Gaurav Founders UpfrontA few weeks ago the folks at Work-Bench invited SnapLogic founder and CEO Gaurav Dhillon to speak about his experience in the integration industry and what he sees for today and moving forward, as a guest at their Enterprise Founders Upfront event in New York. The #FoundersUpfront series was created to allow founders of tech companies to share their experiences and perspectives when starting a company, executing its growth and development and and ultimately scaling a successful enterprise technology business. Gaurav was invited in part for of his role in co-founding Informatica back in the 90′s, and switching gears in the application and data integration to found SnapLogic because of his vision for a truly cloud-based integration platform as a service (iPaaS).

During the Founders Upfront interview, Gaurav spoke with Jon Lehr, Venture Director of Work-Bench and founder of the New York Enterprise Tech Meetup, and addressed the processes and ever-changing trends in enterprise sales over the past few years, as well as current SaaS friendly industries in the market today.

A few additional topics below as covered by the Work-Bench recap blog below:

  1. The early days of Informatica and how whether at a startup or a large company, everyone works hard in technology but sometimes it takes more than that to get products out in front.
  2. Which industry is leading cloud adoption including the financial services industry typically considered to be quick to adopt new technologies, while the retail industry is surprisingly – and aggressively – also SaaS savvy. Gaurav used an example here of SnapLogic customer Target, which created mobile apps and got more sophisticated in their understanding of customers.
  3. The disruption of legacy tech incumbents and recognizing that - when comparing cloud computing and existing business units – in order to survive, “you have to take huge risks and sail your company into harm’s way.”

You can also check out the full conversation between Jon and Gaurav, or watch Gaurav talk about the SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform as a way to solve the Integrator’s Dilemma here. Enjoy!

According to Bill Kutik, technology columnist for Human Resource Executive magazine:

“Forward-thinking CIOs and HR people fully understand the benefits of SaaS and it’s just a matter of if they will bite the bullet on the 10, 20, 30, 40 million dollars they’ve invested over the years in their on-premise systems. I personally believe that SaaS is the next generation of computing, just as client/server replaced mainframe and Web-based apps replaced client/servers.

Why Workday?Be sure to check out his posts here.

According to PWC, only 4 percent of HR departments are on the latest release of their HR platforms, which is why “New Tech Tools” is listed as one of the 10 Trends Driving the Mandate for Modern HCM. According to Workday’s website, the primary reasons customers choose their cloud applications for human resources and finance are that it is proven, simpler, faster, smarter, reliable and secure. But as my friends at Appirio point out in their whitepaper on Cloud-Based HCM, new human capital management (HCM) applications require new thinking from the HR and IT organization:

“Next generation cloud-based HCM applications have the potential to provide never-before-imagined benefits that can maximize business results. However, HR and IT teams cannot approach them as they did systems of the past.

Just as modern HCM requires modern solutions and a new mindset and set of relationships between departments, the social, mobile, analytics (big data) and cloud integration challenges you’ll face when you embark on a cloud-based HCM journey will also require new thinking when it comes to an old problem: data and application integration. When customers choose SnapLogic’s Elastic Integration Platform to connect the Workday solutions, as well as other cloud-based HCM applications, with other cloud and on-premises applications, not to mention databases and big data platforms, the primary reasons are:

Whether your company’s use case is new employee on-boarding to increase efficiency; to increase effectiveness of incentive and sales compensation; or talent analytics from multiple sources to increase employee retention, SnapLogic’s iPaaS, with 160+ prebuilt Snaps, can accelerate the implementation and overall user adoption of a cloud-based HCM solution with single platform for data, application and API integration. Here’s a brief demonstration of SnapLogic connecting Workday with multiple applications and data sources in a single flow, called a Pipeline:

As previewed earlier this month in Powering the Elastic Enterprise with Summer 2014 Release, we will be updating the SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform on July 29th, 2014 for the Summer 2014 Release. The update will occur in the evening PDT and an email will be sent out to customers with details beforehand.

