Profile of Bob Evans
News & Commentary Posts: 1070
Bob Evans is senior VP, communications, for Oracle Corp. He is a former InformationWeek editor.
Articles by Bob Evans
posted in March 2009
Although it has a subsidiary called Boeing India and just opened an advanced technology center in Bangalore, Boeing has landed a $17 billion outsourcing deal to deliver 100 airplanes to Indian airline companies over the next several years. No comment was available from the Obama administration on the Indian economy's decision to ship some of "its jobs" overseas.
With most CIOs planning or building out enterprise-wide mobile strategies, you would think enterprise software companies would be rushing to lead the charge with suitably broad product roadmaps and strategies of their own. But, as my colleague Mary Hayes Weier points out in her excellent news-analysis package, you would be wrong.
Kaiser Permanente CIO Phil Fasano says KP's medical-imaging projects have become so massive that they exceed the storage requirements and consumption of the Library of Congress. And those requirements, he says, are still growing.
An IT leader who also heads up E-commerce shares his views on the initiative and responsibilities business-technology managers need to seize to shake off stereotypes as detached techies. You'll enjoy Bobby Nakanelua's observations on how IT pros can demonstrate that they're valuable teammates rather than roadblocks to be avoided.
Efforts by Satyam's suitors to determine the true value of the company have been hampered by several years' worth of fraudulent financial reports along with some recently filed class-action lawsuits. So Satyam is hoping those bidders can get a glimpse of the real company by speaking with clients involved in ongoing major projects.
The Pittsburgh Steelers have welcomed new investor John Stallworth, best known as a Hall of Fame wide receiver who helped the team win four Super Bowls during his 14-year career. Less well known is that Stallworth, near the end of his NFL career, started an IT services company that he sold in 2006 for $69 million.
Satyam's founder could face lie-detector tests and "narco tests" that use barbituates to lower a subject's inhibitions in answering questions. Investigators believe founder B Ramalinga Raju and his brother are withholding vital information about the $1.5B accounting fraud they have admitted to perpetrating at Satyam over the past several years.
RFID supply-chain solutions are helping Norway's largest brewer increase profits, improve customer service, and get fresher beer to thirsty Norwegians. And Volkswagen's group CIO said his RFID project could lead to a paperless production and logistics chain throughout the entire corporation.
If American businesses yield to the anti-outsourcing caterwaulers, then don't be surprised to see them go after other equally legitimate business tools next.
Looking past a limited audience of advanced users to a much broader market, Oracle plans to release this summer a new version of its Real Application Clusters (RAC) technology featuring "significant ease-of-use enhancements" that will make possible "grid computing for the masses." Whether the masses are hungry for grid computing is another matter.
In an exciting and thought-provoking experiment in the city of Boulder, Colorado, Xcel Energy has kicked off a $100M project called SmartGridCity designed to give consumers greater control over energy usage and options via Web-based accounts. But the control goes both ways: the test also allows Xcel to reach into consumers' homes and adjust thermostats during periods of high demand.
Subscribers to software solutions with a fixed duration are shopping around more vigorously for replacements and cost-cutting is a major motivator, a Gartner blogger says. The frenzy hasn't hit on-premises software companies nearly as hard because their perpetual licenses are, well, perpetual -- so in that universe the churn-and-burn season never happens.
While touring India this week, execs from Hewlett-Packard, IBM, and Sun criticized the Obama administration's anti-outsourcing policies as unrealistic, claiming they fly in the face of the global economy and will not produce positive results.
Oracle will "continue to take market share from [SAP] for years to come," has produced a better database machine than Teradata, and is taking database share from both Microsoft and IBM -- all because of the $3 billion Oracle invests each year in R&D, CEO Larry Ellison said yesterday.
How rigorously do you guard against the risk of visitors surreptitiously photographing confidential assets? Two engineers whose employer had a $1.2M contract with a Chinese tire maker are facing 150 years in the slammer for allegedly scamming their way into a Goodyear plant in Kansas and secretly photographing proprietary equipment. So maybe it's time to review that security plan.
What if, three years from now, India has more IT professionals than the U.S.? Would that be wonderful for India and terrible for the U.S.? Would it mean the U.S. has taken another giant step toward being a nation of purely non-producing consumers? For India, says Infosys founder S Gopalakrishnan, it would mean that "in the IT revolution, we are at the centre."
CIOs today are in the perfect position to lead the next wave of customer-centric business evolution.
Wal-Mart is preparing an aggressive expansion of its retail banking business after a year of cautious experimentation to understand customers and build out its IT banking infrastructure. The goals? To make money, boost sales in Wal-Mart stores, provide basic banking services to consumers, and credit and payroll services to suppliers.
From 6 a.m. until noon two days a week, outsourcers in and around Hyderabad will receive no electrical power as part of the state-owned utility's plan for rolling brownouts until the end of summer. So check that fine print in your SLAs -- do they cover "load-shedding" contingencies?
