By John Ambrose
This week’s announcement
that IBM is acquiring Kenexa for $1.3 billion has generated a lot of buzz. As I wrote on the Skillsoft blog back in December
when SAP announced it was acquiring SuccessFactors, this sends a clear
message to other large traditional software/services vendors – it’s all about
the cloud. And as Josh Bersin wrote in his
post on the acquisition, after SAP‘s acquisition of
SuccessFactors and Oracle‘s
acquisition of Taleo, it’s IBM’s turn to jump into the HR and talent management
recognizing the significant hard- and soft-cost advantages of procuring
software and content in the cloud. For the past decade, SaaS vendors
including Skillsoft have been extolling the financial and deployment advantages
of cloud-delivery models.
Skillsoft has always
been a cloud-based provider and maintains relationships with many talent
management vendors, including Kenexa.
This relationship and our commitment to our common
customers will continue.
IBM acquiring Kenexa,
just like SAP’s move did back in December, underscores the importance of
integrating talent management with existing mainstream corporate
infrastructure. This is good for corporate users as they do not check their
consumer tendencies at the front door of the company and expect and deserve a
better, more seamless talent management experience.
Learning content is
key to any successful talent management program from recruitment to retirement.
Skillsoft will continue to provide this essential ingredient to the talent
process for our clients regardless of whether they are an SAP, Oracle or IBM
This deal, along with
SAP’s acquisition in December and Oracle’s acquisition of Taleo earlier this
year, confirms that organizations value employee development as a competitive
differentiator more than ever before. The industry has moved from tactical
(but necessary) human resource administration toward higher-value human capital
management (HCM), where developing people, not the process, is the focus.