Archive for November 15th, 2007

Mashups, the new ETL?

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

I suppose there are some similarities between mashups and ETL tools, as pointed out by Jacob Ukelson, in that they can extract data from a variety of different systems, play around with that data and then write it somewhere – a web page, an aggregated UI, another target application etc.  This offers a new perspective on data cleansing, process automation and orchestration, screen aggregation and much more, but without the need to access the back end systems.  No database transactions here, and no coding either.

Jacob wonders whether IBM can seriously launch into this space next year, as they state.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and I welcome IBM’s efforts.  The very fact that they are even trying to enter the space, validates a market that it is very difficult for the smaller vendors like Blue Prism to build alone.

In praise of IT

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

Despite numerous articles on this blog criticising enterprise IT for not understanding business needs, I am a staunch supporter of the IT function and I try to make my comments constructive so as to help IT and their business colleagues deliver greater things.

So, I am definitely in favour of promoting IT successes.  This is much more than perception management.  Remember that Accenture, IBM, Cap Gemini and the like will all be proudly shouting about their accomplishments.  If you are a CIO bidding against an external vendor, then you better be able to demonstrate some successes and not a procession of failures.  The vendors will have a huge web of triumphal yarns to spin.

So, why not publish internal case studies?  Why not set up an intranet site, with progress/info/updates/successes (and failures – honesty is good)?  Why not spend a bit more time telling people about the good things you have done?  I often see IT people and old style CIOs who seem afraid of selling themselves.

You get a bullet in the head when things go wrong.  Take some credit when they go right!

A word of warning though, you better make sure that what you promote is the truth and not thinly veiled propaganda, which business staff will see through straight away.  That is where you are at a disadvantage to the external suppliers…