downward spiral

When New Technology Causes Productivity to Plummet

Technology is expected to enhance productivity

Most business cases for technology investments include “productivity gains.” Even when no formal business case is created or communicated, users, managers, and executives implicitly expect that new technology will make their lives better.

However, many organizations spend money on technology as if it were a lottery ticket—hoping they will win. We could consider technology investments to be calculated risks, but, unfortunately, that just doesn’t seem to be the case. Most investments in tech turn into mechanical implementation projects that result in more complaints than compliments.

The most common complaint about technology from the user community is that it kills productivity, exactly the KPI it aims to improve. There are two reasons:

  1. Underutilization
  2. Poor maintenance and support

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Running an Effective Fit-Gap Analysis - Abraic

Running an Effective Fit/Gap Analysis

Commercial, off-the-shelf (COTS) software—not custom software—continues to be the preferred option for many firms, especially for ERP and CRM solutions.

The benefits of COTS solutions have been publicized widely and revolve around reduced time to deploy, cost avoidance, standards based, best practices included, solution maturity and platform flexibility, to name a few. However, many COTS deployments end up being disappointments, if not failures, once in production. Thus, many of the touted benefits are not being realized.

A critical success factor in a COTS solution deployment is the fit/gap analysis. COTS solutions are not ‘plug and play’, no matter what their marketing materials say. During the fit/gap analysis phase, decisions need to be made about customizations and functional configurations.

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10 ingredients of a successful UAT

10 Ingredients of a Successful User Acceptance Test (UAT)

The User Acceptance Test (UAT) is a critical component of any IT implementation. The goal of a UAT is to validate if a system or solution will meet the needs of business users in their operational environment.

The outcome of this phase sends the project down one of two paths. If all goes well, the project moves on to the Go Live phase. If it’s a flop, the project faces many challenges ahead, the Go Live timeframe is at risk, and the credibility of the project with the business may be tarnished. Obviously, the stakeholders want the UAT to go well. So how do you secure a win?

Let’s explore the 10 key ingredients of a successful UAT. We’ve seen this recipe work across a wide variety of IT projects.

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That “Status Quo” IT Approach Is Putting You at Risk

You’ve heard the phrase, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

There are many areas in business where that advice may hold true, but your IT assets are not one of them.

IT assets—including hardware, software and data—start deteriorating the day they are acquired. Yet the tendency today is to purchase, install, and then promptly forget about a technology. Few people or companies realize that when it comes to IT assets, maintaining status quo carries great risks.

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The Case For Customizing Software

The Case for Customizing Software

There is ample evidence that, in general, “software customizations are bad.” (So much so you might have nightmares where software customizations are vampires, haunting you, refusing to die in peace.)

But consider the other side of the coin: the risk of an organization going along with canned software functionality. This can downgrade an organization’s business practices to “average,” causing them to lose out on opportunities to improve performance.

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Underutilized Software Revealed in 4 Complaints

tweet-graphic-transTweet: Underutilized #Software in 4
Complaints @mpapov http://ctt.ec/dIbrf+

If there is an underutilized software package in your organization, and if you’re listening, you’ll likely hear a complaint or two about it. These complaints are symptoms that, if undiagnosed, will fuel negativity and friction.

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