Marilyn de Villiers

About Me

Marilyn de Villiers is a Freelance writer and editor.

Robotic process automation set to become intelligent

If bots could learn, they would require less up-front effort in RPA deployment. Thanks to advances in applied artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning algorithms that have the ability to detect patterns and make predictions and recommendations, bots do not have to receive precise programming instructions to adapt to changes in business processes. Bots will be able to be used to automate a far wider range of business processes than is currently possible, which could drive demand for the technology.

Top five worst practices for BI and analytics

 The key to achieving BI success by making it accessible to everyone starts with generating insights, then operationalising those insights and being able to place a monetary value on the benefits gained. The goal is to turn data into actionable insights with real business outcomes. However, there are several common mistakes organisations make when rolling out BI and analytics projects that result in their investments ending up as shelfware: unused, forgotten and representing missed opportunities.

Seven must-haves for business intelligence success

Analytics projects fail not because the solution doesn't work, but because the business fails to realise value from its investment, or the technology is not used at all. The cost of this failure is enormous. The first step towards having analytics take its rightful place in the organisation is for data to be regarded as an asset, on par with every other asset owned by the business. There are seven key factors that can mean the difference between an analytics project succeeding, or adding to the high statistic of big data project failures.

Clearing the confusion around digital process transformation

The plethora of automation tools available out there can be extremely confusing for organisations wanting to embark on a digital transformation process. Two-thirds of global service organisations were engaged in digital transformation, with 16% claiming to have already completed the process. it is important for organisations to take a holistic view of what they are hoping to achieve, before deciding on which automation approach to take. This is not always easy, as enterprise architects have to choose from a confusing range of process automation options as a foundation for the transformation journey.

Five factors to consider when choosing software for your business

Debate around the advantages and disadvantages of commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) software versus one-of-a-kind, fully customised software has raged, there is a third, lesser-known, option: platform software. Think of the three software alternatives on a spectrum of development, with COTS on the left, custom-built software on the right, and the platform alternative somewhere in the middle. There are clear differences between them, with each having its own set of pros and cons. Here are five factors to consider when deciding between COTS, platform or custom-built Software.

Good news, bad news in new open source software report

The popularity of open source continues to rise exponentially. Demand for JavaScript, for example, is huge. However, popularity does not infer less vulnerability. The percentage of vulnerable Java components downloaded has increased substantially over the past four years. The rise in overall open source-related breaches should be seen against the background of the massive growth in the use of open source components.  It appears that some open source component users are oblivious to all advice and warnings. 

No one-size-fits-all competencies for project management

Project management is a relatively new profession, there is no consistent picture of what a project manager is, and what competencies individuals filling a project management role should have. There are no one-size-fits-all competencies required for operational project management (OPM) in today's era of digital disruption. Nevertheless, there are certain important behavioural and personal competencies that should always be taken into consideration when appointing a new project manager, or looking at the competencies an already-employed project manager would require in order advancing his or her career prospects.

Four reasons to use process mining

A trap many businesses fall into is to try and automate as many processes as possible. However, automation for the sake of automation is a real problem, because digitising everything is not a realistic goal. Businesses need to prioritise in order to establish a road map for transformation. The question is – how to identify which processes to automate in order to achieve the greatest value? That’s where process mining comes to the fore. Process mining applies the concepts of data mining to business process. The technology is largely used for process discovery; compliance auditing and process enhancement.

Five steps to prevent application clutter from undermining digital transformation

For many CIOs who are expected to lead the charge towards the digital holy grail, the exercise can be a hair-raising challenge that requires them to navigate an unchartered IT minefield, with redundant and obsolete applications that have accumulated over the years threatening to blow the entire exercise out of the water. It’s essential that before embarking on a digital transformation journey, CIOs ensure they fully understand and then streamline the organisation's application portfolio.

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