28
Feb 17

TheWHIR – 3 Steps to Ensure Cloud Stability in 2017

We’re reaching a point of maturity when it comes to cloud computing. Organizations are solidifying their cloud use-cases, understanding how cloud impacts their business, and are building entire IT models around the capabilities of cloud.

Cloud growth will only continue; Gartner recently said that more than $1 trillion in IT spending will, directly or indirectly, be affected by the shift to cloud during the next five years.

“Cloud-first strategies are the foundation for staying relevant in a fast-paced world,” said Ed Anderson, research vice president at Gartner. “The market for cloud services has grown to such an extent that it is now a notable percentage of total IT spending, helping to create a new generation of start-ups and ‘born in the cloud’ providers.”

More of TheWHIR post from Bill Kleyman


16
Feb 17

Continuity Central – Report looks at the prevalence of business-critical custom applications

At the 8th Annual Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) Summit at RSA in San Francisco, Skyhigh Networks unveiled its ‘Custom Applications and IaaS Report 2017’ report.

Conducted in partnership with the CSA, the report is based on a broad survey of software development, IT administration, IT security, operations and devops professionals across the Americas, EMEA and Asa Pacific, involved in developing, deploying and securing custom applications. While respondents forecast rapid IaaS adoption, they at the same time expressed numerous unresolved concerns about the security and compliance of their custom applications in IaaS platforms.

“Custom applications are a core part of how our business operates, and moving these to the cloud provide IT an opportunity to ‘start fresh’ with the right visibility, controls and overall security, without getting in the way of business operations,” said Stephen Ward, CISO, TIAA. “Meeting our security requirements for our applications, as well as our IaaS environment, is absolutely critical to accomplishing our business goals for cloud and overall software programs.”

Some of the key findings from the survey include:

Every company is a software company. Every company has developers writing custom code to improve engagement with employees, partners and customers.

More of the Continuity Central post


15
Feb 17

Fast Company – How Has Technology Changed The Way We Trust?

Rachel Botsman has spent over a decade thinking about the “sharing economy.” As an an author and a visiting academic at the University of Oxford, Saïd Business School, who researches how technology is transforming trust, she’s an authority on the subject. She’s also one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People. She is currently writing a book, due out next fall, about the new decentralized economies and how that has changed trust.

I recently chatted with her about what this means for the future of leadership. What follows is a transcript of our conversation. It has been edited for space and clarity.

Can you talk a bit about your current project and its background?

In 2009, I wrote What’s Mine Is Yours about the so-called sharing economy.

More of the Fast Company article from Cale Guthrie Weissman


17
Jan 17

Customer Think – The term “Digital” is simply the latest proxy for describing current unmet needs

Grow my company, and maintain profitability. This is likely the core job for any business owner and/or management team. The markets punish public companies that cannot maintain growth and/or profitability over time. Hey founders, initial growth don’t count! Everyone grows from zero.

The term “Digital” is simply the latest proxy for current unmet needs in many markets. While it’s simple, it’s also confusing. Both customers and suppliers alike have difficulty expressing what needs are in a consistent fashion; which is why we — as whole — have great difficulty achieving high rates of product launch (or solution implementation) success. The only way to address this is to, once and for all, come to a common agreement.

Terms like Digital, the Sharing Economy, etc. are simply trying to describe how certain solutions and platforms are addressing current unmet needs in the market. Products and services that are struggling are serving former unmet needs.

More of the Customer Think post from Mike Boysen


16
Jan 17

Untitled

From the article: “The problem I see more often is that leaders don’t make decisions at all. They don’t clearly signal their intent about what matters. In short, they don’t prioritize.” Is your IT staff clear on priorities?

Every organization needs what I call a “hierarchy of purpose.” Without one, it is almost impossible to prioritize effectively.

When I first joined BNP Paribas Fortis, for example, two younger and more dynamic banks had just overtaken us. Although we had been a market leader for many years, our new products had been launched several months later than the competition — in fact, our time to market had doubled over the previous three years. Behind that problem was a deeper one: We had more than 100 large projects (each worth over 500,000 euros) under way. No one had a clear view of the status of those investments, or even the anticipated benefits. The bank was using a project management tool, but the lack of discipline in keeping it up to date made it largely fruitless. Capacity, not strategy, was determining which projects launched and when. If people were available, the project was launched. If not, it stalled or was killed.

Prioritization at a strategic and operational level is often the difference between success and failure. But many organizations do it badly.

More of the Harvard Business Review article from Antonio Nieto-Rodriguez


09
Jan 17

CIO.com – ​5 lessons in reducing IT complexity

It’s an adage as old as time (or at least as old as the invention of the personal computer): Technology is destined to cycle constantly between complexity and simplicity.

