes from Java, .NET world, you probably will find it boring, so NO.
  • If you find corporate workflows and business process boring, NO.

SFDC-Trailhead-Developer-BeginnerI will go through other one during Christmas time, Which one do you recommend me?

The career upgrade roadmap

This book basically convinces you to change the way to find the job you want.

The difference with others I have read is that it proposes you a specific approach with clear steps you have to follow.

One of the main messages is that if you send CVs on any job board, you will compete against 70 – 80 people; if you use this method you will compete against 2 – 3 people.

The proposed road-map is:

  1. Target identification: job titles (define at least 5) with target companies (30 – 40 companies) and location area.
  2. Market validation:
  3. Consistent connection:build relationship with people, connect with them for learning and looking clarity.
    1. Identify the experts: look for people who do these jobs or that have done the job in the past. Get in touch with 10 of them per week.
    2. Try to get introduced through your contacts. If not, get in touch directly.
    3. Meet the person in person or by phone.
    4. Follow-up, follow-up, follow-up.
  4. Craft your career narrative.
  5. Red carpet application.

the-career-upgrade-roadmapAt the end of the day, they suggest you to use your contact list as a CRM, get in touch with people, build relationship and dig into these relationships to find these positions that are never published on the on-line boards. The key aspect is: be persistent.

Which ecosystem/s are the right ones for me?

So many companies are moving from their current environments to the new ecosystems available in the market. This drives the organizations to perform a rationalization of their portfolios.

This is no-brainer, but the first step is to understand your current portfolio of assets and what are your business priorities for the future. Once done, next step is the selection of the target ecosystems. There are different ecosystems in the market available, and the first questions to be asked are:

  • What are the best ones for my organization needs?
  • Do they integrate properly with respect my needs?
  • How mature is my organization to embrace the selected ecosystem?

Below I have tried to define what are the components of the different ecosystems or platforms, independently of the business processes or the industry where the organization is:

Value-chain-mapping-ecosystems-generalThe picture is full of lines, so let’s divide them from end-user and CEO/CIO point of view. I have added CEO on purpose, because the IT activities are not a support department anymore. Some organizations still do not understand that IT is a core capability of their organization and this is a big mistake.

For the end-user:

Value-chain-mapping-ecosystems-end-user

  • Platform, is the environment where they access and perform their duties. User experience is key and a logical way to integrate with different tools and services is relevant to enable the expert users to dig into the platform and obtain as much benefits of its use. The user assumes they can send e-mails, manage documentation, chat with their colleagues, perform workflow activities…. This is not an added value, it’s a must.
  • Applications marketplace: users are wise people with specific needs. The platform does not need to satisfy all specific needs, but an application marketplace that offers specific solutions is important to make your platform to fit within your business needs.
  • Certification program: it enables the organization to have a clear roadmap of required knowledge your teams require. It also sets some standards on the use of the platform. Finally these programs also enable the business to understand the technical side of the platform which is key when managing transformation projects.
  • Development community: the link with the end users is the applications marketplace, but in addition this can be also linked with specific projects done by a third party. The third parties have to be able to provide customized solutions, respecting the platform best practices and enabling a long term use of these specific solutions. Here the robustness of the platform is key.

For the CIO / CEO. The majority of the comments are around the value of time, as this is the key aspect we have to look at long term: time to market.

Value-chain-mapping-ecosystems-CIO

  • Application marketplace, relevant to access to specific solutions for your organization. You pay, but immediately you obtain the solution on your environment. You will enable the different business units to invest their money where they want.
  • Partners network is important to understand if we can integrate the other assets we have on the target ecosystem. We require flexibility to enable the platform to adapt to our organization. A platform without integration with the main vendors will drive us to an isolated environment with limits at medium term, which will finalize with a fiasco and more $$ investment.
  • Development community. We have to understand how big is the development community, understand if there are qualified vendors with these capabilities, if we can create a competitive environment, if we just can depend on a given partner…
  • API, indeed the versatility of the API for your partners, your third parties, the development community.
  • Continuous development: this is key when the complexity of your platform is increased and you are attending needs from different BUs into the same environment. How fast, which quality and how stable is the delivery of new pieces of software is a relevant aspect.
  • Software development speed. This indirect parameter is the more relevant aspect of the map, because it gives you a lot of information about the rest of the components and how they impact on your time to market.

The origin of a slow software development speed could be:

  • The platform does not have a good API to integrate other systems.
  • The first integrations are easy but continues development of different activities makes the integrations more complex and the platform is not able to respond quickly.
  • There are too much re-coding.
  • There are not good quality checks of the code.
  • There is not a good development community.
  • There are not good partnerships with other vendors that require to perform extra efforts for integration.
  • Once the complexity of the environment is increased the time to market decreases. Stress analysis and understand the limits of the environment is key.
  • The distance between the business requirements and technical solution is so far away and it makes the achievement of the new solutions to be a complex process.
  • You have not knowledge of the platform in house to launch/manage these type of projects.

