Archive for Styczeń, 2012

Kaspersky Lab issues Spam report for December 2011

By admin, 24 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

‘Conditional Coupons’ and Increasingly Malicious Mass Mailings

Kaspersky Lab announces the publication of its spam report for December 2011. The last month of the year was predictably quiet – compared to November the share of spam in email traffic fell 4.4% and averaged 76.2% for the month.

The lull in business in the run-up to the holidays means botnets are hamstrung by empty offices and silent computers, while the spammers themselves often take a break for the festive season. However, even the approach of Christmas does not prevent them from coming up with new tactics to attract users to their mass mailings. One of the latest ploys has been the use of coupon services to boost demand for products that are widely advertised in spam. Distributors of German pharmaceutical spam concluded that offering a ‘conditional coupon’ with a 10% discount would increase demand for the medications they sell.

“We still have not detected any malicious attachments disguised as coupons, although we expect that these will show up in spam sooner or later,” warns Maria Namestnikova, Senior Spam Analyst at Kaspersky Lab. “Anything and everything that is in demand on the Internet is eventually added to the spammers’ arsenals in one way or another. Primarily, new approaches are typically used by the participants of affiliate programs that send out spam advertising medications and replicas of luxury goods. They are later joined by distributors of malicious code.”

Malicious files, were detected in 4% of all email traffic in December, which was an increase of 1% compared to November’s figure.  A third of all Kaspersky Lab email antivirus detections were for mail emanating from Russia and the US. The malicious program most frequently detected remains Trojan-Spy.HTML.Fraud.gen (11%) – a Trojan designed to look like a registration web page for a financial organisation or some other online service. When it came to spam sources in December, India remained on top, accounting for 12.43% of all spam, followed by Indonesia, Brazil and Peru. Significant movers among this particular rating in December were South Korea falling from second to fifth place and the UK, which fell from seventh to seventeenth.  Remarkably, the latter started the month as the eighth biggest source of spam but had fallen to 53rd by the final week of December.

The full version of the spam activity report for December 2011 is available at: http://www.securelist.com.

Email archiving versus email backup – they’re not the same and your business needs both

By admin, 24 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

Email and instant messaging have become a vital part of everyday life and business workings, and because organisations are so reliant on email, without the ability to communicate via these channels productivity can often grind to a halt. Due to the critical importance to business of email and messaging, both backup and archiving are vital in ensuring business continuity, disaster recovery and legal regulatory compliance.
 
“Email storage and management have become important issues in the business space. Most people now understand that having a backup of data such as emails is desirable in case of technology failure, however because a large proportion of business communication takes place via this medium, archiving also becomes necessary to store data for legal purposes. Email backup and email archiving are not the same thing, and are in fact two separate technologies, both of which are necessary in today’s business world,” says Paul Lawrence, Regional Sales Director – UK, Nordics & MEA at Barracuda Networks Limited.

Backup is designed to restore and index a snapshot of data at a certain point in time, by creating a copy of the primary data source. Email backup can happen both at the individual message level and the server level, both of which are important for disaster recovery. Message-level backup stores mail messages from each user for fast restoration of messages that have been corrupted or accidentally deleted. Email server backup is needed to restore an organisation’s email server in the event that the server is corrupted or destroyed, but in order to do this a full backup must be available of the entire email server including software, configuration and the database.

“However, backup is a snapshot of a specific moment, which means that all emails sent and received after that certain point in time will not be backed up in that snapshot, and emails that are not backed up can be deleted from the email server, which means they could be lost forever. This means that backup alone, while important for disaster recovery, does not meet organisational compliance objectives to legislation such as the Electronic Communications and Transactions (ECT) Act,” says Martin Tassev, Managing Director of LOOPHOLD Security Distribution.

Archiving, on the other hand, is designed to save data for an extended period of time and index it for easy search and retrieval. An archiving solution ensures that every single email that is sent or received is captured and stored for retrieval should this be necessary. This is vital not only for compliance and legal purposes, is important not only to ensure availability of messaging data, but also from a continuity perspective, so that in the event of an individual employee leaving, previous email transactions can easily be searched and retrieved.

“The indexing and search functionality of archiving makes specific data far easier to find, which makes searching in the event of a dispute a far simpler process. This is particularly important for organisations in sectors such as financial services, which are legally obligated to keep a copy of all transactions that take place over email. Properly archived message data is also vital for the process of e-discovery, since email has become so much a part of our lives that the majority of litigation cases now require emails to be presented as evidence,” says Tassev.

