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Posts Tagged ‘IBM’

What is your mobile strategy?

April 25, 2013 6 comments

According to Latha Maripuri, Director of IBM Mobile and Security Services, mobile technology has unquestionably changed how we interact in both our business and personal lives. In fact, mobile devices have quickly moved from a nice-to-have technology to a necessity for most of us.

But the integration of mobile within our lives doesn’t stop there. We’re using mobile technology in innovative ways and countless places across every industry. For example, doctors can track therapeutic effectiveness through remote monitoring apps, keeping them updated on patients even when neither is in the hospital. The examples are endless.

More here: Mapping Out the Top 4 Strategies for the Mobile Enterprise « A Smarter Planet Blog.

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What is your new ecosystem?

The need for change is obvious. The CIO as change agent not only touches his/her own function, but also need make influence on entire organization and business ecosystem as well, it takes strategic planning, methodology and practice in orchestrating such transformation. This is a big deal. If the business isn’t strategic it will be impossible for technology to be strategic as well.

Define Roadmap: In fact, the required changes, at the most fundamental level, need be well documented. A clearly defined roadmap is available, and industry best practices are in place to serve as a framework upon which the solution can be implemented over time. The transformation to a more proactive service/solution delivery organization with repeatable management processes in place of the ‘crisis of the day’ leadership model, can be a reality, but only if the CIO is the proactive, visible and charismatic sponsor.

Optimize Process: Meanwhile, to compete, business unit leaders need IT to ensure the availability and reliability of their business process automation tools/technology, so their staff can function as efficiently as promised, back when they justified the tool purchase. In fact, many organizations have little insight into their cost structures and who is consuming the assets. They have no idea where they are spending their money on and often assume it is mainly being spent on items which are actually much lower on the list. Every IT finance group can capture costs but the challenge is to have visibility and traceability between costs and the assets consuming those costs. The leadership team needs IT to be the business process optimization expert for the company, to find creative sources for competitive advantages, to better compete.

Ask for Help: One of the first things a CIO must do in a transformation initiative of this magnitude is to ask the business for help. The effort will fail if the business units are unwilling to invest resources and accept a “period of pain” where service levels may be adversely impacted. CIO can envision themselves talking with business unit leaders, selling them on the challenges and the vision for the future. Will CIO be open to new perspective, willing to adapt the new skill set to the demands of evolving technology or adapt their role to the evolving business requirements for technology? Will CIO be learning agile to understand business ecosystem and connect innovation dot cross-functional, cross-industrial and cross-cultural border? It takes both attitude and aptitude.

Who is responsible for your nonprofit Digital Community Building?

When it comes to building community and increasing brand awareness, some organizations hire communications, marketing, and engagement staff to handle these activities. And that makes sense — someone needs to be charged with keeping a close eye on the organization’s community growth.

Jamie Millard and Lori L. Jacobwith also suggest that building awareness for your important work in an increasingly cluttered space can’t be the responsibility of just one person or even a department. When an organization embraces the culture of creating and empowering all staff to become “brand ambassadors,” authentic and exponential growth starts to happen.

More here: Ctrl+Alt+Delete: Rebooting Your Digital Community Building | NTEN.

Can you eliminate the need for email?

With some careful application of social media tools, could you actually eliminate the need for email?

Luis Suarez, who works for IBM, ditched email. He still has an email account, but since 2008 he’s tried to wean himself off email.

Suarez documents the decreasing amounts of email he receives with blog posts tagged “A World Without Email“. When he started, Suarez received more than 30 emails per day; by 2011 he received 16 emails per week. (I always imagine the phrase being read with the deep voice of movie trailer narrators, “In a world without email, one man stands alone…”)

Headlines highlight Suarez’s lack of email as an oddity. In 2012, Wired ran a story titled “IBM Gives Birth to Amazing E-mail-less Man“. The idea that a tech professional could do actual work without email boggles! Bah. Nearly impossible!

Headlines about Suarez should read “Man Chooses to Work in Public”. Suarez replaced email with a mix of internal and external social networking tools. He posts to his WordPress-powered blog at elsua.net several times a month. He uses Twitter and Tumblr to share what he’s doing. He even uses Google+ now and then.

Suarez’s choice to share his work came as a result of thinking and practice. He worked for years in the field of Knowledge Management. And he’s highly proficient at learning new tools and ways of working: he started blogging back in 2005.

So, can you eliminate email? Yes, with the careful use of social media and the willingness to “work in public”, it can be done. What is the value? Knowledge is shared. Work is collaborative.

Crossing the Innovation Chasm. Does CIO stand for Chief Innovation Officer?

December 3, 2012 1 comment

Why does the Innovation Chasm exist? As a CIO, you have been charged with protecting your organization’s valuable assets, and with providing a reliable and stable infrastructure. As a result, you have become the “CI-No”:

  • “No, we can’t buy that application you saw in an airplane magazine.”
  • “No, we can’t have a new Web site built in two weeks.”
  • “No, we can’t do that because it will expose our customer data.”

You could be the CI-No because you were the only game in town: if the business wanted access to technology, they had to come through you. That’s not the case anymore. One of the byproducts of the perfect storm is that the business can now access technology directly from the Cloud without your involvement, and without your knowledge. It happens in companies of all sizes, in every industry, regardless of your IT or security stance. When business has access to that technology, it widens the chasm.

IT has to up its game, and smart CIOs are on a path to help the business use technology to innovate both what they do and how they do it.

