Climbing toward the clouds

clouds

We have spent a few months of passionate work analyzing the state of the art of the use of CLOUD in companies and their evolution, due to the activity carried out within the framework of the REALCLOUD Project , where we have combined the activity of basic and applied research carried out by the project partners, URV focused on analyzing the boundaries of cloud storage, UJI focused on analyzing the borders of cloud computing, together with COREX and TISSATas a coordinator, shaping energy-efficient and economically sustainable systems over time, where the value we bring to the project from a sectoral Technological Institute such as AIMME is market knowledge on how to implement new ICT effectively, counting on collaboration of the ITIO-DOE-UPV research group .

At the beginning of the project we present the first advances made in the project within the framework of the ‘REALCLOUD: Application of Cloud Computing in companies’, with the aim of publicizing the current and future possibilities of CLOUD COMPUTING or cloud computing applied to companies to make them more competitive, as well as the activities of the Project to encourage both companies in the metal sector and the rest of sectors, including the IT sector itself.

During the day was presented to the more than 120 companies attending -more than 150 who have viewed the videos online in these first 4 months- the project survey whose results can be seen below in this document, filled by the not inconsiderable figure from more than 250 companies in our area.

The differential factor of this survey compared to others recently carried out by European or national organizations by large consultants, is that it is oriented to periodically measure (through 4 waves every six months, during 2012 and 2013) the evolution of the impact that these technologies have had, are having and are expected to be in the companies of our immediate environment, especially SMEs and self-employed, to analyze, identify and tear down all the barriers we detect along the way, trying to generate an ecosystem favorable to cooperate with all the agents that join the final objective, that the companies obtain benefits as soon as possible.

That road from I through D to get to the famous I + D + i is usually guided by three relevant factors:

1) Common Sense (WHAT): a company in the innovative metal sector will address the incorporation of new technologies in its processes if it previously sees clear investment returns, or at least sees the risk of testing it before tackling large investments when the return is assured by the maturity of the technology.

2) The trust that the agent transmits (WITH WHO) that helps you to make that change: generally you go to agents with credibility contrasted by the experience that the years give to that same work in an impartial way, with other technologies that in its moment were also incipient.

3) The time scale (WHEN): it is important to advance in time the test of new technologies (to anticipate your competition by innovating in processes) that makes sense to try together with the trusted agent that helps us, but for this they must be mature enough so that they do not become a waste of time (and money).

A good way to illuminate the darkness of this path of R & D & I, is to move from words to action with projects such as REALCLOUD, that is, we talk and write a lot about the enormous impact that is expected in the generation of new employment and wealth, but at the same time we are witnessing a good summary of phases, milestones or, better said, obstacles that we still have to overcome in this race towards the cloud: technological, legislative, change management, economic, etc. The best way to break down these barriers is to cooperate from different business sectors and AA.PP., and from different geographical areas so as not to reinvent the wheel continuously, so that we start from the results and previous pilot experiences to advance and accelerate this process all together .

Finally, echoing the first conclusions that are derived from the analysis of the surveys, together with the first contacts and meetings held from AIMME with companies from both the offer and the demand for the cloud, it is summarized that there is great confusion about the borders between remote hosting of web applications, server virtualization and cloud, which as always is resolved by attending the awareness actions ( conferences ) and training ( courses ) that we have organized from AIMME, and will continue to organize according to the demand we are having.

Hopefully in a not too distant horizon, perhaps it is in the famous HORIZON 2020 that is spoken in the field of European research, we can look back and see that we have managed to reach the goal satisfactorily and we are all winners.

To finish, reiterate our invitation to participate with us, filling out the survey, if you have not already done so, re-filling it before the close of the next wave, if you have already done so, attending the workshops and courses we organized, and encouraging you to migrate to the cloud the computer developments of your company to start before offering it as a service instead of as a product, and at the same time migrating to the cloud the servers and applications that make sense to migrate so that the part of our employees that makes sense to use it, can do it as soon as possible.

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Interview with Santiago

question and answer

Santiago Bonet lends his insight below.

What is crowdsourcing?

Crowdsourcing – from ‘crowd’ (mass) and ‘sourcing’ (outsourcing) consists in outsourcing tasks traditionally carried out by an employee or subcontractor, to a large group of people or a community through an open call, usually in exchange for a reward.

When we think of social networks managed by companies, we usually think that the target is the final consumer. What is the recipient in the metal sector?
The metal sector accounts for 16% of regional GDP and refers to companies in the primary sectors of the economy, industry, commerce and metal services that manufacture and / or sell their products to other metal companies and many other sectors (B2B), and final consumers (B2C).

The relationships they have with other companies, employees, customers and suppliers, can take place through these new communication tools, as happened in their day with the appearance of the telephone, fax or later the email.

Many companies are resistant to having presence 2.0 on the Internet. What would you say to those responsible?

There is a belief that presence 2.0 is a waste of time and the return on investment is not clear. To avoid this biased view of reality, you can follow the steps:

1) Analyze what your competition is doing online, if it is the first of its sector / geographical area, take the opportunity, but imitate or collaborate.

