Tuesday, 28 October 2014

High risk in the cloud

The latest European Cloud Adoption and Risk Report surveyed approximately 1.6 million cloud users.  It discovered that the average number of cloud services used by the average company has increased by 23% in 2014.

The report found that fewer than 10% of these services meet the ‘most stringent’ security requirements while 74% of clouds services used by European firms do not meet the EU’s Data Protection Directive’s regulations.

A key challenge is that employees are using services without the express knowledge or support of their IT departments.  This trend to ‘Shadow IT’ services poses enormous security risks to businesses. 

In one case highlighted by the report one single employee uploaded over 17GB of sensitive data to 71 high risk cloud services over three months.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Scott Brown joins BIR Editorial Board

We are delighted to announce that Scott Brown has joined our Editorial Board.  He joins Martin Ainsworth, Anthony Capstick, Steve Dale, Ceri Hughes, Penny Leach, Mary Peterson and Gillian Ragsdell. 

Scott Brown is Owner of Social Information Group, an independent information practice focused on the effective use of social tools for sharing and finding information. He has over 20 years of experience across corporate settings, public and academic libraries, as well as consulting and coaching work. He has presented at a multitude of information industry conferences, and has authored books, reports, papers and articles. He is adjunct faculty at San Jose State University in California. He received his library degree from San Jose State University in California in 1999, and holds a Masters in Counseling from Regis University in Colorado.

He is well known to readers of BIR, having written three articles for us since we joined as Editors. 
  • Mobile apps: Which ones really matter to the information professional?, Scott Brown, Business Information Review, December 2012; vol. 29, 4: pp. 231-237.
  • Coping with information obesity: A diet for information professionals, Scott Brown, Business Information Review, September 2012; vol. 29, 3: pp. 168-173.
  • Social media for company research: A few of the best tools, Scott Brown,  Business Information Review, September 2011; vol. 28, 3: pp. 163-174

Friday, 21 March 2014

Leeds Central Library launches new Business & IP Centre

The new service will provide free support and advice to entrepreneurs and small business owners.
Following a successful pilot in Newcastle, Leeds is the second city to open its Business and IP Centre.  There are plans to open similar services in Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool and Sheffield over the next year.
Services on offer include access to resources and information on running a business, workshops and advice sessions.

More information:  The British Library

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

BIR Best Paper Prize - Congratulations to Chris Rivinus

We are delighted to announce that the winner of the Business Information Review Best Paper Prize is Chris Rivinus. 

His article ‘IT project prioritization: A practical application of knowledge management principles’ appeared in our December 2013 issue and was voted the best paper of 2013 by the Editors and members of the Editorial Advisory Board. 

Chris works for Tullow Oil, a London-based independent oil and gas exploration and production company which regularly wins awards for its innovative approach to problem solving. Tullow’s CIO recently challenged his team to develop an approach to devolve control of IT project prioritisation to non-IT leaders within the company.

Chris’s article explains the approach developed and how it is working to keep the business’s IT strategy aligned with Tullow’s entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to collaborative decision making. 

To celebrate the Prize SAGE is making the article freely available – simply follow this link.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

An announcement about our Editorial Advisory Board

Veronica Kennard retires; several new members join

Following Veronica’s retirement as Director of Information at Rothschild, she has decided to retire from the Editorial Board.  We would like to take this opportunity to thank her for her involvement with BIR over many years and to wish her well for the future.  Veronica ran the information department at Rothschild from 1991 till the end of 2013 and was acknowledged as a leading information professional in the Finance sector.  Business information has been her focus since her postgraduate diploma in Information Science gained at City University.  Her breadth of experience at the London Business School and in the corporate sector with Bain and Company and Goldman Sachs gave her a unique perspective on the content direction and the range of topics that we cover and we truly appreciate her contribution.     

We are delighted to welcome the following people to our Editorial Advisory Board Team:
  • Steve Dale (Collabor8now)
  • Ceri Hughes (KPMG)
  • Mary Peterson (South Australia Health Library Service
  • Stephen Phillips (Morgan Stanley)
  • Gillian Ragsdell (Loughborough University)
They join our existing Board members Martin Ainsworth, Anthony Capstick and Penny Leach and our colleague Allan Foster (who writes our regular Initiatives column as well as the annual Survey.

We look forward to working with all of them this year.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Connectivity deficit costs UK £30 billion a year

According to research undertaken by O2 and the Centre for Economic and Business Research, British business is paying a high price for poor connectivity.

A survey of 1000 middle managers found that:
·         80% of administrative staff don’t have remote access to key business systems
·         Improved connectivity could save each employee up to 127 hours of travel per year

The report states that organisations should work hard to improve connectivity to:
·         Eradicate needless journeys
·         Provide better access to information ‘anywhere’ to enable employees to make better use of time and increase productivity
·         Improve the efficiency of meetings, in particular saving workers over 50 hours a year in wasted follow up activities
·         Improve customer service and increase sales with real-time information.

More on the O2 website.

Monday, 27 January 2014

IT project prioritisation - a practical application of knowledge management principles

What happens when you devolve IT project prioritisation to non-IT business leaders?

Tullow Oil, a leading independent oil and gas exploration and production group, did just that.  The approach reflected its commitment to collaborative decision making.

Chris Rivinus describes how Tullow Oil made this approach work in his article in the December 2013 issue of Business Information Review.  Astonishingly, they devised a system which enabled 15 very busy people, with diverse backgrounds, based in different continents, to reach decisions on projects even if they had little technical expertise.  And they do this in an hour a month!

The article describes the processes and templates used and describes the guiding principles that make the approach work, including:
  • Snap-shot decision making
  • Trust their gut
  • Simplicity
  • Visualise with data and text detail as backup
IT project prioritization: A practical application of knowledge management principles.  Chris Rivinus, Tullow Oil UK, Business Information Review 2013 30(4) 196-203

Friday, 24 January 2014

The organisation of organisational knowledge

"Knowledge does not need to be complex, and its capture does not need to be complicated"
So says Danny Budzak, Senior Information Manager at the London Legacy Development Corporation in the UK.

Writing in the December 2013 issue of Business Information Review (BIR 30(4)), Danny describes the approaches he and his Information Services team took to develop and implement IM standards, tools and techniques.

This focus on keeping it simple can be seen in team's approach to data, information and knowledge.  These included:
  • Very short one-to-one sessions with staff to help them organise email folders (less than 10 minutes)
  • Using critical questioning to understand the nature of the data stored within the organisation - reducing the number of 'must keep' files from over 5 million to 130,000!
  • Producing a two page report of data audit findings
"We have learned that knowledge management works well when it is related to real and pressing issues...."

The organization of organizational knowledge, Danny Budzak, Senior Information Manager, London Legacy Development Corporation, UK, Business Information Review 2013, Vol. 30(4) 183-190.