Monthly Archives: September 2008

Information Lifecycle Management: Cost Reduction for Your Bottom Line

Join BearingPoint Senior Manager Pat Tobin as he explores the importance of Information Lifecycle Management (ILM) and how it can directly impact your bottom line. With a 50 percent growth in storage data of companies in recent years, the ILM Solution has evolved heavily over the past seven years. Companies that typically used a centralized system to store data now want much more control over their information and are turning to the ILM solution for that support.

[podtech content=http://media1.podtech.net/media/2008/09/PID_013761/Podtech_BP_PatTobin.mp3&postURL=http://www.podtech.net/home/5376/information-lifecycle-management-cost-reduction-for-your-bottom-line&totalTime=622000&breadcrumb=0514159203ed403eb8d09f0063d62c91]

The ILM Solution is also heavily used for E-discovery. With E-discovery costs on the rise, organizations are in need of a solution that assists with gathering only the necessary data, and not just a compilation of tons of document that are not needed. With every litigation suite, there is only a certain amount of documentation needed. Clients can experience massive cost decreases when just the necessary data is pulled.

With the many positives of designing an effective ILM solution come some struggles. Firms have legacy data all over the place. It is a very big obstacle trying to balance all of the data, plus input anything new. Another challenge is the need for a lot of governance. With all of the legalities, it’s extremely important to know the regulations and compliance issues up front. Lastly, an organization needs guidance on how to initiate this solution and where it should end. This is where BearingPoint can assist. ILM is a journey, but a journey worth pursuing. This journey will result in massive cost reduction and extreme efficiency for all your storage needs.

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Sweat Equity

Reposted from E2.OH – Investigations into Enterprise 2.0
post by Nate Nash

The results of the dank, humidly oppressive heat outside and the icy breeze incessantly wheezing at full tilt from the vent over my cube is an appropriate metaphor for many things here. The two extremes combine into a somewhat temperate, moderately sticky existence that takes every opportunity to remind me my wool suit is a far from informed fashion statement. I have become the mildly disappointing middle-ground between immovable environment and the best laid apparel plans. A pitiful melange of attempted professional grandeur, slogging sweatily through a rain forest.

Awesome. Let’s implement some E2…

I suppose I am built for cooler climates, but alas I find myself in a tropical metropolis. It is not technically that hot. However, it is extremely technical when it comes to atmosphere. The humidity, smog, and millions of people everywhere fit like a moist, size too small glove, squeezing you into anonymous exhaustion. On this particular day Jay and I are presenting our progress on a new portal and KM prototype. The majority of the presentation was your usual schnauzer and quarter horse, but I found a specific snippet of dialog worthy to resurrect this rustbucket of a blog.

I loudly clear my throat, hoping to startle open the drooping eyelids of the unlucky meeting attendees. I bat .500 on the try, but figure it is better than a wholly unconscious audience.

“After interviewing stakeholders from across your organization, a single, shining beacon of a requirement has emerged. That beacon my friends, is the guiding principle by which we have developed your prototypes. From the most senior director down to the interns, your organization’s needs can be summed up in a single phrase…. ”

I pause for effect as fluttering eyelids and the squeaking of uncomfortable people adjusting uncomfortable chairs creates the desired climatic precipice. (In case it isn’t already blatantly apparent, I tend toward the dramatic. Come on…anybody can do PowerPoint. Let’s cook with jet fuel for once.)

“Nobody can find anything. Ever.”

A full room of vigorously nodding heads confirms the statement. A man leans forward from a particularly rickety chair in the back of the room and slightly raises his left hand. I acknowledge his question as he unknowingly blasphemes, “We need a logical structure! Just like my hard drive. Is this what you have created for us?”

I now have 2 reasons to sweat. The aforementioned climate and my answer to this question.

“You don’t need organization. You need transparency. Your guiding requirement is not a new place to put things. It is a new way to do things. The effectiveness of this organization is stifled through the corralling of people, process, and technology into utterly unusable pockets of opacity. We propose transparency as the guiding principle for change, affecting all aspects of the organization, technological or otherwise. Your complete organization states the inability to quickly find information as a chief concern. This is not caused by ineffective execution. This is caused by ineffective dogma.”

Glasses, ties, papers, feet, eyebrows are adjusting. The room is exploding with minor adjustments. Everyone in simultaneously slightly adjusting something. I am wondering whether I should adjust my flight home to account for the looming stage hook. Slowly the lesser vibrations cease and the same man speaks again.

“But my department needs control. My department has very sensitive information that can’t be shared. I need to be able to find information from the other departments, but our documents are confidential.”

The nodding quickly reaches a fever pitch, heads bobbing like chop after a summer squall. I launch into a pointless rant about what actually makes information confidential but it is relatively clear to me the stage has been set. No matter where we go from here, this implementation will be about air-conditioning in the tropics. You see no matter the intent or design of air-conditioning, there is always a lingering wisp of the natural environment. Sometimes it is barely noticeable, other times it is overwhelming. I am confident that the “guiding principle of transparency” will not be watered down to a “suggestion of translucency”, but there is a long road ahead. In order for complete success to occur, there must be an organic change in the environment, not a temporary, man-made attempt at cooling things off. Without the underlying shift in the organizational climate surrounding transparency, there will be rooms that are too cold or too hot, depending upon your perspective and location. Change is difficult indeed. However, addressing the root cause will make for much longer lasting results. Dropping a wiki on a group of people without first seeking to alter their method for work is like wearing a suit in the rainforest. Looks decent from afar but is completely uncomfortable up close.