The core functionality of email archiving is to index and preserve electronic communications to enforce retention policies according to regulatory compliance. However, it also protects entire organisations’ email and messaging data from operational failure, disk failure and disaster and improves email server performance at the same time by offloading emails from the server into the archiving system, storing only one copy should an email have been sent to multiple people, where users can access them seamlessly and easily.

“In order for organisations to attain comprehensive email storage and management that meets the needs of the business as well as the compliance requirements of a variety of legislation, it is vital to implement a combination of message archiving and message backup. These two complementary technologies work together to ensure that messages, which have become an integral part of organisational communication, are retained for legal purposes and for restoration should users require it,” Lawrence concludes.

Offshoring to South Africa in 2012

By admin, 24 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

Written by Gareth Pritchard, CEO BPeSA Western Cape

Following a highly successful 2011, the BPO industry in South Africa is set for another stellar year in 2012.

Gareth Pritchard

Gareth Pritchard

Over the past decade we have seen huge growth in the global BPO & Offshoring industry. In response to this, South Africa has formulated a very competitive BPO value proposition built around five core areas that will help drive investment to our shores.   

Cost Savings

Typically South Africa is able to offer source destinations a cost saving of around 50 %. This saving has increased even further on the back of the dti national incentive scheme which pays investors up to R112,000 for each job created and maintained over a 3 year period.

In Cape Town an additional incentive is available which pays for the first 6 months of telco services for new investors, further lowering the overall cost basket.

Domain Skills

South Africa’s mature domestic BPO market provides a large pool of world-class, experience and skills in the financial, telecommunications and legal domains. In terms of financial skills our tertiary education system generates large numbers of qualified actuaries, chartered accountants and other specialists each year. This is added to by sector-specific programmes in banking and insurance which assist by providing intermediate levels of skill. 

There is a common misconception that the BPO sector in South Africa deals only in large scale entry level customer service work, although this does make up a large portion of the industry, it is in truth still only a part. In the last few years, we have seen some interesting developments in the UK insurance market, with South Africa being used as a high end outsourcing destination for actuaries.  A similar trend is occurring in the LPO (Legal Process Outsourcing) sector, where South Africa is developing a reputation as a high end service location for legal based offshoring.

Large pool of English speaking agents

South Africa has a large pool of highly skilled English speaking graduates (345,000 graduates each year) to choose from, and is second only to India and the Philippines in terms of English speaking graduates coming out of a BPO supplier destination.

Robust enabling environment

Rapidly improving telecoms services have also added to our standing as a world class service destination. This change has been driven by the deregulation of the telecoms market, which has seen telecoms costs reduced by around 85% since 2003 and is set to improve even further on the back of further competition created by the various undersea cables.

First world experience

In terms of positioning, South Africa is well placed to service the European market and is able to fill a gap for US and Australian companies offering 24 hour customer support. South Africa also provides cultural affinity with Western markets, a key quality for a customer service destination.

 “The BPO industry is a key job creator for the country and we are fully committed to helping BPeSA Western Cape and its partners in driving further investment to our shores,” says Alan Winde Minister of Finance, Economic Development and Tourism for the Western Cape.

Contact Centre - Teleperformance

Contact Centre – Teleperformance

As the BPO industry continues to grow in 2012, so too will the competitive landscape. In response to this we need to be proactive and ensure our value proposition remains ahead of the curve. The industry is changing and we have started to see UK based companies pulling their voice operations out of India in favour of quality English speaking locations. This is a great opportunity for South Africa as we are viewed as a high quality voice destination, and as a result, if we can capture just a small percentage of this BPO exodus, we should see substantial industry growth going forward.  

BPeSA Western Cape

BPeSA Western Cape is an Investment Agency for the BPO sector in the Western Cape and facilitates the growth of the BPO and contact centre industry. As an investment agency for the Western Cape, the organisation’s core focus is on attracting foreign investment, in order to drive job creation to the province.

 

In 2012, commercial mail is more mobile and across channels

By admin, 24 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

Opinion Article by Walter Penfold, Managing Director of Prefix Technologies

The first quarter of the year is traditionally when predictions are made that will set the tone for what happens in the remaining quarters.

Often it is a case of self-fulfilling prophecies. In other words, if we believe that social media will increasingly overlap with commercial email in 2012, it has a pretty good chance of happening. This is what worries me about predictions of the world ending in 2012 (I won’t mention the exact date, just in case) but that’s a topic for another opinion article I hope to write the day after (forgive the pun).