Here is a great visual of how to align with the CEO.

CEO Hierarchy of Needs

via Crossing the Innovation Chasm.

Why open social collaboration platforms will disrupt the enterprise market in 2013 and beyond

November 21, 2012 9 comments

Organizational Learning Culture Mind Map

I think this is spot on and I suggest you read the whole article. Social and open are not just the latest big thing. It is real and you will regret it if you don’t “get it”. In the year 2017 you and your career will regret it if you don’t get on board now. Open is happening now and it is not just the future.

It is definitely not just about the technology. It is all about how people want to work. It is all about our corporate culture and strategy. It is all about the process of change and real adoption.

The majority of businesses aren’t run efficiently and employees lack the tools and equipment necessary to do their jobs. Quite a wide sweeping statement, I know. But I’ve also been in the trenches. And I realize it’s not for lack of trying. I’ve worked with companies who hired consultant after consultant to help with productivity recommendations, workflow suggestions and overall team building — all in the name of doing better business. These investments never quite had the impact leadership hoped for.

Why?

Because they lacked a fundamental commitment to launch an entire culture overhaul (more about this later). Not necessarily “cleaning house,” but changing the WAY people work individually, collaboratively and publicly. The key lies in this trifecta, partnered with the right people on board.

via Why open social collaboration platforms will disrupt the enterprise market in 2013 and beyond – Brian Solis.

As CIO, is your best business partner the CMO?

November 13, 2012 1 comment

When CMOs and CIOs collaborate, the relationship puts the business at a competitive advantage. Technology provides the muscle to make sense of the explosion of data now at our fingertips, as well as the tools that can interpret those results to better discover what customers want. When the CMO and CIO share a focus on the customer, the power to drive business growth is potent.

Better insight from customers can drive serious growth in our companies, at least according to a recent study by IBM of over 1700 CEOs. But today, acquiring and interpreting customer data inherently must involve both the marketing and IT departments. In fact, recent research conducted by the CMO Council, suggests that this process should start with the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) and the Chief Information Officer (CIO).

One of the key challenges CMOs face is figuring out how to partner with other internal functions. But given that today’s CMO is often the main connection between the consumer and the company, a strong relationship with the CIO can allow them to leverage technology to better understand those customers.

And although there are a myriad of analytical tools for generating this kind of information, CMOs are struggling to convert data into consumer insight they can use. A recent study (also from IBM) indicates that more than 70% of CMOs feel they are underprepared to manage the explosion of data and “lack true insight.”

With this in mind, there is a growing need to identify how CMOs and CIOs can use the technology that’s on-hand to ease this process — which will ultimately drive growth for the entire business. Below are four suggestions for building this power partnership in your company.

Find Common Ground – Differing incentives is one of the biggest barriers to an effective relationship between marketing and IT.

“There is an interesting intersection between risk management and innovation that emerges in the CMO-CIO interface.” ~~Gene Morphis, former CFO of CVS and David’s Bridal 

It’s the ultimate intersection between those who are often tasked with driving change, innovation, and revenue growth (marketing) and those who need to ensure that there aren’t any issues or risk with technology, information, and systems (information technology). It’s up to the CEO to ensure that marketing and IT are on the same page in terms of both innovation goals and risk management.

The best way to overcome this kind of incongruence is to start by understanding — and respecting — the conflicting incentive structures of each department and working collaboratively to find common ground. In some instances, it may be necessary to align the CEO on a plan, but a united recommendation between the CMO and CIO has a better of chance of success.

Put Business Needs First, Infrastructure Second – While it seems intuitive, companies often mistakenly focus first on creating the infrastructure, and then focus on figuring out what to do with the data afterwards. David Norton, the prior CMO of Caesars Entertainment, suggests that “data infrastructure should follow an understanding of the business questions. For example, something as simple as deciding how to look at the data — hourly, daily, weekly — can influence how you organize the data.” If the CMO works with the CIO to outline the data that they need to understand customers, the CIO can better ensure that the data infrastructure will be aligned with ultimate business needs.

Understand the Customer Holistically – Data can spring from a number of places: loyalty cards, purchases, social media behavior, website analytics, surveys, etc. And new technology can integrate these disparate sources of customer-related information. But this is a barrier for most companies.

“The challenge that we find with most of our clients is that they do not have the internal capability or bandwidth to focus on integrating customer data to generate superior insight. Yet, this assimilated perspective is precisely what is necessary to move ahead of the competitor’s level of customer understanding.” ~~Dr. R. Sukumar, CEO of a fact-based research and consulting firm

Even when firms effectively get a holistic customer view, they often lack the staff or bandwidth to act on it quickly. This is why they frequently turn to external partners to help fill the skill gaps needed to integrate, analyze, and use insight to drive business results. These external partners typically have the technology and expertise needed to successfully generate and leverage in-depth customer data.

Apply Tools that Everyone Can Use – Historically, data analysis and customer research has been reserved for only a few skilled employees (typically in marketing research) who can navigate technically sophisticated systems. But now emerging are technology-enabled reporting portals that enable multiple users in marketing — even the tech novices — to analyze customer research themselves. For example Dr. Sukumar’s company, Optimal Strategix, is one of many that has developed such a universal tool, and he agrees, “Gone are the days when marketers had to get their information from a PowerPoint presentation that marketing researchers or consultants provided.” The CMO now has the ability to be more hands-on with the customer information that is typically reserved for the CIO’s team.

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