CIO Symmetry


August 29, 2014  5:53 PM

Wearable tech and IT consumerization rattle the enterprise

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
CIO, Cloud Computing, Consumerization of IT, Dell, E-discovery, Facebook, Mobile Application Development, Mobile applications, Mobile Computing, Wearable devices, WhatsApp

Facebook’s $19 billion purchase of mobile messaging app WhatsApp turned heads not just for the price tag, but also for its signal to CIOs of the reality of IT consumerization. In this week’s Data Mill, SearchCIO Senior News Writer Nicole Laskowski outlines takeaways from the Gartner Catalyst conference about how IT can ride on the wave of consumer messaging apps and how they’re impacting the enterprise.

From Samsung’s and Apple’s smartwatches to Ralph Lauren’s swanky smartshirt, wearable tech continues to make a splash in the consumer market. It won’t be long before employees start bringing these connective devices into the enterprise — so CIOs may as well start to work with business partners to identify and prepare for its pros and cons.

In a digital age where end users are now at the center of the enterprise, CIOs are finding that they must serve both internal and external customer bases — and the lines are blurring, according to CIO Andi Karaboutis. In part one of our video interview, she spills on the parallels between the two; in part two she talks about how, with some smart prioritization, it’s still possible to bring IT closer to the business.

The cost savings associated with cloud computing have long been lauded, but any discussion surrounding the cloud’s financial benefits is more complicated. In part one of this SearchCIO feature on cloud economics, Features Writer Kristen Lee explores how business drivers, cultural factors, provider transparency and other elements factor into calculating the economics of cloud. In part two, Lee delves deeper into how to analyze those various drivers to get the most out of your cloud investment.

Elsewhere on SearchCIO…

From the mobile-equipped audience at the Pope’s inauguration to Clinique’s point-of-sale mobile app, evidence of mobile disruption abounds, experts at the recent MassTLC Mobile Summit said. The clarion call for CIOs, Executive Editor Linda Tucci explains, is to prepare your business models for mobile computing or get left behind by competitors.

Despite the promises of mobile computing, however, many organizations are still leery of adopting bring your own device (BYOD) and bring your own apps (BYOA), mainly because of the risks they pose, but also because of its transformative impact on an enterprise’s culture and operating model. Read SearchCIO expert and contributor Harvey Koeppel’s advice on how to craft the safest and most effective BYOD policies.

With all that developing a mobile application entails, not to mention the deployment of that app, it’s no surprise that many CIOs are fearful of the possibility of failure. But as Forrester analyst Jeffrey Hammond advises, CIOs should embrace this failure — and learn to mitigate its costs. Get his tips on how to evolve a development culture around mobile app dev and advice on building a purpose-built mobile app.

Customization sometimes makes no business sense, as CTO Niel Nickolaisen well knows, but sometimes, it’s needed to meet changing customer demands. Get his thoughts on how today’s diversity of cloud offerings can help you approach customization.

And on SearchCompliance…

Half of respondents to a recent Gartner survey pointed to figuring out which data to keep and which to discard as the top issue their organizations struggle with, so it’s not surprising that data classification and data mapping are crucial to a data discovery strategy. In a tip by SearchCompliance Site Editor Ben Cole, learn how to take those first steps and reduce litigation costs and risks.

That’s all our news for this week, folks! Stay tuned for next week’s Symmetry roundup. In the meantime, enjoy the long holiday weekend and get updates by following @SearchCIO, @SearchCIOSMB and @ITCompliance.

August 22, 2014  6:44 PM

Three digital intelligence tactics for IoT; Heartbleed hack reemerges

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
Chief Data Officer, CIO, Collaboration, cybersecurity, Digital intelligence, E-discovery, Gartner, Heartbleed, Internet of Things, Mobile data, Mobile security

With the proliferation of Internet of Things (IoT) devices and the resultant growth in streaming data, CIOs are facing new duties and challenges. To fully take advantage of IoT, CIOs must build a “digitally intelligent architecture,” analysts say. In this week’s Data Mill, SearchCIO senior news writer Nicole Laskowski outlines three digital intelligence tactics CIOs must focus on.

There are only about 100 chief data officers around the world, according to Gartner, but the role has gained an outsized amount of recognition, particularly in banking, government and insurance. Still, questions persist, and at the recent MIT Chief Data Officer and Information Quality Symposium, a panel of CDOs addressed many of them.

Heartbleed reemerged in this week’s headlines, playing a key role in the data breach of a Tennessee health network. In Searchlight, find out what enterprise CIOs and security officers can take away from this latest breach, as well as from UPS’ discovery of the vulnerability of its customers’ data.

When it comes to securing enterprise mobile collaboration, mobile device management and antimalware aren’t always the best answer. At the Gartner Catalyst Conference, security analyst Mario de Boer laid out the best tools to effectively secure mobile data in your collaboration environment.

Do you and your enterprise know what to look for in order to hire the right tech talent? Join us in discussing the IT skills gap in the next #CIOChat tweet jam on Wednesday, Aug. 27, at 3 p.m. EDT.

And on SearchCompliance…

Increasing volumes of data mean more complex e-discovery at many organizations. Fortunately, new cloud-based e-discovery tools can help address companies’ e-discovery management requirements. In a tip from compliance expert Jeffrey Ritter, learn key strategies to ensure your cloud providers are able to meet these needs.

In this week’s compliance news roundup, U.S. companies, particularly in the financial services sector, continue to grapple with today’s post-recession regulatory landscape. Plus, read more about PricewaterhouseCooper’s bank reporting blunder and U.S. tech giants’ broken Safe Harbor pact.

That wraps up our news this week! Check in with us again for next week’s Symmetry roundup, and get updates during the week by following @SearchCIO, @SearchCIOSMB and @ITCompliance.


August 15, 2014  7:58 PM

Two-speed IT at Gartner Catalyst, and which CDO role will prevail?

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
Agile, Big Data, Chief Data Officer, Chief Digital Officer, CIO, CIO Decisions, CISO, Compliance, cybersecurity, Data Mining, Data privacy, Digital strategy, E-discovery, Gartner, Hybrid cloud, Mobile Application Development, NSA, Target data breach, Two-speed IT, Vendor management, Waterfall development

John Deere’s director of enterprise architecture Mano Mannoochahr kicked off the big data discussion at this week’s Gartner Catalyst Conference in San Diego, and his keynote sparked some discussion on the benefits of both waterfall and agile. Read Senior News Writer Nicole Laskowski’s take on how the 177-year-old corporation utilizes two-speed IT to leverage both approaches.

Also from San Diego, Features Writer Kristen Lee addresses a standout conference session on McGraw-Hill Financial’s hybrid cloud journey, during which Financial Architect Srinivas Sarathy laid out why the company went for the hybrid cloud approach, the challenges involved and the lessons learned.

Two CDO roles are gaining prominence in the C-suite, but one might outlive the other, reports Laskowski in this week’s Data Mill. While the work of both the chief digital officer and the chief data officer is critical to the success of the business, one’s role as “customer champion” is more well-defined and understood outside of IT, Laskowski explains.

Take a gander at our fresh issue of the CIO Decisions e-zine on the hybrid cloud! Find out how a hybrid strategy can be better than the sum of its parts; plus, learn some CIOs’ take on the benefits and drawbacks of a hybridized computing environment; read about a craft brewery startup’s winning cloud ERP strategies; and more.

In other SearchCIO matters…

Snowden-approved cloud backup vendor SpiderOak is the latest vendor taking a stand against the NSA’s data mining. What can enterprise CIOs and CISOs take away from this news as they deal with the thorny privacy issues that surround client data? Find out in this week’s Searchlight.

CIOs and IT leaders are tasked with the not-so-mean feat of keeping the organization running smoothly and overseeing the technology providers that enable the business’ needs. Check out our Essential Guide to get help on navigating the tricky waters of vendor management in today’s fast-paced IT environment.

With an estimated 1.75 billion users downloading mobile apps, it’s no surprise that businesses of all sizes are jumping on the mobile app bandwagon. But as Lee heard from mobile app experts at last month’s MassTLC Mobile Summit, the odds of a mobile app taking off after launch aren’t so great. Get their tips on what mobile-aspiring businesses can do to increase their apps’ likelihood of success.

And on SearchCompliance…

In light of Target’s C-suite shake-ups following last year’s data breach, inquiries around the accountability of the retail giant’s executives still abound. Take a look at this SearchCompliance FAQ to get detailed answers to the most pressing questions about the Target breach.

Corporate compliance and cybersecurity expert Jeffrey Jenkins knows how overwhelming it is to develop a well-rounded, successful cybersecurity program. On SearchCompliance, he provides three invaluable tips to help you step up to the task.

It’s time for another #GRCchat: SearchCompliance editors and experts will be chatting about how big data has shaped e-discovery management, as well as how digital governance best practices can help avoid legal issues. Join us on Thursday, Aug. 21, at 12 p.m. EDT!

That about does it for this week’s news! Check in again next week for another Symmetry roundup, and get updates during the week by following @SearchCIO, @SearchCIOSMB and @ITCompliance.


August 8, 2014  7:42 PM

Big data architecture dilemma; Russian hackers’ theft as CIO advantage

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
#GRCchat, Agile methodology, AT&T, Automation, Big Data, Big data architecture, CIO, Compliance, Data breach, Data privacy, data security breach, Governance Risk and Compliance, Hackers, Paypal, Security compliance

Tesla’s decision to build an ERP system from scratch rather than upgrade its SAP software has IT circles abuzz. It highlights a longstanding quandary for CIOs as they architect for big data: To build or to buy? In part one of senior news writer Nicole Laskowski’s two-part series, get expert advice on how to look at your business problems and outcomes before investing in big data technology. In part two, Laskowski takes a closer look at how technology leaders decide whether to build or buy technology for big data.

Kristen Wolberg, PayPal’s vice president of technology business operations, is no stranger to workplace transformation. Before PayPal, she led Salesforce’s move to Agile and helped rightsize Charles Schwab. In part one of this CIO Innovator Q&A with executive editor Linda Tucci, Wolberg explains the philosophy behind PayPal’s move to an Agile methodology. In part two, she talks about how she pulled off getting 4,000 people on board with the transformation, and its consequent benefits.

In this week’s Searchlight, a Russian crime gang’s hack of 1.2 billion passwords has the world reeling. Data security expert Ronald Breaux, of international law firm Haynes and Boone, argues that CIOs can use the sharpened focus on data breaches to insist on higher standards of security and compliance.

In other SearchCIO matters…

Today’s cloud service providers are getting more and more in tune with enterprise IT’s needs, and improving relationships with them could very well spell strategic gains for CIOs, expert Larry Bolick and other tweet jammers agreed in our first #CIOChat recap from our recent cloud provider-themed chat. In the second recap, they discuss the differences between dealing with traditional vendors versus cloud providers.

In a video interview, MIT Sloan CIO Leadership Award winner Thaddeus Arroyo, CIO at AT&T, discusses how he delivers value and extends digital capabilities to the company’s internal and external customers. Watch the video to find out why he thinks the two constituencies are converging.

And on SearchCompliance…

As governance, risk and compliance (GRC) platforms evolve, they are commonly integrated with organizations’ business processes. In SearchCompliance contributor Christine Parizo’s tip, see how GRC tools can help meet your regulatory compliance requirements, and how one bank accomplished just that.

Many businesses are making the move to automated compliance in an effort to simplify data management processes and rein in costs — a shift that might make GRC professionals wary. But this trend instead likely indicates that these professionals will need to acquire new skills, #GRCChat participants said in the latest tweet jam recap.

In compliance news, the online user privacy debate gains renewed fervor with the help of big-name technology companies’ involvement. In our news roundup: Facebook faces a European lawsuit, Google tips off police to a child abuser, and more.

That closes out the week’s news! Make sure to check in with us again in next week’s Symmetry roundup, and get updates on our stories during the week by following @SearchCIO, @SearchCIOSMB and @ITCompliance.


August 1, 2014  8:07 PM

Mobile technology’s promises and hurdles; data governance myths, debunked

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
Big Data, Cloud costs, Compliance, cybersecurity, IT Governance, Mobile BI, Mobile technology, Vendor management

The future of mobile personalization was the topic of a panel of mobile app experts at MassTLC’s Mobile Summit last week. Read SearchCIO features writer Kristen Lee’s recap of the session to find out how today’s increasingly targeted apps have gone beyond just recommending where you should call for takeout.

Mobile analytics is one of the hottest IT trends of 2014, and for good reason: the plethora of benefits, from increased productivity to streamlined internal processes, are transforming the business. What exactly is driving this shift to mobile business intelligence? SearchCIO contributor Scott Golden, co-founder and vice president of consultancy Decision First Technologies, offers some ideas.

The San Jose Sharks NHL hockey team and consultancy Superior Group each had its reasons for choosing an enterprise social network (ESN) platform, and they leverage these tools in different ways. In part one of her feature on ESNs, contributor Christine Parizo details how the Sharks selected an ESN tool that integrated with its back-end systems and boosted employee morale. In part two, Parizo recounts how consultancy Superior Group used gamification to drive employee adoption of its ESN platform.

The scenario: You’re a small business owner who’s on the fence about whether to build a mobile app or optimize your existing website for mobile. Where do you begin devising a mobile strategy for your business? On the CIO Symmetry blog, I talk about how thinking like a mobile-savvy consumer (which you probably already are!) puts you in your customer’s mindset. In part two, I detail the pros and cons of going the mobile-app versus mobile-responsive site route, and with the users’ experience in mind.

In other SearchCIO matters…

The U.S. government released a report this week on how hackers are exploiting remote desktops to tap into networks undetected. The report recommends a layered approach to security, and humans — including CIOs — play no small part in that strategy. In Searchlight, find out if corporate politics and CIOs’ self-interest might be to blame for an inadequate security program.

Lee continues her investigation into the economics of cloud on the TotalCIO blog, where she recaps her interview with Health Management Systems’ Cynthia Nustad on how the CIO contracts with cloud providers. Find out Nustad’s criteria when considering vendors, and learn her strategy for avoiding vendor lock-in.

Sometimes, technology alone isn’t enough when handling big data coming in at accelerated rates — particularly when you’re in the business of exploring that data to learn new things. That was the consensus of a panel of medical and pharmaceutical experts at the MIT Chief Data Officer and Information Quality Symposium explained. Read senior news writer Nicole Laskowski’s latest Data Mill to find out how these experts are dealing with big data’s various pain points.

The information that organizations glean from ERP systems is key to managing product planning, interacting with suppliers and customers, and more. Take a look at the free ERP requests for proposals templates and examples we’ve gathered to help you find the right ERP provider.

Sure, services and applications — and their providers — are getting more in line with customers’ needs. But it’s also the day and age when employees’ shadow app use is becoming rampant, and service-level agreements are becoming more complicated. Our recent stories have got you covered; take our quiz on service vendor management to learn more.

And on SearchCompliance…

As data piles up faster and faster, so do the myths surrounding that data’s management and governance. In a Q&A with SearchCompliance site editor Ben Cole, governance expert Jeffrey Ritter demystifies five common myths companies deal with as they tackle information governance. In part two, he debunks persistent misconceptions around data storage costs and information governance training.

In our most recent #GRCchat tweet jam, participants agreed that automating compliance processes can greatly assist with data management, and cut down on costs and redundant resources. However, they also warn that automation tools still have a potential for error. Check out this recap to find out what participants suggested to overcome these drawbacks.

And that wraps up our week’s news! Catch us again for next week’s Symmetry roundup, and stay updated on our stories during the week by following @SearchCIO, @SearchCIOSMB and @ITCompliance.


July 31, 2014  1:41 PM

Is a mobile-optimized website or app right for your small business?

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
Digital disruption, Mobile, Mobile Application Development, Small businesses

Check out part one of this blog post to learn an easy trick for developing a mobile strategy for your small business.

Arguably the strongest case for going mobile is the opportunity it gives you to engage with customers. The widespread adoption of smartphones and the evolution of mobile apps have vastly increased a company’s touchpoints for interacting with customers. Thanks to mobile computing, small businesses can not only provide services to consumers 24/7, but also improve and customize these services based on the unique data that users themselves provide. The tools and technology to provide a highly customized mobile app experience are there, said Mike Schneider, vice president of marketing for big data company Skyhook Wireless.

Speaking at the recent Mass Technology Leadership Council’s Mobile Summit, a gathering of mobile app experts, Schneider urged the audience to create “appticipation” by delivering personalized user experiences with their mobile apps. “Knowing where your users go and the places that are important to them allows you to reduce the friction from the opening of the app to getting value,” he said, citing advances in geofencing and persona development.*

Understand the use case for mobile

Mobile’s expanding reach, however, won’t do you any good if there isn’t a sound use case. A recent case study by SearchCIO contributor Christine Parizo on small business 8z Real Estate‘s decision to develop a mobile app is a good model. Much of the agency’s decision to go ahead and develop a mobile app was based not just on the prevalence of smartphones, but also on the nature of buying property, explained 8z marketing associate Staci Striegnitzk. “People driving or walking through a neighborhood and seeing a ‘For Sale’ sign don’t want to wait until they get home to know the details,” she said. Indeed, Striegnitzk expects the percentage of listing traffic that comes from mobile to climb to 50% during the next few years.

Experts agree that you should apply the same rigorous business logic when considering whether to build a mobile app or mobile-optimized website to reach digitally savvy consumers. The cost of developing a mobile app can range from almost nothing (if you’re a self-starter and are up for learning to code yourself!) to tens of thousands of dollars. There’s also the matter of how time-consuming and difficult it is to develop native apps, especially if you want to create one that can reach users right away; as such, some small business owners opt to outsource app development to a third party.

While creating a mobile-optimized website tends to be cheaper than an app, if your current site is built on an older protocol, you’ll likely pay more than you’d expect to commission one. Unlike native apps — which don’t rely on connectivity and can be designed to do anything, from pushing notifications to providing café recommendations based on your current location — users can’t access the content on your mobile-optimized site unless they’re connected to the Internet. Also, the mobile version doesn’t go beyond the information they would find if they were to visit your site on a desktop, but they do have the advantage of working across operating systems.

The bottom line: Deciding whether “going mobile” for you means building a homegrown app or creating a mobile-optimized version of your website requires lots of homework, particularly around the question of what your target customers want: Are you planning on providing extra benefits that would make downloading a unique app extremely useful for them, or would creating a mobile site on which they could access up-to-date information suffice? One thing is certain: Considering the breakneck speed at which mobile technology is disrupting businesses, the question may be not if your small business should go mobile, but when.

*More than one person in the audience raised concerns on the “creepiness” factor, but as an avid user of my Starbucks and LevelUp apps, I’m willing to share the necessary data in exchange for convenience — a point Schneider also addressed. But that’s a topic for another blog post!


July 31, 2014  1:39 PM

To build or not to build a mobile app? Think like a digital customer

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
Digital disruption, Mobile, Mobile Application Development, Mobile technology, Small businesses

If you’re the owner of a small company and are looking to maintain or even ramp up your business, odds are you’ve thought about developing some sort of mobile presence, either in the form of a mobile-optimized website or the creation of your own mobile app.

You’ve also likely heard from fellow small business owners who’ve incorporated mobile computing into their businesses about some of the competitive benefits mobile confers — as well as the challenges. But if you are on the fence about whether to forge ahead with mobile, here is an easy way to think about it: Take stock of how you are using mobile computing in your personal life. Chances are you’re using mobile computing in much the same way your customers are. And thinking like a customer when it comes to mobile already puts you one step closer to understanding what quality of services they expect from your business.

In my case — and I’m a mobile consumer if there ever were one — it wouldn’t be a leap to estimate that outside of the hours I put in for work, I spend more leisure time on my smartphone than I do my personal computer (and my PC doesn’t even come in second place — my Roku device takes that spot). And even for work purposes, if I’m on the go, my smartphone, particularly its apps, give me numerous options to stay plenty productive.

Here’s just a sampling of mobile apps I use regularly on a weekday: Android’s Email app, to which I link my Outlook account; Gmail; Google Calendar; Google Hangouts; Facebook; Spotify; Twitter; Yelp; Google Tasks; HBO Go; Todoist; YouTube; GO Weather… I could go on. And with regard to mobile-responsive sites, more often than not, the only time I have to catch up on current events is when taking public transit to work. You can bet that The AtlanticThe Washington Post and Quartz, among many other sites, get plenty of daily mobile visits from me.

But don’t take just my word for it. Nielsen’s 2014 Digital Consumer Report found that the average American consumer last year spent 34 hours a month on their mobile devices, compared with 27 hours on the Web via a PC.

I mentioned earlier that many of the apps I use on a day-to-day basis also enable me to be more productive. Stats from recent studies also confirm that small businesses reap internal benefits from mobile apps as well. According to a 2012 study by the Small Business and Entrepreneur Council, 78% of small business owners reported saving a median four hours per day of work due to company use of mobile apps. The study estimates that this saved time translates to small business savings of approximately $14,317 per year — that’s no small fish for a small company.

