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But the rewards. Abell told Computer Weekly that the company was sharpening its focus on e-business and that staff faced compulsory redundancy, were leaving on agreed terms and about jobs would be lost through "normal attrition". He added, "The UK market over the past four or five months has changed significantly, with clients demanding faster, shorter projects and a lot more competition. Jon Collins, senior analyst at Bloor Research, said, "Cap Gemini is not one of the 'big five' outsourcers, so it can't set the agenda, but it is following it with these moves.

Cap Gemini has not notified its general customer base about the job losses. Only clients working with a Cap Gemini employee who is being made redundant have been informed. Abell rejected suggestions that Cap Gemini customers would suffer as a result of the job cuts. One major Cap Gemini client told Computer Weekly that he was surprised at the job losses, but was confident that the service level agreements he had negotiated will prove effective. For companies having trouble finding qualified IT professionals to hire, the solution may be closer than you think.

Just ask Home Board presentations can be scary. The good news is CIOs can't go too wrong in a climate where boards are desperate to learn about For Schneider Electric and many other large enterprises that take a look at edge computing projects, the main criterion for Researchers are still seeing surprisingly high WannaCry detection rates and they worry this points to high risks because systems Security vendor RiskIQ discovered several old Magecart domains that had been sinkholed were re-registered under new owners and VPN services, enterprises choosing between the technologies should consider factors like With 20 questions Though despite interest, this IBM unveiled the latest in its line of mainframes capable of processing 1 trillion web transactions a day.

The IBM z Swim released its new Swim DataFabric, which integrates with Microsoft Azure to help users organize and gain insights from Dremio issues a new platform update, defining itself as data lake engine technology that looks to help users connect and query Database expert Chris Foot details the key reasons why DBAs should consider using third-party database administration to fill Mike Simons.

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Published: 20 Apr Sign in for existing members. Step 2 of How can we tackle the unconscious bias faced by women in Stem? As of December eBay had And by the way, the site has been able to serve its initial purpose. This story illustrates one of the transformations our economy is undergoing.

Adam Hillary

Value is no longer created solely or even primarily by the corporate behemoths of the industrial era. People and their ideas are the most significant drivers of wealth creation in today's global economy.


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The personal computer, the mobile phone, and the Internet have given every individual with access to electricity and a telephone line the ability to create products, services, and markets. While the dot. Whether one works for an Internet start-up or a Fortune corporation, today's success depends more on innovation, adaptability, and creative talent than asset base or current revenue stream.

As a result, an entirely new way of collecting information and forecasting results is necessary. These days, investors and managers must do a better job of revaluing the true economic potential of the companies under their purview to avoid inefficient capital allocation resulting in heightened market volatility and, potentially, downturns like the crisis in Asia and the collapse of the Nasdaq, NeuerMarkt, and other technology-oriented exchanges.

Our research at CGEY over the last five years demonstrates a dramatic shift in value creation. Until now, the benchmark for understanding value creation resided in audited financials like the balance sheet and income statement. But today, the answer lies in a set of elements that include ideas, innovations, human activities, work team efforts, and business processes. These new value drivers are called "intangibles.

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Admittedly ungainly, the word intangibles was created in reaction to an existing concept, that of tangible assets. The prefix "in" is evidence of a relative lack of stature in the economic lexicon and the low level of comprehension regarding both the source of intangibles and their value. One may view this reactive or lack of permanence as a comment on the transitory nature of the debate surrounding their contribution to value creation.

Human capital, intellectual capital, social capital, and structural capital are among the concepts defined by the word "intangibles. As assets, intangibles are increasingly the means by which companies deliver the value they provide to customers. In addition to those mentioned above, examples of intangibles that might be thought of as assets include business or manufacturing process enhancements that increase productivity, new types of financial instruments designed to spread risk or better leverage the shifting value of underlying corporate assets, and the marketing or managerial strength that comes from a successful corporate culture.

Intangibles are not derived from the same sources of knowledge as are standard balance sheet and income statement data. The invention of double entry bookkeeping by Luca Pacioli, an Italian monk and mathematician, years ago led to the development of modern financial reporting in the 19th century. Designed to serve the fragile global economy that began to emerge in the late Middle Ages in Europe, this system relied on relatively simple financial concepts based on the need to extend credit for sales and purchases between people who shared neither language nor currency nor value system.

Furthermore, the transactions this system was originally created to underwrite could take place months or years before the actual payment reached the person or organization proffering the payment.

Such a tentative web of relationships required measures easily understood by the few relatively educated participants in the trading economy. This meant that the concepts under consideration had to be kept to a minimum, in part because the common set of financial or managerial measures with which they were dealing was minimal. With the dawn of the industrial revolution at the end of the 18th century, commerce and industry became more complicated, and financial reporting as we now know it began to evolve.

It was really at the end of the 19th century, however that the financial statements we now recognize really emerged, primarily through the heft of the British Empire. The majority of bookkeeping in those days was on commodities such as coal, iron, and cotton textiles in which England was the world's leading producer. With the large British capital flows to all corners of the globe, the simple balance sheet of payouts vs.

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Increasingly, business audiences found that measuring the actual flow of monies was more and more valuable, which led to the development of the funds statement in the early 20th century, now required to be included in annual reports. We are still grappling with these frameworks more than a century later. Consideration of intangibles and the role they played in the economy began to emerge during the first half of this century, though, of course, the word intangibles was not yet in vogue.

