The Top Three Reasons DB2 is Best! Webinar, 9/25

Posted by Kim May on September 15, 2014 under DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 Migrations, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, IBM Mid Market Customers, Oracle, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , .

Date:  Thursday, September 25, 2014

Time:  12:00pm – 1:00pm EDT

Register:  HERE

Every organization – current DB2 users and others – is under fire to deliver a flexible, reliable database solution to support business requirements.  In sixty minutes you will learn why DB2 10.5 for LUW is the best choice to support critical data management needs.  When someone asks, “Why DB2?” you will have 3 answers!

We will cover:

  1. Functionality: high availability with pureScale, maximum data compression, and query acceleration with DB2 BLU
  2. Success:  learn how current customers are leveraging DB2 to meet their objectives
  3. Pricing:  find the right fit with simplified purchasing options

Whether you are currently using DB2 and looking to better understand its features, or considering a move to DB2, please join us.

The webinar will be presented by IBM DB2 Competitive Sales Specialist Bill Kincaid and IBM Champion Kim May.

About the presenters:

Bill Kincaid is an IBM DB2 Competitive Sales Specialist.  Bill has worked for IBM, Microsoft and Oracle, as well as data virtualization solution developer xkoto.  Bill’s specialty is helping database users – customers currently using DB2 and customers considering migrating to DB2 – to fully understand the value of DB2.  Bill earned his BA at the University of North Carolina and his MBA from the University of Georgia.  He lives in Charlotte and works with IBM customers in the Eastern US.

Kim May is the Vice President of Business Development for The Fillmore Group and an IBM Champion for Information Management.  Kim coordinates The Fillmore Group’s software sales and consulting efforts, including migration support for customers moving workloads to DB2.  Kim’s experience includes several years supporting technical education, and she currently serves on the board of the Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group.

 

IDAA Use Cases – Session #IDZ-6691B at Insight

Posted by Kim May on September 9, 2014 under DB2 Education, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, IDAA, Insight 2014, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , .

Frank Fillmore will be delivering a session on IDAA use cases at the IBM Insight Conference in Las Vegas (formerly IOD) on Tuesday, October 28th, from 10am-11am.

The IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator (IDAA) speeds analytic queries that currently run on DB2 for z/OS.

IBM DB2 Analytics Accelerator can:

  • Help with operational data store reconsolidation on IBM System z.
  • Reduce extract, transform and load (ETL) costs and latency to make OLTP data available for analysis faster and less expensively.
  • Speed up batch reporting and offload System z processor consumption.
  • Archive original data by using the high performance storage saver (HPSS).
  • Enable analysis of VSAM and Information Management System (IMS) data along with DB2 for z/OS by using the DB2 Analytics Accelerator Loader.

In Frank’s session, attendees will learn about these functions and more, and gain an understanding of possible, interesting, and valuable IDAA use cases.

I hope we will see you there!

Services – Available Help for the “tions”

Posted by Kim May on May 30, 2014 under Authorized Training Partner, Big Data, Data Studio, DB2 Connect, DB2 Education, DB2 for i, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for VSE&VM, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, DB2 Migrations, Federation, Frank Fillmore, Hadoop, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Pure Systems, IDAA, InfoSphere, InfoSphere Streams, MQT's, Netezza, Optim, Oracle, pureScale, Q-Replication, SQL Tuning, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

I was on a call this morning with an IBM technical team to discuss our progress filling the seats in one of our upcoming free IDAA classes.  Not surprising, given the number of people on the call (and who they were!) we went a bit off topic and ended up chatting about services and what appears to be – to IBM customers and sellers at least – a shortage of skilled consultants available to help with the “tions” – replication, implementations, migrations and federation.

The Fillmore Group has skilled consultants available to support these efforts, at rates that are typically about half of those being charged by “the competition”.

If your team has a project pending, or one in process, where a skilled consultant, at a reasonable hourly rate, can get things back on track, please contact me.  We are ready to work!  A list of our IBM Information Management capabilities is attached here.

 

2013 Recap and DB2 Support Trends to Watch in 2014

Posted by Kim May on January 5, 2014 under DB2 Education, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Training Services Delivery Partner, International DB2 Users Group (IDUG), TFG Blog. Tags: , , , .

I spent some time this past week reviewing our 2013 performance, which was terrific, and planning for 2014.  It was a good exercise in looking at what seems to be working for The Fillmore Group, as well as the trends that seem to be changing the way we are engaged and supporting Information Management users.

In terms of trends I am surprised, and quite honestly a bit reassured by, the number of consulting engagements we’ve been authorized to work remotely.  The expense and wear and tear from travel that is frequently associated with working onsite at a client’s location cannot be overestimated.  However, up until about two years ago, we did almost 100% of our billable work at customer locations.  I was shocked at how much this has changed.  I hope this is an indication of more confidence in our consultants, who perform work at a high level regardless of where they sit, but also I understand this also reflects more confidence in the tools and technologies that enable us to work and communicate effectively when we work remotely.  Kudos to all the consultants making their way to the airport tonight, but also many thanks to the customers who trust in our professionalism and communication skills and are allowing many members of our team to sleep in their own beds tonight.

