2017 Highlights Series
“Every company becomes a software-driven company by intelligently connecting people, things and businesses.” — Björn Goerke
A huge fan of science fiction, Björn Goerke, CTO and President of SAP Cloud Platform at SAP SE, referenced Star Trek — a diverse, moneyless society that solves its problems through collaboration rather than violence — to draw a comparison to the open source ethos and continued challenges we face as a culture.
After making the recommendation that there be more trekkies, Goerke dove into his talk on digital transformation, explaining that legacy companies are disappearing from the list of the most valued companies. They are being replaced by IT companies like Apple, Google and Microsoft, while start-ups like AirBnB and Uber are disrupting companies that have been around for hundreds of years. These classical companies are waking up to the new reality and trying to find ways to stay competitive.
How? Goerke posits that these companies need to change their business model, software development, and internal culture to become more agile so they can innovate and deliver quickly.
However, it’s not only the non-IT companies that are going through this digital transformation — even well established IT companies are experiencing a similar dilemma.
Goerke spoke openly about SAP’s massive transformation. In the classical model, it would take almost 20 years for a newly released software to be deployed in production by customers. After SAP became a cloud-centric company, it began releasing quarterly updates and updates its cloud software every two weeks. With over 80,000 employees, it is a massive cultural challenge.
As challenging as it was, SAP has done it successfully, electing Cloud Foundry to drive its digital transformation. SAP joined Cloud Foundry Foundation as a Platinum member and has been a leading contributor to many Cloud Foundry projects including BOSH OpenStack CPI, Service Fabrik, CF OpenStack Validator, IPSec BOSH, App AutoScaler, App Auto Sleep and many more.
Goerke encouraged the audience to develop a new way of thinking in order to meet the challenges of digital transformation. SAP Cloud Platform with Cloud Foundry as the underlying PaaS solution, has been the key to overcoming difficulties for SAP.
Watch the complete talk here: