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News

Tech CEOs Expect Greatest Profits In 2017 and continues hiring of skill force.

The survey of 53 tech CEOs found 40 percent expect their greatest profits in 2017, with another 23 percent seeing highest profits in 2018 and beyond. At the same time, 36 percent of the tech CEOs intend to increase their company’s headcount by 11 – 25 percent over the next three years, with 21 percent planning a 6 to 10 percent increase.

Take care of current customers to drive growth.

To drive their company’s growth during the coming 36 months, the tech leaders’ priorities are building their business with current customers and selling existing products.

Workforce and skills required to deliver growth.

The CEO survey captured tech leaders’ views on their company’s workforce and the skills required to compete and grow. When asked whether they have adequate talent and don’t see possible disruption over next three years, 28 percent agreed with the statement, 34 percent disagreed, and 38 percent were neutral. Asked whether they have felt the effects of a skills gap but are adequately investing in training and education to address the gap, 57 percent of the tech CEOs agreed, 21 percent disagreed, and 23 percent were neutral.

BPO Thought Process-Survey Finds 57% of Organizations are Concerned about their Contract Management Processes.

A recent report by Huron Legal found that 57% of the legal technology and contract management professionals polled expressed concern about their company’s existing contract management procedures. The report is excellent and I recommend that people read it for themselves. But in addition to the lead statistic, I was also drawn to their conclusion that for most companies, “the contract management process is still a manual, slow, inefficient and ineffective process.” Coupling those points with the previous IACCM report indicating that proper contract management could improve a company’s profitability by the equivalent of massive 9% of annual revenue and I’m left with the conclusion that the majority of CFOs, CPOs and GCs can’t ignore this and will do something.

China's Huawei, Unwelcome in the U.S., Finds Favor in Canada.

For years, Huawei Technologies has been a pariah in the U.S. The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in 2012 issued a report concluding that its ties to the Chinese government pose a threat to U.S. national security and that Americans should avoid buying from the company, China’s biggest maker of telecom-networking equipment. In July 2013 former National Security Agency Director Michael Hayden, now a director at rival Motorola Solutions (MSI), said he had evidence that Huawei, whose founder and chief executive officer served in the People’s Liberation Army, provided customer information to the Chinese government. Huawei, which also makes smartphones and tablets, has denied the claims, calling them “tired, unsubstantiated, defamatory remarks.”

The company has scaled back its ambitions in the U.S. for the time being. Instead, it’s turned to another North American market, with far better results. In Canada, Huawei supplies 3G and 4G network equipment to Bell Canada (BCE:CN) and Telus (TU), two of the nation’s big three cellular operators. Its hardware makes up 100 percent of the 4G network of Saskatchewan Telecommunications, the regional carrier owned by the provincial government. SaskTel also relies on the Chinese company to troubleshoot technical problems and help the carrier plan ways to expand its service. “Huawei is not just here to sell equipment and leave,” says Ron Styles, SaskTel’s CEO. “They are at the table with us when we are making decisions about what’s needed for our customers.”

Until recently, the Chinese company’s strategy up north was “to maintain a relatively low profile,” says Scott Bradley, Huawei Canada’s vice president for corporate and government affairs. Although it has almost doubled its quarterly smartphone shipments this year, sending 20.3 million phones around the world in the second quarter to place third behind Samsung Electronics (005930:KS) and Apple (AAPL), most of its sales outside China are in Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. It’s now ramping up efforts to sell smartphones in Canada, where it has less than 1 percent of the market. “Recognizing that we had challenges in the United States, we weren’t in a position to aggressively build a consumer brand” in Canada, but that’s changing, says Bradley. In a July 29 report, IDC said its figures “show that the momentum is undoubtedly there” for Huawei to push further into markets where it’s been weak.

Bradley says Huawei has new opportunities in Canada because of changing regulations that, as of December, prohibit carriers from locking consumers into three-year contracts. The new policy, which gives people more flexibility to switch from one carrier to another, means operators have to make in two years the money they used to make in three. The shorter window has pushed carriers to cut back on subsidies for pricier phones, making Huawei’s models more attractive, says Bradley. Huawei phones can’t compete with an iPhone or a Samsung Galaxy when the competitors’ phones are heavily subsidized and comparable in price, he says. But as consumers see the true cost of their phones, the Chinese company may have an edge.

