Apple is expanding its use of Fusion-IO. Apple’s increasing use of the Fusion-IO storage platform may move the company ahead of Facebook as Fusion-IO’s biggest customer. If you aren’t familiar with Fusion-IO, you might be soon. Some analysts are saying the company’s technology may soon become “the” defacto standard for storage in the same way that Windows and Intel transformed and then dominated the computing market.
Fusion-IO has a fairly narrow focus in the storage market. It sells flash memory components that plug into servers and act as high-performance cache However, the narrow focus hasn’t limited Fusion-IO’s success. Founded in 2005, since the company’s IPO last summer Fusion-IO’s share price has steadily increased as investors confident in Fusion-IO’s ability to command the market snapped up the stock. Earlier this month, rumors spread that Dell might be attempting to acquire the startup. .Fusion-IO’s platform is used widely by both Apple and Facebook to deliver a speedy user experience.
Use of Fusion-IO’s technology isn’t the company’s only link to Apple. Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has served as Fusion-IO’s Chief Scientist since 2008. Facebook accounts for 36 percent of Fusion-IO’s revenue, 24 percent come from Apple and 14 percent from Hewlett-Packard. Fusion-IO has also added Salesforce.com and Pandora as customers. However, not everyone is enamored with Fusion-IO. The CEO of EMC lashed out at Fusion-IO saying that the company’s attitude toward flash memory, “darn right foolish.” EMC started by using flash arrays, then took a page from Fusion-io’s playbook by announcing VFcache, a PCIE-based server-side product.
Fusion’s CEO still claims Emc is a bottleneck, arguing his firm’s technology goes beyond a standard pcie connection and provides direct memory access that eliminates the overheads of disk protocols.
Critics of Fusion’s direct memory access approach, known as its VSL technology, argue that this technique requires firms to rewrite applications to take advantage of the solution.
Analysts tell SiliconAngle that this is the land grab that is going on. New cloud-based apps require new approaches to development, and a key to Fusion’s success will be its ability to get ISV’s and application developers to code to its API.
No matter what your opinion is on Fusion-IO’s strategy, clearly the company is doing something right. Almost all of the company’s customers report dramatic improvements in performance after adopting Fusion-IO’s platform. Fusion-IO’s revenue are projected to climb 82 percent over the next two years. This is the faster growth than any of the company’s competitors. Fusion-IO is a pioneer in the flash-based storage market and that gamble is paying off.
Since the late of 1990s, the term business intelligence (BI) and its application has been widely known and used in organizations, especially in large enterprises. But in a decade later, they started to realize that changing business environment will needs something more than just BI, which now called business analytics. In 2006, an author named Thomas wrote an article on HBR entitled “Competing on Analytics” which provisions the rising needs for business analytics. Davenport started his explanation on competing analytics by giving some examples on the succesfull usage of killer apps in some organizations, named Amazon, Harrah’s, Capital One and Boston Red Sox. By utilizing analytics, these organizations are able to knows better about the values that customer want, which inturn be able to squeeze all the value from the processes and make the best out of it. Davenport also point out that, to be an analytics competitor, top-down approach from the senior leadership team, as well as hiring the best people are necessary. Nonetheless, not all organizations are succesfull on using business analytics due to its characteristic. The rest of the articles explains about what organizations can make the best of analytics, as well as the changes that an organization must undergo to adopt it.
ANATOMY OF AN ANALYTICS COMPETITOR: MUST-HAVE CHARACTERISTICS FOR ORGANIZATIONS
Some traditional organizations may not be fully suitable with competing analytics. One best practice that an organization my want to know is how Marriot International using analytics. But, it will not work to some traditional organizations. Davenport’s study found three key attributes that an organization must have:
WIDESPREAD USE OF MODELLING AND OPTIMIZATION
Analytics competitors do things beyond statistics and spreadsheets. They are using sort of things that could provide them better insights from data, such as:
- Predictive modelling to identify the most profitable customer.
- Data warehouse to pool inhous and outside data.
- Optimized supply chain.
- Real-time pricing.
- Sophisticated experiments to calculate impact.
Some analytics competitors, especially inscurance company, like Capital One and Progessive doing series comprehensive experiments to have the best value based on their customers need, even with high-risk.
AN ENTERPRISE APPROACH
Successfull analytics competitor will implement analytics using multiple applications in wide busines functions rather than using single app. For some companies such as UPS, Capital One and Barclays Bank are already implementing business intelligence and then shifting towards full-bore analytics competitors. However, Devenport thinks that BI still have some flaws where its still use data which spreads all over the organization. The data may contains errors and make the decision inacurrate, which in contrast, analytics competitors are using centralized function to manage critical data. People within the organization is as important as the technology. Some organization like P&G create a pool of experts from various function to do the analytics.
SENIOR EXCECUTIVE ADVOCATES
Changing into an analytics competitor simply changes the organization, and it will require leadership skills to guide the organization towards sucessfull adoption. Its proven that if the initiative just pushed by one-or-two business unit leaders, it will not successfull. There was some key leadership qualities that the article pointed out, such as: appreciation and familiarity with analytics or analytics-minded, intuitive, and have the guts to make decision even not supported by numbers.