Battles at the turn of the century over antitrust issues driven by steel and oil industry consolidation set the stage by focusing attention on organizational dynamics: Were economies of scale really better for the organization, its shareholders, customers, and employees or not? And if so, why? These considerations lead to fascination with the achievement of an entrepreneur named Henry Ford who created the modern automobile industry. It was Ford's organizational and inspirational innovations, however, that actually set the stage for revolutionary changes.

Ford's great achievement was not invention of the automobile itself, because that had actually been accomplished by several European and American inventors working alone but in parallel at the end of the 19th century. The assembly line proved to be the most effective way to leverage the benefits of standardization. Ford and his managers built on the research done by so-called "time and motion" study experts like Frank Gilbreth, Sr. They then analyzed their data to see where they could eliminate unnecessary steps while calculating how long the average worker should take to complete the remaining steps.

Ford and his managers then conceived a system that took account of the multidimensional factors contributing to cost and to productivity. By calculating the time and cost of every facet of the assembly process, the Ford team was able to reduce inventory and production costs and increase the speed at which the cars could be produced while offering the consumer a consistent, reliable, and affordable product. At the time of this announcement, Ford was assailed by less perceptive business leaders who thought that he had made a devastating concession to labor that would fatally affect the cost structure of American industry.

Ford, however, understood two things his detractors did not.

The first was that by paying slightly above market, he would attract a more highly motivated and skilled worker from whom he could demand more. Secondly, Ford believed that to truly achieve what we would now call "scalability," he needed to create a market for his product. Ford's success has become the stuff of American legend. It led to an increase in interest in stories about the burgeoning world of business. No longer focused exclusively on stories about finance and stock prices, these new features recounted such sagas as the struggles of Alfred Sloan, the management genius who created the General Motors Corporation GM , to reorganize that behemoth along the lines of what had become known as business principles.

Sloan established the multidivisional corporation that, in effect, created a portfolio of brands. Sloan's idea was to offer a variety of price points aimed at consumers' ability to pay. The brands were structured so that GM could move their customers to more expensive cars as their incomes and families grew. In addition to the marketing advantages of his new system, Sloan created a divisional organization that optimized the parent corporation's ability to share costs over a broader set of assets.

This lowered average costs for GM's products and permitted the rationalization of administrative and other expenses where possible. In sum, what Sloan accomplished was designing a template for the modern multinational corporation. The pyramidal divisional structure offered a means by which the corporation could continue to grow while providing the means for inserting leadership at the appropriate level so as to optimize management supervision without unnecessarily multiplying the number of people who had to report directly to the chairman or CEO.

In addition, it allowed for reorganization as market conditions dictated. They were improvements in the processes, managerial decision-making, brand extension, and compensation policies that contributed to improvements in productivity, profitability, and return on investment. While Ford, Sloan, and others wrestled with the manifold problems and opportunities presented by the internal combustion engine and all that flew from it and into it, similar organizational issues were raised in other industries as well.

The most famous example occurred in a productivity study at Western Electric's Hawthorne plant near Chicago, Illinois. The issue managers felt they needed to address was employee morale or motivation. Executives at the plant were concerned about flagging productivity, and the question in their minds was how best to raise it. They began by analyzing all of the systems and conditions on which the plant ran.

Outside consultants interviewed plant workers and asked about their lighting preferences; did they want it raised or lowered? When plant managers raised the lighting, they noticed that productivity increased in the subsequent period. They then decided to experiment by lowering the lighting and, to their surprise discovered that productivity went up again.

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Ultimately, they and the social scientists with whom they consulted decided that the real improvement in productivity came not so much from the lighting, but from the positive feelings they had imbued in the plant workers by giving them attention and asking for opinions about working conditions.

The outcome of the experiment has been known ever since as "the Hawthorne Effect. Today, the Hawthorne Effect can be seen across disparate fields ranging from healthcare satisfaction to religious affiliation. The recognition that managerial style could affect employee performance spawned a market in managerial advice. Edwards Deming and John Juran in the field of quality, and of the greatest living sage of management, Peter Drucker, who published On Managementin , the business of providing advice to managers took off.

The combination of Stagflation in the United States and the success of the Japanese automobile and consumer electronics manufacturers added kan ban, keiretsu, and other Japanese phrases to the business vocabulary. The management guru came into being with the publication of Bob Waterman and Tom Peters' Search for Excellencein The larger point is that managers had created a market for advice on the intangibles of how to better manage people and processes and how to manage their role as managers. Management had become a profession separate from the functional specialties of Human Resources or Finance or Engineering, and from the industry-specific specializations created around steel rolling mills, direct mail marketing, or software design.

The growth of business was now dependent on turning in better performance on those occupations that filled the interstices of the traditional business framework. What these new philosophers of business were doing was acknowledging the role of intangibles. Today's management teams have a new challenge. They can no longer rely on reporting of their past and current financial performance.

They are not only getting an incomplete view of their enterprise, but they are missing a forward view of their company and a significant opportunity to improve operating and capital market performance. Financial statements, designed to capture the linear, engineering-based assessments of railroads, steel mills, automobile factories, and electric generating plants are not necessarily the most effective methodologies for evaluating the potential of companies whose worth is based on intellectual constructs or human potential.

In addition, intangible value drivers complement each other in ways that traditional financial measures do not. It is difficult to separate one intangible from another because they function in such an interconnected fashion.