• At ASP we often hear the term “disruptive technologies” when talking with our members. But what does that really mean? (The PC “disrupted” the typewriter industry and yet I’m using a clicking QWERTY keyboard to type this report.) We submit –- whatever your definition -- that disruption has become the norm. As ASP founder Jeffrey Tarter noted in the first Maintenance and Services Rations report in 2004, “Technology pundits are always on the lookout for ‘disruptive’ changes in the software world, but they’ve mostly missed one of the biggest transformations of the last few years—the greatly expanded role of services.” A decade later, that role has continued to expand and change, until now we have products that are called (and delivered as) services and yet still tracked as product sales.
  • “I think we’re further ahead than we sometimes think! I look forward to a time when I can actually PROVE that social media is providing a scalable and cost effective option and that, over time, we will realize reductions in interactive support and cost.” “If you try to boil the ocean, you will fail.”  “Executive buy in is still a challenge in getting a line item on the budget for our social efforts.” “If you don’t use it (social media for tech support), you’ll fall behind. It’s that simple.”  These respondent comments summarize both what we see in this survey and in the technology sector at large. Many companies with whom we’ve engaged -- in this survey, our consulting engagements, and our seminars –- are further ahead than they think.
  • How does a company set appropriate salaries for the jobs it has to fill? The conventional answer is that HR managers are supposed to offer “market-based” pay—that is, high enough to attract (or retain) talented people, but not more generous than is necessary to fill those jobs. But that answer doesn’t tell us where “market-based” benchmarks come from. In actual practice, companies typically look at salaries at peer-level companies, to get apples-to-apples alignment with the pay levels that their most direct counterparts are currently offering.