Monthly Archives: February 2012

Wisdom lies in Collaborative Power and Intelligence

In my recent blog posts, I shared insights on Predictive Analytics (Will Predictive Analytics at ‘Speed of Thoughts’ Help Businesses?), Real Time Decisions (How critical are Real Time decisions in business today?) Personalization (Personalization: A Key Tenet of User Engagement) and  their significance in our lives in general and in businesses today. In current business paradigm shift- with evolutionary social business, it is paramount that businesses look for wisdom in collaborative power and intelligence. There is old time saying that 5 sticks tied together are stronger and unable to break as opposed to individual stick. We have recently witnessed the power of ordinary people uniting together and fought collaboratively using Facebook and Twitter to topple  down dictators in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya—and are threatening absolute rule in Syria. And in India one man’s (Anna Hazare) campaign against corruption went viral, bringing thousands to the streets in support.

As anyone who has worked in a sizeable organization knows, there is no guarantee that the organization as a whole will perform efficiently and achieve its goals, even if each employee is individually efficient and every team has a high level of productivity. To achieve enterprise productivity, it is necessary not only for individuals and groups to “do things right” by working productively but also for the enterprise as a whole to “do the right things” – form the right teams, make the right decisions, allocate resources correctly, and effectively coordinate activities across the entire organization.

Most organizations fall short of the optimal level of enterprise productivity because of one or more of these reasons, all at a great cost to the business.

  • They are disconnected from themselves with various parts of the organization unintentionally working at cross-purposes with each other.
  • Information that exists is not getting shared or reused.
  • Human talent is not being applied where it is most needed.
  • The same problems are being solved repeatedly by multiple groups

Intelligent collaboration through automated business processes has the ability to alter the course of any important business activity, with a potentially dramatic impact on the financial performance of the business. Whether it is a simple email exchange, a physical or virtual meeting, a task force, or a large-scale project, the activity is inherently collaborative.  In fact, collaboration can be defined as the work that takes place among people when a business process is not pre-determining how the work should take place.  Collaboration is many things: information sharing, brainstorming, problem solving, best practice negotiation, innovation, coordination of activity, alignment of purpose, and so forth.  Collaboration is the “white space” between the business processes; it is the glue that holds an organization together, and the lubricant that allows the machinery to keep running.

Real time search and collaborative capability of right people with right content supported by defined processes will provide unparallel wisdom in the organization in the most competitive business environment today. Interestingly, technologies such as Oracle WebCenter platform   offer these capabilities in our Web based business transactions and compliment in the overall collaborative intelligence and Power.




Will Predictive Analytics at speed of thoughts help businesses?

Alakh Verma, Director, Platform Technology Solutions, Oracle

In my recent blog posts, I shared insights on real time decisions (How critical are Real Time decisions in business today?) and its significance in our lives in general and in business today.  Threats and damages caused by major catastrophe such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Air, rails or ships accidents can be minimized if not averted with the help of predictable and agile analytics at speed of thoughts. What to talk about businesses? Not only product failures, major losses and economic disaster can be avoided but it can be turnaround with major innovation in the area of in-memory analytics.

Analytics is all about gaining insights from the data for better decision making. The business press is abuzz with examples of leading organizations across the world using data-driven insights for strategic, financial and operational excellence. A recent study on “data-driven decision making” conducted by researchers at MIT and Wharton provides empirical evidence that “firms that adopt data-driven decision making have output and productivity that is 5-6% higher than the competition”.

There are few solutions offered in this space such as SAP and IBM, as well as specialized plays such as QlikTech and Tableau and Oracle has recently announced Exalytics-an engineered system to enable fast and easy ad hoc analysis across large end-user communities using an in-memory processing engine. Speed of thought and instant response are the hallmarks of its functionality, making it highly applicable to a range of ad hoc, what-if analysis and forecasting and real-time planning applications. The in-memory capabilities are key to enabling a highly interactive and visual analytic experience for end users.

Although Oracle Exalytics is a new product, the architecture is built on several existing Oracle products: parallelized versions of its Times Ten in-memory database and Oracle Essbase OLAP Server (a specialized in-memory version), together with an optimized version of the Oracle BI Foundation Suite (OBI EE 11g for standard enterprise-grade BI query, analysis, reporting, dash boarding, and other visualizations). Most, if not all, of these software products have been modified to run in-parallel and in-memory data-processing architectures. All of these combine to deliver query optimization, complex multidimensional analysis and planning calculations, and enterprise-wide BI scale, respectively, through a revamped user interface that is designed for “speed-of-thought” analytics.

