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Risks & Metrics Mistakes

The Frustration of Metrics for Big Businesses

At least compared to in the past, General Electric (GE) is in dire financial straits right now. According to the Economist, “Its shares, cashflow and forecast profits have dropped by about 50% since 2015.” In a post at Gartner, Andrew White discusses the implications, and the unique challenges that come with metrics in big (and maybe even not-so-big) businesses. Failing Metrics There could be any number of reasons why GE’s position has fallen, and the …

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A Sharper Metaphor for Your Data Governance Strategy

We use metaphor as a common language to convey big ideas in easier ways. One of the simplest ones used these days is “data-driven,” but its simplicity may actually be a problem in this case. In an article for CIO magazine, Rohan Light discusses the problems of “data-driven” and offers an alternative metaphor to consider. Flowing Metaphor Light’s main issue with “data-driven” is that it sounds good—“data delivers us to the best course of action”—but …

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Privacy and Metrics of Testing and Staging Environments

The big hacks we have heard about have typically struck production environments, but staging environments sometimes have data worth stealing too. We need to become more mindful of the data used in CIAM (customer identity access management) systems and prevent untested code from reaching production. In an article for CSO magazine, Susan Morrow touches upon five areas of interest in protecting data: Data quality Data storage Code security Hardening endpoints Good security policy and best …

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Why the Entire C-Suite Needs to Use the Same Metrics for Cyber Risk

Cybersecurity has gone from “important” topic to “critical” topic, but the reality is that most businesses are still not treating it with the gravity it deserves. It is not for lack of trying though; this is just a big topic. In an article for Harvard Business Review, Jason J. Hogg prescribes a holistic approach for executives to apply cyber risk metrics uniformly across the organization. A United Front Right now, when cyber risk conversations occur …

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5 Reasons Why More Data Doesn’t Guarantee Better Decisions

Analysis paralysis is not the only reason why an abundance of data still fails to enable better business decisions. Data has contextual limits that must be considered. In an article for Business 2 Community, Kaan Turnali discusses five other reasons that data fails to yield the right insights: Data is only raw material for better-informed decisions. Technology alone can’t deliver better decisions. Lack of leadership results in lack of direction and consistency. Enterprise data demands …

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7 Software Testing Metrics That Are Useless by Themselves

For metrics to be useful in any situation, they must always be established and measured from a perspective of, “You need to see the forest for the trees.” There are many metrics that are outright useless by themselves, and they can do damage if you make decisions based on them in isolation. In an article for DZone, Gilad David Maayan gives examples of seven useless metrics. Myopic Metrics Number of test cases executed: There are …

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Is Your Company Using Employee Data Ethically?

Like Jeff Goldblum’s character observed in Jurassic Park, sometimes we get so swept up in whether we can do something that we forget to ask if we should do it. This is especially true regarding the huge new possibilities for exploiting employee data that businesses have. In an article for Harvard Business Review, Kon Leong reviews the ethical challenges that come attached with employee data. Balancing Data and Privacy Right now, businesses are using employee …

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9 Common Myths of Being a Software Tester

Testing is typically treated as one of the less glamorous parts of software development, in spite of its critical importance. This lack of enthusiasm has in turn given way to various myths about software testers, and buying in to them can make development even harder. In a post for Software Testing Help, Meenal Balajiwale addresses nine of these myths: Testers get involved only during post-development in the project lifecycle. Testers will not become project managers. …

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Benchmarking Blunders: Three Pitfalls to Avoid

There is plenty of advice on how to get benchmarking done right. Megan Stoffer has three tips about how to not get it wrong. There is a subtle but useful difference between the two. Jump These Gaps A vague or unclear objective An uninspiring comparison group A lack of action It is critical that when a business decides to benchmark that it does so with a specific goal in mind. In the rush to find …

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Tales of Defects in the Defect Count

Performance testing metrics provide critical information with real business value. They also have a tendency to yield false-positives and other unintended consequences. In an article for TechTarget, Yvette Francino discusses the precarious position she has faced with testing metrics in her career. Nesting Defects Francino has a particular bone to pick with misuse of the defect count metric. At IBM in the ‘80s, there was a quota to be met on how many defects had …

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