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Conclusion: A competency centre for Business Intelligence (BI) must have an active mandate and involvement from the senior executive to sustain optimised delivery of the organisational BI strategy. This leadership is a key factor in the ability to successfully deliver the initial benefits of the competency centre within a three month development period, establishing long term benefits.

Conclusion: Organisations that are still running Windows XP fleets are debating holding off a desktop refresh (to Windows 7) until Windows 8 becomes available. There are three key considerations to this discussion: product functionality, management, and licensing. In each of these three categories, IBRS concludes that there is no compelling reason to wait for Windows 8.

Conclusion: The challenge of servicing customers well through various channels and over many devices has added considerable complexity to operations. The blindness of monitoring how well the IT operation is working has been removed and now data flows in huge amounts. The principal goal is to provide high quality customer experience and not simply rely on dashboards to churn out machine data reports.

The skills of analysis and insight should be more keenly applied to the data in order to reveal and clarify the value of the data. How the reams of data can be used for an organisation to deliver a high customer experience remains the main task. Organisations that believe that solely monitoring data to support transactions will likely miss the significance of what the data can yield and strengthen their customer contacts.

Conclusion: Cloud computing has multiple dimensions that must be considered when analysing risk. The use of four key variables can rapidly identify the expected level of risk in a cloud computing scenario. These four variables – deployment model, geographic location of data, supplier arrangements and information criticality – can be quickly applied to assess the level of risk and determine a suitable mitigation strategy.

Conclusion: Despite recent IT Shared Services (ITSS) failures in government, the global appetite for ITSS seems to continue unabated. Given evolving developments in the cloud, ITSS seems assured of longevity. It is thus important to understand its nuances, especially from a delivery perspective. Whilst tempting to think of ITSS initiatives merely as ambitious programs of work capable of delivering attractive savings, it seems that a scaled-backed, incremental delivery approach, though perhaps more costly and time-consuming than other methods, may result in more lasting and beneficial outcomes.

Conclusion: The instincts of greed and ambition can sometime blindside the architects of IT Shared Services (ITSS) initiatives. Thinking too grandiosely and without sufficient regard for the consequences of ITSS can doom such ventures from the outset. Conversely, taking more level-headed approaches, tempered by the honest counsel of those that aren’t necessarily management sycophants, can have the opposite effect.

Conclusion: The seemingly growing deployment of enterprise social media may add another layer to organisational communications and collaborative suites; or it may replace them altogether. At this stage definite judgement is not possible, given the varying feedback on usage, value and overall benefits.

Ostensibly these tools are being introduced to improve collaboration and productivity. Yet the evidence is not conclusive on those criteria. Nevertheless, it is not necessary to rationalise such deployments on efficacy criteria alone.

Conclusion: There is a perception that public sector organisations experience higher failure rates with IT Shared Services (ITSS) ventures than their private sector counterparts. While no definitive studies have confirmed this, it remains true that both sectors have a chequered history of success with ITSS. However, perceptions are skewed by the sometimes massive and very public ITSS failures that have occurred locally in the public sector. Curiously, many of these failures could have been averted by following some simple steps.

Conclusion: Crafting a durable social media strategy is a challenge. How social media tools and behaviour will mature, and the lessons taken from the early phase, will define how it will be implemented later. To manage the social evolution, adequate guidelines can serve as a strategic path.

The two key elements to have in creating a social media strategy are: 1) a robust view of how users and user behaviour is evolving and 2) practical and tactical techniques and tools to deploy and measure in order to produce the information to grow competence.

Conclusion: Just as the influx of personally owned mobile devices is reaching a peak in enterprises, there are new options for mobile device management (MDM) which are being driven by three factors. The three factors are: HTML5, Exchange ActiveSync, and carriers moving up the value chain in an IP-centric world. Ultimately, all three options will have appeal to different types of organisations, and different applications. Due to the rate of maturation of these factors, CIOs should expect that an MDM platform deployment will have a shelf life of less than two years.

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