In part two of this blog post, learn about some of the plusses and minuses of building a mobile app or website.


July 25, 2014  7:09 PM

Nordstrom dives into text analytics; Uber sets enterprise mobile pace

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
Analytics, Application performance management, Big Data, CIO, Cloud Computing, Cloud Security, CTO, Dark data, Disaster recovery (DR) testing, Enterprise, Enterprise mobile, Gartner, Governance, grc, Hadoop, Information security, Mobile strategy, SaaS, social, Text analytics

SearchCIO’s CIO Innovator Essential Guide is out! Make sure to take a look through the collection of CIO profiles to meet the IT execs, your peers, who are using IT enable the business, and see what they’re doing in mobile, cloud, big data, agility and social collaboration.

Elsewhere on SearchCIO…

Matt Fisher, Nordstrom’s program manager for product reviews and ratings, never imagined “falling in love with data” when he took the post last year. In SearchCIO’s latest installment of its Business POV series, senior news writer Nicole Laskowski sat down with Fisher for details on how Nordstrom uses text analytics to dive deeper into thousands of customer reviews.

Hadoop’s ecosystem has developed in leaps and bounds, but Gartner analysts Nick Heudecker and Merv Adrian warn CIOs to practice caution before implementing the distributed computing framework. In Data Mill, Laskowski details why security and governance around Hadoop still have a ways to go for the framework to really meet enterprise needs.

If there was a crucial message panelists at MassTLC’s Mobile Summit drove home earlier this week, it’s that enterprises can’t afford to wait to fully understand the breadth of mobile’s disruption — just take a look at Uber’s shake-up of the taxi market. In this week’s Searchlight, find out why slow might not be the way to go when incorporating mobile your business strategy.

Only a few years ago, CTO and SearchCIO contributor Niel Nickolaisen fought hard to control his company’s environment, applications and users — and earned a reputation for being out of touch with and a barrier to IT progress. In his tip, Nickolaisen discusses how he’s learned to go about life the “bring your own anything” way.

Gone are the days of yore, when sharing content meant sending emails or placing ads in print or media outlets. To take advantage (and tackle the challenges) of the “digital business era,” as expert SearchCIO columnist Harvey Koeppel calls today’s convergence of social, mobile, analytics and cloud (SMAC), CIOs should study its implications on how they live and do business.

Just because you’ve finally deployed a mobile app after thorough development and testing doesn’t mean that the work is done; there’s still the matter of how successfully the app performs out in the field and how widely it’s used. SearchCIO contributor and mobile expert Bryan Barringer lays out how mobile application performance management (mAPM) tools can help counter performance degradation.

And in other SearchCIO happenings…

The latest issue of Modern Infrastructure: CIO Edition covers the range of issues CIOs must confront as the number of SaaS services — sanctioned and unsanctioned — continues to grow. Click through the ezine to learn how CIOs are rising to the task of SaaS governance.

And from the stories in the June/July CIO Decisions ezine on infonomics, we’ve gathered our favorite quotes from CIOs, thought leaders and analysts in a nifty CIO Citings infographic. Check them out and visit the individual ezine articles for more information on why it’s important to treat corporate information as a valuable asset.

It’s time for SearchCIO’s next tweet jam! Make sure to join our editors and other participants on Wednesday, July 30, at 3 p.m. EST, to talk cloud services. Use the #CIOchat hashtag to discuss how cloud can be used for competitive business gain, as well as CIOs’ relationships with cloud service providers.

The work isn’t done after you’ve completed your disaster recovery test, participants agreed in our last #CIOchat tweet jam on DR processes. Find out what best practices and advice they offered on what should go into a post-test after-action report.

Over on SearchCompliance…

The digital age has sped up the accumulation of “dark data,” or legacy data that no longer generates value. But companies can’t afford to disregard this information — doing so leads to missed benefits and further risk. In this SearchCompliance Ask the Expert, Derek Gascon, executive director of the Compliance, Governance and Oversight Council, explains why it’s time for organizations to start addressing dark data’s GRC challenges, and which tools can help.

In a video excerpt from SearchCompliance editor Ben Cole, Patrick Gilmore, CTO at data center services provider Markley Group discusses a prevalent question when it comes to securing information in the cloud: Who’s responsible, the provider or the customer?

