Schneider Electric Energizes Employee Services with Smarter Request Management

Organizations constantly change: they add and drop product lines, acquire other companies, divest business units, and expand into new markets or countries.

The true measure of any enterprise technology is not whether it can merely adapt to such changes, but also enable continual improvement,  both operationally and in employee experience.

Schneider Electric call deflection savingsWhen Schneider Electric launched an initiative to upgrade its employee services request portal, it put its request management software to the test. Here’s the company’s story.

Schneider Electric is a global organization with more than 170,000 employees in 134 countries, supplying a wide range of business and residential energy products and services.

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8 Things We DON’T Hate About IT

It’s easy to bash the IT department; to deride it as the land of no and slow, a roadblock rather than a resource, a group it’s easier to work around than to work with when addressing urgent and rapidly changing business needs.

But given the current and on-the-horizon risks of digital disruption of business models (example: one-hour photo shops were a rapidly growing business in 1988, but their numbers have plunged from more than 3,000 shops across the U.S. in 1998 to less than 200 today) from developments like 3D printing, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things (IoT), technology is playing a bigger role than ever in businesses of all kinds.

8 reasons NOT to hate ITThat makes IT’s role more vital than ever. Practices, processes, and in some cases even attitudes need to change, to be sure, but now is the time to engage IT, not hate it. Forward-thinking companies like Nordstrom and Starbucks—while not “technology companies”—are embracing IT internally and externally to improve both operational efficiency and the user experience for customers and employees alike.

Yet inside many corporations, IT is viewed as an impediment rather than an enabler in embracing digital change. In her article 8 Things We Hate About IT, Susan Cramm acknowledges that “nobody hates the people in IT—it’s the system that’s broken. Continue reading “8 Things We DON’T Hate About IT”

Six Ways to Deal With the “Crisis” in IT Communications

This couldn’t be happening at a worse time.

According to a recent study by the CIO Executive Council, poor communication is resulting in “a state of crisis between IT and non-IT employees, which could prove disastrous” in the current environment of unprecedented digital disruption.

How to fix the crisis in IT communicationsWriting in CIO magazine, Brendan McGowan details the research findings. IT leaders recognize that building trust and credibility across their organizations is critical, but most acknowledge significant shortcomings in their groups’ communication abilities.

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Fairfax County Public Schools Make the Grade with Improved Service Delivery

While no one enjoys having the “flow” of their work interrupted by a technology problem, that situation is especially vexing for teachers; a glitch can throw off not just their schedule, but that of the whole class.

Fairfax County Public Schools Improves IT Service DeliverySo when tech issues do occur, teachers need to be able to report incidents quickly, have confidence that the problem will be fixed promptly, and get back to their students.

Recognizing the challenges in the classroom, the IT staff at Fairfax County Public Schools first moved their services online in 2007. But this early system still relied on manual steps and paper-based approval processes.

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How IT Will Change by 2020 – Research From HDI

Given the rapid and dramatic changes occurring in business and technology, it’s challenging to predict events even one year out (though a post here last fall took a shot at predicting IT trends for 2015).

Yet the researchers at HDI have even more ambitiously taken a stab at prognosticating the state of enterprise technology and IT support five years ahead in Foresight Is 2020: Industry Predictions from the HDI Strategic Advisory Board.

the future of IT support per HDIThis article by Roy Atkinson and Craig Baxter shares some of the findings from “an ambitious project to look ahead about five years and make some assertions about where the technical service and support industry will be by the year 2020,” launched late last year by the HDI Strategic Advisory Board.

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The Biggest (Overlooked) Tech Challenges for Retailers in 2015

Responding to changing consumer expectations, price-sensitivity exacerbated by the great recession, and increasingly tech-savvy shoppers has forced broad and deep adoption of new technologies by retailers. Everyone knows that.

Top retail technology challenges in 2015Most retailers by now have developed strategies for addressing mobile payments, personalization, beacons, omnichannel inventory management, big data analytics, showrooming, webrooming, and buy online / pick up in store—even if the processes and supporting technologies still sometimes have a few rough edges.

Early adopters are exploring strategies for incorporating the Internet of Things (IoT), 3D printing, virtual assistants, and same-day delivery.

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How ERM Helps With Employee Retention

To enhance their competitiveness (or to address the expectations of stakeholders, in the case of government agencies), organizations have been investing in new and better technology for decades. These investments are generally made to meet one (or some combination of) of four primary objectives:
Technology that makes employees happy

  • to reduce costs;
  • to improve product or process quality;
  • to accelerate workflow; or
  • to enable new capabilities.

Employees were provided with and trained on the use of new technologies and tools in order to do their jobs more effectively and efficiently. True, in many cases new technologies made employees jobs easier, but the primary objectives for new investments were still focused on operational and financial benefit for the enterprise. Continue reading “How ERM Helps With Employee Retention”

The 10 Most Popular Posts on Kinetic Vision in 2014

Our goal on the Kinetic Vision blog is to help business and IT professionals keep pace with changing technology, business practices and user expectations, and to improve operations by applying enterprise request management (ERM) and business process automation strategies.

Top 10 request management blog posts of 2014Total visits to the blog this year increased nearly 60% from 2013. The results are gratifying, and a reflection of the strong interest in improving business-IT alignment, the user experience, and bottom-line results using evolutionary, agile approaches.

Here are the ten most-read posts on the blog this past year. While these posts cover a range of topics from support to employee onboarding to BYOD policies, and range in date from March 2012 through September of this year, most address one common theme: Continue reading “The 10 Most Popular Posts on Kinetic Vision in 2014”