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6/28/17 2:50 PM

What does Amazon's Whole Foods Purchase mean to the Retail Industry?

 There’s been a lot of hype during the last two weeks around Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods. Just when you thought that the traditional retail industry couldn't be in a more serious state of upheaval, e-commerce and cloud pioneer Amazon announced its plan to purchase the high-end grocery store chain Whole Foods for $13.7 billion - it's largest acquisition ever. It would be an understatement to say that this deal will only have serious implications for the future of grocery stores, as it’s going to impact the future of the retail industry as a whole. Disruption and innovation are nothing new for Amazon, in fact, it's what the company is a master of. It's just another spur (and a sharp one) for retailers to get moving on new strategies to be able to survive in today's rapidly changing and hyper-competitive world of commerce.

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4/3/17 6:03 PM

POS Technology and Security Challenge (2017)

 With the latest 2017 POS technology changes to PCI-DSS, and ever-changing security requirements in a world in which electronic transactions are constantly under attack, there are significant changes afoot when it comes to processing credit cards. Last year, for instance, most companies were forced to migrate from SHA-1 (Secure Hash Algorithm) to SHA-2 because the former was deemed insecure, and the likes of Google, Microsoft, Apple and Mozilla announced that they will no longer accept SHA-1 certificates in the browsers in 2017. Likewise, companies have until June 2018 to stop using and update current versions of unsafe SSL and TLS protocols, which have also been proven insufficient in the face of more advanced threats that have emerged.

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3/20/17 2:52 PM

When Innovation is a Four Letter Word: Keys to Innovative Leadership

Recently, I was meeting with a client after performing an assessment on their back office operations. Unfortunately, the assessment highlighted a number of areas where the company was significantly under-performing when compared to industry benchmarks. The company’s head of the shared services organization sat stiffly as I, as gently as possible, relayed the details of our assessment and proposed major changes to their organization.

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12/19/16 1:39 PM

When Good Employees Turn “Bad” – The Challenge of Employee Tenure

Did I get your attention with this title?

In reality, good employees don’t turn, “bad”, but in a lot of cases, they can outgrow the roles that they are performing in your organization.  Employee tenure, without professional growth and development, can hurt an organization, both financially as well as operationally.  And you’re not doing your employee any favor either, if he or she is doing the same job for many, many years.

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11/8/16 7:44 AM

Omnichannel Optimization: Aligning Technology with Business Processes

In an increasingly omnichannel world, customers have a wide variety of channels to choose from when making purchases. Thanks to Amazon and other ecommerce innovators, those same customers also expect to receive their purchases almost instantaneously, regardless of what channel they are accessing. To illustrate this change in demand, a recent report by Technavio estimates that the market for same-day delivery in the US will hit $987 million by 2019.  Today's customers are also increasingly opting for the buy online and pick up in-store option, with 82 percent of respondents of a recent Temando survey stating so.

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10/19/16 11:31 AM

The Myth of the Millennials

 I recently attended a conference on shared services, and throughout the 3 days, there were multiple sessions focused on the millennial workforce: hiring them, motivating them, retaining them, and developing them. 

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9/21/16 1:56 PM

New Business Technologies: RPA & Cloud Solutions

It seems like you can’t log into the Internet without being bombarded with proclamations about new business technologies solutions that are streamlining and improving back office processing across the globe.  Apparently, Skynet isn’t only planning the destruction of mankind; it’s also processing and paying your invoices.

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9/19/16 3:12 PM

How to Leverage Your Cost to Serve to Improve Profitability

Latin America is rich in opportunities, from growing market reach to rationalizing operating costs, but these opportunities are not exempt from related challenges.

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8/18/16 12:54 PM

Leveraging Technology in Latin America

 Latin America is rich in opportunities, from growing market reach to rationalizing operating costs, but these opportunities are not exempt from related challenges.

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8/17/16 4:43 PM

Improve Working Capital by Paying Attention to Your Inventory

 Latin America is rich in opportunities, from growing market reach to rationalizing operating costs, but it is a region that also presents challenges.

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8/11/16 11:18 AM

Managing Complexity in Latin America

 The complexity of any organization’s operating model is heavily influenced by the environment in which it conducts business.

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7/22/16 4:08 PM

5 Pressing Issues Confronting Multinationals in Latin America

Latin America presents a plethora of opportunities for Multinationals, from market development on a region with an aggregate GDP in excess of five trillion USD, to manufacturing, to supply chain management, to back office operations in a lower cost environment; but it is not free of challenges. It is one of the most complex regions in the world to do business in. Take taxes for example. According to a recent survey by Doing Business  from the World Bank, it takes on average 478 hours a year to prepare tax returns in Latin America versus 177 in the high income countries and 186 in the U.S.

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7/10/16 1:58 PM

Changing The “Back Office Dynamic”

We have worked with many companies over the years, analyzing their back office operations and looking for ways to increase performance and efficiency.

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6/30/16 1:32 PM

The Strategy/Execution Duality

Execution has enjoyed an impressive reputation in the last few years under the banner that any strategy is worthless if not executed.  While this assertion is tautologically undeniable, it is also true that executing a flawed strategy can have unappealing consequences. New Coke or the Betamax video format come to mind.

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5/25/16 1:08 PM

The Dark Side of Benchmarking

 Benchmarking is a good tool to understand what other organizations are doing, but it needs to be taken with a grain--or rather a pinch--of salt.

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12/22/15 10:25 AM

Explore Amazon S3 Benefits: Flexible, Scalable And Secure

Recently, our own Jose Alvarez, Director of Managed Services, spoke to the research firm Clutch, providing feedback on the use and implementation of Amazon S3 service. Obviously, we’re proud to help clients move their data centers to Amazon Web Services, so Jose was more than happy to explore the S3 service in depth for the research firm.

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