The second trend surprising me is the silence from the DB2 community around the IBM Global Skills Initiative.  By outsourcing training IBM has essentially unraveled the lifeline that keeps technical skills current and enables customers to make use of the wonderful solutions available.  This troubles me – I am not sure if this is an indication of the aging IT workforce (“I learned the basics years ago; nothing has really changed”) or the constriction of education funding available to support skills.  I expected a revolt!  Instead, while I see IDUG flourishing and third party training options increasing (both of which are great for the overall DB2 ecosystem in my opinion), I fear the decline in training will parallel a decline in new product adoption.  I hope, as the Global Training Providers get a better handle on how to deliver IBM education, that offerings and options – and enrollment – will increase.  We view lifelong education as one of the requirements – and pleasures – of life in the world of technology; I hope it isn’t stifled or relegated to slide decks and 30 minute presentations on concepts.

Finally, a trend that I intend to address as best I can in 2014 is Procurement and E-cig Twigg’s popular e-juice guide.  Why, in the world of cost cutting and expecting people to do more with less is the ability to engage with customer organizations becoming so terribly difficult?  We’ve been an IBM Business Partner for decades and have established our organization in many ways.  In the past year we have run into multiple situations where technical managers who are trusted with million dollar budgets are bound by Procurement teams whose job seems to be to make it nearly impossible to engage reasonably priced resources to support business critical projects.  When our consultants are only able to engage as a subcontractor to a subcontractor (this is the case with several of our current customers) and the rate the customer ultimately pays is excessively high, no one wins.  I am not sure how I will overcome this, but I plan to attack it in 2014!

A healthy and prosperous 2014 to everyone in the DB2 community!

 

Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group News

Posted by Kim May on December 3, 2013 under Baltimore Washington DB2 Users Group, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, IBM Champion, Information on Demand Conference, International DB2 Users Group (IDUG). Tags: , , , .

Fall is the busiest time of year with IOD requiring so much *energy*!  Now that Thanksgiving has passed and it’s December already, it’s time for me to focus on what’s happening here locally.  Which means, of course, the Baltimore/Washington DB2 Users Group meeting, scheduled for December 11th, from 9:00am – 3:30pm, at the Columbia Sheraton.

This year’s December meeting is sponsored by SEGUS.  Next year’s meeting (plug, plug) will be hosted by The Fillmore Group.

This month’s agenda includes a kickoff session to be delivered by DB2 Gold Consultant, IBM Champion and President of the Atlanta DB2 Users Group, Ted Alexander.  We’ve worked with Ted in the past and have long admired his technical expertise and his charm (of course!)  Ted’s presentation will run from 9:00am – 10:15am.  Ted’s session abstract is below.  If you would like to join us, the complete agenda and registration information are here.

Application Developers & DB2 for z/OS

Things are changing with every release of DB2 for z/OS. More features for application developers to exploit, and a few that are going away. In this session we will cover DB2 for z/OS version 9 and DB2 for z/OS version 10 and some new stuff on DB2 for z/OS version 11.

This presentation is geared toward the application developer and the tricks that can make their application run smoothly and upgrade easier to the next release of DB2. Did you ever wonder how DB2 for z/OS new features are chosen?  We’ll have a look at that, too.

Unused 2012 Budget? Invest in DB2 Now!

Posted by Kim May on November 26, 2012 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 for z/OS, DB2 Gold Consultants, DB2 Migrations, Frank Fillmore, IBM DB2 Services, InfoSphere, Netezza, Optim, Oracle, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , .

Don’t wait – act now!  Invest in DB2 before year end.
 
With 2012 rapidly drawing to a close now is the time to review unused budget funds and invest in DB2 training and services.  The Fillmore Group has our DBA on Demand support option and IBM Authorized Training classes scheduled that can be paid for in advance and used to ensure your team is prepared for a successful 2013.
 
DBA on Demand offers expert consulting services, either onsite or remote, at a discounted hourly rate.  Our “150 for 150” offer delivers 150 hours of support at a discounted hourly rate of $150 per hour.
 
There are still seats available for the December 10th CL412/CL442 DB2 for LUW Performance Tuning and Monitoring Workshop to be delivered by DB2 Gold Consultant Frank C. Fillmore, Jr., in our Towson, Maryland classroom.  Additional TFG classes scheduled are available on the IBM Learning Services website.
 
Please feel free to contact me with any questions on how The Fillmore Group can help preserve your unused funds and help your team have a successful 2013 with DB2!

DB2 December Renewal? Stop! Evaluate AESE First!

Posted by Kim May on November 15, 2012 under DB2 Education, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 Gold Consultants, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , , , , , , .

