Notes from the Gartner CIO Forum

I am in Phoenix at the Gartner CIO Leadership Forum where tomorrow I will be introducing a customer of ours to talk about their virtualization journey.

Today I hosted a lunch with 4 CIO and took some random notes.

Resistance is Futile

Three of the CIOs at the table are >80% virtualized, in other words they are in the “resistance is futile” phase.

All three of them say that they virtualize anything that comes their way just like I talked about in this previous post. When I ask them if the application owners are pushing back, they said that they don’t  really tell them. They just do it (virtualize their applications that is). As I covered before in this blog, this is typical of customers who have the right level of experience and sponsorship. Heck, there are CIOs…

The fourth is just trying virtualization on some tactical projects. Very early stage of adoption.

ISV Support

One of the CIOs are the table is struggling with getting a clearstatement of support from Oracle. We heard this before. Truth is that Oracle supports all their products on VMware BUT Oracle RAC. Like many ISVs, they do have a clause in the support statement where they reserve the rights to have the customer reproduce potential problems on physical, but we don’t have any record of them ever enforcing this.

Another one told me that he made VMware support a key ISV selection criteria. This is not the first time I hear about this best practice. Again this is an indication of a very mature virtualization customer.

Speaking or Radical Impact…

Every time I spend time with a customer I try to reverse engineer their journey. One of the stories I heard at lunch today is pretty typical. This is a 1.5 billion dollars company with our 120 people in IT. They used virtualization tactically across many project for a while, then got hit by a major business trigger that pushed them over the hump to adopt virtualization fully: they were running out of data center space (heard that before?). They are now 80% virtualized and they are in the process of downsizing their data center from 1200 to 400 sf.

Carbon Footprint

I often talk about the higher level business impact that virtualization has on our customers as they move through their journey. One customer today told me that they track their carbon footprint and that virtualization had a big positive impact on it. Interestingly, we are working on a new ROI calculator that includes carbon footprint as one of the key metrics. We saw a lot of interest about this in Europe but this is the first time I heard a clear need from a US customer.

more notes tomorrow.


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