2) Implement state-of-the-art web applications to truly relate to current and future clients, via web and email (1.0) and social networks (2.0). Complementary channels are each aimed at a different target audience.

3) Let the agents of change experiment. It is not about disqualifying or facing one generation (1.0) against the other (2.0), but to add the experience of one with the ideas and spirit TRANSPARENT and OPEN of the others, as a sign of confidence that the mix is ​​good for all of

As an ICT specialist, do you think that the tablet will revolutionize the way you consume publications and will lead to a quantitative leap in the race to bury the paper?

I think the natural evolution will be that gradually the paper will be replaced by a set of devices according to the place of use: computer screens at work, TV screens, tablets and ebook readers at home, smartphones on trips, etc. and at the same time these devices must respect author rights through micropayments so that said authors have the motivation to continue generating content in the future.

How is the entry into social networks when the company has no prior experience? What is it that we should never lose sight of?

The agent of change must be identified and trained to implement these new technologies, changing the processes involved to maintain that activity properly and to be able to perceive returns on the investment. We must never lose sight of the fact that this activity is not free, it requires a minimum and constant dedication.  Movers in Syracuse, NY must dedicate themselves to driving leads on Facebook to be successful.

Summarize the basic lines of your paper.

INNOVATION IS AN ATTITUDE as we already know according to many experts, and COLLABORATIVE INNOVATION IS A NECESSARY ATTITUDE in the current situation in a globalized environment where from all fronts they are demanding us to optimize resources, do not reinvent the wheel and cooperate.

In the paper we will present the results achieved through the Metal 2.0 Project (2008-2009) aimed at boosting the use of social web among companies, to reach the results achieved in the next phase of the project called Metal 2.0 Crowdsourcing Project (2010) , aimed at boosting the use of crowdsourcing in companies. All this in order to encourage other companies and organizations to help us transform their sectors and geographical areas, and why not, move forward together.

The project is based on an analysis of the state of the art, both at a scientific and business level, including exposing these preliminary results in a day, subsequent survey and then various pilot experiences in order to encourage the ice to break through the use of crowdsourcing. All summarized in a results report published in February 2011 and accessible at: http://www.metal20.org/

During the exhibition, all the results obtained in each of the project phases will be detailed, emphasizing that collaborative innovation or crowdsourcing is the next natural step to implement social networks in companies that can be summarized as: SHARE (1-communication and 2-conversation), COLLABORATE (3-collaboration) and EXPERIMENT (4-co-creation).

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Crowdsourcing or the art of innovating cooperating

On April 7 took place within the framework of the Polytechnic City of Innovation-UPV the first edition of the INNOVALENCIA Congress “Emprender and Innovar en Red” ( http://innovalencia.com/ ) organized by the Valencian Association of Innovative Companies , (AVANT i + e), with more than 300 attendees and interesting presentations by great experts such as Gaby Castellanos , Javier Echeverría , Salvador Gómez and Juan Gasca , and a round table moderated by Carlos Seaton .

The presentation that I carried out, “Crowdsourcing or the art of innovating cooperating”, is based on the results achieved to date in the ProjectMETAL 2.0 CROWDSOURCING , of which I will only highlight the last sentence that closes the presentation, regarding the incorporation of new ICT in organizations: “The future depends on you, this is not a problem for others, it is a problem for everyone”, which summarizes the thread of the paper based on the fact that for 15 years companies do not innovate in ICT spontaneously, it takes an AGENT OF CHANGE that is dedicated to experimenting and introducing new ICTs on an ongoing basis (ebusiness, emarketing, social networks and crowdsourcing) in the processes of the company, in order to obtain new benefits (remove inefficiencies, meet new customers via the Internet, carve out a reputation to deserve to be followed and why not collaborate and ask for help through the network). All this will happen IF AND ONLY IF the CEO or manager BELIEVE in the new ICTs as a source of competitiveness to differentiate themselves from the competition.

The presentation is accessible on Youtube (video) and Slideshare (presentation) at:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfTcGxFhFl0

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When Working Together, We All Win

After analyzing in the previous post ” It can be said higher but not clearer: In the ERA OF THE COLLABORATION companies must collaborate with each other – and with ICT before, more and better.”

This seems a good time to lose fear to collaborate between companies. We can see several aspects that can restrain (BARRIERS) or condition (FACTORS) that need, because we can not be excellent in everything, we must concentrate on something that makes us excellent, or at least better than our competition, and we must surround ourselves with collaborators inside and outside the company better than ourselves so that together we are able to do “something big” that unites us in a complementary way and trusting each other. As a sign that “together we win.”

Barriers to collaboration

The 13 barriers to collaboration in companies, indicated in a recent post by Javier Megias, are summarized in:

1. Feeling of property
2. Lack of trust or respect
3. Culture of internal competence
4. Long vision term non-existent
5. Different and non-aligned priorities
6. Everything is confidential
7. Organizational charts and compartmentalized
8. Bottlenecks
9. Ego
10. Objectives and variable remuneration
11. Lack of tools
12. We do not have bridgehead
13. Too much ” seriousness”

I would only add, in line with the phrase of WANTING IS POWER, that values ​​such as egoism (me, me, me, me) should be absent in the DNA of collaboration, where only personal interest is looked at and nothing or little the collective, and present values ​​such as the GENEROSITY AND HEIGHT OF MIRAS, as explained in the previous post.