IBM's research lab in New Delhi has developed technology that lets mobile-phone users create speech-driven web sites that can not only listen but also respond.
When JohnsonDiversey CIO Matt Peterson signed his first outsourcing agreement three years ago, his No. 1 goal was cost reduction -- "and it was a long way down the list to get to No. 2," he said. But because the relationship with outsourcer Wipro has steadily evolved, Peterson is finally able to turn his focus outside the company to working with customers to drive revenue and loyalty.
The media bubble enveloping federal CIO Vivek Kundra almost burst today as, in almost-simultaneous alerts, old-fogey-onliner the Wall Street Journal said his former offices had just been raided and equally ancient C-SPAN was posting video of a speech he'd just given. But the (media) day belonged to the Twittering
Fulfilling the vision of China as "the future growth engine of the company's business," the global soft-drink icon has opened a $90M innovation and technology facility in Shanghai that will employ 600 people -- three times the number forecast by the company 18 months ago.
Retail CIOs are looking to boost revenue via automatic replenishment, demand forecasting, enhanced promotional effectiveness, and Web-based sales channels, a new study says. Plus, 26% expect IT budgets to go up as a percentage of sales, while 51% expect them to hold steady. Cutbacks, schmutbacks!
JP Morgan Chase is reportedly planning to increase its use of Indian outsourcers by 25% to handle the IT integration of Washington Mutual and Bear Stearns and other projects. The moves are expected to cut overall IT costs for JPMC even as it raises its volume of Indian outsourcing business to a reported $400 million.
Newly minted federal CIO Vivek Kundra plans to scour the globe for great ideas: "I want to make sure we're leveraging innovations from throughout the world." But hold on a second -- wouldn't such an approach cut against the grain of President Obama's "Buy American" platform and his "our jobs" anti-outsourcing stance?
So after one year on the job, the leader of the team that protects this country's national information infrastructure has resigned over turf battles with the NSA and insufficient funding, my colleague Tom Claburn reports. Talk about screwed-up priorities: We spend $71,000,000,000 on federal IT but can't pay to protect our economic and national-defense interests?
With his staggering federal IT budget, Vivek Kundra needs to address these six crucial questions.
India's largest outsourcers are dropping prices by up to 20% as financially challenged global customers "renegotiate existing contracts and award new projects at much lower rates," says the Economic Times. Tata, Infosys, Wipro, and HCL have been or are discussing such rate adjustments with high-profile corporations in financial, retail, automotive, and telecom markets -- read on for some of the names.
A $1 billion insurance company has sharply reduced its dependence on a brittle 30-year-old mainframe and redeployed many internal IT staffers to new initiatives by outsourcing the hosting, care, and feeding of that mainframe. The three-year project at Harleysville Insurance achieved the top-level goal of shifting big chunks of fixed costs to variable costs and allowed the IT team to focus on higher-value projects.
UPDATE: Bob Evans has posted a new column on this subject called "The $200-Million-A-Day Man: Our New Federal CIO." You can read it here.
It will be fascinating to see if newly minted federal CIO Vivek Kundra can establish a meaningful agenda, command the respect (or if necessary the fear) among the myriad agency CIOs he'll be trying to herd, and sooner rather than later get beyon
Blogger Vinnie Mirchandani says that while today's duration for SaaS deals averages 1.5 years, "the secular trend is towards higher renewals…and multiyear deals. SaaS will likely become like outsourcing contracts -- 3, 5, 7-year deals." Sounds good in theory, but will CIOs go for it?
It comes down to whether you believe that Salesforce could reduce some costs for you and deliver every single bit of functionality and value that Oracle or Microsoft or SAP could.
A deeper and broader entrepreneurial drive among consumers in India, Brazil, and China is displacing the U.S. from its leading role as the key market for new networked technologies, according to a report from Accenture. "To put it bluntly, these consumers see networked technologies and services as a way to make money," a news article about the study says.
Following its deliberate crash of a lunar probe into the moon to gain experience with lunar landings, China is reportedly planning to ban humans from exhaling in order to gain experience with lower carbon dioxide levels. And it has been learned that as a third phase in its novel string of experiments, China is reportedly planning to fill its primary rivers with concrete to gain experience in driving trucks on water. Can these two followups really be true?
In the handful of days since President Obama vowed to punish U.S. "corporations that ship our jobs overseas," the backlash in India against such a disastrous move has spread to officials from government, IT industry associations, and leading Indian IT services companies such as Infosys and Wipro. And while they say they want to wait for more details, they are also clearly deeply concerned about the huge
Is it better for CIOs to have high-level positions reporting to top executives, or to have mid-level roles where their ability to make great contributions is stifled by bureaucracy and politics but the job security is better? That's a question posed in a recent column on the public-sector Governing Web site. At first I thought it was a joke, but then I read the headline that delivered the punchline: "All CIOs Great And Small."