Industry News and Analysis
< p="">Bridging the Gap Between Staff and Management
Are you a "virtual" manager, relying on voicemail or e-mail to stay in touch with employees? If so, your staff may need more face time with you, suggests a recent RHI Consulting nationwide survey. Fifty-two percent of CIOs polled said inadequate communication with IT employees is a company’s most common management mistake. Lack of recognition and praise ranked second, receiving 17 percent of the response. Other responses included: lack of flexibility in scheduling hours worked, lack of employee authority and lack of training, development or educational opportunities.
The survey includes responses from 1,400 CIOs with more than 100 employees in their company.
"When communicating with employees, many companies rely on the ‘trickle down effect,’ hoping that key messages will somehow make their way from senior management to the staff level," says Greg Scileppi, Executive Director of RHI Consulting. "Apprising your team of the big picture increases motivation and allows them to develop more targeted solutions. The result is greater job satisfaction and, ultimately, reduced turnover."
Scileppi notes that while managing projects and staff remotely is often necessary in an accelerated business climate, there is no substitute for face-to-face meetings. Conducting informal meetings or project status checks and establishing an open door policy can help bridge the gap between staff and management. Delegating authority, sharing the organization’s vision and recognizing accomplishments through bonus pay, extra vacation time and public praise are effective ways to boost morale and reward employees for outstanding work.
For more information, visit www.rhic.com.
Attachmate e-Vantage WebPublish
e-Vantage WebPublish gives organizations the ability to selectively publish host application screens in a GUI presentation for viewing from a Web browser without changing any host application code. The host data remains secure because end-users only have access to a Web server – they do not have direct access to host applications.
e-Vantage WebPublish 3.0 features include the ability to run on a local Web server and support 500 simultaneous users, customizable templates, and the ability to use current legacy systems. Existing Vantage WebPublish customers under a maintenance contract will receive a free upgrade.
For more information, visit their Web site at www.attachmate.com/unisys.
Job Search Site for IT
Tekbay.com is a job and recruiting site which focuses on the IT industry and IT professionals, and offers a free resume posting and job search center. By completing the online registration form, IT professionals can enter their resume into the Tekbay.com site. In addition, employers can post jobs, search the database and check responses to their postings.
The Job Search Engine in Tekbay.com allows candidates and employers to search jobs using a keyword search or a skills search. The Job Hunt Management System allows candidates to keep track of which jobs they have applied to, and retains copies of materials posted onto the site.
Tekbay.com also boasts additional services through their Career Links archive, where more information can be obtained on job training, career hotlines and human resources issues. The site has already signed up more than 3,000 IT companies, including several Fortune 500 companies.
For more information, visit their Web site at www.Tekbay.com.
Ohio Bureau of Employment Services to Use CMplus
Unisys is supplying the Configuration Management Program Librarian for Unisys Systems (CMplus) product and the CMplus services to the State of Ohio Bureau of Employment Services (Ohio BES) located in Columbus, Ohio. CMplus will be used to manage approximately 17 Unisys-based business applications across all of Ohio BES 2200/ClearPath IX Unisys systems.
CMplus offers a host-based, Configuration Management solution supplying source control, change management, build management, auditing, release management, environment management and distribution management of customer developed 3GL business application software for 2200 and ClearPath IX Series Systems. One of the key features required by Ohio BES is the use of CMplus SHARED Object Feature that provides a single management point for those business objects that are identical across many different CMplus business applications.
CMplus is designed specifically to manage Unisys 3GL business applications. These applications may consist of many objects composed of: Batch, Demand, TIP, High Volume TIP (HV TIP), Fixed-Gate Subsystems, ECL, PROCs, WebTS/JavaClient and DPS Forms. CMplus supports business applications built using either Basic Mode or Extended Mode compilers or a mixture of the two.
For more information on CMplus, visit www.federal.unisys.com.
ES7000 Achieves 32-Way Scalability
The Unisys e-@ction Enterprise Server ES7000, running the Amadeus/ITA low-fare search solution, has become the first system on the market to demonstrate the full 32-processor performance capability of the Microsoft Windows 2000 Datacenter Server operating system.
The ES7000 ran the Amadeus/ITA Software low fare search application, designed to find the least expensive airline route among all possible routings between two cities. The low fare search application analyzed 16.6 billion flight segments per day when running in the 32-way ES7000 environment – nearly twice the 8.5 billion flight segments analyzed per day by the 16-way ES7000. In achieving this virtually linear scalability, the Cellular MultiProcessing (CMP) architecture of the ES7000 eliminated a common server performance obstacle: The degradation of individual processor performance that typically occurs as CPUs is added to single or clustered multiprocessor servers.
