Success vs Satisfaction

Some may think these terms are synonymous. However, it occurred to me the other day, that while we might be a satisfied customer, this isn’t always elevated to a successful outcome.

There is a big difference from being satisfied at a tactical level and creating success at a strategic level.When implementing quality & risk management solutions, for example, the selection experience and usability of the technology can be very satisfying.But that doesn’t mean it will transform the success of the business.What are the ultimate possibilities of the implementation, beyond automating a process?

The premise of Operational Excellence is not only to achieve customer satisfaction, but to achieve greater success in the business.If you have created a fantastic product and wonderful brand experience that initially satisfies your customers, is that enough? What about extending that opportunity to new markets where other customers would benefit from the same? And what will happen to the life cycle of the customer’s use of the product – will their use be merely satisfying or provide some degree of success or next step? Extending satisfaction to success is the real growth opportunity.

Which brings me back to what the implementation of systems that support Operational Excellence should achieve.Costs,quality,compliance, globalization, and customer demands are forcing manufacturers to find ways to do more with less, and technology adoption is critical to satisfying these demands and also to achieving greater success.For example:

User satisfaction has been important to ensure the easy adoption of quality & risk management tools.As such, disparate and home-grown solutions satisfied immediate requirements for capturing or automating data within siloed functions. Yet, that hasn’t stopped critical quality issues and non-conformances from occurring – a result of focus on satisfaction but not success.

A maturing manufacturing software landscape continues to enable a more refined focus on metrics and KPIs.Automated data management is satisfying a deeper analysis of performance.Success depends on understanding the real-time metrics that enable proactive quality management.

Advancements in next-generation manufacturing software and technology are enabling organizations to more readily identify areas for improvement.By continuing incremental steps beyond satisfaction towards success, these advancements will be key to accelerating operational excellence.As you look to your own technology roadmap,consider not only what will satisfy your functional requirements, but also how implementation, vendor support, time-to-use, and integration amongst systems will deliver success.

courtesy:grcnews.com

India digital Security market to grow 8% in 2014

Delhi: Digital security vendor revenue (hardware, software and services) in India will grow from $882 million in 2013 to $953 million in 2014. Security spending will continue to grow to in 2015 when revenue is projected to reach $1.06 billion. Security services revenue accounted for more than 55 percent of this total revenue in 2013 and this trend will continue into the foreseeable future, says a Gartner report.

“Enterprises in India that traditionally did not focus on, or invest in, a lot of security technologies are now beginning to realise the implications that a weak security and risk posture can have on their business,” said Sid Deshpande, principal research analyst at Gartner.

Vertical markets, such as banking and financial services, that have had a strong focus on security are now preparing themselves for the next wave of digitalisation by investing in technology approaches that can enable them to grow their business securely while embracing digital business models. Though this heightened awareness is creating increased budget allocations for security, there is still a skills deficit in the security space in India, consequently driving up the market opportunity for security consulting, implementation and managed security services.

BlackBerry buffs up security credentials with Secusmart deal

NEW YORK: BlackBerry Ltd is buying a privately held German firm that specializes in voice and data encryption, it said on Tuesday, in a bid to burnish its credentials with highly security-conscious clients like government agencies.

The Waterloo, Ontario-based smartphone maker did not disclose the terms of its deal to acquire Secusmart GmbH, which specializes in encryption and anti-eavesdropping services for governments, companies and telecommunications service providers.

The acquisition is the latest by the smartphone pioneer to build on niche areas in an attempt to reinvent itself under new Chief Executive John Chen and recover ground ceded to Apple Inc’s iPhone and Samsung Electronics Co’s Galaxy devices.

“It is a really reassuring sign that BlackBerry is now less focused on firefighting and more focused on identifying and building for the long-term into enterprise services,” said CCS Insight analyst Geoff Blaber.

Still, BlackBerry shares fell 4 per cent to $9.54 on Nasdaq and C$10.45 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

Chen wants to remain a competitor in the smartphone segment, but is focused on building on BlackBerry’s strong mobile device management abilities by beefing up its security and corporate app offerings.

