Recent Posts

Excellence in Sales Order Entry – From Document to Digital

digital sales orders

Sales orders, the documents with the odor of company success attached to them! Physical (or electronic) proof that your company sells products that your customers like. Proof that you make money and create and retain jobs. So what could there be that is not to like about sales orders? Well, the question here is: Are your sales orders solely creating value and financial success for your company? Or are they also costing you money? Are they slowing down your business? Maybe even creating conflicts with your customers? Fully digital sales order process – why? In a digital world, you should consider automating your sales order entry process from beginning to end. The digital sales order process should start the minute a sales order enters your company, from document to digital. This should be independent from your input channel – whether your sales orders reach you via EDI, email, fax or paper document, make sure to digitize your sales orders when they first touch your company. Many of our customers have EDI in place for 60 – 80% of their sales orders. However, the remaining 20-40% slows down their business, preventing them from having full insight and transparency of the status of ALL sales orders. The impact When our customers started to capture the data also from PDFs, emails and paper documents, they realized how valuable a fully automated a digital process is. With their model from document to digital they turned the sales order process into a fast, customer-friendly and fully transparent process. They now have full insight into the status of any sales order. If a customer has a request referring to a sales order, they can answer it within seconds, independent from its input channel or process status. Reporting and transparency have exponentially improved. Management is now able to track the performance of the sales order process across countries, from month to month or year over year. Now, even the performance tracking task is a simple activity, too. It is fast and it is accurate. Not only for the electronic input channel, but for all sales orders. The information extracted is also proof that with the new integrated sales order automation, customers have been able to cut sales order cycle time in half by also automating the remaining 20-40% of sales orders. Customer relationships have also improved because disputes over orders and invoices or wrong deliveries have reached an all-time low. The analysis of sales orders allows making purchasing recommendations to customers from evaluating other customer orders – those who regularly order specific products in combination with other products. These cross-sell opportunities are well-received by customers as they create value and often help to meet their core business needs. Have you identified a need to further digitize your sales order entry process? Take a look at how OpenText™ Business Center for SAP Solutions helps to improve the sales order process and much more.

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How Digital Transformation is Giving Humans More Time to Really Think

The pace of technological change today is being called the “fourth industrial revolution.” New solutions powered by artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, and machine learning are enabling machines to handle processes that once required human decision-making. Just as mechanical muscle lowered the demand for physical labor in the first industrial revolution, today cutting-edge technology is reducing the demand for human intervention. The “migration” of tasks from humans to software and machines has been evident for quite some time. From ATMs to automated check-in at airports, technology has been performing relatively simple and repetitive tasks. Today, this transformation allows much more complex and nuanced tasks to move from human speed to machine speed, across industries that have remained largely untouched by machine intervention. Most recently, AI and cognitive systems have found a place in legal discovery, insurance applications, underwriting and claims processing, and the delivery of financial investment advice. In healthcare, telemedicine allows diagnosis and monitoring without the need to physically see a clinician, and a surgeon can operate from another hospital or country—just more examples of where jobs long understood as “human” are being displaced by technology. The automation option New opportunities for automation will continue to appear, as mechanization, automation, AI, and robotics replace human workers. But it’s not all doom and gloom. As “traditional” roles are replaced, new jobs will be created in the transition—jobs that require creativity, innovation, and strategic thought. As we do away with mundane work, the time gained through automation can be used to innovate, germinate ideas, and conceive new processes fueled by the kind of thinking that only happens when our minds have time to wander. The beginning of a sweeping societal change? The World Economic Forum, economists, analysts, and labor organizations have predicted a wave of job losses due to the surge in AI, robotics, and other technologies. We could see a net loss of 7.1 million jobs over the next five years in the 15 leading countries that make up approximately 65 percent of the world’s total workforce. But two million of the jobs will be offset by the creation of new positions that will support and foster the new wave of innovation, beyond what we see as credible or possible today. But as some roles are automated, others will come online; for instance, individuals who can build, develop and make sense of these sweeping changes. Developers, programmers, scientists, and technologists will—more than ever—be required to drive forward the accelerating pace of change. There will also be a greater need for economists, lawyers, and policy makers who can interpret how governance, intellectual property, and society at large will have to adapt. While algorithms may automate decision-making, it won’t be easy to replace leaders who can navigate this new fast-paced, intense change. At the end of the day, you may wonder if a machine could do your job. And the answer is that it could probably do some of it. And that’s okay, because automation will free us up to do more of the thinking required to come up with what’s next, perhaps with the help of a new robot friend or two.

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How Your Mindset Is Holding You Back…..(And What To Do About It)

Innovation Tour Stockholm

In this blog we welcome guest blogger Fredrik Härén who will be speaking at the Innovation Tour Stockholm in March. Fredrik is an author and keynote speaker on business creativity, change and global business. In our business lives, we’re used to regularly upgrading our IT systems. But when was the last time you upgraded your mindset? I’m guessing your answer is ‘rarely’ or ‘never’. You’re not alone. I spend a lot of time travelling the world delivering keynotes to all sorts of different audiences, and our mindset – as well as our language – is holding most of us back. We’ve grown accustomed to new, disruptive technology, creating new markets and giving us new services and options in ways we’ve never considered or imagined. And that disruption has happened because someone chose to look at a solution or outcome differently. They changed their mindset. I’m not suggesting we all need to become serial entrepreneurs, but our static, fixed mindset and the language we use to refer to the world around us is limiting our potential with new technology and tools. Take the internet for example. Years ago, everyone referred to ‘web pages’ because that’s how we thought of its structure. (Remember WAP?). Today, we just see it as content, which the likes of Netflix, and a host of other companies are monetizing. Likewise, the rise and fall of early mobile phone companies had as much to do with their mindset as it did with their market share. Eriksson and Nokia looked at the mobile phone and thought, ‘how much computing power can we put in a phone’? It was the wrong question. Apple said, ‘how much of a phone can we put into a mini computer?’. The same thing is going on today. Drones would never have gained traction so rapidly if we had referred to them as ‘micro helicopters’ because that kind of language and vocabulary automatically limits the way we think of their potential. By calling them drones (with no pre-existing frame of reference), we haven’t put them into a pigeon-hole. My point in telling you this is to make you aware that you’re doing it. Just having simple awareness of the way we are thinking, the language we are using and the frame of reference we are imposing, can change things. It can help us look at the problems and desired outcomes around us with fresh eyes. There’s so much more I’d like to tell you that I can’t cover in a single blog, but it is something I’ll be covering in greater depth at the upcoming OpenText Innovation Tour in Stockholm on 29 March. If you’re interested in learning how to take the blinders off and apply new ways of thinking to your own work and personal life, I’d love to see you there. You can register here. Fredrik Härén has delivered more than 2,000 presentations in over 60 countries on six continents. He was voted Speaker of The Year in Sweden and selected as one of the “Sweden’s Top Ten Best Speakers Ever”. Fredrik is a Certified Speaking Professional (one of 700 globally) as well as GSP Global (one of only 30 globally). He is the author of nine books, including “The Idea Book”, which was included in “The 100 Best Business Books of All Time”. His latest book, “One World. One Company” discusses what it means to be a truly global organisation. 

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Ovum Names OpenText as a Leader in Web Experience Management

web experience management

The research and analysis firm Ovum has released a report naming two OpenText products as leaders in web experience management – also commonly known as web content management (WCM). The Ovum Decision Matrix: Selecting a Web Experience Management Solution, 2016-17 report cited OpenText™ TeamSite and OpenText™ Web Experience Management as market leaders because of their strengths in technology and execution. Here are strengths Ovum attributed to OpenText WCM solutions: Top-rated for maturity Strong roadmaps and long-term strategy Ease of use and interoperability Large portfolio of capabilities Ovum considers web experience management as a key element of digital transformation for today’s enterprise organizations, and we at OpenText fully agree. Organizations need to attract, engage, and hold the attention of their customers through round-the-clock, connected digital experiences. While web experience management or WCM initially focused on websites, it now encompasses so much more: WCM, digital asset management (DAM), web analytics, social, mobile experiences, etc. Sophisticated enterprise solutions cover the entire customer journey, and connect with other key platforms for marketing automation, e-commerce, and customer relationship management. Market leaders not only score high in key capabilities but are also widely accepted as best-of-breed. Read more details in the report and take a look at OpenText WCM offerings.

