Business Insights Newsletter Article | August 2013
The Enterprise Re-Imagined

Inspired by changes in the technology landscape, today’s business leaders are reimagining each facet of their organization. Getting to market faster and with innovative products and services is a necessary differentiator in driving competitive capabilities. The right decisions around enabling technologies and services can unlock your potential and deliver business transformation -- across your enterprise and for your customers.

By 2016, one billion global consumers will have access to a smartphone or tablet computers, making mobile devices a crucial medium for interacting with customers. With 2.5 billion users connected to the internet, one third of the worldwide population is a click away from your business, product, or service. (World Internet Users Statistics Usage, 2012)

Enabling your people to work where they want—in the office, on the go, and at home—and making it easy for them to collaborate with colleagues, partners and even customers around the world is key. According to industry analysts mobile workers will number 1.3 billion (over 37% of the total workforce) by 2015.

What CEO’s Want

Key technologies driving change in enterprise are mobile communications, social networking, data analytics, and, enabling them all, cloud computing solutions.

These technologies – called “mega-trends” by one industry analyst firm -- are revolutionizing how companies do everything from engage consumers, manage expenses, attract and retain talent, nimbly compete in a global economy, and help foster a culture of innovation.

Given some of these trends, CEOs across a range of industries are reimagining their enterprises in light of the new technology landscape. In survey after survey, CEOs identify the same basic set of issues driving change and challenging businesses today:

  • Empowered customers have more information and new ways to connect. How can businesses keep up with rising expectations?
  • Cost and risk management are more important than ever. How can we achieve real-time visibility to optimize the business?
  • New modes of work are changing the workplace. How can our organization invest in technology to attract, motivate, and empower the leaders of today and tomorrow?
  • Global uncertainty is changing the competitive landscape. How can we anticipate and react to challenges in the market and the regulatory climate?
  • Innovation is coming from everywhere. What can we do to foster innovation and stay nimble enough to keep ahead of the pack?

Because every global enterprise today addresses these issues with technology, your technology choices are strategic. Technology can not only help you accomplish specific goals and achieve specific results, but it can also enhance the fundamental agility and insight of your organization by empowering your people to recognize and act as quickly as today’s fast-changing world requires.

Microsoft – Transformation Meets Re-Imagination

At Microsoft our mission and values are to help people and businesses throughout the world realize their full potential. Our job is to help you reimagine how you show up in your industry, to your customers and as an enterprise overall.

To help meet this need, Microsoft is also transforming -- from a software company to a devices and services organization. We believe this transformation makes Microsoft unique in that our technology and solutions extend from the consumer to the enterprise, span from on-premises to the cloud – including hybrid solutions if that’s what the customer wants. Whether it’s devices, infrastructure or services, each makes the others better. We believe that organizations are facing a profound transformation and opportunity that won’t be sufficiently addressed via a patchwork of point solutions.

Three Key Principles to Help You Succeed

Across all of these areas, we continually focus on three key principles to help you succeed today while preparing you for the future:

  • First, we provide a Personal Experience, by enhancing your employees’ unique passion and skill set with a choice of experiences across a range of devices and services that will help them create and innovate. It encourages getting data insights into the hands of the people close to the decision, and delivering a unique experience for your customers with immersive apps that connect them to your brand.
  • Second, we provide Choice, Not Disruption, by helping you encourage experimentation in your company in a cost-effective fashion by using your existing technology resources. By offering choice – of vendors, hardware, services and partners – we can help your employees be their best on their terms using technology they’re familiar with so they can work on great ideas both inside and outside your company’s firewall.
  • Third, we offer Global Excellence. Through more than 30 years of continuous learning across consumer and businesses, we have can dissolve the walls between consumer and business by coupling pairing with a global partner ecosystem and our unparalleled experience running global datacenters to support customers around the world.

It’s important in this time of re-imagination and transformation that your technology partner can help you evolve your business.

Looking Ahead

As we look ahead, we’re thinking about what devices people will use to interact with computing in the future. For example, we are evolving our concept of displays from current investments such as the large, multi-touch display Perceptive Pixel screen to future innovations in pervasive displays – meaning, we envision displays that turn any surface into a potential computing device.
Microsoft Research is investigating technologies such as PixelSense, a powerful display that can be used on a table, a wall, or embedded into fixtures or furniture. The display responds to touch and real-world objects, supporting more than 50 simultaneous inputs.

Skinput extends the concept to the human body, appropriating the skin as an input surface or even a fully interactive graphical interface.

Tomorrow’s devices will evolve beyond the devices we know today, extending computing control from touch—the current favored input mode—to voice.

On the services side we have had a big commitment to consumer services for a long time. Enormous success with products such as Hotmail with close to 350 million users now provides increased value as; we have 600 million people accessing MSN. Our Skype product has 300 million active users. That said, we made a big commitment seven years ago in the enterprise services space and while it's getting a lot of recognition right now, it's not something we just started this year. Office 365, Dynamics and Lync are revolutionizing how businesses can operate seamlessly, efficiently and affordably. In the cloud we offer private, hybrid and a public environment, and it's the fastest growing business in the history of Microsoft.

As we continue to evolve technology, Microsoft will remain committed to supporting the devices and experiences that people expect and our services will be delivered in the context of always on and always available. As our customers rely more heavily on cloud computing, we are evolving our services to provide the privacy, security, and control to ensure that you can take advantage of this technology with confidence.

A Snap-Shot of What Will Be

Here is a view of how we envision the future of devices and services:

  • From morning to night, your experience with technology should be consistent and intuitive, whether you’re using a phone, PC, tablet—or even a gaming system.
  • As you move between home and work, it should be easy to store and access data digitally via the cloud and from any device.
  • Your technology experience should be fun and natural, enabling you to directly manipulate text, slides and other objects through gestures, touch, and pen.
  • It should be easy to explore data quickly to help uncover new insights. New large-format touch screens and Windows 8 offer an incredibly immersive experience today—one that is bound to become ever more immersive as “screens” evolve into interacting with virtually any surface.
  • Meetings should be just as productive virtually as in person. Our latest Lync and Skype solutions enable high-quality audio/video conferencing that allow you to go paperless with application and presentation sharing.
  • In meetings, you should be able to draw, type, click, or swipe to save and search your notes—from any device.
  • The devices you want to use are the same ones that meet your enterprise security requirements, helping you protect sensitive information and communications.
  • And those same devices also run the new Office, making it easy to quickly share your data without printing.

We have decades of experience delivering both consumer and enterprise technology, and our consumer experience truly helps us deliver better enterprise technology. As users increasingly choose their own devices and applications and as enterprises increasingly pursue the opportunities enabled by the cloud, this experience helps us make it easy for our customers to meet user expectations AND satisfy enterprise requirements.

What to Know More?

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