Last week I attended BMC's Engage event, an analyst forum in Vegas, as a guest of BMC. Like every other technology vendor, BMC would like a greater share of the emerging digital economy.

With more and more businesses moving to the public cloud, I have no doubt in my mind that the on-prem data center market will diminish quickly over the coming years. I also expect mainframes to go the way of the dodo within 10 years, but many others have previously predicted the demise of mainframes and time has proven them wrong, so I accept I may also be premature.

BMC, a bastion of IT operations, now wants to help IT leaders become drivers of digital business. Indeed, BMC has positioned many of the current raft of product offerings to help tech leaders deliver a more efficient and agile tech capability for the business. And this is important. One of the biggest challenges for many large technology teams is their lack of agility. In the age of the customer, tech teams need to tap into every opportunity (and automation capability) to drive greater agility and efficiency throughout their technology delivery capabilities.

Over the past three years, BMC has retuned their solution portfolio, service, sales, and ecosystem strategy to partner with customers around digital enablement. BMC has accelerated investment in innovation — e.g., their application portfolio management solution TrueSight and the reengineering of Remedy/ITSM — and doubled the number of new products coming to market. In effect, BMC has been undergoing its own digital transformation in an effort to bring a "solutions oriented approach to customers."

Companies like Monsanto and RioTinto were cited at Engage as examples of customers that BMC has helped on their digital transformation journeys. But, as in almost all tech vendor examples, little detail on just how BMC helped these companies was revealed (hopefully I'll be able to bring these case studies to life through a research report in the future).

As part of their digital offerings, BMC was eager to showcase the progress it has made on it's MyIT solution. This suite of tools is designed to allow IT teams to deliver self-service mobile app portals to employees, enabling them to access tech services (and other things besides) through the app portal. Indeed, BMW reportedly uses this application throughout it's dealer network, allowing dealers to order all kinds of BMW supplies for their dealership. Automation tools like this from BMC aim to increase the ability of the technology group to deliver high impact services quickly to employees. And tech teams need greater agility.

Like most tech companies, BMC continues to see the world through the prism of their existing business. P&Ls structured around product groups reinforce this inside-out perspective, making it harder to see the world through the lens of the customer (see "How To Unlock Tech Industry Digital Transformation"). But BMC appears to be moving in the right direction toward an outside-in mindset. Their future success will not only depend on their own transformation journey, but also on how quickly IT organizations and line-of-business teams see the automation of technology service design and delivery as an integral part of their transformation journey to becoming a digital business.

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Note: BMC is a Forrester customer.