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“One Step” to Make Agent Guidance Easier

Agent Guidance

Have you looked at the desktop of the average customer service employee lately?  Even with unified communications and the consolidation of systems such as CRM and ERP, most desktops look more like a NASA command center than a helpful application to deliver a great customer experience. I have good news…and bad news. Let’s start with the bad news – your IT department has a long uphill journey to merge systems, unify the tools in use and reduce the chaos of customer data. The good news is that there are ways to provide agent guidance and overcome desktop application challenges that don’t include a forklift upgrade to a single desktop application. But don’t look for an easy trail to follow with the typical solutions on the market. Tools for guidance and automation are quite common from vendors the likes of OpenSpan (now Pega) and Cicero, but we find that today’s contact centers struggle to prioritize these efforts for several valid reasons — deployment and product complexity. In fact, in the report, “These Overlooked Assistance Tools for Your Customer Service Agents Can Boost Productivity,” Brian Manusama and Jim Davies of Gartner evaluated the complexity, deployment, vendor and ROI level for such tools. Here’s is one of the tables in the report: Table 2. Technology Category Overview In layman’s terms, I believe these tools are hard to configure, hard to use and hard to deploy. But why?  First, most of these tools are designed to be professional-service-revenue-generators and not happy-customers-that-use-it-generators. Second, your IT department doesn’t want to deal with yet ANOTHER thing on the desktop to configure or install. This is exactly why the OpenText™ Qfiniti team has made Qfiniti Optimize, our agent desktop automation and analytics solution, native to the OpenText Qfiniti platform. If you’re using another call recording and quality management solution, then let us show you our integrated WFO suite. If you’re already using Qfiniti today, then most likely you have everything you need to push guidance and automation previously installed and ready to test. To show you exactly what this means, we’re inviting you to see how easy it really is. We call it the Qfiniti Optimize One-Step. One Step. Give us one broken application workflow and let us show you how to message, guide, automate and monitor the agents to better AHT, compliance and accuracy. One Team. Give us one team of agents and let us enable Qfiniti Optimize in a manner of minutes, to try the “One Process” steps to improve their efficiency. One Month. Allow that team to use the automation and guidance during a one month trial. Nothing to install, configured by you, and monitored by us. We think that you’ll like what you see, and the agents in your “One Team” beta group will like it too.  I’ve thrown dozens of pizza parties in my time for call center agents, but perhaps your beta team will throw you and IT a pizza party for a change.

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OpenText ApplicationXtender 8.1 SP1 is Here!

ApplicationXtender

ApplicationXtender is now part of OpenText. Like you, we’ve always known that ApplicationXtender was a jewel within the Dell EMC Enterprise Content Division, but now that we’re part of OpenText, it’s great hearing this validation from our new colleagues as well. If you’d like to know more about the ECD integration, we recommend you read Stephen Ludlow’s recent blog which will also point you to the recording of an interesting AIIM webinar. OpenText invests in products and technologies that have the opportunity to address new markets and opportunities. ApplicationXtender fits into this category, offering a quick-to-implement and easy-to-use solution for companies and departments that don’t have the budget or IT support for a full-scale ECM implementation. As early proof of this commitment, we just launched the first service pack for ApplicationXtender 8.1: Certification / Security for Microsoft Windows Server 2016, SQL Server 2016, and Microsoft Office 2016 Image Capture Supportability update and PDF rendering performance enhancements Microsoft Office Integration Supportability update Cumulative Patches If you are new to ApplicationXtender or haven’t moved to ApplicationXtender 8.x yet, you may want to know that ApplicationXtender is a scalable, cost-efficient document management solution, optimized for line-of-business content. With ApplicationXtender 8, we’ve started our mobile and cloud-first journey, with a long list of enhancements over previous versions. Take a look: Mobile-enabled, with an intuitive user interface, no plugins required Cloud-ready, for public, private or hybrid cloud deployment Easy to learn! Users can stay in their familiar business applications. They can easily view content without invoking the application that created them Rapid to deploy, requiring minimal IT involvement Based on open standards such as RESTful Services and HTML5 Available in English, German, Simplified Chinese, Brazilian Portuguese, Spanish, French, Italian We’re excited not only about this release of ApplicationXtender, but its future as well! Learn more about ApplicationXtender here. Existing customers current on maintenance can access the latest release of the software by visiting the Dell EMC Support site.

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How Supply Chains are Embracing Digital Disruption

Digital

Many companies today are beginning to embrace the ‘fourth industrial revolution’ where ‘hyper connected’ production and supply chain environments will transform companies into digital businesses. These latest disruptive technologies can be broadly split into three categories. Firstly, new networks such as 5G mobile networks, Internet of Things related platforms, and other cloud-based network infrastructures. Secondly, new types of devices being connected to these networks, namely 3D printers, advanced robotics, drones and, of course, Internet of Things devices. Thirdly, new types of information coming off of these connected devices, data which can be archived and analyzed to obtain deeper insights into what is happening across an end to end supply chain. To understand how new digital transformation initiatives could affect supply chain operations, OpenText recently commissioned the analyst firm IDC to conduct a survey in this area. We had a great response to the survey with cross industry and cross region insights which I will be sharing via several blogs over the next few months. I am only going to share one key statistic from the new study here, and that is from the 250 companies surveyed, 56% said they had already appointed a Chief Digital Officer.  We asked IDC to test a specific hypothesis to see whether ‘new digital technologies would lead to new supply chain transformation initiatives’. If true, then it presents an opportunity for companies to consider outsourcing their B2B integration requirements while they focus on deploying their new digital projects. As part of the survey, we obtained the latest adoption patterns on new digital technologies, such as drones, IoT and wearable devices and we will share these and other findings from this interesting study over the coming months. There are five disruptive technologies that are gaining more coverage in the industrial media than others at the moment, drone-based technologies, 3D printers, wearable devices, advanced robotics and the Internet of Things. Our new IDC study looked at adoption rates for these technologies and many more technologies such as machine learning, especially in relation to supply chain operations. Why are these five technologies getting more coverage than other disruptive technologies? Well firstly all of the aforementioned technologies are being targeted at both the consumer and enterprise space, so for example you can purchase a 3D printer or robotic hoover for the home, and similar technologies are starting to be introduced to the enterprise. This is not the first time that consumer-based technologies have entered the work environment. Over recent years CIOs have had to adjust their corporate strategies to support ‘bring your own device’ based technologies brought into the enterprise by employees. So how are these five disruptive technology areas being deployed across the enterprise today? Drone Based Technologies – This technology has been getting a lot of coverage in the press in recent years, all for the wrong reasons. The drone device market has been impacted by various lobbying groups concerned by their safety and of course privacy as they fly across city centres. Local governments have been quick to establish no fly ‘drone zones’ over cities around the world, even before the economic benefit of these devices can be properly determined. Companies such as Amazon and their Prime Air drone has got the most press coverage with their drones which can deliver small packages to consumers. This ‘last mile’ delivery of packages is an increasingly important area of development for third party logistics providers. DHL is one of the first 3PL providers to leverage this technology to deliver medicines to remote islands in the Far East where there is not enough space for traditional aircraft runways. There are initiatives underway to define air corridors for air-based drone devices, but of course drones don’t have to be limited to the air. Starship Technologies for example has developed a small autonomous vehicle that has a payload capacity to carry two shopping bags. The intention is that this small vehicle can deliver shopping ordered by a consumer and deliver to their home address. But what if you could use the same technology to deliver small components from automotive suppliers located on a supplier park near to a major automotive OEM? Supplier parks are being established in all the major automotive hubs around the world today and these types of autonomous drone devices could help to streamline the delivery efficiency of parts to car manufacturers in support of their Just-In-Time production environments. Drone based technologies are still relatively new, however they offer some unique capabilities to support today’s production and aftermarket retail sectors. Audi for example are starting factory tests of drones to deliver parts from inventory locations to trackside for fitting to vehicles. 3D Printing Technologies – 3D printing technologies are not new and in fact much of the early research into this area actually started in the early 1990’s. Back then it was known as stereolithography or rapid prototyping, both terms being used to describe the layer by layer curing of plastic based materials to create a 3D object. Today, the technology is being developed at a rapid pace, not just with the printing technology but the materials used as part of the printing process. From an automotive production point of view, extensive research is being undertaken in the use of metal-based 3D printing processes as these offer the greatest advancement in terms of both reducing production times and increasing customer satisfaction in the aftermarket service sector. On the production side, manufacturers such as VW Group are already producing 3D metal parts, initially on concept cars being exhibited at motor shows such as Geneva. 3D printing is actually transforming the design and engineering of tomorrow’s vehicles as more and more parts are being identified for ‘design for replacement’. So for example if a car goes in for a service and a broken support bracket needs to be replaced, rather than ordering a new bracket from a supplier, the replacement bracket can be 3D printed in the dealer service centre and then fitted to the car being repaired. This introduces the concept of the ‘zero length supply chain’, where parts can be 3D printed on demand and no 3PLs are involved in the delivery of replacement parts. This is likely to transform the automotive aftermarket service sector. One manufacturer, Local Motors in North America is pushing 3D printing technologies to its limit by manufacturing an entire vehicle using 3D printing processes. Local Motors could be considered as an automotive industry disruptor in a similar way to Tesla Motors. Whereas Tesla has cornered the market in the premium electric vehicle market, Local Motors looks set to transform the modular construction of vehicles using new 3D printing technologies. Wearable Technologies – In recent years there has been a trend to develop mobile apps for enterprise smart phones and tablet devices however now there is an increasing trend to develop apps for wearable technologies as well. The adoption of wearable technologies in the consumer sector has grown exponentially over the past couple of years. Technologies such as Apple’s Watch, Microsoft HoloLens and Google Glass have been getting the most attention from the enterprise and this has been driven by a need to provide employees with digital product information any time, any place or anywhere. Apple Watch is relatively new to the market and enterprises are still learning how this technology could benefit production and supply chain operations. The ability to view information relating to B2B transactions such as purchase order status or Advanced Ship Notice delivery status could transform the delivery and monitoring of such transactions across a business network. For example being able to act upon an undelivered ASN before it impacts downstream production processes, could be of immense benefit to a company. In addition using mapping apps to track shipment deliveries etc could help to increase the level of end to end visibility across a supply chain. More info on this in an earlier blog. Microsoft HoloLens, using augmented reality technology overlaid across a real world environment, could transform collaborative review processes. For example not just at the design stage of a new project but also across retail distribution networks where advanced features of a new vehicle can be demonstrated to potential buyers. Volvo Cars announced a partnership with Microsoft to install HoloLens across their dealer networks to allow potential buyers of their cars to visualize and ‘experience’ the various safety features of their vehicles. To learn how HoloLens could be used for visualizing information flowing across our Business Network, take a look at this blog. The one piece of technology that obtained the most interest when it was launched two years ago was Google Glass. Even though version one was retired by Google in 2015, Version two is rumoured to be released in the very near future. Glass has the ability to transform how for example production workers access digital assembly information or how service technicians access repair information. VW announced in December 2015 that they were deploying Glass to production workers in one of the factories, providing them with the ability to view assembly drawings, assembly videos and other product specific digital information within the Glass device. This allows workers to access any digital asset related to the assembly of a vehicle. Devices such as Glass will transform the role of the warehouse picker who can be guided to part collection points using maps and other location specific information which can be presented in their Glass device, keeping their hands free at all times. Advanced Robotics Technologies – Over the past few years, Google has acquired eight robotics companies including the infamous Boston Dynamics, a leading developer of advanced robotic devices for the US military. Google has been applying their robotics research towards production environments and in the future it is possible that Google may develop an operating system specifically targeted towards managing production robots. In fact, Google is already working closely with Foxconn, a leading contract manufacturer in the high tech sector, to replace up to a million manual workers across their Chinese production plants with advanced robots known as ‘Foxbots’. One of the key drivers for this robotics research is to try and develop more intelligent robots that can not only think for themselves but also sense their surroundings in a more accurate manner. Another leading robot manufacturer, Rethink Robotics, developed the ‘Baxter’ robot to try and transform production line operations. Traditional single arm robots normally require a safety cell to work within so that workers on the shop floor don’t get injured. Baxter meanwhile has proximity sensors placed in both of its arms so that if anyone approaches Baxter then it can shut down immediately. The area of artificial intelligence is going to further develop the advancement of industrial robots and when combined with the connected nature of the ‘Internet of Things’, production lines are going to become increasingly automated, self-sensing and more responsive to changing production requirements. The Internet of Things – if there is one disruptive technology that is getting the most interest from the industrial manufacturing sector, it is the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT or the Industrial Internet, Internet of Everything, Internet Plus etc all exist to achieve the same thing, namely to provide a way for billions of connected devices to be able to transfer gigabytes of data with Big Data repositories where trends can be analysed and reported upon. The IoT will transform the 360 degree view of information and visibility of physical shipments moving across end to end supply chains. RFID technologies have been used for over twenty years, with mixed success in terms of adoption across the manufacturing industry however the IoT gives RFID a new sense of purpose and further investment in RFID technologies is now taking place to support IoT initiatives. IoT is also driving significant merger and acquisition and consolidation activities across the high tech sector, with a significant amount of M&A activity taking place in the semi-conductor sector. IoT is transforming industries, business processes and providing companies with significant operational benefits. The supply chain stands to benefit considerably from the IoT and there are three immediate areas where IoT can add value to a supply chain environment. To find out more about these three use cases, please take a look at an IoT  webinar with the lead IoT analyst from Gartner late last year. All five technologies that I discussed in this blog post will eventually find their way into more digital supply chains, as depicted by the diagram above. Key to the success of these future digital supply chains will be to establish an end to end ‘digital backbone’. B2B/EDI networks will evolve into more intelligent business networks where connected devices can share structured and unstructured information in a seamless manner with backed enterprise systems and Big Data repositories. OpenText is continually investing in our Business Network and my previous blog post highlighted some of the recent enhancements we have made to our Business Network. I will discuss further enhancements in the near future. OpenText has a broad portfolio of Enterprise Information Management solutions to help enable the digital business. One thing’s for sure, B2B integration will be at the heart of these digital transformation initiatives and I will share some proof points on how this will be achieved in future blog posts along with discussing the type of supply chain transformation initiatives being undertaken. If you would like to learn more about the IDC study then I will be presenting key findings at our series of European Innovation Tour events during the second half of March 2017. If you haven’t registered yet then please click here.

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Who’s ready for OpenText Enterprise World?

2-17 OpenText Enterprise World

For the last 19 years, OpenText Enterprise World has grown to become a major event in the industry. And 2017 marks a new chapter in our premier event’s history. This year’s conference will be unlike any before! We have prepared an extraordinary event that will offer insight into the skills, tools and directions that businesses require to be successful in the age of digital. Homeward Bound We couldn’t be more excited to bring the conference home to Canada. From July 11-13, 2017, we will be at the award-winning Metro Toronto Convention Centre in the heart of downtown Toronto. What’s New at this Year’s Enterprise World This year, we designed an entirely new experience for attendees with four customized conferences under one roof to meet individual business needs: OpenText User Conference addresses specific uses and applications of the OpenText platform, highlighting Customer Experience Management, Business Network, Enterprise Content Management, Business Process Management, Analytics and Discovery. OpenText Industry Conference identifies and explores the trends impacting the Financial Services, Life Sciences, Public Sector and Energy & Engineering industries OpenText Partner and Technology Conference incorporates tracks for both traditional OpenText partners as well as a brand new opportunity for start-up technology companies to showcase their innovations From the onsite expo to the technology pavilion, OpenText Enterprise World 2017 immerses you in the digital trends impacting businesses across the globe: Engage in 175 breakouts, product demos and informational sessions to get the knowledge you need to digitally transform your business Connect with OpenText executives, industry leaders and peers to discuss the best practices that will lead your company to success Discover the strategies, tactics, and tools to digitize you organization Gain insight into the trends and drivers that are transforming business for a competitive advantage Whatever your path to digital transformation, OpenText Enterprise World is the place to be. If you haven’t registered, what are you waiting for? Get to it and Register! We can’t wait to welcome you to the future.