Fast software development speed means:

  • You will reach the market faster,
  • You attend your business processes faster,
  • You can define shorter cycles of software delivery.
  • You potentially will be more competitive.

In 1961 organizations tried to send a man on the moon. In 2015 organizations try to be the fastest developing code.

Ok joapen, but you did not answer “which ecosystem/s are the right ones for me?”

No I did not, this is just an introduction of the main aspects of this exercise. To be continued.

GAFAMA

Right now there are six digital ecosystems that dominates the digital world,they are known as GAFAMA: Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, Alibaba.

Between these six ecosystems their combined market cap is $2.3 trillion (equivalent to the size of the UK economy). For the rest of the world there are 2 main questions:

  1. How can I become the next one on that list?
  2. How can I survive living on those ecosystems?…how can I interact/negotiate/take advantage of the use of their services.

GAFAMA

Attribution modeling

To attract new customers through marketing campaigns is more complex thanks to the new channels where consumers reach a brand. This makes the way to reach the consumer to be more complex.

The aim of attribution modeling is to understand the influence each advertising impression has on a consumer’s decision to make a purchase decision.

To provoke the decision of purchase is a direct goal, but there are also indirect goals in this complex relationship between a consumer and a brand. By this reason another goal of attribution modeling is to convert visibility into what influences the audience, when and to what extent.

The main restriction in marketing is budget and good marketers know how to maximize the money their customers want to spend. So ROI of marketing campaigns is on debate. This article talks about it with some good examples to understand better the attribution modeling.

Funnel-attribution-modeling

Ruta por Sierra de Cádiz

Buena ruta ayer sábado con Alfredo por una de las sierras que más me gusta.

Unos datos para el recuerdo

  • Benaocaz – Villaluenga: 4.5kms – 1.45h
  • Villaluenga – Circo: 11kms – 2.45h
  • Circo – Casa Dornajo: 1km – 45m
  • Casa Dornajo – Benaocaz: 2.5kms – 1 h

Total 18kms en 6 horas.

circo-desde-casa-dornajo

MVC pattern + DevOps + agile = SaaS developer

This equation is so simple, there are transferable skills that can be used in different platforms.

MVC pattern + DevOps + agile = SaaS developer

In the market, companies working on SalesForce, ServiceNow, Workday… all of them are looking for developers. You cannot learn how to develop ServiceNow code using the traditional training channels: they just don’t exist.

So the skills that these companies are looking for are:

  • Developers with perfect understanding of MVC pattern.
  • Developers who understand the cultural aspects of DevOps, the principles of automation in SDLC and quality of software.
  • Developers with perfect understanding of some of the agile methodologies.

Hiring these skills, you ensure that the learning curve to be a developer in your own platform is minimized. They can become experts in just some months.

By the moment, the only academy that certifies that these guys is the SalesForce academy. So many of the certified developers in Force.com are being hired by other companies to work on ServiceNow. It’s simple, they only have to get familiar with the library of objects.

I have just noticed that AWS offers their own DevOps training, classifying DevOps as a methodology, which is wrong!

P3M3, what is the priority

This maturity model is very well known by the project/program/portfolio community and one of the questions I would like to ask, is: once we have done an assessment of the situation we have in our project, program or portfolio, where should I start with? We all have limited resources and we cannot fix all.

The classical view of the assessment summarizes the situation with this view:

P3M3-classic-assessmentThe immediate answer that comes to my mind is to start with the less matured aspects. But is this the right criteria? Am I taking into account all relevant aspects?

If we organize the report taking into account the value for the cutomer (which could be a customer, the steering committee or the PMO) we could have a situation as this:

P3M3-value-chain-chart

Our goal is to increase the maturity of the execution of these areas, so the black lines just mark the desired trend we want to give to it. We have limited resources, and to set the right priority is key to maximize the improvement.

  • The vertical position of each area represents the priority of our customer.
  • The horizontal position represents the level of maturity of each area.
  • The blue lines represents the latest desired trends or “urgent” priorities marked by the customer.
  • I have highlighted in red, yellow, green the initial priorities we should take into account for the actions to be done.
  • Special attention of risk management, that, even do that it is more mature of others, it has a high relevance on the benefits management of the program. The improvement on this area will improve the benefits management and the stakeholder engagement.
  • Special attention to Financial Management: initially it’s not a high relevance topic, but the fact that we are closing a fiscal year, makes it important to understand how we are.

Now the difficult side of our real life: Define the actions by area to be launched, performed, measured and communicated.