I always love hosting our Outsource Talks webinars – but today’s was even more enjoyable than usual, featuring as it did three remarkable professionals gathered together in the same place, rather than dialling in as is customary. Having Morgan Lewis’ Ed Hansen, Ivalua’s Gary Malhotra and Outsource columnist Thom Mead round a table here at the SIG Summit in California was a unique pleasure, generating as it did a delightful degree of interaction alongside the anticipated thought leadership.
Hard to believe half a year has gone by so quickly, but Outsource finds itself once again at a SIG Summit – taking place this time round in delightful (though, today, surprisingly drizzly) Carlsbad, California.
Every pilot/flight trainee knows the importance of trusting what the plane’s cockpit instruments are telling them. With very rare exception, the cockpit’s instruments don’t lie. What’s happening to the plane can be counter-intuitive to what your human senses are telling you. I can recall several instances in my flight training when I had to fight my senses (and fear) and rely on the data in the cockpit as my only gauge of what was actually happening and what I needed to do to get the plane to back to straight and level flight.
Procurement today is a different game. Once viewed as a back-office task, it has emerged as a key differentiator and driver of business value. And to execute it well requires totally new ways of thinking and acting.
Best-in-class organisations understand this. And they are tapping technology, big data and digital networks to fuel a simple, more collaborative source-to-pay process that is changing the game.
Moving Beyond Savings
Since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, the global supply chain hasn’t really changed all that much. Products are made from raw materials in factories, shipped off somewhere else (either by land or sea), stored in a warehouse, and then distributed to retailers. Beyond a few small differences, this is more or less the way most people have acquired their stuff for nearly two hundred years.
Earlier today, I had the great pleasure of hosting the seventh episode of Outsource Talks, our webinar series – for those of you not yet familiar with this especially marvellous project - that brings the time-honoured talkshow model to the international sourcing, outsourcing and business transformation community.
Earlier this year, Outsource editor Jamie Liddell chaired an advisor roundtable hosted by Capgemini, during which key themes emerged which were subsequently explored further by several of the roundtable guests in our recent two-part article 'A Dizz
Earlier this year, Outsource editor Jamie Liddell had the privilege of chairing a roundtable dinner hosted by Capgemini, and attended by some of the most prominent advisors in the UK outsourcing community. The evening saw a huge variety of topics covered - but took place under Chatham House Rules, meaning that the conversation did not take place "on the record".
When we talk about ‘robotics’, we are no longer talking about plugging in ‘dumb’ machines to mimic human action. Enterprise process robotics has evolved to a point where it can be integrated into existing systems, talking directly to applications with a built-in understanding of process best practice. However, despite this, perceptions often remain outdated.
Tony Strong is the CEO of UK-based multi-channel service provider Parseq. Way back when we launched our oNexus platform, Parseq were one of the founding oNexus partners and we were promised an interview with Tony - and now our paths have finally aligned.... Outsource caught up with him at last to hear his thoughts on his new role as CEO, the invaluable importance of organisational culture - and consolidation in the customer contact industry.
It has already happened. Digital technology has taken over. When it comes to global sourcing, job opportunities, branding, company cultures, it is all transparent. Job-seekers can see straight through you and your company before they walk through the door and shake your hand.
Consumers are becoming both more loyal and trusting of their banks and insurers according to a survey of 3,000 consumers in Germany, Spain and the UK. The research, titled Youbiquity Finance 3, is the latest in the BT- and Avaya-supported series begun in 2012. It finds that the increasing use of technology is coinciding with improved relations between consumers and banks and insurance companies.
Only imagination limits the opportunities available from our rapidly connected world. It’s hard to think of a household product or work device that could not have some benefit from being connected to another application via the internet of things (IoT), which adapts based on data from another source. Unsurprisingly, Gartner identified that the number-one strategic technology trend for 2016 would be the so-called device mesh: the ever-expanding set of end points that people can use to find information and communicate online.
Budgeting for IT has always been an uphill battle, with the boardroom tending to try and cut back on spending whenever possible, despite a driving desire for the competitive advantage strong tech investment brings. This is especially true for cybersecurity, which has always been hobbled by the difficulty in proving its day-to-day value. It’s only when an attempted attack occurs that the value of security investment overtakes the “it won’t happen to us” mentality.