For the last two years Forrester has presented and most recently partnered with the Tech:Touchstone event management company that produces the Green IT 2009 Conference & Exhibition in London. Despite one year in passing and a challenging economic environment, green IT is still top of mind in 2009.
Recently I took a look at an EA-maturity-model-cum-roadmap from Leo de Sousa, Manager of Business Application Services and Enterprise Architecture at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (click to read Leo’s blog on EA CMM). To my surprise, I liked it. Why was I surprised?
I have never liked EA maturity models. Yes, tracking progress is important. And yes, there should be a consensus about what characterizes a mature EA practice. But I don’t like how they would ostensibly be used to compare one enterprise with another, a la benchmarks. Perhaps I was soured on them by seeing them used as a governance technique in US federal agencies.
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) required agencies to assess themselves against a standardized maturity model, with progressive hurdles in successive years. Federal agencies, accustomed as they are to all sorts of oversight and compliance mandates, know how to pass compliance audits. Did you ever wonder how (then) Popkin System Architect got so popular in the federal government? An EA tool was required to demonstrate a certain level of EA maturity and System Architect was the lowest-cost offering at the time (I’m sure there are other reasons as well). Behavior was around letter-of-the-law compliance, and it seldom catalyzed getting with the spirit. Even when Dick Burk at OMB introduced a clever workaround in a second version of the model — you could leapfrog to a level 4 if you showed actual business benefits, regardless of what other checklist items you missed — agencies simply marched through the maturity level checklists getting the requisite items done. The scores were good, but in my opinion they overstated the degree to which EA was ingrained in the culture of the agencies.
On 9/9/09 Salesforce.com announced the launch of Service Cloud 2, a new set of three collaborative offerings: Salesforce Knowledge, Salesforce Answers and Salesforce for Twitter.
With Salesforce Knowledge companies can share data in the Service Cloud, Salesforce Answers enables companies to create communities to capture knowledge and Salesforce for Twitter allows companies to screen and participate in the 45mio user Twitter community directly from the service cloud.
TJ Keitt, Heidi Lo and I presented a Forrester Teleconference about the Millennial or GenY on September 2, 2009. The multi-generational chat was by far the most active I’ve seen during a Teleconference with over 100 entries in an hour. TJ and I presented for a half hour and then opened the phone lines for voice questions. Heidi handled the tweets. Having two co-presenters helped us to participate in the chat. Because the pace of chat was so fast with so many conversations, participants were reacting to comments of others rather than just responding to a presenter comment or question. It was dynamic and truly community generated.
The premise of the teleconference was that the youngest generation in the workforce (Gen Y or Millennials) is neither revolutionizing the workforce (yet) nor acting as entitled employees. Some of the highlights of the participant interaction follow:
“It’s hard to get a job because as a new grad we can’t meet the ‘years of experience’ requirement.” Recommendation: Apply anyway. Be tenacious and prove that you can do the job.One Baby Boomer participant is about to start a company that mentors new employees at corporate customers to address this “experience” requirement. Another GenYer suggested using your social network to reach the hiring manager. Another said that that GenXers in an organization can be excellent mentors for the GenYers.
Two weeks ago, I commented on the changing role of the risk management professional, and thought it would be worthwhile to spend a few moments discussing the auditor as well. In a contest of which job is likely to see more change in the next two years, I would expect a photo finish.
What is a map?In traditional cartographic terms, a map is “a graphic representation or scale model of spatial concepts” that is “is a means for conveying geographic information.”The traditional map is static, representing geographic features at a specific moment in time. Antiquarians preserve old maps as pieces of artwork, snapshots into bygone eras, fossilized records of the world that was.
Kofax announced yesterday the acquisition of 170 Systems. Why did Kofax do this? Well, good acquisitions have a mixture of tactical and strategic complements — and this one is long on both. With over 800 invoice processing customer using Kofax for front-end capture they now can add invoice workflow — exception management and payment for full invoice processing solutions. Add in the purchase of a Swedish EIPP provider 18 months ago and this indeed covers all bases. The 170 Systems customer base alone is a gold mine: 40% have no automated capture. There’s plenty here to give ReadSoft a run for their money.
But, really this acquisition is about moving up the value chain. Customers are looking for more complete solutions, and this deal underscores the trend by the larger capture, imaging, and ECM companies to move further into the business process applications markets.
In addition, Kofax gains better visibility into the economic buyer, and picks up a solutions-oriented sales force and the platform to grow their top resellers into top-notch integrators of supply chain and ERP financial deals, not to mention 170’s existing partners.
Also, they are primed to go into to other un-tamed processes, such as sales order processing and contract management. All in all, it’s thumbs up for this bold move by a company that has historically been timid about venturing from its paper roots.
It must be in the air... but seems like there are a bunch of announcments this week. Next up? RightNow Technology's acquisition of HiveLive. So if you were doubting that "social media" is for real or executives in your company are not sure if they should go down this path... I'd say the answer is "YEAH!" and yesterday was not soon enough.
The reality is- whether you realize it or not- your customers are talking about you in the cloud. The "cloud" here means - on blogs, on thirdparty review sites, on Twitter... And you can do the "ostrich" and continue to stick your head in the sand or you can decide to join the revolution. I know I sound a bit fanatical... but the truth is that the concept of what customers think about your company, customer as well as employee feedback is not new. If you remember... We as a nation sent Mr.
Architects can choose cost effective and flexible platforms.
Quality assurance and testing pros can make sure it works bug free.
Business analysts can uncover and document key requirements.
Project managers can craft a plan to get the app written on-time.
Managers can make sure that it is all done within the budget.
CIO's can find talent and put together teams.
This Prowess Is All For Naught If You Don't Get The User Experience Right!
But, this technical, process, and management prowess is all for naught if you cannot design a compelling user experience (UX) that is useful, usable, and desirable.
Application Development Pros Are No Less Capable Of Learning UX Design Than Anyone Else.
Unfortunately, many application development professionals are unlearned when it comes to knowing how to design user experiences that makes users say "Wow!". It is not that they don't want to design great user experiences. They do. It is just that no one ever taught them how.
So many of you came to the @CRMe09 conference where I spoke about the ROI of Social Media, in particular that derived from customer service. And a funny thing that happened there... Lithium had a booth in the exhibitors area and they had asked me to come and speak to people about my ROI model. So there I was ready to impart my wisdom. A man came up and saw the flyer on the table - it was for the Tweet-up. He picked up the flyer and asked me to tell him about Tweet-up.