In GRC news from around the Web from the past few weeks, a growing number of risks is continuously changing the regulatory landscape, and various organizations are feeling the effects. Check out SearchCompliance’s roundup to see how Wall Street banks are adapting, how CISO roles are evolving, and whether many enterprises’ risk management strategies are up to the task.

And that’s a wrap for this week’s news, everyone! Stay tuned for next week’s Symmetry roundup; in the meantime, stay updated on our stories during the week by following @SearchCIO, @SearchCIOSMB and @ITCompliance.


July 18, 2014  8:41 PM

Mindful awareness key to employee well-being — and competitive advantage

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
Apple, Business Process Reengineering, CIO, Compliance, compliance management, Employee engagement, Employee performance, Enterprise mobile, Hybrid cloud management, IBM, Internet of Things, IT services, MapReduce, Microsoft, Multitasking, regulatory compliance, Startups

Digital overload and extreme multitasking are doing a number on employee engagement and efficiency — and the U.S. economy, SearchCIO senior news writer Nicole Laskowski reports. A few employees at Intel decided to take an unexpected tack to tackle this problem: mindfulness. In this two-part feature, find out how mindful awareness, not multitasking, could lead to competitive advantage.

What do the groundbreaking Apple-IBM deal and Microsoft’s massive job cuts have in common? Well, we could be witnessing the beginnings of big-tech enlightenment, as I cover in this week’s Searchlight. And it might do CIOs good to take a page from these big names’ playbooks and stir up their business processes.

For many new businesses, it isn’t just a matter of having a brilliant idea and the guts to put it into action; they face heaps of obstacles that range from searching for office space to looking for willing investors. Fortunately, PayPal’s here to help. From the Small Companies with Big Partners event that was held at its Boston headquarters this week, features writer Kristen Lee reports how PayPal’s Start Tank program goes beyond monetary support.

Hybrid cloud computing offers many perks, including lower costs, agility and faster IT service delivery. But it also comes with many challenges. In this two-part feature, contributor Dina Gerdeman covers how CIOs should handle being an IT services broker in a hybrid environment and what early adopters of hybrid computing advise their fellow CIOs in order to reap its benefits and avoid its pitfalls.

Elsewhere on SearchCIO…

What’s the next big thing after MapReduce? That was the looming question at a panel hosted by The Hive, a San Francisco meetup for big data startups. Considering its known imperfections and the takeover of the Internet of Things, the answer could lie in its — and other paradigms’ — evolution, Laskowski reports in Data Mill.

Continuing SearchCIO’s video coverage of the MIT CIO Sloan symposium, Laskowski chatted with Daimler Trucks CIO and Leadership Award finalist Dieter Haban about the power of sensor data. Check out this video for an inside look at how Daimler’s truck sensors link to its Internet of Things, and how that’s transformed Daimler’s business.

And in another interview, Laskowski sat down with Dell CIO and fellow award finalist Andi Karaboutis to discuss how she’s “stopped asking people what they want,” citing Steve Jobs’ quote that once a product is built, customers will want something new. Watch this video excerpt to find how she and her team “surprise and delight” both the business and customers.

Over at SearchCompliance…

Increasing digitization of records and global operations means that businesses need to turn to new technologies to help with their associated data management processes, which is easier said than done, particularly in terms of meeting compliance requirements. SearchCompliance contributor Jeffrey Ritter offers four tips to help ensure that tech investments can pass muster.

SearchCompliance has another #GRCchat tweet jam lined up, this time on the topic of compliance automation! Join editors and experts on Thursday, July 24, at 12 p.m. EDT, to discuss how, in the face of regulatory compliance challenges, companies can benefit from automating compliance management processes, as well as what impact that might have on GRC jobs.

And that’s all the news this week, folks! Check back in next week for another Symmetry wrap-up; meantime, stay on top of our stories during the week by following @SearchCIO, @SearchCIOSMB and @ITCompliance.


July 11, 2014  8:21 PM

Startup Hopper’s chief data scientist puts Spark in travel industry

Fran Sales Fran Sales Profile: Fran Sales
Apache, Big Data, Big Data analytics, CIO, Cloud Computing, Cloud Disaster Recovery, Data protection, Data Science, Disaster recovery and business continuity, Governance Risk and Compliance, Information governance, Information security, IT hiring, IT talent, MapReduce, Mobile information management, Spark, Startup

Come one, come all, and take a gander at the inaugural video for our new series Startup Spotlight! SearchCIO features writer Kristen Lee gives us a peek inside the Cambridge, Massachusetts, offices of Hopper, a startup lauded by the press for its flight-search tools that allow customers to travel more cheaply. Lee speaks with chief data scientist Patrick Surry about the big data technology his team uses and how Hopper has garnered such creative IT talent.

