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Day: February 5, 2018

IDG Contributor Network: 15 risk areas for software development outsourcing

Outsourcing is a well-established strategy that many IT departments use to accomplish business objectives. Over the years, we’ve seen companies, regardless of industry size, struggle to outsource software development successfully. Many times, the root cause issues were not systemic to the process of outsourcing or caused by the outsourcing partner, but rather because of internal factors at the company that ultimately prevented success.

As we analyzed company experiences, we’ve seen recurring themes or “warning flags” that, if properly heeded, can help a company proactively remove barriers to successful software outsourcing. These 15 areas of risk fall inside three dimensions of software leadership:

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IDG Contributor Network: Companies embrace blockchain to modernize loyalty programs

A business’s long-term success and momentum are ultimately derived from its customers’ satisfaction. No matter if a company is B2B or B2C, they must cultivate strong relationships that incentivize customers to come back repeatedly. For consumer-facing businesses especially, the experience should be the focal point of any interactions because a positive outcome, no matter if it results in a sale, will likely translate to a better reputation, stronger loyalty, and hopefully drive results with word-of-mouth advertising.  The crux of the strategy is to aim for customers that are ‘very satisfied’ more so than simply ‘satisfied’.  

Companies have long understood this phenomenon and sought to harness these highly lucrative relationships by engaging in any number of promotions including loyalty points, rewards programs, and other value-added perks.  However, despite their popularity, the current engagement model leaves a lot to be desired for both customers and businesses. 

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IDG Contributor Network: Why CIOs must be VOCAL to drive digital transformation

The digital transformation (DX) buzz is reaching new heights in 2018 as news about digital transformation has gained the attention of the C-suite of many forward-looking organizations. Digital transformation is increasingly being accepted as an important business agenda and not just an IT project. In many organizations, Digital transformation is being spearheaded by the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) or the Chief Information Officer (CIO) while some have appointed a dedicated Chief Digital Officer (CDO) to lead this initiative. 

Organizations must undertake digital transformation initiatives with the objective to improve their long-term competitive positioning through innovative business models, delightful customer experiences and efficient business operations.  Digital technologies such as cloud, big data, machine learning, Internet of Things (IoT) and blockchain are key enablers to help organizations achieve these objectives.

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Alleged Spam Kingpin ‘Severa’ Extradited to US

Peter Yuryevich Levashov, a 37-year-old Russian computer programmer thought to be one of the world’s most notorious spam kingpins, has been extradited to the United States to face federal hacking and spamming charges.

Levashov, who allegedly went by the hacker name “Peter Severa,” or “Peter of the North,” hails from St. Petersburg in northern Russia, but he was arrested last year while in Barcelona, Spain with his family.

Authorities have long suspected he is the cybercriminal behind the once powerful spam botnet known as Waledac (a.k.a. “Kelihos”), a now-defunct malware strain responsible for sending more than 1.5 billion spam, phishing and malware attacks each day.

IDG Contributor Network: Wake-up call: today’s B2B software buyer has completely changed

[This post was cowritten with Chad Quinn, President and Co-Founder of Ecosystems]

We are living in the age of Disruption.  Change continues to come in fast and furious waves, and as the Fourth Industrial Revolution plows ahead, we are witnessing the disruption of entire industries, companies, institutions, and functions at a pace never seen before.

Sales is not isolated from this change. The Sales Function will change more in the next 3 years than it has in the past 50 years.  What most companies don’t realize is that this change is happening right now.  Companies are growing tired of their current Chief Revenue Officers and replacing them at a faster pace. Industry reports confirm that in 2017, there were more hired and fired than in the past 5 years combined. Yikes.

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IDG Contributor Network: Why enterprise architecture maximizes organizational value

Enterprise architecture (EA) defines how your organization will meet future business problems. Begin to build stability into your organization by creating an enterprise architecture.

Architecture details multiple layers of abstraction to form a complete and common view of information, guidance, and direction. Together these benefits form the guardrails for solutions—considering what’s best for the organization—by adding guides and constraints to those solutions.

EA organizational benefits

Enterprise architecture forces a decision based on outcomes. Does the organization limp along within the confines of the existing architecture, or does the organization make a strategic decision to be better? This is the beginning of EA.

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IDG Contributor Network: Don’t just push data – push an action

When Southwest Airlines tested new screens at Dallas Love Field airport recently, it took some of the stress out of waiting for a flight. We’re used to seeing screens in airport terminals, displaying a sea of information for passengers who look for the drop of data they need, but these new screens in Dallas not only show data, they suggest an action, getting at the core of why passengers are looking at the displays in the first place.

The screens visually display such things as how full a flight is — the No. 1 question in departure lounges — and give passengers suggestions of what to occupy themselves with before boarding; like whether or not there’s enough time to grab lunch. Information is color-coded with urgent items in yellow, bringing more attention to specific flights as the departure times near.

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