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IT Briefcase Exclusive Interview: The Value of Fast, Agile, and Cost Effective Enterprise Apps with Gottfried Sehringer, Mendix

July 29, 2013 No Comments

In the interview below, Gottfried Sehringer from Mendix offers expert advice for organizations looking to maximize business value through the rapid delivery of adaptable, multi-device Enterprise Application solutions.

  • Q. How do you see Enterprise Applications, Big Data, and Cloud computing evolving together and changing IT as we know it?

A.These trends are putting a lot of pressure on CIOs, CTOs and IT management, but they also provide a true opportunity for IT. The speed at which information is created is staggering and is forcing companies to respond to demands of their customers, partners and employees faster and faster. At the same time, IT has the opportunity to become a proactive business leader. IT overall, specifically business applications, are at the core of innovation today and help companies differentiate their business from competitors. If IT can build and deploy more applications in a shorter period of time, they will help their company to scale their business faster, compete better, save money and capture new revenue opportunities. And while these technologies contribute to such pressures, they also provide a solution. For example cloud-based app platforms can help IT teams deliver traditional IT projects in a different, much faster and agile way.

  • Q. What are the main IT challenges that you see arising due to the proliferation of BYOD in the workplace and the increased abundance of mobile applications available today?

A. In our experience, the main IT challenge created by BYOD in the workplace is data governance and the mushrooming of application versions for different devices (which by the way, goes beyond mobile and tablets – it includes office computers of laptops of road warriors and telecommuters). IT has to juggle user experience, business requirements, security and governance concerns with cost and time to market. IT has to find a way to build once (keeping UX, requirements, security and governance in mind) and be able to deploy to any device without creating additional overhead. The “build once – deploy anywhere” concept becomes even more paramount when you think about the cost and time it takes to change, update and enhance business applications.

  • Q. What advice can you offer to businesses trying to overcome these challenges?

A. The difference between success and failure will be having the right strategy in place that allows IT teams to build applications once and deploy them easily no matter who uses them, nor which device they’re using. It may require a new way of thinking – it’s not only about BYOD or the next iPhone app. It’s about adding new tricks to your IT bag, tricks that are focused on getting more apps built with less effort in a scalable and repeatable way. Tricks that allow IT and business to better collaborate on a daily basis and share requirements and results in real time. And of course, tricks that provide a build-once, deploy-anywhere technology. A combination of all of the above will be essential to get in front of the avalanche of business needs that just become bigger and bigger.

  • Q. When people think of Enterprise Applications, they often think of Mobile. Can you please tell us a little about how Mendix is currently offering solutions that span a broader spectrum, covering mobile as well as business applications that can be used on all different devices and systems?

A. The Mendix App Platform has been fundamentally designed to allow companies to build and deploy powerful enterprise applications much faster and easier, typically allowing our users to see results in days and weeks, not the months and years you see in typical enterprise application projects.

Of course, today’s business applications will be increasingly used on smartphones and/or tablets, but traditional office computers and laptops are still the backbone of most companies’ IT infrastructure. The Mendix App Platform excels in such an environment. It allows you to build things like business logic, workflow, data model and integrations once, manage deployment, user access rights and security in one place. It also provides specific user interfaces that are optimized for different device types and screen sizes. A true build-once, deploy-anywhere model.

Many of our customers, from the insurance giant Liberty Mutual in the US to the small NGO War Child in Uganda, rely on this strategy to build cost-effective, results-oriented applications.

  • Q. How do Mendix solutions such as Mendix 5 offer a quicker, more agile, and cost effective Application Platform as a Service solution for businesses around the world today?

A. The Mendix App Platform is a solution for organizations that want (or in many cases, need) to get more out of their existing resources and better enable business with the rapid delivery of very adaptable, multi-device business applications. The platform has everything you need to plan, build, deploy and maintain even the most complex applications – and do it extremely quickly and collaboratively with the business. This ‘light-speed application delivery’ results in lower opportunity costs because applications are brought to market faster; better user experience because business are heavily involved; and the ability to jump on business opportunities that would otherwise be too short term to take advantage of. A visual approach to application development, one-click deployment into prebuilt environments, an integrated feedback mechanism, and pre-built application components available in our App Store all add up to a quicker, more agile and cost effective solution to build business applications.

  • Q. What industries do you see benefitting most from Mendix solutions?

A. Mendix is a horizontal platform with users from virtually every industry. We do see particular demand in the industries that have found ways to competitively differentiate their business through technology innovation, such as insurance, telecommunications, logistics and a broad spectrum of business and public services. Additionally, the sectors that have unique compliance and regulatory needs, such as life sciences and financial services, see a dramatic benefit from adopting the Mendix App Platform.

Gottfried Sehringer, Vice President of Marketing

With a track record in successful technology marketing in high-growth environments, Gottfried Sehringer is responsible for leading the company’s marketing strategy, product marketing, communications and demand generation initiatives. As a marketing innovator Gottfried has led numerous companies into new markets, positioned companies for growth, spearheaded product and technology innovation, forged strategic partnerships, and designed high-velocity marketing models for scale.

Before Mendix, Gottfried held a series of executive positions with SmartBear Software, SAP, Softrax and several other enterprise software organizations. He holds an MBA from the University of Mannheim, Germany.

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