HP has held up last year's merger with Compaq as the best example of why its newly-unveiled enterprise architecture strategy will work.
"We are our own best proof point," HP's CEO, Carly Fiorina, said. "We know what it means to demand more of technology, and also have technology deliver more."
At the one-year mark of its merger with Compaq, the company detailed its Adaptive Enterprise strategy, that is open standards-based, with a strong focus on allowing companies to maintain heterogeneous environments and reduce costs through better management.
Fiorina said companies, whether they were responding to new federal regulations or competitive pressures, need simplified, standardised, odularised and integrated architectures.
A foundation of the strategy was its Darwin Reference Architecture, intended to allow companies to develop adaptive models that are consumption-based, or pay as you go. The company also several new tools including new management software that offers automated real-time resource utilisation and self-healing capabilities.
But HP also faces challenges from IBM, which has the same vision, according to industry pundits.
"You may call it different things, but it's the same vision, and achieving that is a challenge. There are two ways to get at the same solution and I think they are both working toward that end. And competition is good," said one industry analyst, who believed that HP's focus on the client/server gave it a leg up over IBM.
HP has also finalised a $US3 billion services agreement with consumer products giant, Procter & Gamble. The deal will affect 2,000 P&G employees, who managed the company's IT infrastructure, data center operations, desktop and other services in 48 countries.
In making that decision, P&G's global business services officer, Filippo Passerini, said he had a high-level understanding of HP's enterprise plan.
However, he said that decision to outsource was based on the company's 15-year relationship with HP.
"I don't think one can ever bank on one particular new solution for a strategic long-term decision," Passerini said.
HP's enterprise strategy would add value to its relationship, he said.
Although HP officials cited a number of customer references, Fiorina focused on the company's merger with Compaq, which she called a mammoth task. Some of the IT infrastructure issues the company had to deal with included about 7000 applications, more than 200,000 desktops, and a system that moved some 26 million email messages a week.
The company reduced overall cost by 24 per cent, she said.
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