Luckily, the organization is committed to the concept (at least), and starting to warm up (pun intended) to the prospect of change. We are committed as well, but should probably look into procuring a few linen suits.

Privacy in a Data-Deluged World

Reposted from Paul Dunay’s Buzz Marketing for Technology

Data privacy

Drop.io‘s CEO Sam Lessin presented “A Brief History of Privacy in this Data-Deluged World” at the Ignite II kick-off of Web 2.0 in NYC.

I loved Sam’s thought captured in the following quote: “For the first time in history it is now cheaper and easier for people to be public than to be private. What I mean by this is that for thousands of years publishing content about yourself was expensive and time consuming, and privacy was the default state… The web, and specifically the web 2.0 model, is turning that on its head in a very big way…. Even just a few years ago online ‘privacy’ meant little more than protecting your credit card information and identity, now it means thinking about every single thing you say, do, or write, online – and how it will be perceived, saved, and used – now and in the future.”

“In the end, privacy has been central to western civilization forever. It is something that has value. All that is changing is that something that used to come totally naturally is now something people have to both defend and actively invest in maintaining.”

To view his presentation materials, speech transcript and video online at http://drop.io/ignitesam

Enterprise Business Intelligence: Cut Through the Chaos

In today’s challenging business market, the level of what’s available within a company is now more important than ever. Organizations are faced with increasing costs and no centralized way to account for their data. With the maturity of BI tools, more companies are utilizing these features to deal with the enormous increase in information both unstructured and structured.

The bottom line is people are beginning to realize the effective use of BI and how it can transform their business and gain the competitive advantage. However, every organization is different and faces unique challenges in defining their BI vision and executing on it. Many companies are dealing with duplicate data, missing relevant data and no enterprise view of their database. The key is to learn how to cut through the chaos.

Join BearingPoint Managing Director Greg Molley to explore the importance of Business Intelligence (BI) and how it can exponentially benefit your organization.

[podtech content=http://media1.podtech.net/media/2008/09/PID_013744/Podtech_BP_GregMolley.mp3&postURL=http://www.podtech.net/home/5360/enterprise-business-intelligence-cut-through-the-chaos&totalTime=977000&breadcrumb=71006d6a9ac14e059087187f4645752a]

Getting customer feedback through social networking sites

You might have run across a customer survey while surfing a business site or received an email to give your feedback on a product or service you currently use. While these survey mediums have been the norm in collecting consumer opinions online, they are no longer the best way to get the true pulse of your customers.

More and more companies are turning to social networking sites, like Facebook, to get consumer input on their products and services. The thought of “going where the fish are” is true in this case as more and more people join and actively participate in these types of sites. The use of networking sites represents a shift in gathering consumer data and reaching your target audiences. An effective survey coupled with the right incentive or reward can spread virally and increase the sample size to get a large number of survey completions and feedback.

BearingPoint has partnered with a leading bank to develop a survey using Facebook to extract opinions on consumer banking habits. The survey recently launched on Facebook and is being monitored to determine its effectiveness. The survey offers a $25 gift certificate from Restaurant.com as an incentive to attain customer feedback. Stay tuned to find out how effective the survey was in an upcoming blog.

View the survey

The Importance of Fraud Management

Fraud is an ever-increasing problem in the financial services field, and the growth of fraudulent behavior just shows how difficult it sometimes is to prevent this type of activity. With fraud management, especially in the insurance industry, you have the advantage of early detection.

The role of fraud management has evolved greatly over the years. Twenty years ago, there were five fraud investigators in the market, now there are more than 150. Fraud management is mainly organized in a traditional versus non-traditional method. To identify which is more appropriate for your organization, BearingPoint experts can identify the problem and offer an appropriate solution. With the rise in fraudulent behavior, expect fraud management to be a top priority in financial services over the next few years.

Join BearingPoint Business Advisor Delia Klause to explore the benefits of fraud management and why discovering fraudulent activity within your organization is so critical.

[podtech content=http://media1.podtech.net/media/2008/09/PID_013728/Podtech_BP_DeliaKlause.mp3&postURL=http://www.podtech.net/home/5343/the-importance-of-fraud-management&totalTime=710000&breadcrumb=40442cc00d6a44ff80d9b75c7d944ef4]

Collaboration with Wikis: Filling the void

Post by Sean Lew, Business Consultant at BearingPointCollaboration

There is a growing need for organizations to collaborate more efficiently across time zones, geographic locations and across departments. Collaboration promises greater efficiency, streamlined communication and better knowledge retention across an organization. Collaboration software like wikis has also been sprouting all over organizations with no real direction from the senior management. Many organizations have started taking a more serious look at such forms of collaboration technologies.

Internal collaboration

Collaboration is not just providing a virtual platform for employees to work together. It allows employees to hold conversations and discussions online and provides background and context for visitors or new team members. With all the information well documented, there is a reduced risk of losing information when employees move on.

Many collaboration technologies also provide a social aspect of it where employees can connect with people outside of their team. This allows self discovery of assets within the organization, find other experts and innovate on the project, department or the business.

External collaboration

Collaboration with suppliers and customers should also be an area organizations should look at. Harvard Business School (http://hbswk.hbs.edu/archive/5258.html) conducted a research on Procter and Gamble’s (P&G) innovation model which includes connecting with the global talent pool in search of promising ideas and implement P&G’s capabilities to create better and cheaper products – fast. Such forms of collaboration, may it be with suppliers or customers can be very astonishing.

The success of collaboration is to take an enterprise view and formulate an adoption strategy across the various departments. What is your organization doing to strategize and implement changes to meet the needs of your rising collaboration requirements?

Author: Sean Lew