OK. Onto bread and butter email marketing matters of the here and now.

Our starting point of what is going to happen in 2012 is basically that last year we started seeing increasing adoption of international best practice combined with impressive local innovation. So we can expect more of the same this year, as South African email marketers continue to mature which, in laymans terms, means they will increasingly get their groove on. Or take their groove to new heights, or whatever.

In 2012, as in any other email marketing year, ensuring that marketing campaigns remain relevant will be critical. And this simply means, in a cluttered marketplace, you had better find new ways to approach consumers in a way that makes them feel like individuals. Consumers are suffering from marketing information overload and extreme ‘Dear Valued Customer’ annoyance. So use email to engage more effectively with consumers in a way that drives conversations, not sales pitches.

Speaking of conversations, more emails will be opened and actually read on mobile devices, thanks to the exponential growth of smartphones and tablets that is sure to take place during 2012. Nielsen has indicated that at least 45% of all mobile web use is for checking email.This is a great opportunity for the mobile marketer with the foresight to design mobile-friendly mail templates.

Now more conversation talk… Cross-channelling will be another 2012 watchword. This just means that deeper integration will take place between email and social media. Yes, social media has been a buzzword in South Africa for years as we looked enviously at the level of social media marketing sophistication overseas – but now we really mean it!

There is a growing base of analytics and an increasing number of tools that are giving marketers greater insight into and control of the cross-channelling process. The low cost of creating a buzz for a product or event via social media platforms makes this a very cost effective option for marketers. Marketerswho work across the various channels effectively will ride the cross-channelling wave.

We will also see more relevant content being driven to a more carefully-segmented customer base. Success will accrue to those who are able to segment their customer lists beyond the more traditional areas (such as geography, industry and company size). It will also come to those who deliver more dynamic content and who focus on issues like sending more emails to the most active subscribers and fewer to those who are less active. Marketers that fail in the segmentation, content and subscriber areas will probably find their messages banished to the ‘trash’folder.

Another key trend will be the growing base of locally relevant email marketing research that will be conducted during 2012. South African marketers are rapidly realising that in today’s world, there is no one-size-fits-all model. If companies aim to succeed in effective customer segmentation and the delivery of genuinely relevant content, they will need the analytics to go with it. We can thus expect a surge in the amount of marketing research being conducted. This is because it will be the foundation on which all other success will be built.

A further trend expected to raise its head in 2012 is that of the growing importance of event messages. These will be mails that are sent due to some form of ‘prompting’ by the customer. This could be something as simple as a ‘welcome’ message to new subscribers or a ‘thank you for shopping with us’ farewell. Alternatively, it could encompass queries, such as that prompted by a customer abandoning a shopping cart. There is little doubt these event messages should form a major part of your email strategy, as they undoubtedly have a much higher open ratio. It has been suggested that they can generate a five times greater return on investment (ROI) than a standard weekly newsletter.

Those marketers that are able to focus their efforts on driving customer-centricity, effective cross-channelling and on data-driven, multi-channel marketing strategies will lead the way during 2012.

Samsung Galaxy Tab’s helps the Smollan Group mobilise its field workforce

By admin, 23 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

Samsung is assisting the Smollan Group achieve greater efficiency, control and most importantly, cost savings, out in the field, through the utilisation of Samsung Galaxy Tabs.

Using the combination of its custom developed application and a fleet of 50 Samsung Galaxy Tabs, the Smollan project team, which was divided across two provinces, was able to collect information on over 31,000 retail stores within a three month period. Says Colleen Rose, IT director at the Smollan Group; “That’s an unprecedented 10 outlets’ information captured by each individual fieldworker every day and close to 500 outlets’ information captured in total each day. Furthermore, as the information is collected straight into our custom-application, as well as verified at source, the information collected is usable by the client almost immediately.”

As a provider of field marketing, brand activation and market intelligence services to the fast moving consumer goods market, the Smollan Group in South Africa alone has over 18,000 field workers operating in stores country wide on behalf of its clients. Continues Rose; “To co-ordinate this mobile workforce, mobile technology in the form of smartphones has been invaluable up until now. Smartphones are great for getting simple instructions to our 18,000 strong mobile workforce and allowing those individuals to provide simple feedback in the form of confirmation that a task has been completed. However, when it comes to more complex tasks, such as collecting survey data and geocoding store locations, smartphones aren’t the ideal tool.”