"Microsoft is very pleased with the progress we are making with Unisys to enable Windows on large enterprise class systems," says Bill Gates, Chairman and Chief Software Architect of Microsoft. "This first demonstration of the 32-way capabilities of Windows 2000 Datacenter Server on the Unisys ES7000 in an airline reservation scenario is a great example of the innovation and cost advantages this platform will bring to large e-commerce apps."
Unisys, Pathlight Enter SAN OEM Agreement
Pathlight Technology has formed an OEM agreement with Unisys to deliver a family of Storage Area Network (SAN) products that will provide Unisys customers with high-performing storage interoperability solutions. The agreement includes Pathlight SAN Gateway, Pathlight SAN Director and Pathlight’s Virtual Private SAN (VPS) access control technology.
Unisys has completed an extensive qualification of Pathlight’s SAN products to verify their compatibility with both Unisys products and other third party products. Pathlight’s products will play a central role in the Unisys strategy to provide complete storage interoperability solutions from a single source.
These solutions allow customers superior performance, scalability, management and sophisticated resource sharing without any host, storage device, HBA or OS dependencies.
The Unisys storage interoperability solution includes selected features from the broader array of capabilities offered in Pathlight SAN Gateway, the lynchpin of the Unisys Pathlight OEM package.
The complete SAN Gateway product delivers the full range of functionality demanded by today’s SAN environments, including the sharing of operational and functional resources. This high-speed, high-reliability device offers connectivity, simultaneous support for heterogeneous systems and storage (including Fibre Channel and SCSI), management of the entire SAN environment, scalability and support for third-party value add functions, such as server-free backup.
SAN Gateway also supports Pathlight’s Virtual Private SAN (VPS) – a superset host-independent and OS-independent LUN Masking product that is the de facto standard for access control in SAN environments and the key to reliable resource sharing.
Unisys, Compaq Deliver CMP Architecture
Unisys and Compaq Computer Corp. have reached an agreement in which Compaq will deliver 32-processor servers based on the Unisys Cellular MultiProcessing (CMP) architecture under the Compaq ProLiant brand. The two companies had announced the signing of a letter of intent to pursue the agreement in February 2000.
"Extending the ProLiant product family to include 32 processor systems is a key element of the Compaq strategy to drive industry-standard technology into the data center," says Paul Santeler, Vice President Enterprise Servers, Industry-Standard Server Group, Compaq. "The CMP architecture will play a key role in fulfilling our commitment to providing the highest levels of performance and stability on platforms based on industry-standard technology."
Telecommuting: Wave of the Future?
In the latest Council Opinion (from Cutter Consortium’s Business Technology Trends and Impacts Advisory Service), Ed Yourdon, Chairman of the Cutter Consortium and member of the Cutter Technology Council, states that telecommuting can be seen as a competitive tool.
"By increasing productivity, reducing absenteeism, and attracting skilled workers in distant locations who would not otherwise be available, there is an opportunity to gain the advantage before the majority of other companies do the same thing. That advantage may exist for as little as six years, and it could last as long as 17 years."
Survey Shows Majority of Firms Have Formal Electronic Communications Policies
In today’s increasingly wired workplace, businesses have taken the lead in establishing guidelines for employee e-mail and Internet use. In a recent survey, 65 percent of chief information officers (CIOs) polled said their companies have formal procedures regulating electronic communication.
"Clearly defining e-mail and Internet policies guards against potential problems later on, such as productivity losses caused by excessive personal use of the Web at work or downtime caused by computer viruses inadvertently transmitted online," says Katherine Spencer Lee, Executive Director of RHI Consulting. "In addition, establishing ground rules prevents employees from feeling they’re being monitored arbitrarily."
Survey results show that CIOs at large companies are most likely to establish formal guidelines governing e-mails and Internet use; 80 percent of technology executives at firms with 1,000 or more employees said they have official policies regulating electronic communication.
Lee points out that with recruitment and rentention being key issues today, employers must strike a balance between protecting business interests and maintaining an atmosphere of employee trust. "While well-crafted and clearly communicated e-policies are a prudent safeguard, they should be flexible, reflect your firm’s culture, and not make workers feel as if they’re cut off from the outside world."