Remember the hassle of attaching peripherals in the days before USB ports? Remember the anguish of developing applications for competing OS interfaces before HTML? We fixed those problems, and look at that, we’ve moved on to others.

“Complexity grows over time,” says Bryson Koehler, chief information and technology officer (CITO) of The Weather Company in Atlanta. “Systems are built to do one thing, and then they’re modified, morphed and bastardised to do things they were never meant to do.”

Complexity also occurs when technologies overlap one another – “when you add new stuff but keep the old instead of getting rid of it,” says Dee Burger, North America CEO of Capgemini Consulting.

More of the CIO.com post from Howard Baldwin


04
Jan 17

IT Business Edge – Eliminate Technical Debt to Enable a Nimble IT Organization

The problem of technical debt is pervasive. And it’s not always easy to clearly identify the long-term problems that come with accepting technical debt. Here’s a practical look at some of the costs and implications. What is your organization doing to address your technical debt problem?

In the wake of economic volatility over the past decade, corporations have accumulated technical debt due to cost cutting and underinvestment in technology. In many companies, the result is often a patchwork of software fixes and inefficiencies across applications, architectures, and infrastructure that stifle agility.

Meanwhile, the business expects IT to keep pace with the change that digital disruption requires. In order to do so, CIOs must pay down the accumulated technical debt to regain strategic relevance while playing the role for which IT is best suited: guiding technology decisions to help the organization maximize the value of new technologies.

In this sldieshow, Mazen Baroudi, Accenture Strategy’s North America lead for Technology Strategy, outlines the areas where management needs to look to identify sources of technical debt. Mazen closes with three steps IT organizations should take to pay down their technical debt on their journey to becoming more nimble and responsive to the company’s technology needs and ultimately its business.

More of the IT Business Edge slideshow


30
Dec 16

GigaOM – The enterprise CIO is moving to a consumption-first paradigm

Take yourself back a couple of decades and the IT industry looked very different than it does today. Back then the number of solution choices was relatively limited and only available to those with the finances to afford it. Many of the core services had to be built from the ground up. Why? There simply wasn’t the volume or maturity of the IT marketplace for core services. Today, that picture is very different!

For example, consider email. Back in 1995, Microsoft Exchange was just a fledgling product that was less than two years old. The dominant email solutions were cc:Mail (acquired by Lotus in 1991), Lotus Notes (acquired by IBM in 1995) along with a myriad of mainframe, mini and UNIX-based mail servers.

Every enterprise had to setup and manage their individual email environment. Solutions like Google Apps and Microsoft 365 simply did not exist. There was no real alternative…except for outsourcing.

More of the GigaOM post from Tim Crawford


29
Dec 16

Information Age – IT can make or break the success of a deal

This article is a couple of years old, but the topic of IT agility is more important than ever in the merger and acquisition space.

Businesses are increasingly under pressure to deliver value to stakeholders, particularly when undertaking bold initiatives such as mergers, acquisitions or asset disposals. This is the case not only for corporate acquirers but also for private equity (PE) firms, whose strategy is leaning toward add on acquisitions as a means of growing their portfolio companies.

Among the fundamental change brought on by mergers and acquisitions (M&A), management teams often require significant effort in restructuring or streamlining operations of acquired businesses to deliver success in the absence of financial engineering. But given the challenging success rate of M&A activity delivering realised value to organisations in the short and medium term how can those parties involve in M&A actually deliver realised value?

More of the Information Age article from Tony Qui


21
Dec 16

ZDNet – Gartner’s digital transformation, IT crystal ball for 2017: Reading between the lines

ugmented reality will become a shopping paradise, webpages will start to give way to screen-less voice interactions, blockchain technology will create a business worth $10 billion, and the Internet of Things will save $1 trillion a year by 2022.

Those items reflect Gartner’s crystal ball predictions for 2017 and beyond. The predictions were outlined at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Orlando. The theme for the conference is digital transformation, experiences, and engagement.

Jason Hiner at TechRepublic is looking at the implications for IT as these trends play out, but it’s worth looking here at the business takeaways amid the tech shifts.

In a slide, here’s a look at the technologies companies will have to put together and navigate. At the very least, the slide provides a starter set for a tech buzzword drinking game.

Here’s a between-the-lines reading of Gartner’s prognostications.

By 2020, 100 million consumers will shop in augmented reality. Gartner analysts Daryl Plummer and David Cearley argued that AR will go mainstream. Retailers will use AR to boost the shopping experience as digital information blends with the physical.

More of the ZDNet post form Larry Dignan