THEIR SOURCES OF STRENGTH: WHAT MAKES AN ANALYTICS COMPETITOR RUNS
Basically Davenport define 4 things that makes an analytics competitor ticks, they are:
THE RIGHT FOCUS: HAVING A CLEAR SIGHT
Even if an organization have the ability, it is necessary to have certain focus on only a few analytics subjects. Becoming to diffuse can make the organization losing clear sight on the purpose of analytics. Another consideration of focus is about having a deep analysis on at least 7 functions. Nowadays, advanced statistic models and algorithm ca be used widely, including in advertising and other marketing measures. Later on this subtopic, there are examples that sucessfull analytics competitors can’t be done by the organization alone, it also needs to help their vendors and customers.
THE RIGHT CULTURE: TO JUSTIFY EVERYTHING QUICKLY
The right culture to have is the culture to appreciate usage of data, fact and the things between that and the procedure to get it. It also applied in organization with high creativity and intrapreneurship: any innovation should be made based on evidence. However, always justify everything also have payoff: it might be taking long time and costly, so the managers hould balance them in order to make quick decisions.
THE RIGHT PEOPLE: THE BEST OF THEM
Analytics competitors hires best people on analytics, bunch of them, to do the analytic-based decisions and make it seamlessly in line with the business. But, the people to do the analytics just as good as how far they can communicate it, so they must have sort of good interpersonal skills. In terms of formula, it might look like this:
Good Analyst = Expertise +Ablity to express it in simple way + Interpersonal skills
Of course, to get people with this quality is not easy, not to mention taking long waiting time. To have an overseas employee might be a good idea.
THE RIGHT TECHNOLOGY: THREE PILLARS
Analytics and IT are unseparable. It is supported by three pillars: First, THE DATA,whether it is from ERP, CRM, POS, any of them, and a lot of them, means years of data. They put it in data warehouse, which a familiar tools on BI. Second, THE BI SOFTWARE, to collect data from warehouses, analyse them and making reports. And Last, THE COMPUTING HARDWARE which enables a computation power for huge volume of data, quickly.
THE (LONG) ROAD AHEAD
Well, it might be not long road, as Davenport writhe the articles 5 years before this review written in the late 2011. He was concluding his paper with reminding us that to become an analytics competitor will takes a long time until the ROI, while meantime, it will cost many efforts and expenses. Yet, it can be done gradually from current time by collecting data and refining the system, and equip the organization with analytics-minded people.
Business analytics might be an interestring concept to explore to enrich our current knowledge and view on today’s business intelligence. In contrast with BI, business analytics focuses on gaining insights and overview of organizational performance based on data and statistical methods, supported by BI applications. It also cover the issues of leadership, culture and having a certain quality of analyst within the organization. On the article, Davenport gives the readers a comprehensive look of business analytics without losing the big picture. His writing also well supported with examples which gives personal and easy-to-digest touch on complex concept. A worth to read for BI enthusiasts.
Based on a Harvard Business Review Article Titled “Competing on Analytics” by Thomas H. Davenport Published on January 2006, Article Review By Akhmad Rahadian Hutomo for Business Intelligence Assignment, Information System, Faculty of Computer Science, Universitas Indonesia on October 2011.
Over the last several years, interest in and excitement about analytics/big data/data mining has grown exponentially. Count me among its biggest enthusiasts, as I firmly believe the potential for the “this changes everything” discoveries are real!
I’m just as excited about “informationalization,” a concept that’s been around for a whilebut has been gaining speed in recent years. The basic idea is simple: Make existing products and services more valuable to your customers by building in more data and information.
- BrainPad Accelerates Multiple Web Analytics Systems on Less Hardware : fusion-io (c24.co.uk)
- The Problems of eDiscovery Costs (arnoldit.com)
Why then do so many firms struggle to glean maximum intelligence, if any, from their data? Why are they struggling to fill the exponentially growing number of open head counts they appear to be prioritizing.
Here’s why: An individual employee actually has a “Priority #0”, which takes precedence over Priority #1. While Analytics sole purpose is predicting and improving business performance in the future, somehow employees are recognized, rewarded, and evaluated on something other than Analytics. Your product owner is responsible for making sure the product ships, not so much on how it “will do”. The engineers and designers don’t understand why proper data infrastructure is needed to make current design decisions… because its not. Its for future design decisions. However without that infrastructure in place upon launch, there is simply no way of tracking a product’s success or failure post-launch.
How does this get resolved? While there’s no silver bullet, the solution must start from the top. It’s not enough for executives to preach data driven decisions from a soap box, or for internal recruiters to post, post, and repost analytic positions which they can’t seem to fill. They must make sure that proper incentives are in place and that perverse political disincentives are eliminated (like needing a particular number to be the answer aside from the actual number). In fact, I often get asked “Scott – What do you when you have tomake up the numbers”?
While Data Insights is what the CEO’s are calling for, CFOs, CIOs and other internal staffers know its also a bit of a whistle blower, or political “Debbie Downer”http://slashdot.org/topic/bi/big-data-top-priority-executives-mckinsey-survey/. What would you do if there were actual data on your products performance beyond marketing hype and conjecture? Your departments contribution, your online presence, customer loyalty, call center efficiency, etc… all up for mathematical analysis. Would you pass muster?
But on the upside, maybe that multi-million dollar advertising budget can be reallocated toward a far more profitable end. Analytics can help you make these crucial decisions.
- Get increased Results and ROI from Analytics Analysis. (firstrate.co.nz)
- Three Google Analytics Tips That Can Increase Your Online Marketing ROI (firstrate.co.nz)