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6 Considerations for Charting Your Digital Course

Today’s digital disruptors make headlines across the sectors with sweeping changes in data management, analytics, and customer experience. A wave of change is rolling in as organizations automate the way customers buy, the way suppliers fulfill orders, the way manufacturing happens, and more. As customers and business professionals, we are witnessing how digital transformation is restructuring the face of business and, ultimately, our world. Jumping the information hurdle An initial challenge for large organizations moving towards a digital future is getting a handle on the terabytes of information and content generated by employees and systems each week, along with the information collected from websites and contact centers. These volumes add up to far more data than any human could read, process, and fully understand. And, on its own, this information is of no use; we have to be able to use it to generate value, improve service, and increase customer satisfaction. Without a doubt, information holds intelligence and your ability to get to that insight is what helps you to compete. To that end, here are six thoughts on charting a digital course for your business: Increase your competitive preparedness. Digital transformation can help your business quickly adapt to shifting customer demands, making it possible to compete with old and new rivals. Use a digital approach for a big win. The ability to go digital can level the playing field for some businesses, allowing them to have a huge impact on established markets, companies, and brands. What you may not have been able to do manually, or at scale, you can launch into with a digital approach. Gain an advantage with analytics. Sticking with out-dated methods of managing and analyzing data, keeping processes manual, and only operating at human speed puts your business at risk of being outperformed by competitors. You can regain your advantage by implementing intelligent systems to detect and analyze predictive trends. Unlock the value of information you already have. By using data and information analytics with content and process management technologies, you can uncover valuable ‘digital breadcrumbs.’ This insight can help your business to make intelligent changes to create products that better suit customer requirements, improve organizational efficiencies, and implement self-regulating business processes that save time and money. Use automation as a differentiator. Automating tasks that previously required human intelligence can now take place using digital processes. Consider the way Tesla Motors releases over-the-air updates to improve the functionality of their electric cars, just as if you were downloading mobile phone software. Not only are owners spared a trip to the garage, but Tesla cuts the expense of scheduling and managing customer visits. Create a digital culture in your organization. Don’t go digital for digital’s sake. Adopt a well-planned strategy to understand where digital can deliver the best benefits for your business, and start there. Let this go hand-in-hand with fostering a cultural change in your organization that acknowledges how employees may view the impact of a digital-first approach on their own roles. To explore how to move forward with your digital transformation, take a look at how OpenText Release 16 enables companies to manage the flow of information in the digital enterprise from engagement to insight.

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Webinar Outlines a Bright Future as OpenText and Documentum Come Together

Documentum webinar

On February 2, I had the good fortune to participate in a very interesting webinar hosted by AIIM. Inspired by the new union of OpenText and Documentum, the event brought together a variety of experts to discuss what the pairing means to customers of both, the partner network, and the industry in general. And the interest was certainly there — registration numbers were some of the highest AIIM has ever seen. Well, we covered what we set out to, and more! The roundtable discussion and subsequent Q&A session were wide-ranging and dynamic, addressing the concerns of the customer base and future product integration plans, but also delving into a wide open sharing of views around the present and future state of ECM and the skills that organizations are going to need in order to be successful. If you didn’t get the chance to attend the webinar, then setting aside some time to listen to the webinar-on-demand would be 60 minutes of your time well spent. Regardless of your current solution provider or your role in ECM, there’s some thought-provoking perspectives on topics like “the difference between ECM and Content Services” and “the kinds of technology and business competencies an organization needs to have – or develop – in order to embrace this shift toward content services.” I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Finally, please join us on February 14 as AIIM Chief Evangelist John Mancini and I connect once again to present Next-Gen Information Management — Succeeding in a New Era. We’ll be examining the emerging age of Content Services and what that means to the traditional concept and practice of ECM. Sit in to gain valuable insight into the changing definition of ECM and learn the next steps that will allow you to prepare for the future while maximizing your current investment. Here’s hoping everything OpenText and Documentum do together in the future is as great as our first webinar!

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Why DAM Isn’t Just Pretty Pictures on the Web Any More

DAM webinar

Why do you purchase and implement a Digital Asset Management (DAM) platform in the first place? If you’re like me when I ran the content management team at another company, it was originally to control the flow of approved images to the company’s online presence. We were revamping the website and eCommerce platform and a key part of the project was to improve the images used, and to make sure that they were both brand and safety compliant. It didn’t take long for the word to spread that we now had a single safe source for brand approved images. Soon we were talking to other groups in the company, and even our dealer network about how they could contribute to, and access, the DAM. Instead of just storing the images selected for use on the website we were soon storing every picture from a product photo shoot, then came interest from the company archives. In the space of eighteen months we had passed one million assets and over eight-thousand users accessing them. But the most interesting part was the way that the DAM became the source for applications and use cases that we had never considered. We had developed a way to create lightweight 3D models of our products, and started storing the source files for those on the DAM too. Suddenly the DAM was the source driving Augmented Reality proof-of-concept innovations, being used to populate digital signage at dealer showrooms, as well as training, facilities planning, trade shows, coffee table art books, calendars, licensed merchandise, and more. At the point where I left the company we had recorded sixteen different use cases for the content stored in the DAM, and I’m sure there’s even more now. The thing is, I was far from alone in witnessing how a good DAM platform can be used in different. powerful ways. Since joining OpenText I’ve seen other uses, such as: Media companies who use their DAM to deliver DVD packaging and advertising banners that automatically resize and place the correct logos and text based on the intended markets and distribution channels. Drinks companies where the DAM is a central component of their high-profile sports sponsorships programs A rail company that uses the DAM to manage rail inspection videos from cameras mounted on the front of locomotives An aerospace engine company that uses its DAM to store and analyze images of parts from any engine involved in an accident So how are you using your DAM platform? Join us on Wednesday February 15th for a webinar on how to Unlock New Potential (and ROI) From Your DAM. Click here to register

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3 Tips to Gain Mindshare for Your Contact Center

Contact Center

One of my favorite discussion topics with OpenText WFO customers and other contact center professionals is about the internal brand perception of the contact center within any organization. Contact center brand perception? Yes, exactly. Every enterprise contact center is perceived differently by other business units and C-level executives depending on how the company approaches its customers and markets. Is the company strictly bottom-line driven, wringing every last dollar out of its budgets in order to maximize profits? Or is the company customer-centric, doing everything it can to improve customer service in order to compete effectively in the marketplace? I love talking about this at customer meetings and industry events because we all know the contact center holds the key to vast and rich customer information, exactly the kind of customer knowledge that every department and every executive should want to understand in some form or another. Better business decisions are made when more is known about customer preferences, behaviors and opinions. So why is it that the contact center is more often perceived as a cost-center rather than a customer experience leader? Why are we constantly tasked with delivering better service, hitting higher sales targets, scoring higher customer satisfaction responses but with ever-tightening personnel resources and budget dollars? Why is the contact center constantly tasked with delivering better service with ever-tightening personnel resources and budget dollars? I invite you to register now for a webinar on February 23 when Ken Landoline, Principal Analyst for Customer Engagement at Ovum, and I will explore this issue that I’m so passionate about. Make no mistake: this is an internal brand perception issue. But we will approach the discussion from a very practical point of view, offering you specific tips on how to secure greater investment and ensure organizational mindshare. In this webinar we will share proven methods about how to get more in order to do more in your contact center: – Learning what KPIs matter most, identify, provide and relay metrics that matter – Setting up your dashboard, quickly identify information to make real time decisions and predict behavior – Becoming an indispensable resource, understand and coordinate contact center goals with others in your organization With this actionable information in hand, you can then manage or influence up and be the agent of change who helps evolve the internal brand perception of your contact center from cost center to value center. I look forward to you joining us at this webinar. Doing More with Less? 3 Tips to Gain Budget and Mindshare for Your Contact Center Webinar Date: Thursday, February 23 Time: 2:00 PM ET / 1:00 PM CT / 12:00 PM MT / 11:00 AM PT Register Now