Secusmart’s technology is being used to protect the devices of government officials in both Canada and Germany, including the BlackBerry device used by German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the wake of the US spying scandal last year.

“Everybody wants to talk about eavesdropping, but it really isn’t just that. Both governments and enterprises are now more and more focused on security in the mobile world,” Chen said in an interview, adding that the Secusmart deal gives BlackBerry yet another leg up on the competition in relation to device security.

Besides the new line of BlackBerry 10 devices, Secusmart’s technology is also used to secure the landline phones of corporations and government agencies.

“This is going to be where monetization is really going to lie for BlackBerry in the future and they have to start building value,” CCS’s Blaber said. “That first and foremost is the most reassuring sign from this acquisition.”

ON A GROWTH FOOTING

Chen said the company, which has gone through a rough and extended restructuring process over the last two years, will be soon getting back on a growth footing with the last of its lay-offs likely to be completed by the end of July.

“We are already starting to turn on our machine to now hire people,” said Chen, adding that any headcount growth is likely to be moderate for now.

“I want to make sure that we don’t get carried away and get ourselves into trouble again financially, but then again, we do need to invest in certain areas, if we want to compete in the future,” said Chen, a well regarded turnaround expert in the technology industry, who took the reins at BlackBerry some nine months ago.
The firm has also been expanding its enterprise sales team.

Chen said he expects the company’s revenue to grow midway through the next calendar year after the firm rolls out its Passport and BlackBerry Classic devices, and an updated version of its mobile device management software.

“Knock on wood. I feel pretty good about where we are in terms of the turnaround,” said Chen. “We still have work to do, so I wouldn’t say we’ve completed the turnaround, but the tough decisions and the tough thinking have already been taken or are done.”

courtesy:economic times

How different cloud services are competing, pushing up usage

Consumers are already using the cloud widely, even if a lot of them don’t know it. Approximately 90% of global internet users are already on the cloud in some manner, and that number will remain steady as internet usage spreads globally.

But mobile has led to explosive growth in cloud usage. Mobile consumers leverage the cloud to store and consume media, and sync their apps, files, and data across devices. BI Intelligence estimates traffic to the cloud from mobile devices will grow at a compound annual rate of 63% between 2013 and 2018.

Even as cloud usage is exploding, though, consumers remained confused about the cloud, and services specifically aimed at cloud storage still only reach a small share of U.S. internet users. That means companies like Dropbox and Google Drive have a big opportunity to grab users. To do so, they’re slashing prices and upping storage space.

The new report, provides an exclusive comparison of how the different cloud storage companies are stacking up in terms of pricing and offerings. We put this in the context of cloud adoption and traffic, and also look at how well consumers understand the cloud. There’s a big opportunity for cloud storage services that can help internet users understand the benefits of using the cloud, and create seamless services that allow people to easily access their files from any device.

Here are the key points from the report about how consumers are using the cloud:

  • Usage of services that employ cloud computing is already a mature mass market.Approximately 90% of global internet users are already on the cloud, and that number will remain steady as internet usage spreads globally.
  • Consumer cloud computing is already a mature mass market and mobile has led to explosive growth in cloud usage. Mobile consumers leverage the cloud to store and consume media, and sync their apps, files, and data across devices. We estimate traffic to the cloud from mobile devices will grow at a compound annual rate of 63% between 2013 and 2018, which is significantly faster than the 22% growth rate for overall cloud traffic.
  • Yet despite so much usage, consumer awareness of cloud services remains low.Even though most online consumers use cloud-based sites and apps, survey data shows that they’re confused about cloud computing and its value in helping organize digital services.
  • There are growing opportunities for wider penetration and usage for consumer cloud-based services. For example, consumer adoption of cloud storage apps, like Dropbox and Google Drive, remains low.
  • There is no clear worldwide leader in the consumer cloud space – yet. Apple’s iCloud held an early edge in markets where the iPhone is popular, but suites of cloud-based services from Google, Amazon, and Microsoft are catching up worldwide. More specialized cloud services like Dropbox and Evernote are trying to become platforms in their own right.

