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Beware a Meager ROI on Automation

Homer Simpson ran for Sanitation Commissioner on a platform of, “Can’t someone else do it?” and he won. People love not having to do stuff. But automation is not always as instantly sound in practice as in theory. In an article for InformationWeek, Mark Dickson outlines why the return on investment (ROI) on automation will be underwhelming if you are not careful. History Is the Best Teacher Dickson uses an unusual but powerful example to …

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Untangling Your Organization’s Decision-Making

Armed with extensive analytics, and being mindful of the many biases that affect our perceptions, business leaders should be better equipped to make decisions than ever. However, business complexity has also increased such that decision-making accountability has become too messily dispersed. The final result is a tangle. In an article for McKinsey, Aaron De Smet, Gerald Lackey, and Leigh M. Weiss comprehensively address how to clean up decision-making processes in your business. Piercing the Impenetrable …

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How Do We Prepare for the Coming AI Projects?

AI used to be the term we used to describe awesome dudes like C-3PO. Now it has been co-opted to mean boring things like game-changing business innovation. Alas, IT must make do with the coming of this less-exciting version of AI. In an article for ZDNet, Mark Samuels discusses what CIOs can do to prepare for AI projects. Artificial Ideas Right now, robotic process automation (RPA) to handle mindless tasks is the hot new thing. …

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Develop the Mindset of the Next-Generation CIO

CIOs are wrestling for control of the technology budget with CMOs, among other competitors. What is at stake is IT’s credibility moving into the future. CIOs who can demonstrate a forward-looking mindset can remain the masters of their own destiny and ensure IT’s continued relevance. In an article for CIO magazine, Dan Tynan describes the skills and traits that “next-generation” CIOs will have to possess. Robust Priorities Chiefly, CIOs must make technology a customer-centric experience, …

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Use Feasibility Studies to Ensure Your Project Can Succeed

Pilot projects, management software, and agile implementations are all great avenues to getting a stronger hold on projects. But there might be something even simpler than those options for ensuring the viability of a pending project. In an article for Tech Pro Research, Mary Shacklett discusses the overlooked value of feasibility studies. Plausible Plans Shacklett describes feasibility studies as occurring during project preplanning, after project conception but before presentation of the project concept to management. …

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4 Ways to Increase IT’s Strategic Value

If someone offers you chocolate, you eat it. If someone offers advice to increase IT’s strategic value, you take that too. In an article for the Enterprisers Project, Craig Williams, CIO of Ciena, shares four ways to increase IT’s strategic value: Develop talent. Culture is not static. “Sell more bagels.” Be a little paranoid. Sweet Success The best businesses do not have one competitive advantage—they have several. You should always be striving to make the …

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The 3-Year IT Roadmap: A Short-Sighted Long-Term Solution?

Any business that is not looking to the future is about as safe as a driver who is texting on the highway. IT particularly loves three-year roadmaps for securing its future. But are they actually that useful? In an article for TechRepublic, Patrick Gray challenges the conventional thinking and offers an alternative to these roadmaps. Fog Ahead A roadmap—in spite of how much data it attempts to consider across systems, vendors, and overlapping timelines—still involves …

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The 4 Types of Project Manager

There is more than one way to grow a company, and project managers are actually at the core of that growth. In an article for Harvard Business Review, Carsten Lund Pedersen and Thomas Ritter identify four different types of project manager that can help the business grow in different ways. They say your organization should try to retain a healthy mixture of all four of these types: Executor Expert Gambler Prophet A Reliable Quartet The …

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What Is Digital Transformation?

It wouldn’t be surprising if you encountered some form of digital transformation by this point in time. The term itself means that an organization is adopting new technology into existing practices to drive stronger efficiencies and organizational alignment. However, Forbes published a statistic that stated 84% of companies have failed at this. In a post for the Association for Project Management, Ketan Patel discusses some of the nuance of digital transformation. Taking on Transformation In …

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5 Factors Complicating Today’s IT

IT is in a weird spot when it comes to innovation and internal maintenance. There’s a pressure to be on the cutting edge, but there’s also an expectation to maintain exceptional daily operations. The large majority of IT’s time is spent on the latter, and you can’t reinvent the wheel if all you do all day is make more wheels. In an article for InformationWeek, Tim Herbert identifies five of the biggest factors making your …

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