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Empower Your Mobile Workforce

mobile workforce

Is your mobile workforce integrated into your IT based business processes? Can maintenance engineers look up data, order parts and enter job details directly at maintenance sites? Does your delivery staff need to get signatures for delivered items? Do you need to notify workers about their next task? Do you want your Sales team to submit orders right at the customer site? Do your mobile workers need to take photos of work sites and submit them to headquarters? Do you need to track the GPS position of mobile workers for further processing? There are endless scenarios where organizations can benefit from mobile IT solutions. Mobile infrastructure Mobile network infrastructure is at a point where high speed network access is available everywhere. And mobile devices like smartphones and tablets have internal databases and file storage capabilities that enable developers to create offline capable apps without problems. Technically there is no reason to exclude your mobile workforce in your IT processes today, and create a more efficient organization and a better, more responsive customer experience. Mobile workforce app development best practices All this can be easily done with low effort app development and usage of mobile devices like smartphones, phablets and tablets. The development effort for mobile workforce apps can be kept quite low when using multi-platform development tools like OpenText™ Gupta TD Mobile. Other than Apple and Google’s native development tools which require high effort platform dependent coding, TD Mobile offers development of mobile workforce apps for all mobile platforms from one source code, empowering organizations to develop mobile workforce apps that work on any mobile device at a small budget. Integrate mobile workforce apps into your IT infrastructure TD Mobile workforce apps can easily connect to any of your backend IT systems. Using the no-coding database access feature, developers can configure database access to all SQL and NoSQL databases without actually writing any code. If you are using a Web Service or REST service layer for your business logic, TD Mobile can easily access these services as well. Integrating business logic from SAP, SalesForce and OpenText AppWorks is easy as well. The data communication with the datacenter and the binding of backend-values to visual objects is automatic as well. TD Mobile is built to automate and reduce the development effort of mobile apps as much as possible. Mobile workforce apps require strong security and integration with office security systems. With TD Mobile all data communication between the data-center and the mobile device can be configured as strongly SSL encrypted. At the backend TD Mobile can interact with any security provider as LDAP and Microsoft Active Directory to force sign-on via corporate standards. Smartphones and tablets contain a host of device features like camera, GPS sensor, accelerometer, fingerprint reader and many software features and apps like the contacts database, email, notifications and much more. Developers crafting apps using TD Mobile can easily access the device and software features of smartphones and tablets. The built-in camera can be used to decode barcodes, the GPS feature can be used to detect the current position, notifications can be sent to an app user, to for example send the next work order. The possibilities of integrating device features are endless only limited by a developer’s imagination. Many organizations have grown international and require mobile workforce apps to adopt to local language. Using OpenText Gupta TD Mobile development teams can build multi-lingual apps from scratch. All required UX languages can be provided in one single app source. At application runtime the app chooses the language to use based on the current locale of the device. Native app deployment and Web app deployment TD Mobile apps can be deployed as native Android, iOS and Windows Phone apps. Developers can easily monetize their efforts as native apps can be deployed through the Apple AppStore, Google Play store and the Windows store. Apple and Google enterprise deployment options can be used to deploy internal workforce apps. Additionally or alternatively TD Mobile apps can be deployed as Web apps allowing to run them on any device that hosts a Web browser. This comes in very handy when the app needs to be used on desktop computers that use Windows, Linux or MacOS operating systems. If you are still using paper-based processes for your mobile workforce it is time to rethink and integrate your mobile workforce into your IT systems giving them access to anything they need from anywhere to increase efficiency and speed up internal processes, increase efficiency and such providing a better more responsive customer experience. Download a free trial version of OpenText Gupta TD Mobile 2.1  now.

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Steel Mill Gains Insight, Makes Better Decisions Through Analytics

analytics

When you think of a steel mill, crucibles of glowing molten metal, giant molds and rollers probably come to mind, not complex financial analysis. But like every other industry nowadays, steel mills – especially ones that specialize in scrap metal recycling – have to keep reviewing their material and production costs and the ever-changing demand for their products, so that they can perform efficiently in a competitive global market. That was the case for North Star BlueScope Steel in Delta, Ohio, which produces hot-rolled steel coils, mostly for the automotive and construction industries. Founded in 1997, the company is the largest scrap steel recycler in Ohio, processing nearly 1.5 million tons of metal a year. To operate profitably, North Star BlueScope examines and analyzes its costs and workflow every month, pulling in data from all over the company, plus external market research. But it was hampered by slow and inefficient technology, centered on Microsoft Excel spreadsheets so large and unwieldy, they took up to 10 minutes just to open. Comparing costs for, say, the period of January through May required North Star staffers to open five separate spreadsheets (one for each month) and combine the information manually. Luckily, the company was already using OpenText™ iHub  as a business intelligence platform for its ERP and asset management systems. It quickly realized iHub would be a much more efficient solution for its monthly costing analysis than the Excel-based manual process. Making Insights Actionable In fact, North Star BlueScope Steel ended up adopting the entire OpenText™ Analytics Suite, including OpenText™ Big Data Analytics (BDA),  whose advanced approach to business intelligence lets it easily access, blend, explore, and analyze data. The results were impressive. The steel company can now analyze a much larger range of its data and get better insights to steer decision-making. For example, it can draw on up to five years’ worth of data in a single, big-picture report, or drill down to a cost-per-minute understanding of mill operations. Now it has a better idea of the grades and mixes of steel products most likely to generate higher profits, and the customers most likely to buy those products. To learn more about how North Star BlueScope Steel is using OpenText Analytics to optimize its operations, plus its plans to embrace the Internet of Things by plugging data streams from its instruments about electricity consumption, material usage, steel prices, and even weather directly into Big Data Analytics, click here.

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Drawing Conclusions – A Visual Picture of Our Increasingly Digitized World

Innovation Tour

In this blog we welcome guest blogger Jasmin Deniz Karatas who will be attending Innovation Tour London in March. Jasmin is a Consultant, Digital Interactive for Accenture. As human beings we all interact with the world slightly differently. Some of us understand and digest information best when we hear it. Others remember things better by sight, with pictures and graphics. And some of us are “hands-on” learners who prefer to touch, move, build, or draw what we learn, and perhaps even involve some type of physical activity alongside it. Most of us have an intuitive preference for one of these styles over another, depending on how we’re wired. Regardless of your ‘style’ of absorbing new information, one thing we all have in common is that digitized data now surrounds all of us, and digitized environments are helping to make us smarter and harness our human potential. It’s something my Accenture Interactive colleagues will be outlining at the OpenText Innovation Tour London on 21 March using highlights from the latest Fjords Trends 2017 report, Mixed Reality and Humanizing Artificial Intelligence, which examines the most significant emergent digital trends expected to disrupt organizations and society in the year ahead. For my part, I’ll be painting you a visual picture of what’s being discussed on stage, in parallel with the presentation, as well as the topics and issues raised from audience members in the form of questions. As a Consultant within Accenture’s Digital Interactive, I specialise in a human-centred design approach with a focus on gamification and design thinking. I take what I hear and paint it on a canvas. People often tell me it makes them ‘hear with their eyes’. From my perspective, it’s an exciting thing to do. I tend to go into my own world and visually represent whatever it is that I’m hearing. Once I’ve started, I continue to add to the canvas long after the presentation has ended. Many people often sit in on a session, watch what I do, and then come back a few hours later to see how it’s progressed. In the same way that all of you will be looking at your information strategies more closely over the coming year, I’ll be painting you a visual canvas of the critical new technologies, design considerations and disruptive trends that will shape both your thinking and interaction.Depending on your individual style of engaging with new information, it might help you to better digest what’s being said, or visualise what it would mean for your own organization. My hope is that it will make you think about what this means for your own actionable insights in a rapidly evolving digitized world. I look forward to seeing you at the event. You can register to attend the Innovation Tour London here.

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100,000 Pieces of Content a Day

content

It often feels like we are being deluged by content, we are exposed to more stories, images, video, and audio than ever before. Yet most of that content (social media aside) has been sorted, indexed, written, edited, managed, and gone through a publication process before it even gets to us, the consumer. How do those who produce the content deal the vast amounts of raw information, text, and images etc., that go to make up the stories that we see? And how do they make their publishing efficient enough to keep up with the unedited real time content streaming across the various social media platforms? These were the sort of problems facing News UK the publisher of some of the biggest and most popular British newspapers. The Times, Britain’s oldest daily national, and The Sunday Times are the world’s best-known quality newspapers. The Sun is the most read British newspaper, with more than four million readers each day. News UK also operates a number of digital channels, including Sun Bingo, Sunday Times Wine Club, and Riviera Travel. News UK receives and generates more than 100,000 new digital assets each day, and manages in excess of 25 million assets in total. The assets including text, images, pages, video, graphics, and audio needed to be captured, indexed, and quickly made available to users across the business. Their existing digital asset management system (DAM) had served the business well, but was more suited to print media, with limited options for moving towards a converged, multichannel solution. It also lacked the ability to be easily integrated to its chosen editorial system. “We need to drive a greater responsiveness for global news coverage, rapidly publishing articles that provide a consistent, rich multimedia experience for readers across all channels and publication brands,” says Simon Pumphrey, Systems Manager at News UK.” Against a backdrop of technical change, we have to ensure we remain at the forefront of how news is delivered, across all channels.” In looking for a replacement for their legacy system the new DAM solution had to be faster, easier to use, and be more cost-effective than our existing system. It should also help us ensure compliance with usage rights of the assets we use, with comprehensive tracking, audit, and reporting. We wanted a browser-based solution, based on open standards, which would be straightforward to integrate to our editorial system. OpenText™ Content Hub for Publishers (CHP) meets all of these criteria and more,” says Pumphrey. CHP has been introduced as part of a large-scale transformation project to increase collaboration across editorial teams. “The business critical deployment of OpenText CHP allows News UK to collect as many as 100,000 or more new digital assets and news feeds submitted each day by multiple journalists, photographers, and agencies into a single system. The OpenText content Analytics engine automatically tags these assets, ensuring content can be quickly found and retrieved across the various editorial desks.” Not only can the assets be easily repurposed across The Times, The Sunday Times, and The Sun, but the solution ensures the correct rights are associated with each asset, helping to mitigate the risk of digital rights infringement. “In today’s connected world, customers are choosing to engage with our newspapers across a growing number of devices and, increasingly, we need to manage the growing types of digital content to create a richer digital experience. We chose OpenText CHP as the scalability of the platform has enabled us to move from a print-centric process to one where journalists can associate multimedia content directly into different channels,” You can find more information about the News UK implementation of CHP here, and download the white paper on Content Hub strategy.