By contrast, tablet computers with their larger screens, more accomplished web browsers and more data centric design are great for this kind of fieldwork. It is for this reason that when Smollan were asked by a large FMCG brand to visit rural, ‘off the beaten’ track retailers and perform a detailed survey, as well as to geotag and photograph the storefront, they were excited to trial tablet computers and gauge how much of a difference their use would make in practice.

Says Paulo Ferreira, Head of Mobile Product and Business Solutions at Samsung; “Smollan had very specific requirements when it came to a tablet that would deliver what the company required. Being chosen to deliver what they needed and as a result, working closely with the Smollan Group has been a great opportunity for Samsung, where we have had to opportunity to see first hand the benefits of mobility in action.”

The starting criteria was to find a tablet software development ecosystem that would allow for Smollan’s development team to rapidly build and deploy a custom application to a sizeable workforce. Continues Rose; “Here, we considered a number of different options, but ultimately settled on Android, since this offered us a more open architecture, a familiar software development environment and the ability to deploy the final application to a fleet of tablets without the need for a locally supported application store, as is the case with some of the tablet offerings available today.”

Next, Smollan had to choose a model of Android tablet that was extremely portable, equipped with GPS hardware (for geotagging purposes), capable of fast data transfers and more robust than its peers, since field workers can often be hard on their equipment. “We settled on Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 7” as it ticked each of these boxes perfectly, and was available with an optional ruggedized casing, making it tough enough to endure the everyday knocks and bumps associated with field work of this kind;” she added.

The High Speed Uplink and Downlink Packet Access (HSUPA/HSDPA) of the Samsung Galaxy Tab device allowed for the effective synching of data remotely, which resulted in the fact that field workers did not need to spend valuable time coming into the office – ensuring the project was a complete success.

“This is just one of many examples where mobility and the use of mobile devices are changing the way industries conduct daily tasks – resulting in work being done more effectively and efficiently. Mobile devices have and continue to revolutionise many sectors and Samsung are proud to be at the forefront of this – meeting the needs of organisations and promoting a smarter working environment;” concludes Ferreira.

Lighting Structures secures multi-million Rand project at new Eskom power plant

By admin, 23 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

Lighting Structures, a business unit within Jasco Carrier Infrastructure and a jointly owned venture between Jasco and the LeBLANC group, has secured a deal to the value of more than R12 million to design, manufacture, supply and install of a range of Hi Masts along with civil works and electrics at Eskom’s ground-breaking Medupi Power Station in Lephelale in the Limpopo province.

“Medupi” represents the first power station to be built in the country in more than two decades, and as such required a significant amount of peripheral infrastructure, including specialised area and street lighting to ensure security and safe operations. Lighting Structures specialises in the engineering and design, fabrication, logistics and installation of Hi masts (including Rail-low masts, Mid-hinge masts, Hydro and Access masts) and street lighting poles amongst others.

“We were awarded the tender for a number of reasons: our engineering and design capability, our ability to deliver and manufacture a quality product at short notice from our recently upgraded plant in Nigel, as well as our high level focus on SHEQ (Safety, Health, Environment, Quality). SHEQ is critical to any project of this magnitude, and our strength in understanding and incorporating client SHEQ requirements and our ability to work within these parameters is a significant differentiating factor for us. Thus we are able to deliver to our client a true end-to-end high quality lighting solution at a competitive price setting us apart from the competition,” says Francois van Zyl, Divisional MD of Jasco Carrier Infrastructure.

Lighting Structures was responsible for the design, supply, erection and commissioning of 98 x 30m Rail-low masts, 14 x 40m lattice towers and 16 x 18m Mid-hinge masts, including luminares for all structures. This included the fabrication of the masts and towers to suit the terrain, delivery to site of all masts and towers, supply and installation of electrical distribution boards and splitter boxes in the masts and towers, earthing , civil works, as well as mast assembly and erection on site.

“The unknown terrain required us to work in a very hands-on fashion with the various contractors when it came to all site related work. Our in-house engineering capabilities were put to good use on this project, as we were able to provide on-site assistance and able to adapt the foundations and structures to suit the varying soil conditions at the Medupi site,” van Zyl adds.

The sheer scope of the project provided a challenge in and of itself.  Apart from having to set up a project office and base camp for site personnel, Lighting Structures was also required to work around the various EPC and EPCM contractors on site and were given very specific time constraints around the installation of the Hi Masts. The project is due for completion in April 2012

For more information visit us at Jasco at http://www.jasco.co.za/Lighting-structures.asp

Konica Minolta receives 2011 BERTL’s Best Production Line of the Year

By admin, 21 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

The Business Equipment Research and Test Laboratories Inc. (BERTL) has awarded Konica Minolta with the title of 2011 BERTL’s Best Production Line of the Year for its bizhub PRESS C8000, bizhub PRESS C7000 and bizhub PRO B1200 devices. BERTL is an independent testing laboratory whose purpose is to provide objective, independent product evaluation reports and comparative analyses on imaging devices and software solutions.
 