In full, the report:

  • Forecasts the total audience for cloud computing services over the next five years.
  • Quantifies the amount of global traffic to the cloud from desktop and mobile devices.
  • Compares consumer cloud awareness to current consumer adoption and usage rates.
  • Surveys the opportunity for cloud-based service companies like Google, Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, and Dropbox.
  • Analyzes which cloud-based service companies are leading the space.

Strategic Risk Management: Are Organizations Doing It Right?

Strategic Risk Management (SRM) includes the processes which can help to identify uncertainties and opportunities that can affect an organization’s strategies. SRM also supports the core Enterprise Risk Management (ERM) objective of guiding the organization’s strategic business decisions that impact business performance. However, due to lack of awareness about SRM, the capability of ERM processes is limited. The need for organizations now is to understand the important role of strategic risk as part of their overall risk management processes, and how they can leverage technology to manage and integrate SRM and ERM into key decision-making.

Many organization’s ERM frameworks have done a good job in identifying and assessing risk, developing risk treatment practices, and monitoring critical risks. However, these frameworks lack the necessary connection between risk management practices and the strategic direction of the organization. While risk management activities and corporate planning are two separate management processes, in some organizations, many of the key components within the formal risk management cycle are comparable to central elements of the strategic planning process.

Under-utilization of ERM in Strategic Planning:

An important element of the strategic planning process and risk management process is to evaluate the robustness of existing and alternative strategies within a changing risk landscape. This can be done when the ERM principles of risk identification, risk assessment, selection of risk treatment practices, and monitoring and evaluating are used in scenario planning, allowing leaders to evaluate the potential success or failure of a given strategic option.


Figure: ERM and Strategic Planning in Alignment

Case Study: LEGO Group

Lego Group sets an apt example of how an effective SRM enables the organization to consider shareholder value as well as help in risk prevention and mitigation. The explicit management of strategic risks helps the company to avoid value erosion, and drive value creation.

Hans Laessoe, Senior Director, SRM at Lego, convened a group of 30 people in the company including product developers, lawyers, and marketers and asked them three questions:

1) What comprises product development and competitive pressure?

2) What comprises the operating environment?

3) What drives consumer demand?

After a half-a-day of brainstorming aimed at risk identification, 90 critical risks were identified.

Next, Laessoe stressed the importance of driving a consistent basis for financial quantification, and involved people who were well-versed in revenue forecasting. While most of the business units had already developed their strategic plans, Laessoe walked them through these plans with a perspective on strategic risks. Post the scenario and mitigation conversation, Lego Group prioritized its risks using the ‘park, adapt, prepare, and act’ (PAPA) model. This assisted managers in prioritizing their strategic responses given a risk’s likelihood of occurring and speed of change.

Today, whenever Lego adopts a new strategy — for example opening a new factory in China — the corporate management team needs to have a new strategy documented, which includes a ‘Preparing for Uncertainties’ dimension.

The Role of Technology:

A technology solution serves as the foundation for the company’s enterprise-wide risk and control activities. An integrated risk framework ensures streamlined processes for risk assessments, risk analysis and risk mitigation. It helps in accessing structured risk information and risk intelligence, thus resulting in a better understanding of the organization’s risk profile. It assists in integrating risk management into decision-making and strategic planning. This results in a more centralized view of risk that is aligned with corporate strategy and objectives, real-time information used to guide decision making processes and robust board level reporting and reviewing processes. Moreover, an integrated GRC system approach ensures enterprise-wide visibility and control and helps build a strong risk culture.

Integrated Risk Framework

Figure: Integrated Risk Framework

Technology enables more informed decision making with the help of a structured and standardized method of reporting results. Powerful dashboards, charts and heat-maps provide real-time risk information, and strengthen transparency into the organization’s risk and control management. This also supports more effective risk monitoring, reporting, and communication.

