NASCAR, Data Governance Software & SAP SAPPHIRE: What's the Connection?

 data governance operating model software solution platform

NASCAR, SAP SAPPHIRE, and Information Value Management®

What's the connection?  Remember that old Sesame Street song “One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just doesn’t belong?” While you ponder this conundrum, let me walk you through the logic.


The Daytona 500 is a NASCAR race that runs in Daytona, Florida and the SAP SAPPHIRE NOW Annual Conference is held in Orlando - both in the Sunshine state so they belong.  SAPPHIRE is billed as the largest global business technology event and Information Value Management® is a leading enterprise information management platform engineered by DATUM LLC, which connects business value to data management.  Technology is technology so SAPPHIRE and Information Value Management® belong. 

If you are heading to SAPPHIRE in May you can drop by the DATUM booth and see an Information Value Management demonstration. 

So what’s the connection between a NASCAR race and Information Value Management®?  Simple, it’s called differentiation. 

A few months ago I was fortunate to visit the Charlotte Motor Speedway as a guest of the Roush Fenway Racing team.  Admittedly, I was a NASCAR fan for the last three laps of any race.  To my simple eye, every single car looked exactly like the one parked next to it.  I asked my host “so what’s the bottom line here? All these things have the same size motor, the drivers are basically the same size, and the tires are the same. How does anyone actually win one of these things?”

Exasperated, my host had to write in crayon.  He explained how racing is a very regulated and proctored sport where just about everything in, on and around the vehicle is tested, observed and then tested again to make sure that no monkey business went on before, during and after a race.  I learned that aerodynamics, weight and a lot of physics terms I had never heard of were factors in the overall success of a car on any given day.  The heat, humidity, and weather plays into the competition as well. And of course, the driver has a little bit of influence on how well the car performs.

When I visited the garage where all the mechanics work, I saw armies of experts working diligently on each of their functional areas.  All those teams, with all those tools and all those materials constantly in motion in hopes that on race day, they will have the perfect combination in place to differentiate their car from the rest.  To boggle your mind just a little, the difference between the #1 car this year at Dayton and the #2 car in their qualifying speeds was exactly .143 seconds.  A half an ounce here, a rivet there, a fold of the metal on the rear spoiler and one less sip of OJ at breakfast; ounces make pounds and it all adds up.  And let’s not forget, it’s also a direct function of leadership.

When you walk into the Orlando convention center on May 17, the SAPPHIRE arena will be overwhelming.  It’s datapalozza!  It’s star-studded before you even get to the main event of networking and the vendors. Coldplay will be there along with Steve Wozniak.  Last year I walked right past boxing champ Evander Holyfield. The booths are spectacular and the energy (much like Daytona I might add) is electric. 

Inside this maze, you will find the engineers of Information Value Management® inside the DATUM LLC booth #873 (that’s us).  And just like the winning car at Daytona, our platform is different from the competition.  Our platform was designed by a pit crew of experts who developed a high performance vehicle that aligns the people, processes and policies to define information trust for the business.  This software platform allows you to launch a data governance operating model that connects data management efforts to business value. But don’t listen to me – I’m just the guy in the stands watching cars make really fast left-hand turns.  Go see DATUM and let the pit crew take you for a ride in Information Value Management®.

Incidentally, I vaguely recall Modus Ponens as the key to this logic.  Maybe a little stretch but when is the last time you saw Evander Holyfield driving a race car discussing SAP in Latin?

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