Since 1995, the “BERTL’s Best” award has recognised the best device, software and product lines in the digital imaging marketplace launched over each year. The categories are based on desktop, workgroup, departmental and production work environments. BERTL’s analysts review them to identify the select group of devices and software that stand apart from the others.
 
Keeping with the times and the demands of its end users, BERTL left behind the simple speed and feed productivity, artificial reliability tests and theoretical SRP pricing lists and focused on the user and the business dynamics when putting together the “Best of the Best”.

“In the Fall 2011 voting session, BERTL’s expert analysts were tremendously impressed with how Konica Minolta’s production print systems performed during testing,” says Art Wynne, President, BERTL. “The bizhub PRESS series continues to impress us, earning Konica Minolta the Best Production Line of the Year distinction.”

According to Leon Minnie, product manager: production systems at Konica Minolta South Africa, a Bidvest company, this is the fourth time in 2011 that Konica Minolta has received accolades from BERTL on behalf of its award-winning production print portfolio. “Earlier this year, BERTL also awarded multiple Spring 2011 BERTL’s Best awards to Konica Minolta, including the ‘Best Color Production System’ for the bizhub PRESS C8000; ‘Best Color Light Production System’ for the bizhub PRESS C7000; and ‘Best Monochrome Production System’ for the bizhub PRO B1200.

“It is also remarkable that the bizhub PRESS range has impressed other institutions such as EDP (European Digital Print Association) and IDEAlliance. In fact, Konica Minolta’s bizhub PRESS C8000 is the first digital press to receive the G7 Digital Press Certification from the IDEAlliance. G7 is IDEAlliance’s industry-leading set of best practices for achieving gray balance and is the driving force for achieving visual similarity across all print processes.”

To read more about this certification, go to http://www.idealliance.org/specifications/g7.)

“The BERTL’s Best and others awards are a validation to Konica Minolta’s ongoing innovation and market-leading technologies, and earning these most recent awards highlights how our customers can count on Konica Minolta to keep them at the forefront of digital press technology,” Minnie adds.

For more information, please visit www.kmsa.com or contact 0800 bizhub.

Océ Production Printing Customer Experience Center opens its doors

By admin, 21 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

Océ, an international leader in digital document management and delivery, has announced that the new Océ Production Printing Customer Experience Center in Poing, Germany (near Munich) has opened its doors to the public. With more than 4,000m² of floor space now available, the new centre sets the stage for Océ’s flagship continuous feed production colour printing and workflow solutions.
 
Versatile and future-proof print solutions

The new Océ Production Printing Customer Experience Center underlines Océ’s leadership approach of being a world-class digital printing and workflow solutions company. Not just a simple product showroom, the Océ Production Printing Customer Experience Center emphasises physically Océ’s commitment to put customers’ needs first.

“This new showroom is designed to be a live performance environment for business leaders and digital printing experts, a place where our customers can experience the future of production colour printing. Visitors can see their own applications running on our high-speed inkjet- and toner-based systems,” says Sebastian Landesberger, executive vice president at Océ Production Printing Systems. “We will also allow our worldwide guests a privileged view from behind the scenes of our R&D innovation hub.”

Smart solutions for challenging new business fields
 
Whether it’s migration from monochrome to colour, VDP, solutions for transaction, TransPromo and direct mail or combined digital and offset printing applications, solutions for the graphics industry, for digital newspaper and book production, it’s all on display in the Océ Production Printing Customer Experience Center. In business development and application areas, Océ customers get the opportunity to see real live applications from business leading clients around the world. Additionally they can dive into their specific business models and experience new perspectives for their own business.

The new premises comprise the full line of established Océ toner-based systems such as the Océ ColorStream 10000 Flex, along with the latest high-speed inkjet systems of the Océ JetStream family and the Océ ColorStream 3500. The company’s own PRISMA workflow software on display operates with finishing solutions and state-of-the-art VDP requirements.

The right place for decision-making

By making the Océ Production Printing Customer Experience Center visit an integral part of their decision-making process, visitors will see first-hand how the company addresses document production challenges. During their stay, customers and business experts can explore a variety of high-level print and output management strategies to help them decide how to best meet their business goals and to prepare for the future.

