CA Technologies has been in the software business for more than 40 years. It works with most of the US's biggest companies (including 49 of the Fortune 50), and in Australia with the likes of NAB, Qantas, Toyota Financial Services and Ausnet.\nIts customers are changing, and fast. They are furiously fending off disruption and positioning software and a slick digital customer experience as key drivers of revenue.\n \nThe same can be said of CA. In response to the rapidly changing market and fierce competition, over the last few years the company has been transforming itself. Multi-year deals signed by CIOs are being replaced with monthly-subscription models targeted squarely at developers. A seamless user-experience is central to every release. The legacy image (and scandal-laden past) is being shaken off.\n \n\u201cLegacy is a sword that cuts both ways. Certainly there are some perceptions, or peoples preconceived notions, that simply no longer apply,\u201d explains CA CTO Otto Berkes, who was appointed two years ago to usher in this new era.\n \nWith the mainframe market \u2013 which accounted for 55 per cent of its revenue last financial year \u2013 predicted to plateau over the next few years, it is pitching future growth on providing a full enterprise solutions suite, with DevOps, Agile management and security baked into every offering.\n \n\u201cWhatever you thought, put it aside,\u201d Berkes tells CIO Australia at the company\u2019s Silicon Valley offices in Santa Clara. \u201cHere's who we are, here's how we work, here's what we do.\u201d\n \nModern Factory\nEarlier this month CA launched a new global marketing campaign to show off its new look. In a TV spot for \u2018The Modern Software Factory\u2019 model it hopes customers will adopt, a tour guide explains the benefits of continuous delivery, frictionless security and agile \u2018from mobile to mainframe\u2019. A dumbfounded guest turns to the guide and says: \u2018I have no idea what you just said\u2019.\n \nCA Technologies' latest TV campaign, 'The Tour'\nIncreasingly, CA\u2019s customers are not the enterprise-wide IT-minded buyers of old.\n"It's certainly shifting more to the line of business. The application owners and the application developers,\u201d explains CA chief product officer Ayman Sayed, who was appointed in 2015 from Cisco.\n \nWhere in the past Sayed would meet the CIO, CTO, CEO or head of infrastructure at business meetings, these days, he says, they are often joined by heads of business functions and marketeers.\n \n\u201cI kid you not. I feel like why are you talking to us? Why?!\u201d Sayed tells CIO Australia. \u201cAnd the answer is they're as interested in building a software shop as the CIO. They're hiring more software developers that are investing in tools and infrastructure at a pace that's much faster than the CIO. And they have a budget that\u2019s an order of magnitude bigger.\u201d\n \nBut they don\u2019t think like a CIO.\n \n\u201cThese folks, they run their business differently,\u201d Sayed says. \u201cThere's a different culture. There's a deeper sense of democracy in decision making and how they pick their tools and technology. The user is heavily influencing the purchasing decision.\u201d\n \nGone are the days of top-down mandating of which tools and technologies staff should use, adds Berkes.\n \n\u201cAnd for good reason. You get a better decision often that way because the CIO or CTO may not be in the best position to know which tools are going to be most effective for solving a specific problem,\u201d Berkes says.\n \nPage Break\nAll change\nThe changing customer has prompted a rethink within CA: "Absolutely it changes what we need to build, how we need to build it and how we need to take it to market,\u201d says Sayed.\nThe company is moving the majority of its offerings to SaaS, shipping six SaaS-based products in the past year. They are now utilising containers and micro-services.\n \nThe new breed of buyer also expects a much smoother experience and doesn\u2019t have time to read a manual. UX has become a more important than ever.\n \n\u201cWe're all consumers,\u201d says Berkes. \u201cWe all want to have a beautiful, robust easy to use experience and I think the approach that we're taking in the design thinking and the design organisation that we've assembled is putting an incredible amount of focus and attention to detail on having users feel great about using our products.\u201d\n \n\u201cThey're taking frankly the same approach that they would be building a great quote \u2018consumer\u2019 product to CA\u2019s products. I think that's spot on.\u201d\n \nNew motions\n \nThe try-before-you-buy customers and SaaS model, Sayed describes as \u201ca new set of motions that we need to get comfortable with\u201d.\n \nBut it is already proving advantageous. Sayed describes an unnamed, long-running client who was offered CA\u2019s App Experience Analytics product on a traditional, three-year licensed model.\n \n\u201cThey come back: Can we buy it by month and see how it goes?\u201d Sayed says. \u201cSo certainly a new motion and it forces us to go more into that route. But the good news is they're actually paying us more than what you would have paid for an upfront licence!\u201d\n \nIn this new world, CA competitive environment expands. It still faces old foes like IBM and Microsoft. The likes of AWS, Azure and Google Cloud are also threats. Now it also has to contend with single product challengers.\n \n\u201cWe are in a very unique position to succeed and win against both,\u201d says Sayed.\n \nThe fact CA doesn\u2019t sell infrastructure, and isn\u2019t a stack vendor, is a huge part of its appeal. Its customer are often bimodal, working in heterogeneous environments on-premise and in the public cloud.\n \n\u201cThey have no interest in a single vendor lock in and they don't want a religion and architecture in a stack that restricts them,\u201d Sayed explains. \u201cThat uniquely positions us to be an honest broker, to be a strategic partner.\u201d\n \nCA\u2019s new TV spot ends with the tour guide saying: \u201cIt\u2019s about moving to newhellip;from old.\u201d As its customers and their needs have changed, so has CA.\n\u201cThose customers don't just want to keep doing what they've been doing,\u201d says Berkes.\n \n\u201cGetting ahead and staying ahead is straightforward \u2013 maybe easier said than done but \u2013 to do a better job of listening to customers and really giving them what they need. And to be able to better respond to the needs that they have today and into the future rather than simply continuing to serve the needs that they have or have had.\u201d\n\nThe author travelled to Santa Clara as a guest of CA Technologies.