We have had the pleasure for Giorgio taking time out of his busy schedule to take part in our infamous 10 questions. Giorgio is a research director for IDC’s European Infrastructure and Cloud research and leads the team of analysts responsible for tracking the cloud infrastructure, server, storage and converged systems markets in Western Europe.
What are your coverage areas?
My main focus area is European infrastructure, a broad spectrum of things ranging from Multicloud management software to service provider datacenters. I’m also increasingly involved in this year’s research sprints (we call them Launchpads) around emerging technologies (Quantum, Edge, Blockchain…) driven by brilliant analysts across multiple IDC teams.
What are your opinions of the IT Analysis Marketplace and where do you see it going?
Analysing the analysts! Three trends I see: the traditional need for ad-personam advisory to IT buyers is not only steady but increasing. With technology topics becoming ever more complex (see the interdependencies of Multicloud, or political nature of Blockchain use cases or AI’s ethical dilemmas), leaders need fact-and face-based opinions more than ever. The second is the changing nature of data. Data are the wheels of any self-respecting research vehicle. In the 3rd Platform era, generating data differently, from new sources and manipulating it better and faster than ever before is crucial. The third is the growing connection between branding, marketing and analyst house services – i.e. the analyst company becoming a digital agency.
What’s your typical day like?
The day starts at breakfast or in the bus, swiping through emails. After that it’s a lot of “Can you guys hear me alright?”, pulling out the toothpaste at security LHR T2 and providing feedback on reports and deliverables. The fun part are workshops or improvised whiteboard meetings with customers, and the unpredictable, sometimes heated conversations with IT buyers at our events. Also enjoyable are the rare isolation days (often in summer heat) with a piece of paper and pen, drawing the research agenda for the next months.
Now, c’mon, tell me an AR horror story?
Not a horror – but a thriller story. I’ve once attended an analyst event linked to a broader customer conference where the facilities were just not fit (or not booked properly). The poor AR person spent two days leading a bunch of analysts (distracted fellas in general) across ultra-crowded, immense halls from one meeting room to another, holding a tourist guide sign and a megaphone. In rare cases did the analysts arrive on time. In some cases they never made it to the meeting room. I think a couple of analysts are still roaming in that conference center (haven’t seen them since). In another case I flew into Vegas on the promise of an analyst track with executives – except there was no such thing, only technical sessions. Learnt my lesson on asking for agendas then!
What is your research methodology?
The ideas stem from anecdotal discussions with “Pathfinder” IT buyers and other IDC analysts. The proof points from primary research in form of small to large surveys. The hard data on market numbers from vendor conversations and guidance process.
Any favourite AR professional you’d like to mention? Any why?
Most of AR folks I know are great and enable easy access to vendor executives. I’ve worked closely and for a long time with Jos Baltes (HPE) who is not only hyper-responsive but also great to get a beer with. Most recently Caroline Dennington (NetApp) adds the British humour (!) – Antonella Crimi (Equinix) and Anna Carzana (AMD) the Italian flair. I’m missing several I know – impossible to mention all!
Tell us about one good AR practice you’ve experienced or one good AR event you’ve attended.
I’ve recently attended a one-day analyst-only event where keynotes were kept to less than 1 hour and most of the day was spent on one-to-ones, with some breaks in between. I thought it was great – even if I ended up talking myself dry. A good AR practice is booking events in the calendar well in advance – even if analysts themselves are sloppy RSVPers!
What are your offerings and key deliverables?
Within my team, we deliver on a subscription program with report, surveys and customer enquiries; release multiple Tracker datasets on a quarterly basis and work on challenging custom project advising vendors and buyers on infrastructure-related decisions. A recent one I liked was advisory work for a custom chipset manufacturer to identify and position their Edge Computing and Gateway strategy.
Any hobbies or favourite restaurant / food that you’d like to share?
With a mixed Asian-Italian family we are way too fussy about food. For the Londoners – L’oro di Napoli in South Ealing. For the Frankfurters – Sushi Boy in Eschersheimer Tor; Lam Freres in Bahnhofsviertel.
What is your biggest challenges for the upcoming 6 months? And for the next 30 mn?
Selecting what NOT to do or cover is the tough one for the next 6 months. With Innovation Accelerators kicking off it’s like the candy shop, but one can’t do everything properly! Next 30 minutes getting home on time for dinner!