Given that so many IBM customers make their initial software purchases in the fourth quarter of the calendar year (when the IBM pricing gets really aggressive), the number of DB2 customers whose annual software license subscription and support is due each December is higher than in any other month of the year.  For this reason we’ve decided to deliver another webinar on the DB2 Advanced Enterprise Server Edition (AESE) bundle in hopes of persuading renewing DB2 customers to consider the upgrade.  AESE has provided substantial value to every upgrading customer we’ve worked with, and enabled their IT organization to better monitor, utilize, and extend the use of their database. 

Frank Fillmore will deliver the webinar on Monday, November 19th from 11am – 12pm EST.  Register HERE.

The invitation, in case you didn’t receive one directly from me (!) –

If your organization’s DB2 license Subscription and Support is scheduled to renew in December, now is the time to learn about the DB2 Advanced Enterprise Server Edition (AESE) product bundle and how you can finesse the upgrade JUST BEFORE paying IBM the annual Subscription and Support fee to make it VERY affordable. Read More…

We Know You Deserve It, But…

Posted by Kim May on November 2, 2012 under DB2 Stars, IBM DB2 Services, Information on Demand Conference, Optim, Q-Replication, TFG Blog. Tags: , , .

I submitted this blog post to the IOD blog (IOD blog) as I was leaving the conference:

At this year’s Information On Demand conference I had the pleasure to catch up with three IBMers who have endorsed, supported and yes, tolerated The Fillmore Group in various ways for many years. Each of these three wonderful IBMers announced their participation in the IBM “Road to Retirement” program and shared some of their post-IBM plans. I wish them all the very best, while at the same time am saddened to see such talented and dedicated experts leave IBM.

Sandy Ovard has been working as Business Partner liaison to Lab Services and has helped us navigate the increasingly complex Lab Services partner engagement process. As we depend on Lab Services for a portion of our services business, Sandy has had the frequently unpleasant job of soliciting Business Partner feedback and addressing issues. Her patience and consistent willingness to pitch in will be missed.

Holly Hayes is one of the SVL development superstars who has worked with a number of technologies. Holly is one of the few “surf and turf” people who fully understand the most technical of technical subjects and has the communication skills to explain them to those non-techies, like me, who need analogies and pictures to understand. I am have been surprised – and amazed – on more than one occasion when I hear about a customer that struggled with a new product implementation and hear, “and then I got Holly involved,” and invariably, things smooth out.

Finally, David Tolleson. David has been the replication and federation Product Manager and a tireless promoter of these solutions. David has blogged, responded to endless emails, and enthusiastically supported a niche technology that enables some of the world’s largest IT shops to meet those 24X7 uptime SLA’s. He has worked with a team that is not only technically capable, but fun to work with.

Good luck to you all!

Webinar – Use Services to Close Q2 Software Sales

Posted by Kim May on June 11, 2012 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 Education, IBM DB2 Services, IBM Information Management Software Sales, Uncategorized. Tags: , , , .

Use TFG Services to Close Q2 Deals

*Update*  Thanks to the IBM sellers who attended yesterday’s webinar.  The slide deck is attached – I hope it helps with your Q2 sales!

 

I am delivering a webcast Thursday, June 14th, targeted to IBM Information Management software sellers who may benefit from using The Fillmore Group’s services to help close software sales deals by the end of June – a big day for IBM sellers (it’s the end of the first half of their business year).  I am excited to do this as The Fillmore Group has historically taken a holistic view of the software acquisition process.  We recognize that more needs to happen AFTER customers purchase Information Management software than BEFORE.

And while figuring out the budget and how much an organization has available to spend on the software itself is important, it’s the follow-on services that make or break an implementation – consulting to help install the software and integrate it with existing systems, and training to ensure an organization’s DBA team is prepared to support it long-term. 

We offer these services and are proud of the consistently fine work performed by our consultants and trainers. 

If you sell IBM software and would like to attend the webinar, I am keeping it short and sweet (30 minutes start to finish).  Register here.

Or, if you are an IBM customer, or thinking about becoming an IBM customer, and are interested in top qualify services from a Premier Business Partner, please contact me here.

DB2 Advanced Enterprise Server Edition (AESE) Webinar – Why You Should Consider It

Posted by Kim May on March 26, 2012 under Authorized Training Partner, DB2 for Linux Unix Windows, DB2 Gold Consultants, Frank Fillmore, IBM Champion, Optim. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

IBM introduced the DB2 Advanced Enterprise Server Edtion (AESE) in late 2010, bundling Optim tools, compression and replication for high availability and disaster recovery in with the features in DB2 Enterprise Server Edition.  Current DB2 customers are offered several upgrade options, making AESE an affordable, comprehensive database solution and an alternative to going a la carte.  

In this presentation DB2 Gold Consultant and IBM Champion Frank C. Fillmore, Jr., will explain what each of the features included in the AESE bundle is and what functionality they deliver.  Using customer examples, Frank will analyze the benefits of moving to AESE for each organization and how they evaluated the options and reached a decision.  Finally Frank will explain how to determine the upgrade path for your organization and what you can do immediately to get an accurate estimate of the cost and best time to move to AESE.    For details on the presentation click, “Read More”. 

April 5th, 12:00pm – 1:00pm EDT.    Register here.

Read More…