These predictive analytics capabilities can  easily be leveraged on demand anywhere with the access of mobile devices at speed of thought if not only to avert disaster but to minimize risks and to turn it around for growth and prosperity.

7 Best Practices of Web Experience Management

Alakh Verma, Director, Platform Technology Solutions, Oracle

In my recent blog posts, I shared insights on personalization and personalized care that plays significant role in offering pleasant user experience (Personalization: A Key Tenet of User Engagement) and then on importance of Portal and Content (If Content is the King, then Portal is the Queen).In this post, my efforts are to identify and summarize some of the best practices of Web Experience Management(WEM) to create delightful customer experience based on the recent research report by CITO Research.

The immense success and proliferation of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Foursquare and mobile/smart devices such as iPhones, Blackberry and Tablet PC among consumers has created consumerization of IT and new paradigm shift seeking pleasant web experience. Now, Consumers have become more powerful than before with access of information and social media to communicate to the world at the fingertip.

1.Social Computing and use of Social Media is changing the way people interact with each other and with companies online. A recent report from Comscore showed that two-thirds of shoppers begin their process online, and the most frequent starting point is the retail site itself. These consumers are engaging, connecting and collaborating. They want to understand what their friends liked, what other options are available, and what people like them ultimately bought. Most of these consumers consider Facebook recommendations when making decisions about purchasing.

Jeff Bullas in his recent blog writes about Best Buy successful implementation of social media that energized it’s employees and customers(How Best Buy energized employees and customers with social media)

2.Consistent experience across Multiple Channels and Devices– have offered Customers many choices of accessing the Web in new, engaging  and collaborative ways than before  and they want that ease and diversity to be reflected in their dealings with businesses as well. Consumers change channels and switch devices whenever they need to. They can keep tabs on friends and family on Facebook and follow the Twitter regularly. They can find a nearby restaurant with foursquare geolocation on their phone and then look up reviews of that restaurant on Yelp.

With changing consumer patterns and behavior, it is extremely important to offer targeted, personalized, relevant and consistent experiences across these channels and devices.

3.Mobility-Smart Devices and Tablets – We have witnessed a smart revolution of the mobile space. As per the recent statistics report, the number of mobile devices has increased fivefold from 1 billion to 5 billion, with a resulting escalation in the number of connected people from 400 million to over 2 billion. This unprecedented growth of connectivity is creating an overwhelming range of new possibilities, and tapping, swiping, locating, pinging and socializing are quickly becoming part of normal human behavior. Technology is starting to change people and these people, whether consumers or employees, will change businesses. As per recent report by research firm IDC, mobile usage will surpass that of PCs and other wired devices by 2015. Mobile data traffic is expected to increase 26-fold between 2010 and 2015. In this rapid shift, mobility has to be the integral part of the solutions and the framework.

4.Real Time Decisions and Social Analytics- The recent technology such as big data analytics helps and supports us with right information, real-time event messaging provides at right time, mobility at right place anywhere and social media in the right context to make right decisions. I have shared my insights on my earlier post on how critical are Real Time decisions in business today?

5.Personalized Experiences –In the connected business environment, consumers expect companies to know about them and their likes and dislikes. For a compelling and relevant experience across channels, companies need to target, analyze, and optimize the customer experience. I had discussed and shared insights on this personalized experience in my earlier post (Personalization: A Key Tenet of User Engagement)

6.Multiple Stakeholders Need Control-Expectations for system usability and manageability have changed manifold. Marketers and line of-business executives require that managing websites be extremely easy to manage their campaign and relevant content to meet the timely execution Nontechnical users need to be empowered to build websites, design the layout, make content changes, set up targeting rules, control user-generated-content, and enable the mobile web, all from an intuitive and easy-to-use interface. (Oracle WebCenter Sites based on Fatwire acquisition enables this seamlessly.)

7.Integrated Campaign to drive customers –In order to create a compelling web experience for customers, we need the ability to organize and access their enterprise data and leverage it in web interactions. We need a technology platform that helps create an integrated campaign to encourage repeat business suiting consumer lifestyle either at work or on the road on an iPhone or visiting a physical store or calling customer service.

Oracle WebCenter is one of the leading technology platforms that offers comprehensive web experience management capabilities such as targeting and optimizing content, social computing, and multichannel engagement—all of which help improve customer loyalty, drive web traffic, and target new customer segments. In one integrated suite, it combines an array of complementary capabilities: web experience management (Oracle WebCenter Sites), composite applications and mashups (Oracle WebCenter Portal), social networking and collaboration (Oracle WebCenter Social), and enterprise content management (Oracle WebCenter Content).