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Matthew Storm Joins the OpenText WFO Team

WFO

If you follow Matthew Storm on social media you may see “marketer, speaker, traveler, foodie, a farmer’s son, a customer service fanatic, lover of life and empty-nester.”  Sounds more like a transformer to me! Matthew has been working on mobile solutions for the past year as part of the OpenText team and as of this month, has stepped up as the product marketing team leader for OpenText™ Experience Suite.  This includes Workforce Optimization, Customer Communications Management, Digital Asset Management and Web Experience Management. Matthew has spent the last decade working overseas and leading a great team at NICE Systems, in addition to his years of contact center operational experience. He has a proven track record of delivering innovative and action-oriented results that unerringly focus on what matters most to both his internal and external customers. Fun and engaging, highly collaborative, deliberate when necessary but with a keen sense of speed to market – these are some of the attributes you’ll appreciate most when working with Matthew. I spoke with him about his new role, and here are three reasons he’s thrilled to be at OpenText: Analyst Recognition The Ian Jacobs-led team of Forrester researchers recently looked at what contact center teams are doing and what problems they’re solving with WFO solutions.  In their research, Forrester also took into account how easy it is to work with the vendors.  At OpenText, a valuable two-way relationship is based on how much a vendor listens to its customers. One of our references told Forrester, “We have had a seat at the table to influence the overall product road map.”  We are excited to bring new innovation to this space and honored to be categorized “Strong Performer”. Download your copy of the Forrester Wave for Workforce Optimization here. WFO Innovation The OpenText™ Qfiniti team has been busy!  In the past 18 months, the OpenText Qfiniti platform has released key innovations in agent guidance, desktop analytics, analytics-based QA, mobility, gamification, and managed services, all with a consistent user interface and unparalleled scale. Matthew was instrumental in the early stages of Qfiniti’s birth in 2003 and said, “I’m proud to see that the fresh innovations to OpenText™ WFO Software are grounded in the longstanding best practices of usability and customer-driven advancement.” Connecting Customer Journeys Finally, while many vendors talk about the multi-channel experience, OpenText has the depth of portfolio to actually “create” digital experiences on the web and social media that match the conversations happening in the contact center.  Matthew recently shared with an analyst that, “every department in an organization thinks that their group sets the tone for the customer experience; but in reality each department is driving amazing silos of mixed delight.  OpenText is more than just multichannel and journey-speak – our solutions touch every angle of customer experience management and seek to connect experiences to drive customer lifetime value.” Learn more about OpenText Experience Suite today. Welcome to the team, Matt!

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ECM that Works the Way You Do – Announcing eDOCS 16.1

eDocs

It’s here and it’s shipping! OpenText is pleased to launch eDOCS 16.1 – overflowing with innovations for an increasingly secure, flexible work environment that ‘works the way you do’. The release reflects our continued pursuit of secure, easy ECM. Innovations provide greater protection against security threats and data breaches, while helping you meet the needs of your changing workforce and their desire for easier, faster access to information and more flexible ways of sharing and collaborating. Flexible and Intuitive eDOCS 16.1 includes a host of functionality for more a more flexible and intuitive work environment – such as FlexFolders to view content based on preferences and re-inherit security and metadata when moving documents between folders, Desktop Sync and Save to synchronize content between a DM folder or workspace and your local drive, targeted records search to constrain a search within a specific file part for faster results, and responsive webtop design to optimize the user experience across devices. Increased Security and Collaboration eDOCS 16.1 also introduces new layers of security and easy ways of adding it, including single-click document security and metadata “look up” security (native ethical walls). For improved sharing and collaboration, Shared Workspaces let you create, secure, and share a workspace with others in eDOCS DM, and integration with OpenText™ Core provides easy, secure content sharing with external parties via the cloud. Streamlined Administration Ease of administration is critical for organizations looking to do more with less. With 16.1 we’ve incorporated library maintenance, FlexFolder administration, and management of client settings into the DM Management Studio. This provides streamlined administration of on-premises or private cloud deployments within a single application. Curious to learn more? View our slideshare presentation, watch our 16.1 Preview Video, visit our microsite, or contact us for a demo at eDOCSinfo@opentext.com.

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OpenText Completes its Acquisition of Dell EMC Enterprise Content Division, including Documentum

As many of you know, OpenText has recently completed on the previously announced acquisition of Dell EMC’s Enterprise Content Division, including Documentum. This acquisition cements OpenText’s position as the ECM market leader and represents an exciting time for the company! Firstly, Documentum is here to stay. We are committed to protecting Documentum customers’ investment with new innovations and continued support for both the OpenText Content Suite and OpenText Documentum. OpenText will expand ECD’s strategy of developing next generation, cloud-native content applications based on the OpenText LEAP Platform. The acquisition of Documentum only strengthens OpenText’s position as the Next-Generation Cloud Content Services Leader and helps drive our promise to accelerate Digital Transformation for our customers. Integrating the ECD portfolio within the OpenText EIM solution presents an amazing opportunity for all of OpenText’s customers. And, with our Innovation Tour continuing to travel around the globe we have a perfect opportunity to share our vision.  For example bringing analytics and intelligence to Documentum, D2, Life Sciences Application, Capture, InfoArchive and Leap. The Innovation Tour is an exciting opportunity to hear more about how the OpenText roadmap will encompass all of the ECD products to deliver on the promise of digital transformation.  I am also excited to deliver a live code demonstration of the very first integration of an ECD product into the OpenText suite. The upcoming tour schedule is: London: March 21, 2017  – Register Now Paris: March 23, 2017 – Register Now Munich: March 28, 2017- Register Now Stockholm: March 29, 2017 – Register Now Eindhoven: March 30, 2017 – Register Now I look forward to seeing you in one of the EMEA innovation Tour stops. I have also included my contact information and would love to hear from you and learn more about your use of the ECD, Documentum Products. Kind regards Muhi S. Majzoub EVP,  Engineering and Information Technology e: mmajzoub@opentext.com t:  muhismajzoub

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Avoiding Digital Culture Shock: Why Financial Services Must Embed A Digital Culture

