Machina Research alums Jim Morrish and Matt Hatton are at it again, launching a new industry analyst firm called Transforma Insights that explores the cutting edge of the digital transformation efforts taking place within the enterprise end user and vendor communities. Calysto sat down with Jim and Matt to discuss their new initiative and the role the IoT will play. We also asked how Transforma Insights will address end user needs as well as provide the forecasting and analysis vendor clients require—and how they will connect these two groups in “scintillating conversations.”
Calysto: What is the impetus behind the formation of Transforma Insights? Where did this all get started?
Jim: We’ve each had 10+ years in this space, first looking at M2M and then IoT, and then encompassing new topics such as AI and data trading. When we launched Machina Research, the IoT wasn’t a thing yet—the buzz was all about machine to machine (M2M) communications. When we talked about IoT, people would ask us if it meant “interoperability testing.” We were that early on it and have had a chance to really dig deep into the technologies that are driving the digital transformation efforts end users are undergoing. IoT is a huge part of that.
Now with Transforma Insights, we have a huge opportunity to get into the end user perspective of digital transformation. We are looking at end users by industry sectors and what they can do with digital transformation technologies. Users will be able to search through content—including case studies—to see what may be applicable to them, and what best practice is in their industry and related industries.
Matt: We’re not necessarily trying to be prescriptive about what end users should do. Rather than just relying on the wisdom of the analyst, we think there’s a more systematic way to support them through decision tools. We’re providing end users with a set of tools so they can see things that have happened in their space—which end users and vendors have done what already—and make better decisions. We think that there is a big gap in the market for Transforma Insights to fill.
That doesn’t mean, of course, that we’ll be neglecting our vendor clients. Very granular forecasts will definitely be a large part of our offering—data they can’t get elsewhere. And we’ll also be offering our own perspectives on competitor benchmarking. All underpinned by some very detailed analysis of real-world success stories.
Calysto: Tell us a little about the tools you created and how they make Transforma Insights unique.
Jim: It’s not so much “a tool” as a complementary set of tools. First off, we will have a case study database, which will help end users to identify best practice across all digital transformation technologies in their industry, and related industries. We will also allow end users to identify projects from any industry sector that may in some way be comparable to projects that they are considering undertaking, or where lessons can be learned. A different cut on that same database will provide vendors of digital transformation technologies with a view on adoption within different industry sectors, and forecasts will highlight Total Addressable Market (or TAM) by sector.
Matt: Exactly. And by including actual company names in our case studies we will allow vendors to identify the leading-edge enterprise adopters, and enterprises to identify the leading-edge vendors. We’ll also facilitate connections between vendors and end users by exposing vendor capabilities to end users and providing end users with visibility into how vendor offerings are differentiated.
Calysto: Do end users understand the term digital transformation?
Jim: Some do, especially those with an innovation business unit. They understand what’s happening in the tech world. But digital transformation is an umbrella term that encompasses many technologies and use cases that are emerging and how they play in their overall enterprise environment.
Matt: Enterprises may not necessarily think of digital transformation, but they are certainly looking at all their options with regard to technologies such as AI, Blockchain, or robotics process automation. That’s the kind of thing we’re able to support on, whether they call it digital transformation or not.
Jim: There’s a question of degree as well. Who was it who said, digital transformation is not taking a caterpillar and making a faster caterpillar, it’s making it a butterfly? The fact is, many end users may be interested in the faster caterpillar. They don’t necessarily need these leading-edge solutions but are interested in seeing what’s out there so they can improve their business incrementally. That’s a valid thing and something we’re looking to support as well as analyzing more disruptive digital transformation concepts.
Calysto: How is Transforma going to reach the end user community?
Matt: In a word: marketing! Many of the channels we’ve previously used to reach clients, including conferences and publications, have evolved to become much more vertically focused. So that suits us. We’re also helped by our unique value proposition to the market—the ability to easily access information like case studies across verticals to see how others have found success—which we think will be incredibly interesting to end users. They’ll also be able to see comparable projects from other sectors to help in their decision-making process. We’ll offer some level of content for free, to help push the message.
Calysto: Tell us about the Transforma team. What should we expect to see in the new year in terms of growing the business?
Jim: We have a few terrific people on board already and are talking to several more. All have extensive expertise at the intersection of the three interrelated Digital Transformation areas that Transforma Insights will be focusing on: New Technologies, Emerging Use Cases and Enterprise Change Management. We think we’re filling a significant gap in the market and are interested in helping both enterprises and vendors move their digital transformation efforts and solutions forward. We will make sure that the Transforma Insights team is the right one to help them do so.
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