Collaboration factors

Once you have overcome the two previous points, see that it is a good time to collaborate, and be predisposed to it by breaking down the 13 bars mentioned, the next step will be to see how to do it successfully. The good practices of cooperation networks show that the success of a cooperation network depends to a great extent on five interrelated factors:

1. WIN-WIN: You must identify and realize the BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES
New business opportunities are the reason companies join a network. A possible lack of a particular business model should always be offset by a clear strategy that will lead to business opportunities in the future. In any case, the cooperation has to pay off, otherwise companies lose interest soon.

2º. MANAGEMENT: NETWORK MANAGEMENT must be in place, consistent and trustworthy
The cooperation networks are lightweight organizations with a small hierarchy and centralized management functions. However, a common understanding of how to handle business as well as conflict situations is crucial to success. It is therefore necessary to define the basic functions and establish some rules. Network management also plays a key role in the initiation process where guidance and training are required before the rules are put in place.

3º. COMMITMENT: COMMITMENT must be secured with active cooperation
The active participation of all participants and the sufficient allocation of resources (time and staff) are essential for a network, to identify and realize business opportunities. One of the most important aspects that define the commitment is whether the strategy of the network has been well aligned with the individual strategic objectives of the participating companies. This strategic objective must be ensured in the initial phases.

4th. TRUST: TRUST should be developed as a basis for cooperative behavior
Trust has been recognized as an important factor for success in any kind of cooperation. As confidence develops and expands quickly, it depends on the personality of the people involved and the relationships between them. In any case, companies have to get to know each other and work together in order to build trust. Particularly in the initiation phase, personal interviews and social gatherings facilitate this process. However, networks should not only rely on personal trust, but also establish rules to institutionalize trust.

5th. TRANSPARENCY: INFORMATION EXCHANGE must be intensive and transparent
Open communication is a basic factor in relationships of trust. In the beginning of the formation of the network should be shared enough information they need, among the network of potential members to get to know each other well. The network manager can contribute significantly to improving the flow of information at this stage. In the following steps, basic IT tools can be used to support this task.

To finish just a reference to our activity carried out in AIMME for 16 years, always seeking that collaborative spirit with all the agents involved in our technology transfer projects: either we look for the best agencies or companies, or we approach them, it is a two-way road, the field:
– TIC OFFER: that offer a new technology incipient that can imply a significant advance in the competitiveness of the companies of the metal that we serve.
– ICT DEMAND: proposing problems that can be resolved through the application of a new ICT not yet developed by anyone.

Do you collaborate with us? If so, think about what and we talk, in the style:
– R & D projects: propose new projects (individual or collective) where we can add value with our complementary know-how to yours.
– Innovative services : we propose new services offered by you where we collaborate in the diffusion, and implantation if appropriate.
-Training on application of new ICT : propose new courses taught by you, we put everything else (broadcast, classroom, students, etc.).

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The Need For Collaboration Between Companies

hands touching

In today’s difficult times, in which companies are faced with challenges and challenges unknown so far to stay in the market, after having done all the cuts and reductions have been feasible, and we do not know what else to do, a possibility very important to consider is to collaborate with other companies.

Understanding collaboration, when two or more companies agree to carry out any action that is convenient for them, for which they contribute resources to be used in a shared way, for a determined period and acting without any subordination between them.

We must distinguish between collaboration and cooperation, since the latter involves a higher level of commitment, and should come after a period in which it is collaborating or when we raise a more complex issue that even needs to have a legal formula that groups companies .

The indispensable condition to collaborate is to have a common goal, since if it does not exist, it ceases to make sense. Collaboration will allow us to achieve this goal through shared resources, integrated into reasonable action plans and at all times preserving the sovereignty and absolute independence of companies. The achievement of the objective collaborating must be faster and cheaper than by any other procedure.

Union forces that can push companies to collaborate can be very diverse: not having sufficient resources to achieve the objective, sharing risks in an expensive project, taking advantage of the knowledge of the other company on some aspect, buying together to achieve economies of scale, share costs to tackle new markets, …

The reasons for collaborating have no limits other than imagination (everything that comes to mind) and obviously the cost (if it can be economically profitable and affordable). But the first thing we must do is perform a self-analysis to discover our needs and verify that they have an appropriate solution through collaboration.

Unfortunately the Collaboration has not been much used by the SMEs that constitute the Valencian business community, which in general has always been prone to individualism and to not share infrastructures, machinery, knowledge, … That is, to do everything for fear of copying, not having the leading role … In these moments, when we need our companies have a greater dimension to get better productivity and therefore their level of competitiveness, this option is fundamental, since only in this way can they approach new markets or improve their situation in existing ones.

And lastly we must not forget that to be successful in the Collaboration a basic condition is the one of the generosity and height of sights, so that it is a win-win for all.

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