To help sell its products in Canada, Huawei is pumping up marketing. This summer it’s sponsoring the Canadian leg of pop singer Katy Perry’s concert tour; it’s also helping to pay for uniforms and equipment for some 35 amateur hockey, curling, and soccer teams in Canada. It’s donating networking hardware to remote communities in the far north of the country to better link them with cell networks. “We want to be embedded with people’s lives,” says Sean Yang, Huawei’s top executive in Canada.

That prospect concerns some Canadians. While Huawei hasn’t encountered the same level of resistance in Canada as it has in the U.S., it’s still had to respond to accusations that it’s spying for its home country. On a visit to Beijing in February 2012, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper attended a signing ceremony for a Huawei deal with Bell Canada and Telus, but after the U.S. House Intelligence Committee’s report came out later that year, Harper’s administration barred Huawei from bidding on national government contracts for networking equipment. Former Canadian security and intelligence agents have expressed concern in legislative hearings and in the press that Huawei’s presence in Canada’s cellular network makes the country more vulnerable to cyber attack. “You wonder, is it too late? Have we drunk the water and now we’re contaminated?” says Michel Juneau-Katsuya, former head of the Asia-Pacific desk at the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, Canada’s equivalent of the CIA. Bradley says the company is “working openly and transparently with our customers and government.”

Seniors Enjoy Benefits of ICT to Communicate with Younger Generations

A new study from Ericsson ConsumerLab carried out in the United States shows that seniors who use communications technology feel more enriched, informed, younger and more in touch with others and society.

This is the first generation of seniors who are able to utilize a wider range of communication technology in older age. Those who have taken up the technology feel more enriched, informed, young, and in touch with others as well as what is happening in society. In short, they feel they have an improved quality of life. The study found that the use of communication technology is bridging the gap between generations in a way that has never been the case with previous generations. Children and grandchildren can share their technology expertise, teaching and giving support to their parents and relatives and creating a common ground in their relationship.

With the growing presence of technology in today's daily life, there is an increasing digital divide between generations, but also within the older age group, with a majority who have not yet embraced usage of smartphones, tablets and new services.

Among the strongest influences for seniors to start using new communication modes are children and grandchildren. Texting has migrated to this generation from their younger relatives. This development is decreasing both voice and email usage, as seniors discover that younger generations prefer to communicate by text.

With its bigger screen and user-friendly interface, the tablet is an attractive device for 65-75 year olds, and is likely to increase in popularity for this generation.

Video calling is just beginning to catch on with the seniors who were interviewed.

Ann-Charlotte Kornblad, Senior Advisor, Consumer Insights at Ericsson ConsumerLab, says: "They see it as a perfect tool, with its easy handling enabling them to have conversations with close friends and family. It also allows for the details and circumstances of life to be shared."

Broadband is driving economic growth in the U.S.

The broadband industry is bringing extraordinary opportunities to nearly every corner of our country. From job creation to business expansion, the high-speed Internet is connecting our nation and driving economic growth.

The converging sectors of broadband, media and information technology add nearly $900 billion annually to the U.S. economy. And today’s connected information, communications and technology sectors support an estimated 10 million American jobs.

These statistics provide a fascinating and revealing story about the broadband industry’s critical role in our economy, its nationwide availability and its growing presence in our homes. Overall the account is a good one, with positive customer satisfaction rates and connection speeds which exceed provider requirements. Last but not least, the data points to increasing levels of Internet usage playing a direct role in everything from employment to entertainment.

Digital is the Present & Future of the business.

Emerging technology is beginning to tackle looming 21st century problems. City of tomorrow will be fully digital. In the coming years communities will grow at an amazing pace. The United Nations predicts by 2030, 60% of the world will live in cities. Demand for clean air, water, energy — and convenience — will skyrocket.

Along with emerging innovations, increased connectivity via the Internet and smart devices promises to help solve many of these threats. Imagine turning the ocean into drinking water, ending traffic jams, making policing smarter and creating buildings with zero carbon footprints.