A new amazing high-tech event location in the prospering Munich area

And what’s more: A multi-functional high-tech space of additional 3,000m² can be rented by third parties as a location for conventions and events, offering a real venue enrichment in the Munich area. The new Océ Production Printing Customer Experience Center offers purpose-built convention facilities for in-depth technology sessions, parallel workshops up to 300 people and a multi-functional stage for high-level presentations, product introductions including catering and more.

Ocular achieves BBBEE Level 1 status three years in a row; increases procurement rating to 168,75%

By admin, 21 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

For a consecutive three years, contact centre solutions provider, Ocular Technologies has received a broad-based black economic empowerment (BBBEE) rating of Level 1. In addition, its procurement recognition level has increased by an astounding 33,75 percent to 168.75 percent this year.

Pommie Lutchman, CEO at Ocular Technologies, says that for Ocular, BBBEE is about more than just boasting rights; it is about true empowerment and reversing inequalities of the past.

“Receiving this recognition three years in succession further strengthens our position with regards to the broader South African empowerment initiative. It is also testament to the fact that our efforts to continuously maintain a Level 1 rating are working,” he says.

As a 100 percent black-owned company, Ocular has adopted the BBBEE strategies of leaders in this spectrum, which are to focus on the seven pillars of the generic scorecard – ownership, management and control, employment equity, skills development, preferential procurement, enterprise development and socio-economic development.

“However, we will not let the legalities of BBBEE overshadow its core benefits, namely, transformation and empowerment – of the individual, the company and the country as a whole,” says Lutchman.

He adds that Ocular also realises the enormous benefits its Level 1 rating and its extremely high procurement recognition rating provides the company and its clients.

“As a Level 1 contributor with a procurement recognition level of 168,75 percent, the company is well positioned to offer its customers better procurement options, through the correct channels – all of which plays a role in underscoring the company’s commitment to transformation and continuous improvement within the empowerment sphere.”

Next generation BI transforms business through social knowledge sharing

By admin, 21 stycznia, 2012, No Comment

After years of slow, small changes in how Business Intelligence (BI) is used and perceived, there has been a resurgence in the way that this type of technology is utilised within organisations. The introduction of “BI 3.0″, dubbed as the next generation of BI solutions, embraces the approach of social media, allowing businesses to leverage the power of collective intelligence to drive BI velocity and enable better decisions to be made in less time.

So says Reinald Bormann, Datacentrix business development manager: Business Intelligence, who maintains that BI has evolved to become more of a forward-looking technology focused on boosting business growth, rather than just the creation of reports.

“While the first wave of BI solutions was touted as being technology that would revolutionise the way that people work, this promise was never realised,” he says. “BI essentially became too complicated for the average business user and was something used primarily by analysts to generate and publish reports.

“Looking at how technology has changed over the years, it is clear that not only has it become far more user friendly, it is highly social, user oriented and rapidly evolving and also arms us with information with which to live our lives,” Bormann explains. “For instance, Amazon tells us what to read, iTunes makes recommendations on what music we should be listening to, Facebook  keeps us in touch with our friends and LinkedIn allows us to investigate future employers and keep our business contacts in order.

“It makes sense then that the new evolution of BI harnesses these technologies to make itself better, faster and stronger.”

BI 3.0 is based on five main technologies:

•  A new approach to data modelling – The ability to absorb data on-the-fly through in-memory technologies allows companies to continue examining new data, or observe old data in new ways, without needing to pre-define how it is going to be analysed.

•  BI 3.0 is for business users – BI 3.0 needs to be easy to use and understand in order to be “owned” by the users that are responsible for the continuous effort to improve a business. It also needs to allow users to make it fit their own specific needs.

•  BI everywhere – BI is a critical component in the contribution to a business’ success. It therefore needs to be available to users wherever they are and whenever they need it, much like e-mail access.

•  Relevant intelligence – The basis of BI 3.0 is providing the right information at the right time, enabling users to find insight they were not aware they were looking for.

•  Social BI – Teamwork allows people to accomplish more than one person could. BI 3.0 operates on the same premise – enabling users to work together using social tools to gain a much higher level of insight.

“There are already tools available that can provide entrance into this new world of BI,” says Bormann. “One such example is Panorama’s recently launched Necto offering which is gaining in popularity. It is truly exciting to see the next iteration of Business Intelligence already being utilised to enable users to leverage collective intelligence, achieve higher insight and take advantage of  ‘self service’ type technology to meet business goals.”

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