May 16 by Eric Dreshfield
Apttus Co-Founder, Chairman and CEO, Kirk Krappe kicked off the day at Accelerate to a standing room only crowd with “Man has always been interested in understanding the evolution of man.” As an epic red sunrise bled across the towering screens behind him, Krappe discussed the importantance of constant evolution and the the burning desire to be at the forefront of improving the way we do business. He did so through the lens of history and of Charles Darwin.
Why Evolution is Critical in Our Modern Enterprise
As Darwin theorized, environment and technology is at the heart of everything we do. Krappe went on to discuss how technology has created large leaps in evolution, moving backwards in time to illustrate the point. Certain periods were marked by certain technological advancements, starting with the Stone Age, then Bronze, Copper and Iron Ages and so on. But not all evolution is chronological. Krappe then described a discovery by German archeologist Klaus Schmidt in 1995: a 3-dimensional tablet, and eventually the buried ruins of Gobekli Tepe. Based on carbon dating, this civilization’s architecture and carvings were well ahead of the understood evolution of tools and structures. Krappe used this civilization to draw a simple, yet remarkable point. “Extraordinary people, even with very little, can accomplish extraordinary things.”
When we consider Gobeklitepe and what we are up against in our modern enterprises, we are not too dissimilar. Enterprises have severe constraints, particularly when it comes to the enterprise application landscape, whether it be limited budgets or resources, not enough time, thousands of applications to manage, screaming business users, or CEOs with unreasonable mandates. As employees, we really are being asked to do extraordinary things, therefore it is important for technology to help alleviate these constraints.
Over the course of his career, Krappe had spent a tremendous amount of time working within the Silicon Valley ecosystem. As he recounted, “There was a moment in my career where I realized what we were selling didn’t really work […] That became the genesis of Apttus,” and really remains at the heart of everything Apttus does. It’s the constant pursuit of evolution and improvement that drives the strategy forward.
Entering the Age of the Middle Office
Krappe theorized that a new technological platform will usher in more effective and efficient business. Over the years, front-office CRM and back-office ERP evolved steadily as essential tools. But the business processes between the two have been stagnant, disjointed, and manual for decades. In other words, the processes driving actual revenue generation and management of key commercial relationships have been significantly neglected, undercutting not just an enterprise’s ability to compete and grow, but to also generate better returns on their adjacent investments in front and back office systems.
Krappe introduced the audience to a new era in enterprise software, the Age of the Middle Office, in which an intelligent platform can bridge the gap between the Front and Back office tools and maximize business outcomes for enterprises. This in turn will improve the efficiency of revenue, contract and procurement operations across sales, operations, finance, legal, and other functional groups.
Introducing Apttus Omni
The platform, Apttus Omni, automates, optimizes, and applies artificial intelligence to the most important set of business processes for any enterprise – generating revenue and managing key commercial relationships. Apttus Omni consists of two main components: first, a patented delivery platform that runs applications covering key Middle Office processes. Secondly, the Omni delivery platform is based on a modern microservices architecture. It runs on multiple cloud infrastructures, including Salesforce, Microsoft Azure, and IBM Cloud. The delivery platform features a single source of data that, combined with numerous services, powers a variety of applications, such as Quote-to-Cash, Contract Lifecycle Management, Digital Commerce, and Industry Solutions.
“We live in a time of intense and continuous business evolution, where success is measured by the speed and volume of revenue generation,” said Krappe. “Rising to meet this challenge, Apttus Omni gives our customers the most sophisticated revenue operations platform in the world and maximizes the value between back- and front-office systems at every juncture. No other software provider has ever used technology in this way, or this comprehensively.”