Posted by Mike Rollings
In Richard Watson's blog post "Do-It-yourself SaaS, a first step into the cloud", Richard discusses this article on Bechtel’s strategy for reinventing its IT as an internal SaaS provider. The article describes how Bechtel reduced its costs by examining its application portfolio and the fundamentals of how it provides services to its workers.
Richard thinks that if enterprises feel they can fund such extensive portfolio management activities from OPEX that we’ll see lots of it going on. I think that we will see a thirst to cut the application portfolio like we have not seen before. The economy and the already heightened interest in optimizing the data center will push application portfolio awareness. If you are looking for ways to reduce operating costs and you realize that you really don’t know what applications need to live or die, then the sinking feeling hits you... "Why run what does not need to run at all?"
I think I could fund that in any organization and any economy!
But I think Bechtel’s best realization was that the majority of workers only wanted information about project status and the like. I don’t know if I missed their answer to this problem, but it seems that they removed these applications from the user’s environment and put up a portal that uses services to provide the information to a huge number of people. This would eliminate the need for the applications for a bunch of people and the associated software licenses. What is unclear is the quantity of application licenses that they stopped using versus identifying applications for elimination, consolidation, or replacement. It would be interesting to find out.