Staci Emery

Disaster recovery tip: Don’t be afraid to update strategies

A lot can happen to a business when companies least expect it, especially in terms of disruptions. Human error or Mother Nature can impact operations for an hour or two, or destroy mission-critical data if firms lack a proper backup plan. In short, organizations, regardless of industry, need an effective disaster recovery strategy to avoid prolonged periods of downtime.

Forbes contributor John Beattie recently highlighted some ways companies can improve their recovery and business continuity protocols. Firms often continue to implement similar strategies year after year, which is not always the most sound approach to maintaining operational efficiency and safeguarding data. Continue reading

Staci Emery

ERP budgets expanding alongside IT spending

The global IT industry is looking up, according to a recent Gartner report. The research firm believes worldwide budgets will total $3.7 trillion, up 2.1 percent from last year. In 2015, this figure will reach $3.8 trillion. Enterprise resource planning solutions are expected to follow this trend and increase their market share in the near future, growing roughly 7 percent and 7.3 percent in 2014 and 2015, respectively.

In an interview with InformationWeek, John Lovelock, Gartner research vice president, detailed how traditional enterprise software spending increases generally result in expansion in other categories. However, on-premise deployments – especially regarding ERP – are becoming less popular as cloud-based options emerge. Continue reading

Staci Emery

Digital risk officers emerging as IT security threats increase

There are so many cybersecurity threats impacting businesses today that firms are expected to take action in the future to address these attacks with a new type of key decision-maker. Market research firm Gartner recently indicated that digital risk officers will be present at more than half of organizations surveyed by the end of 2015. By 2017, a third of large enterprises with a digital presence will have a DRO​, or an equivalent, in place.

Paul Proctor, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner, said DROs need a blend of understanding, business acumen and technical know​-how to effectively assess digital risks. Continue reading

Staci Emery

Key IT trends driving security market

Security has become a major talking point throughout the entire IT landscape in recent years, as high-profile breaches have impacted well-known brands with vast resources, proving any business can fall to sophisticated cybercriminals. A recent Gartner report indicated that IT technologies and trends are influencing the security landscape in 2014.

Neil MacDonald, vice president of the research firm and a Gartner fellow, explained companies are investing in security and risk-based solutions. However, such expenditures are still falling short, given the disruptive nature of what Gartner calls the “Nexus of Forces” – a combination of data, mobile, cloud and social computing. Continue reading

Staci Emery

Microsoft, Salesforce partnership sends shockwaves throughout IT industry

Microsoft has its hands in plenty of popular markets, especially the ever-expanding customer relationship management industry. Microsoft Dynamics is one of the more favored options in this space yet it still has some steep competition especially from the likes of Salesforce. Although these two IT stalwarts are looking for ways to gain more share of the CRM pie, the tech giants recently reached partnership that is reverberating throughout the entire field.

Forbes reported that new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has not been shy about partnering with some of the other major CRM players. The Salesforce agreement now marks the third such agreement – the others including SAP and Oracle. Microsoft will bring Salesforce applications to its own Office and Windows solutions. Continue reading

Staci Emery

Health care industry also jumping on BI bandwagon

The health care industry is often one of the last markets to adopt the latest technologies available. This is due primarily to the fact that organizations in this field are responsible for maintaining some of the most sensitive information, such as patient health records. Every system must be checked and checked again to make sure precious content is safeguarded at all times. It appears that business intelligence suites are quickly making their way into hospitals and medical practices at a healthy rate.

A MarketsandMarkets report suggested that the worldwide health care BI market totaled roughly $2.4 billion in 2013, expanding at a compound annual growth rate of 15 percent during the next five years. North America will be the largest sector during this time, followed by Asia. Continue reading

Staci Emery

SaaS ERP deployments are hitting their stride

On-site enterprise resource planning solutions have had their day in the sun as being the de facto ERP implementation. Today, more companies are opting for Software-as-a-Service as a way to leverage this highly functional tool. A TechNavio report indicated that the global SaaS-based ERP industry is projected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 14 percent between 2013 and 2018.

What are the reasons behind this healthy expansion? The report explained more businesses are looking for convenient technologies that promote energy conservation. For example, traditional ERP suites require between one and three years to achieve complete installation, compared to SaaS solutions that cut this time down to just two or three weeks. Continue reading

Staci Emery

Disaster recovery survey doesn’t paint pretty picture

Disasters can strike at any point in time, putting both corporate data and employees in harm’s way if businesses are not prepared to respond to such incidents. The old adage reigns true regarding these events – money spent on protection is money earned later down the road.

A recent Staples survey found that only 50 percent of staff members believe their workplaces are ready for a major emergency. Nearly two-thirds of respondents indicated that previous natural events have not encouraged their companies to update their current safety protocols. Continue reading

Staci Emery

Global security software on the rise as threats increase

Hackers have upped their game in recent years in an effort to make off with corporate data and consumer information. Some big brands – Target – have fallen victim to cybercriminals, placing greater emphasis on security solutions that safeguard such valuable content.

A recent Gartner report indicated that the global security software market increased 5 percent in 2013, totaling $20 billion.

Ruggero Contu, research director at the firm, explained that although market growth in 2013 was slower than in previous years, it was still a healthy rate nonetheless. Continue reading

Staci Emery

ERP given new life thanks to cloud computing

Enterprise resource planning software has long been a critical solution for all types of industries over the years. One of the tool’s shortcomings, however, is the fact that it has been restricted by on-site deployments requiring extensive customization to introduce added functionality. If too many additions are made, ERP is difficult to leverage consistently.

Traditional ERP software is between a rock and hard place regarding its flexibility, which has enabled innovative technologies such as cloud computing to swoop in and address this challenge. The cloud allows businesses to add additional resources quickly and easily without draining finances – capabilities that are most welcome in the ERP market. Continue reading