Here are some of the updates you can expect to find in this release:

Data Mapper

Within the Data Snap, the mapping table makes it easier to create and manage large schema mappings. From the ability to search the schemas, the use of drag-and-drop to create the mappings, and visual indicators of what has already been mapped, we’ve provided a user-friendly interface to simplify the data mapping process.

mapper-input-schema

SAML 2.0 Single Sign On (SSO) User Authentication

SnapLogic now supports Single Sign On (SSO) through the Security Assertion Markup Language (SAML) standard to let users log into multiple services without needing to enter their user name and password for each service. 

sso-configuration

Dashboard: Insights (BETA)

This new Dashboard panel lets you get statistics on the number of SnapLogic users, pipelines, tasks, data volumes and API calls. Additionally, you get immediate visibility into the number of Snaplexes, files, projects and accounts running in the multi-tenant cloud integration service.

insights-beta

Logging and Debug Enhancements

With the Summer 2014 Release, we’ve added the ability to capture debug traces on pipeline tasks and enabled publishing logs to the cloud for Snaplexes running on Linux.

Snap Developer Community

SnapLogic customers and partners can now log into developer.snaplogic.com to get the latest documentation, downloads, tips and tricks and tools needed for Snap development.  Additionally, users can be configured as Snap Developers in Manager.

developer-community

Additional UI Enhancements

We’ve also focused on additional visual enhancements to make it easier for you to quickly identify what your are working on, including:

  • Indicators for triggered or schedules pipelines in the Dashboard Pipeline Run History
  • Parent/child pipeline hierarchies in the Dashboard Pipeline Run History
  • Indicators for Groudplex or Hadoop-based Snaplex nodes in the Dashboard Snaplex Health
  • Preview added to file selector so you can verify the file you are using.

Snaps

In the Summer 2014 release, we expanded our Snap list with the following additions:  Concur Snap Pack, Expensify Snap Pack, JIRA IssueLink, ZipFile Read and Write, Task Execute, and Binary Router. Additionally, we are making several Beta Snaps available, including Swagger, Salesforce Attachment Download, Binary to Document and Document to Binary.

We are also delivering minor updates and fixes for the following Snaps:  NetSuite and Twitter Query.

See the Release Notes for more information on all updates. Please contact your customer success manager or support if you have questions or feedback. Be sure to also check out the recorded webinar for demonstrations of what’s new.

Summer release webinarLast week we announced our Summer 2014 Release, focusing on powering the elastic enterprise with a unified integration platform as a service (iPaaS) to connect big data sources, cloud and legacy applications and APIs. This week we hosted a webinar for a more in-depth look at what’s new and how SnapLogic is working with IT organizations to accelerate the “cloudification” of their enterprise application portfolio and drive the adoption of new approaches to analytics and data warehousing. The webinar reviewed the latest features of the SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform Summer 2014 Release and included a live demo from our product management team. To recap, new features in this release include:

  • New dashboards and insights for deeper and broader operational telemetry
  • User interface innovations and self learning
  • SAML 2.0 single sign on (SSO) support for user management and authentication
  • SnapReduce 2.0 to connect the SnapLogic iPaaS to on-premises and cloud-based Hadoop clusters for big data processing
  • 20+ new and updated Snaps for all customers
  • A new Snap development community for java developers

Mapper screenshotTo highlight one of these features, the user interface innovations refine and improve our current HTML5, cloud-based Designer for both advanced users and “citizen integrators” who require maximum ease of use and self-service with the introduction of:

  • A New Data Mapper (screenshot to the right) for easily creating and managing source and target mappings using a drag-and-drop interface
  • A New Expression Editor for creating advances expressions based on functions (array, date and string) and properties

For more details, check out the webinar slides below, view the recording here or check out our What’s New page featuring last week’s press release and more information on each of the new and updated features of the SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform. And stay tuned for another post coming tomorrow with the July update details, which will include official release dates and what’s available today for SnapLogic customers.

informationweek_confRecently SnapLogic CEO Gaurav Dhillon participated in an Information Week Conference panel on Digital Disruption moderated by Sandhill.com‘s M. R. Rangaswami. The discussion featured two other CEOs with proven enterprise B2B track records:  Sandra Kurtzig from Kenandy and Frederic Laluyaux from Anaplan. Rob Preston from Information Week wrote about the panel here.  When it comes to digital disruption he asks:  “Will your company be the hunter or the hunted?”

  • In this video, Gaurav talks about digital disruption and the pace of business innovation.
  • In this video, Gaurav talks about the old “glow in the dark” IT organization and the new role of enterprise IT working closely with the business.