Yourdon continues, "With the technology of today, telecommuting is a viable option for some employees and employers. With Internet-based collaboration, teleconferencing and videoconferencing products, it is not necessary for people to be in the same room. It’s now economical and practical for separated individuals to interact with one another in company meetings, sales presentations and other group activities."
For more information, visit their Web site at www.cutter.com/consortium.
Eagle Software Purchased by Employees
Three long-time employees and board members became owners of Eagle Software Inc. on May 26, after purchasing all of the stock shares from the remaining company founders. "EagleSoftware has an outstanding track record as a solid company in the very volatile technology market," explains Dave Hiechel, President and CEO and one of the three new owners. "We’ve been in business for 19 years and much of our success is due to the aptitude and support of our past board members and owners. We want to continue building on our strengths, as well as branching out into new opportunities to improve our company’s value and growth in the future."
Heichel and his partners – Andy Kratzer, Senior Software Engineer, and Milton Larson, Senior Software Engineer – will continue to administrate and manage the company. Eagle Software specializes in automated data backup solutions including automated tape libraries, backup software solutions and backup integration.
For more information, visit their Web site at www.eaglesoft.com.
Unisys and Exult in Strategic Partnership
Unisys Corporation announced a strategic partnership with Exult, Inc., a provider of eHR – Web-enabled, integrated services designed to manage the human resources function. Unisys will provide information technology services to support Exult’s clients. The two companies have also signed a letter of intent for Exult to provide HR process management, consulting and transaction services for Unisys and its employees.
As Exult's IT infrastructure partner, Unisys will provide application hosting services and technical support services for the information systems that Exult employs to serve its clients. In its proposed role as Unisys HR process management partner, Exult will implement best practices and its personalized self-service web portal to deliver improved HR services to up to 36,000 Unisys employees around the world.
Unisys will provide application hosting services that enable Exult and its clients to benefit from an enterprise-class e-business environment and technical support services.
The Unisys e-@ction Outsourcing Solutions will enable development of a solid security infrastructure to ensure the privacy and security of client information; system linking capabilities to support the production environment in the event of a production server failure; and disaster recovery to keep critical applications, such as payroll, fully operational.
Under the proposed relationship, Exult will assume responsibility for redesigning and managing a number of Unisys HR processes and services, while leveraging the significant investment Unisys has already made in Web-enabling HR functions.
For more information, visit the Unisys Web site at www.unisys.com.
Congress Approves Spam Bill
The E-mail User Protection Act (HR 3113), a bill combating the sending of unsolicited spam e-mail, was ratified in the House of Representatives by a 427-1 vote on July 18.
Industry representatives and consumer advocates worked closely with House leadership to create this bipartisan compromise legislation.
The Act prohibits the use of false e-mail addresses and false routing information, and is intended to protect both consumers and Internet Service Providers (ISPs). E-mail senders are now required to provide a valid return e-mail address and to honor opt-out requests from recipients. The bill empowers ISPs to post and enforce these spam policies prohibiting or regulating the sending of unsolicited commerce e-mail (UCE) to their users; prohibits header forgery; and requires fee-for-UCE ISPs to provide an opt-out mechanism for their subscribers.
HR3113 allows individuals or corporations to sue UCE senders in civil court for violations of the law, and authorizes the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to pursue violations of the law.
Unisys, Elron Software Partner to Deliver Internet Policy Management Solutions
Unisys announced a global agreement with Elron Software, a provider of Internet policy management solutions. Unisys will integrate Internet Manager and Message Inspector from Elron Software into the Unisys e-@ction Solutions they provide to customers in the Internet banking, CRM, eProcurement and eCommerce markets.
The agreement includes the integration of Message Inspector, an intelligent content filtering solution for e-mail, newsgroup and ftp Messages. This will enable Unisys customers to limit their exposure to offensive messages, protect company confidential information and prevent unwanted e-mails from entering their organization, such as spam or malicious viruses, such as the "I LOVE YOU" virus.
For more information, visit the Unisys Web site at www.unisys.com.
Packeteer Teams with Attachmate
Packeteer has teamed with Attachmate to integrate their PacketShaper bandwidth management products with Attachmate’s back-office connectivity products to provide an e-business application management solution.
Under the terms of Packeteer’s Solutions Partner agreement, Attachmate’s Enterprise and Unisys product groups will market PacketShaper products and services to Attachmate’s base of Fortune 500 and Global 2000 business customers.
PacketShaper is a bandwidth management solution that allocates network bandwidth to business-critical applications while controlling non-critical applications.
For more information, visit their Web sites at www.attachmate.com, or at www.packeteer.com.