Developments of Information Management
This is a guest article from Racami , a valued BCC Software partner.
The problem with technology…
Information technology (IT) began about five decades ago, however, the number of IT products have expanded more rapidly in the past 10 years than the 30 years prior thanks to consumer devices. By the mid-sixty’s IT was forging their way into the business mainstream. While computers were out of reach for most businesses, telecommunications gave businesses the ability to communicate within their own organization anywhere in the world at any time and effectively pass instructions and information.
In the transactional marketplace IT started to receive their own autonomy and large budgets in corporations, many technical savvy managers of these new departments began spending huge amounts of money on information systems and software to monitor, control, and report on various functions of print production and customer communication.
Consequently, printers began using information systems to handle the flow and maintenance of information that supported their business. Their systems contained information about significant processes, places and things within the organization or in the environment surrounding it. Statistical tools helped business managers make better decisions.
The problem with all this is that there is now too much technology that does not talk to each other. This costs companies money, frustrates employees, and impacts customer satisfaction.
A single source of truth…
In the Print and Mail industry (transactional in particular), the Automated Document Factory (ADF) solutions bring automation and stability, but counter to what the name implies, ADF does not automate the entire factory. ADF has traditionally been focused on orchestrating data processing and inserter integrity, yet not all of the aspects of business and factory management. While falling short of end-to-end oversight ADFs are the seedlings for modern technology that unifies databases, software, and hardware to create a single primary processing system that talks to accounting or other back office systems.
Business requirements for visibility and analytics is driving the need for middleware that connects the various informational or production systems together to tag the information and store it in a central database for further processing and or analysis. The middleware system orchestrates work and collects information about what the various systems are doing. Essentially, a solution that allows businesses to manage and make decisions based on real time data and information to improve results and become more profitable… a single source of truth. The desire to easily create healthy sustainable workflows is addressed simultaneously by middleware that incorporates the ability to do work as well as orchestrate it. The future is…
Tomorrow’s information systems have to be much more than what they currently are. Customer preferences to consume information, pay bills, and electronically interact with the companies that they do business with will continue to challenge organizations’ ability to satisfy their needs.
Corporations that are able to communicate with consumers in real time on a mass scale will outpace those that cannot. This means treating individuals as individuals, yet knowing when to batch vs. handling live real-time interactions is key. Automation is the only way to handle this and the use of sophisticated multichannel workflow engines, marketing automation systems, consumer data platforms (CDP), and tools for measuring the customer journey will be commonplace. Products that facilitate integration and unify data will rule the future.