Cloud computing marks a new “inflexion” point in the IT industry, according to CA Technologies.

In his keynote speech to the 7,000 delegates at the CA World conference in Las Vegas, William McCracken, president and CEO of CA made the announcement as the company launched a range of new cloud solutions, including SaaS monitoring product Nimsoft on Demand.

“We are at a new inflexion point in the industry. There will be significant change by this time next year – it’s started,” said McCracken.

“Change is happening, being driven by economy, technology and user needs, and when things change, we need to change.”

He added: “Companies and industries change, and those that don’t, go to the dumpster.”

At CA World's Technology keynote speech, Dr Ajei Gopal, executive vice-president of products and technology, said: "The cloud will change everything. Instead of being a monolithic supplier of technology services to the business, the IT department becomes the manager of a dynamic supply chain of internal and external resources that delivers services to the business and its internal and external clients.

"[IT will be about] managing a highly virtualised, highly adaptable, internal and external supply chain where the focus is on the product. In this new era, the entire internet is going to be the datacentre."

In his speech, McCracken highlighted how the economic downturn has forced companies to be more efficient, more effective, and to do more with less.

“Most systems in large enterprises at any point in time are 40 to 60 per cent underutilised. They’re built to handle the peak. Economic conditions are driving change with respect to that, and technology ability is starting to catch up,” he said.

Furthermore, CA’s president said that particularly with the internet, there was a constant push for CEOs to change their business models quickly.

“The biggest problem a CEO has today especially is how do they change their business rapidly enough to meet the competitive challenges?

“When you try to change a business, what’s the first thing required usually? A change in the IT system, a new way of interfacing your systems, a new way of supporting the systems,” said McCracken.

He explained how he learned the hard way about the importance of quickly changing business models from his experience of managing the worldwide PC business for IBM.

“Michael Dell built a better model, and when we discovered what he was doing, it took us a couple of years to compete again,” he warned.

In addition, McCracken announced the launch of a new community and website for IT professionals called Cloud Commons. CA is sponsoring the site, which is being hosted by Insight Investments. Other founders of the initiative include TM Forum, Red Hat and Carnegie Mellon University.

“Cloud Commons is to have you to come together to share your experiences of what you see in the virtual environment,” he said.

Cloud Commons will have features such as a Service Measurement Index, being developed by Carnegie Mellon University, which is a standard for quantifying and evaluating cloud computing services.

Meanwhile, referring to the company’s name change from CA to CA Technologies, McCracken said: “CA Technologies describes us better going forward than just CA. Another reason – frankly, I got tired of Googling CA and getting California.”