Conclusion:

A well-defined SRM process helps organizations to gain critical risk intelligence that is needed to protect shareholder value, drive profits, optimize costs, and tap into new opportunities. Leveraging technology highlights both key areas of uncertainty and key new areas of opportunity, and integrates it into a standard ERM process that allows the organizations to maximize profits and reduce costs.

courtesy:MetricStream

Premji Jr. to head Wipro’s venture arm, to invest Rs 600 cr in startups

Wipro is setting up a corporate venture arm to be spearheaded by Rishad Premji that will initially invest up to $100 million (Rs 600 crore) in startups to help the country’s third-largest software exporter fill the missing innovation strand.

This first-of-its-kind venture arm by an Indian outsourcer to be overseen by Rishad, son of Chairman Azim Premji, underscores the company’s recognition to existential threats faced by traditional IT companies from startups focused on disruptive technologies, including data analytics and machine-to-machine learning, said people familiar with the development.

Globally, some of the biggest technology names such as Intel, Cisco and Dell have dedicated corporate ventures for investing in startups and mature ideas that are disruptive.

Barring Accenture, which shut down its venture arm in 2002, none of the large IT services companies has experimented on this front.

“Very soon you will hear about this corporate venture fund that the company will be starting,” said a person familiar with the development. adding that Wipro will invest between $80-100 million (Rs 480 crore to Rs a600 crore) in terms of venture funding for the first year.

“This sum ($80-100 million) is for the first year. And then it will grow. There will be more coming out of it,” said the executive.

Rishad is already the head of strategy division at Wipro and according to another person, is in the midst of putting together a team that will assist him on taking decisions, including evaluating projects that need to be incubated by the Bangalore-based IT firm.

Anurag Srivastava, who is overseeing the Change the Business Unit at Wipro, will be the one of the key members of this team.

Two other executives who will be reporting to Rishad are Jagadish Velagapudi, head of strategic programs, and Haripriya Rama Iyer, who in April was given a senior role in the strategy division.

A questionnaire sent to Wipro remained unanswered. Two people familiar with the development said that the company could make an announcement as early as next month. “Wipro wants to be at the front-end of technology. That fs the ambition, h said a second executive, adding that startups from across the world, including India, will be considered. gInnovation is not restricted to the US. So the thinking is why to limit to any geography.”

ET also learns that the corporate venture arm will be part of Change the Business Unit, one of the two young business divisions the company carved out earlier this year. The company has outlined gmassive investments h in technology platforms, including automation and digital space, results of which should start showing as early as June next year, the executive said.

Over the past few years, Wipro has already made minority investments in two such startups, including $5 million (RS 30 crore) in US-based Axeda, as it aims to offer to offer machine-to-machine learning solutions for clients and an over $30 million (Rs 180 crore) investment in Opera, a New Jersey based data analytics company.

Some experts back this latest effort by Wipro as they believe it is difficult to make an acquisition in a space where every customer in an industry has its unique own requirements.

Google, IEEE offer $1 million for ‘laptop’ sized power inverter

NEW DELHI: Tech giant Google is offering a prize of USD one million (about Rs 6 crore) for building a compact solution for transforming renewable energy into a power source that can be used at home.

Google, along with Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), has started a ‘Little Box Challenge’ to design and build a kW-scale power inverter, a device used to convert renewable energy, including solar and wind, before transforming it into suitable current for home and vehicles.

The challenge is that the new device has to be of the size of a small laptop, roughly 1/10th of the current size.

“We are looking for someone to build a kW-scale inverter with a power density greater than 50W per cubic inch. Do it best and we will give you a million bucks,” Google said in a blogpost.

Google believes that this will help “change the future of electricity”.

“We believe that inverters will become increasingly important to our economy and environment as solar PV, batteries, and similar power sources continue their rapid growth,” Google said.

It added that the innovation coming in will have wide applicability across areas, will increase efficiency, drive down costs and open up new use cases.

Google said making the power inverter smaller would enable more solar-powered homes, more efficiently distributed electrical grids, and could help bring electricity to the most remote parts of the planet.

“A smaller inverter could help create low-cost microgrids in remote parts of the world. Or allow you to keep the lights on during a blackout via your electric car’s battery. Or enable advances we haven’t even thought of yet,” Eric Raymond from Google’s Green Team wrote.

The last date for registration is September 30, 2014, while the grand prize winner will be announced in January 2016.