The Cloud Foundry Foundation wants to make sure all of our member companies’ requirements are included in our platform strategy. One way we do that is through vertically focused special interest groups, or SIGs for short.
Cloud Foundry is about its users, many of which join the Cloud Foundry Foundation. As we look across our membership, over 80% are truly user companies. This is a unique and valuable asset for the ongoing and overall success of the project. We will only change the world if our software helps make users successful by providing the capabilities they need to drive their businesses. In turn, user success will proliferate to our members who provide Cloud Foundry services, driving their overall success as well.
One key role of the Cloud Foundry Foundation is to create coherence in strategy and action across all member companies. By working together, the community has been able to develop a user-centric platform that keeps Cloud Foundry’s promise of no vendor lock-in. This enables companies to maximize the value of Cloud Foundry.
Gathering requirements from all members requires time and effort to make sure that the voice of the users can not only be well heard, but also correctly understood. The traditional process of piecing together numerous siloed discussions provides a series of ideas and concepts that then need to be correctly collated into a roadmap strategy, leaving much of the burden of overall interpretation and prioritization to project teams who are heads down in design and programming and may not be familiar with the specific vertical. We want to create a new way of making sure all user requirements are heard and at the same time that the development and project teams receive enough business context to simplify planning and implementation.
How do we make this happen?
We decided vertically focused SIGs are one way to help gather requirements from all users. These SIGs are meetings where Cloud Foundry users from an industry get together to discuss objectives and requirements.
This August, we started with financial services industry and had a fantastic group of engaged, senior technical and business owners from 12 different companies, both competitors and compatriots. They came prepared and had really thought about where the project needs to head. At the end of 4 hours of almost non-stop interaction, the group had generated an essential list of requirements they believed were key to their industry’s usage of Cloud Foundry and voted on priority.
Some of these requirements will be common across all industries. As we continue to expand our SIGs, the community will be able to more easily understand the common needs of the overall collective. Some items are unique. As an example, the requirement for specific role based permissions that financial organizations need to comply with regulations is unique to the financial services industry. In order to meet financial regulations, sometimes the same person that starts a process isn’t allowed to stop it and vice versa.
As a result of the output from the financial services SIG, the Cloud Foundry Foundation now has the ability to work with all of the project management committees and provide an aggregated view of cloud native requirements from the financial services vertical.
The users have spoken. As a product or service provider, what could be better than having a prioritized list of needs for an entire market?