If you’re a student of the market and interested in either being a disrupter or not being disrupted, here’s a great list of 10 classic business books for entrepreneurs / start-up founders that you might want to sink your teeth into during your summer vacation. Thanks to Dave Kellogg, CEO at Host Analytics, for sharing!

InformationWeek_Conference

SnapLogic_ipaasWe’ve recently talked about the 5 different signs that you need a better cloud integration strategy, including struggles with the integrator’s dilemma, swivel chair integration and considerations about going back to on-prem due to diminishing SaaS returns. As a solution to finding an integration platform to satisfy the 5 signs we’ve talked about, we’ve also come up with some key features and functionality of the SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform that you should know about, including its ability to handle both structured and unstructured data, going beyond point-to-point integration, functionality in hybrid integration use cases and the ability to scale out elastically. Read on for how these different features can help you jumpstart a new and improved cloud integration strategy:

  1. It’s built to handle structured and unstructured data – our support for documents allows our Snap endpoints to directly consume hierarchical data in native format and send it on to downstream Snaps in a pipeline. There is also no requirement to flatten data into records or turn a JSON document in a string or BLOB type.hybrid use case
  2. It’s built to handle streaming and batch app and data integration requirements - as Loraine Lawson has said in reference to our article Why Buses Don’t Fly in the Cloud: Thoughts on ESBs, putting a JSON format on a traditional, XML-based ESB is like making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.
  3. It goes beyond point-to-point integration – in this chalk talk we talk about the challenges of point-to-point cloud integration and outline the benefits of an elastic integration platform (more on that below). SnapLogic operates on a hub and spoke integration architecture, enabling customers to incrementally integrate more complex apps both in the cloud and on-premises at a much lower cost than traditional integration and without re-work or manual coding.
  4. It’s built for hybrid integration use cases – as SaaS adoption increases and gains greater acceptance in IT organizations, enterprises require modern integration processes that offer multiple solutions for different scenarios. These scenarios are: cloud to cloud, cloud to ground, ground to ground and hybrid (cloud to cloud and ground).
  5. citizen integratorIt’s a multi-tenant, software-defined cloud service – the primary concept of software-defined networking (SDN) is “the decoupling of the system that makes decisions about where traffic is sent (the control plane) from the underlying systems that forward traffic to the selected destination (the data plane). The SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform is architected on these SDN concept; the “control plane” controls where and how data is process based on user configuration and preferences, while the “data plane” (aka the Snaplex) does that actual processing of data as per instructions received from the control place. You can learn more about our software-defined integration here.
  6. It’s built to scale out elastically – one of the requirements of a modern iPaaS is elastic scale capabilities, and SnapLogic has built-in smarts to automatically scale the Snaplex out and in to handlevariable traffic loads.
  7. The UX is designed for citizen integrators - our Summer 2014 release refines and improves the HTML5, cloud-based user interface for both advanced users and “citizen integrators” who require maximum ease of use and self-service. As our UX team says about designing the SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform, “it wasn’t enough to simply round the corners of an icon – we needed to rethink and rebuild the technology.”

For more on the SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform, check out the slides below, and read a recent roundup of our top 5 elastic iPaaS architecture posts.

SnapLogic_booth_AWS_SummitLast week the SnapLogic team was in New York for the AWS Summit. It was a fantastic event, with amazing energy. For me the words that came up over and over with people I spoke with at the booth were:

  • Innovation
  • Change
  • Disruption
  • …and Crowded (it was a record turnout!)

Not surprisingly, we spent most of our time talking to AWS customers, partners and prospects about everything related to data, data and application integration, data warehousing and cloud analytics. I found that when people saw some of the logos on our sign (see above) of vendors for whom we also deliver pre-built connectivity, called Snaps, the conversations deepened. I’ve compiled a Storify summary of some of the highlights from the keynote, tweets featuring Amazon Redshift, which is the fastest-growing new product line in the company’s history, and of course the perspective from the SnapLogic booth, which was packed throughout the day. I’ve embedded it below:

Thanks to the AWS team for a great event! Here are some additional resources on how SnapLogic powers AWS Redshift:

If you want to dive deeper into the SnapLogic Elastic Integration Platform, which runs on AWS, this post summarizes some of our most popular cloud integration architecture posts.