Senior news writer Nicole Laskowski also picked Surry’s brain on the technology Hopper’s innovative business model runs on, particularly the relatively new Apache Spark, a large-scale, in-memory processing engine his team is currently experimenting with. Read about how Spark is helping Surry address the latency issues inherent in MapReduce, and why some experts have dubbed Spark the next big thing.

It might be time for CIOs to take another page from those Silicon Valley startups know-it-alls. On Searchlight, I cover how, in the race to snag top tech talent, startups and tech giants alike — from Dropbox to Facebook — are widening their hiring net to teens and tweens. Find out why high-tech employers are overlooking traditional resume credentials in today’s digital age, and why you should jump on the bandwagon.

In other SearchCIO matters…

As big data continues to get bigger, infrastructure bottlenecks increase and businesses are often forced to sacrifice insightful big data, such as highly personalized search results, for information that’s just good enough — or “fast data,” as Scott Jarr, co-founder of in-memory database provider VoltDB, refers to the business problem. In this week’s Data Mill, Laskowski details why a legacy, one-size-fits-all approach can no longer handle big data.

Over at TotalCIO, Lee kicks off her month-long investigation into the economics of cloud computing. In her first blog post of the series, Lee recounts her conversation with David Linthicum, senior vice president of cloud migration services provider Cloud Technology Partners, about how CIOs should work with their business colleagues to identify their “value drivers” for the cloud.

The latest installment of our CIO Briefings series is out! Check out the Essential Guide to get advice and resources from CIOs and disaster recovery (DR) experts alike on how to ensure your organization can continue to run efficiently should a data breach, natural catastrophe, human error or equipment failure occur — as well as how to prevent these disasters from happening again.

To dig deeper into disaster recovery, click through our slideshow on the topic, where we highlight top tweet responses to the question “What is the No. 1 pitfall to avoid when doing a disaster recovery test?” See what advice SearchCIO’s Twitter followers and DR tweet jam expert Paul Kirvan suggested for better disaster planning and recovery.

We also continue our recaps of the #CIOchat on DR, focusing on participants’ two cents on question, “How important is it to perform cloud-based disaster recovery tests?” Discover the perks and risks of cloud-based DR, and find out why CIOs should approach cloud with the assumption that it will fail.

In another installment of our coverage of the MIT Sloan CIO Symposium, SearchCompliance site editor Ben Cole sat down with Patrick Gilmore, CTO at Markley Group, a data center services provider based in Boston, to talk about what skills he looks for when rounding out his IT team. Watch this SearchCIO video to find out why security is squarely in Gilmore’s radar, and why he’s on the lookout for security experts who think offensively.

And on SearchCompliance…

Laws and regulations are constantly changing, and threats are constantly evolving, making it hard for organizations to ensure their IT policies and procedures remain compliant. Compliance expert and contributor Jeffrey Jenkins lists three steps IT and the business must take to develop a focused compliance scope.

Some things never change: A leading pain point for CISOs is how hard-pressed they are to articulate security threats to the rest of the C-suite. As contributor Richard Stiennon points out, perhaps it’s time for IT security officers to educate the business using network visibility to get a “visceral reaction.”

Keeping corporate and personal data separate on both employee- and corporate-owned devices while making sure that information is managed with the appropriate governance policies continues to be a struggle for organizations. In this Ask the Expert, Derek Gascon, executive director at the Compliance, Governance and Oversight Council, offers tips on how businesses can address these mobile information governance issues with the right processes and data management and security tools.

On the IT Compliance Advisor blog, we round up the latest news from around the Web, with data privacy and security once again taking the limelight. See the Obama administration and Microsoft’s take on users’ data protection rights and how consumer data risks are driving GRC job growth.

That’s all for the news we’ve got for the week! Stay tuned for next week’s Symmetry roundup; meanwhile, stay abreast of our stories during the week by following @SearchCIO, @SearchCIOSMB and @ITCompliance.


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