Financial Services

In this blog we welcome guest blogger Lindley Gooden, Managing Director of Greenscreen and a former television and radio journalist. Join him as he chairs a financial services live debate on embedding a digital culture at the Innovation Tour in March. As a former journalist for the BBC, ITV and Sky, as well as more than a decade spent working with companies worldwide, I’ve had the privilege of spending more twenty-five years helping people to tell the world, as clearly as possible, what’s on their minds. It’s involved meeting some 40,000 people – many of them consumers, technology vendors, business leaders – not least in the banking and financial services. You hear a lot of honest, practical and blunt points of view along the way. Indeed, listening to all sides of the conversation is rarely dull and always full of insights – particularly now, on the topic of digital transformation in financial services. As consumers, most of us have taken to it like a duck to water. We are not only empowered, but inevitably, impatient. High expectations, and low loyalty challenge every business sector – especially if we think we’re getting sub-standard service. But from an organisational perspective, it’s clear that many are struggling to tear down silos internally, while scrambling to put a convenient, connected and customer-focused front end onto legacy back office systems. Multichannel to omnichannel, to personalised to artificial intelligence (AI), all in less than ten years. So, as, technology vendors continue to demonstrate the benefits of an end-to-end digital process across the whole business, we’re now turning to the teams who turn that insight into practical value. Hearing so many accounts from the top makes it clear that it’s crucial to talk about the culture, sharing information and insights, and collaboration. Investment in technology offers powerful real-time decision-making, but digital transformation now needs to be part of the culture, not just part of the infrastructure. In our personal lives as consumers, we’ve already made the leap. But supporting innovative digitisation efforts at work is a new frontier that is now seen by more nimble operators in financial services as being equally important. Those organisations able to get employee buy-in to their digital vision, boost digital capabilities, and create a truly customer-centric culture have a noticeable competitive advantage. It’s something I’ll be discussing in depth at the upcoming OpenText Innovation Tour London on 21 March. I’ll be chairing a financial services live debate on embedding a digital culture with some of the industry’s foremost experts on the subject. With so much investment in understanding the technology, and gathering data and insights, it’s clear that the real digital training around culture is only just starting to kick in.  Getting this right will set the bar for how well your digital strategy will be executed and ultimately received. Getting it wrong (or failing to recognise the requirement in the first place) could be costly, and result in what Accenture calls “digital culture shock.”  That’s because transforming your business is one thing, but you must take your employees (and the right partners) with you. Obviously a challenge, but there are great examples across the sector that have produced stunning results. So this year, we want to explore real world examples, successes, practical advice, and results during the upcoming debate. If any of these issues sound familiar to you, I’d urge you to attend. It’s going to be an opportunity to hear – and contribute – at the highest level. Creating a workforce that’s digitally fit and focused on the customer’s omni-channel expectations in this brave new digital landscape is an extraordinary opportunity for growth, commercial gain and innovation from within. Join us in London. I look forward to seeing you there.

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Extending the Digital Supply Chain to Smaller Businesses with OpenText Freeway

Digital supply chain

One of the key challenges facing today’s procurement and supply chain operations is being able to digitally enable the end-to-end supply chain. Without 100% participation from all your trading partners it will be difficult to introduce an entirely digital supply chain. Whether you operate in the retail, consumer goods or automotive sectors, the challenge is the same, persuading your smallest trading partner to exchange transactions electronically with you. OpenText™ Business Network is the largest B2B integration platform in the world, we offer a range of B2B enablement tools to suit every size of company. From fax-based solutions right through to direct ERP integration-based solutions. Many smaller companies struggle to exchange B2B transactions electronically with their customers and sometimes being able to exchange transactions electronically is a condition of doing business. The main challenges relate to having limited technical expertise or simply not knowing where to start. OpenText™ Freeway is an affordable range of B2B e-commerce solutions that enables small and medium sized businesses to create, send, receive, print and manage EDI-based business documents. Built on over 15 years of experience, Freeway can either operate on-premises or in the cloud, the choice is yours. OpenText Freeway removes the pain of working with your customers, automating manual processes and removing paper based transactions, it’s all about improving time, efficiency, and reducing operational costs. Freeway Entry is ideal for the smaller company who just requires a B2B solution which is quick to deploy and relatively cheap to implement. Whereas, Freeway Professional is designed for the larger company that needs to integrate to back-office systems such as accounting packages and ERP systems. Freeway Professional integrates to over 200 different systems. With many industry specific trading partner modules available for retail, automotive, building, pharmaceutical and wholesalers, Freeway has been designed from the ground up to be quick to deploy and simple to use. For example your business can leverage over 1000 trading partner enablement kits to simplify how you work with key business partners across different industry sectors. I could use the remainder of this blog to discuss Freeway in a bit more detail, but why not take a look at our new video which introduces the range of Freeway solutions. You can access the video below. Whether on-premises or in the cloud, Freeway can add real value to your business. Freeway has been sold in the UK for many years, but we are making plans to expand our support of Freeway into other countries, all I can say for now is watch this space, things just got exciting for small and medium sized business! For more information on Freeway, please visit our website where you can also contact our team of experts who will be ready to assist with your query.

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Ten New Ways Business Network Supercharges Your B2B Integration Strategy

B2B

OpenText’s Business Network has evolved considerably since I first joined the company back in March 2006. Our core B2B integration platform Trading Grid was introduced in 2004 and around this time the company started to place a much stronger emphasis on helping companies manage their B2B environments through an outsourced, B2B Managed Services approach. GXS was acquired by OpenText in January 2014 and since then we have been able to leverage other products within our Enterprise Information Management (EIM)  portfolio and apply across our range of B2B integration solutions. Since joining OpenText’s product release schedule three years ago we have introduced more new functionality to our Business Network than at any time since I joined the company. This is great news for our global customers covering the automotive, high tech, retail, CPG and inancial services sectors. In April 2016 we aligned with OpenText’s other solution divisions to launch Release 16, the most complete set of product enhancements, covering all product lines, ever to be launched by OpenText. I wanted to use this blog to highlight some of the key B2B integration investments that we have made over the past eight months. As a reminder, Business Network is made up of two groups of solutions – structured, which covers the traditional B2B integration solutions and unstructured – which covers our secure information management solutions. My colleague Amy Perry covers the unstructured part of our network offerings and you can find more information on these via her blog, We have continued to invest heavily in our Business Network, expanding capabilities and improving how our customers leverage the various solutions and services that we offer today. Over the last few years many companies have been developing their corporate strategies around cloud, mobile and big data and we have embraced these and many other technologies across the various B2B integration solutions that we offer today. Release 16 offered a number of significant enhancements to our Business Network: Trading Grid Analytics, which uses embedded analytics across our B2B transaction flows to obtain, deep, rich and meaningful insights into what is going on across a supply chain operation. Logistics Track & Trace, offering improved end to end visibility of shipments as they move across the supply chain and embedded analytics to provide deep and rich intelligence of logistics carrier performance Enhanced Procure-to-Pay solutions which offer numerous enhancements to our suite of software as service-based Active Applications Enhanced trading partner digitization capabilities to enable the 100% enablement of even the smallest supplier with Fax2EDI and Email2EDI solution availability Mobility, providing mobile apps for transaction visibility and deductions management capabilities Since Release 16 we haven’t been sitting around!, we have been adding more and more capabilities to Business Network. I have undertaken many briefings with lead analyst firms, the same firms that covered our B2B integration activity at GXS, and they have been really encouraged by the level of investment that we have been placing into our Business Network and the plans in place for our future product roadmap. So let me now highlight the top ten features and capabilities that we have introduced in the last few months. Enhanced Trading Grid Analytics – Leveraging additional capabilities from OpenText™ Analytics, Trading Grid Analytics (TGA) now has additional capabilities to analyze transaction based information from a broader set of enterprise systems. We can now leverage a process called ‘data blending’ to accept transactions from third party B2B platforms and information from other enterprise systems such as ERP, TMS and WMS. Data blending consolidates all of this information into a single information flow and helps to provide a complete 360 degree view of information flowing across your end to end supply chain. In addition we can offer custom metrics, which allows companies to define any type of business report through an engagement with our Professional Services team. We have expanded support in our analytics platform (or better known as a data lake) for other document formats such as VDA, Tradacoms and RosettaNet. Finally we have also extended the support of TGA to include our customers on our Trading Grid Messaging Service (TGMS) platform, this will considerably increase the volume of transactions being processed by our analytics platform on a daily basis. Extended Web Services Capabilities – This is a really interesting area as there is a lot of noise in the market at the moment about the growing traction of APIs. However with more APIs comes more end points to manage, it is similar in a way to what happened in 2000 with the introduction of market exchanges and XML document formats. XML was seen to be the replacement for EDI but guess what, 17 years later and EDI is pretty much entrenched across most industry sectors. APIs require a certain amount of technical skills to configure. You may have to worry about multiple connections. As part of this set of enhancements, we have introduced some new web services based integration capabilities. So, for example, rather than you establishing a direct connection through an API to say SAP Ariba, we can now undertake the same integration through our Trading Grid environment. Thus preserving the one-to-many connections that we offer to many companies around the world. So you connect to our network and we take care of connecting to your trading partners or integrating to internal business systems. IS027001 Certification – With many companies taking their first steps into the cloud, working with a trusted partner that can offer a secure cloud-based environment is important for business success. OpenText™ B2B Managed Services platform, personnel, data center infrastructure now meets the requirements of the international security management certification. An important certification to ensure that your business information is managed correctly as it passes across our global Business Network infrastructure. HIPAA Compliance – allows OpenText to exchange healthcare related transactions, for example between healthcare providers and doctors surgeries, across our Business Network, thus helping to increase the overall volume of transactions moving across our network on an annual basis. Extended Mobile Support with Active Orders – We have been able to leverage many different solutions across the broader Enterprise Information Management portfolio of solutions that OpenText offers. For example Appworks, a mobile app development platform that we leveraged last year to develop our Active Documents mobile app. We have now extended the mobile support of our Active Applications (SaaS based B2B integration solutions) to include Active Orders Mobile. Active Orders provides end-to-end visibility of the lifecycle of purchase order based transactions and the extension of this application to a mobile device allows users to track the status of any purchase order at any time in any place. Drummond AS4 Communications Certification – the AS4 communications protocol has been around for a few years now, I remember blogging about this in 2010 after I first heard about this new communications protocol after attending a Cisco conference. Thanks to Walmart in North America, AS2 was broadly adopted across the retail sector, AS3 seemed to come and go with no real traction and then AS4 arrived kicking and screaming to support business expansion into the cloud. AS4 was developed especially to support web-based services for cloud based infrastructures and we now offer support for this protocol via our B2B Managed Services platform. AS4 was clearly ahead of its time and it is really only in the past 2 years that certain industries have started to adopt AS4. For example AS4 has been adopted by ENTSOG, the European Network of Transmission Systems for Gas providers. OpenText has been certified by Drummond for AS4, and also supports the ENTSOG AS4 profile. Other industry bodies such as IATA in the transport sector are also looking at AS4 and you can be assured that OpenText plans to support these new AS4 profiles as they are released. Business Document Viewer – allows EDI-based transactions to be read in a more human readable form. This enables non-EDI or business-related users to view any type of B2B document, in a more recognized and easier to digest format. Extended Self-Enablement Capabilities – This will allow companies to have a bit more control of their B2B Managed Services environment in terms of managing trading partners. In addition a new trading partner discovery admin tool helps to accelerate the onboarding of trading partners to a hub by quickly searching our network for any existing connectivity information and then using this information to speed up the deployment of a new B2B platform. This tool significantly helps our Professional Services team to deploy your B2B platform in a much shorter time period. Electronic Invoicing Enhancements– Our Active Invoice with Compliance (AIC) solution now helps companies to process invoices electronically across more than fifty countries. This includes Brazil and Mexico where the governments mandate the use of electronic invoicing as a condition of doing business in their respective countries. We have now extended the capabilities of AIC to support B2G (Business-to-Government) requirements, in countries such as France and Japan for example. We have also introduced an automatic provisioning capability across our electronic invoicing solution that effectively allows new trading partners to be registered with our invoicing platform as soon as an invoice is processed, ie taking the details within the invoice to auto-provision a new trading partner on the platform. This not only speeds up the provisioning of new trading partners to the platform but it improves the overall quality of the invoice information being exchanged. Auto-provisioning helps to significantly reduce the time to deploy a B2B platform and this capability will be applied to other solutions within our suite of B2B solutions. My colleague Greg Horton recently blogged on this new capability. Acquisition of the North American Automotive Network Exchange (ANX) – ANX has been serving the connectivity requirements of the North American automotive industry for many years now, however as the automotive industry has globalized it has put pressure on B2B networks to provide more global support. Other regional automotive B2B networks such as ENX in Europe and JNX in Japan have serviced their respective automotive industries for many years, but OpenText™ Business Network spans the globe and can offer truly global connectivity. The acquisition of ANX not only extends our support of the automotive industry, but it also brings extensive knowledge of the Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) sector, a suite of tools used to design and manufacture components used in everything from cars to planes. For example OpenText will continue to resell PLM solutions from Dassault and Siemens. Finally ANX also brings extensive experience of the healthcare sector as ANX provides connectivity and transaction based services to many different healthcare providers. This nicely compliments our new support of HIPAA for example. So as you can see we have been very busy since the launch of Release 16 and it doesn’t stop there. We will be introducing even more enhancements over the coming months and I will expand on those new capabilities in a future blog. However in the meantime if you are in Europe during the second half of March then you may like to register to attend one of our Innovation Tour stops.  

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The Provider Path to Better Care Coordination

healthcare

The healthcare experts at OpenText are excited for HIMSS17 to share with health IT gurus a vision for better care coordination by optimizing patient information exchange. The holy grail of better care coordination – and interoperability – is the secure exchange of information that results in better quality care and an improved experience for the patient, all delivered at lower cost. However, this goal is still elusive for most providers. Information systems used by healthcare organizations lock down information as a way to meet privacy requirements, and they do so without the tools that can make access by authenticated users easy and convenient. Historically, standardized approaches to interoperability have left providers with the burden of creating complex and time-consuming 1:1 interfaces to share clinical information with care and business partners. However, recent regulatory incentives, particularly meaningful use, have started to make secure, electronic interoperability a requirement, while value-based contracting and business model changes that put providers at-risk for outcomes have begun to make network interoperability a business imperative. Vendors in collaboration with government are building newly available standards like Direct Messaging, which offer a low-cost, vendor-agnostic, approach to digital information exchange. Care coordination is a complicated dance between providers and any misstep can cause irreparable implications to patient care. While some standards have been put in place to aid in increasing interoperability, low adoption rates in the healthcare community have stagnated real progress. However, transitioning to better forms of exchange by combining such technology as electronic fax, Direct messaging, and other forms of electronic exchange in a single solution increases care coordination across disparate providers. For example, Direct messaging is a way for payers, providers and healthcare systems to securely share information, in a verified environment with unlimited points of connection. It is not a 1:1 model but enables any credentialed physician located anywhere to quickly send patient information to other trusted parties using a Direct address.  Direct is designed to reduce administrative overhead, standardize transactions, and ensure that they occur quickly and securely in an auditable way. As it stands today, better care coordination with standards such as Direct messaging can quickly and positively affect specific use cases, with the most common including: Referrals between organizations and clinicians Discharge summaries and lab results shared between facilities/labs and referring or primary-care providers Sending data to public health organizations Sharing of information upon transitions in care Sharing information with payers for prior authorization of services Direct messaging is an important step towards the goal of an interoperable health system because of its inherent security and simplicity, as well as its low cost. In a network-based care environment, information sharing can help to prevent unnecessary and costly repeat tests and procedures, provide the information needed to create evidence-based care plans, and allow the execution of these plans using the network in the community. Information sharing can help reduce the burden on patients for transferring information, provide convenience when seeking care in multiple settings, and make positive outcomes more likely by reducing complications caused by impaired access to information. However, solutions that provide Direct messaging in addition to other secure, electronic forms of exchange patient information are ideal for greater adoption within healthcare. A single, centralized platform by which to exchange electronic fax, Direct messages, and other forms of electronic exchange are paving the way to better patient care. Want to learn more? Download the IDC Market Spotlight: The Rocky Road to Information Sharing in the Health System for more insights and information from IDC. Join OpenText at HIMSS17 at booth #2929 to see how OpenText can help you achieve better care coordination and ultimately, better patient care.

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Automate Customer Enrollment for Faster E-Invoicing ROI

E-Invoicing ROI

Invoice automation and the move to e-invoicing is a common project designed to save enterprises money.  Billentis estimates that both outbound and inbound e-invoicing projects reduce invoice processing costs by 60%. It is important to note that the more trading partners that participate in your e-invoicing program, the more benefit you will receive from it.  But if e-invoicing ROI is so great, why isn’t all invoicing e-invoicing? The cost of setting up an e-invoicing program can be a roadblock. Part of that cost is enrollment or on-boarding. This involves registering all of the customers to whom you will send electronic invoices into the e-invoicing platform. Sending thousands of invoices to a single customer is relatively easy – only that customer needs to be enrolled for e-invoicing. Sending one invoice each to thousands of customers is a completely different problem. You need to enroll each of those customers before sending electronic invoices. Enrolling new customers can require human interaction and frequently involves several Finance and/or IT procedures. What if you could enroll your customers automatically as you process transactions?  If you have hundreds of customers, this could reduce the cost of setting up an e-invoicing program by tens of thousands of dollars and save hundreds of man hours. This is why OpenText has introduced a capability that will automatically provision many of your customers as you send electronic invoices. In this way you: Reduce the barriers to entry for your outbound e-invoicing project Reduce manual efforts (Finance and IT) Accelerate e-invoicing ROI by implementing your project faster The capability reduces cost and saves time because you do not need to create procedures for manual enrollment or transfer information between systems or databases. You just send us the information about your customer at the same time that you send us the transaction. Learn more about OpenText’s E-Invoicing solutions.

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