Adam Gartenberg's Blog

Business Analytics and Optimization, IBM and Social Marketing

Tuesday’s IOD News (and more)

Last night those of us in the blogging program were treated to a preview of today's news... which due to sheer exhaustion on my part, I'm only getting around to blogging now (so much for a preview, I know).  Regardless, it was great to have a chance to sit down with a number of IBM executives and IBM customers and here their first-hand details on today's announcements.

Announcement:  Hundreds of Global Companies Turn to IBM to Tackle Their Most Complex Information-Related Challenges
Bernie Spang, Director, Strategy and Marketing, Database Software and Systems was joined by C. Mohan, CTO of Reliance Life Insurance.
Reliance is just one of 700 companies highlighted in today's press release that are moving SAP workload from Oracle and other database software to DB2.

C. Mohan described how Reliance needed an operational store that can expand seamlessly and support business growth.  They were looking for a complete solution, including an information agenda and strategy.  As one example of the benefits, they used to be distributing day old data, and people were looking for something much closer to real-time.  

Bernie related what he hears are the three most important things he's hearing from IBM Clients:  Cost, cost and cost.  As information continues to grow, companies need to take operational costs out of managing information.  Without continuous increases in efficiency, they can't afford to invest and keep up with these kinds of projects.

Another customer highlighted in the release is 3UK, a large mobile broadband provider, which is now using the IBM Smart Analytics System to analyze network hotspots, detect potential congestion areas and dropped voice calls.  

Banco do Brasil S.A., a major financial institution with 6,000 locations across Brazil and 20 other countries, is moving to DB2 10, which they expect will help them handle increased workloads more quickly, and also deliver storage and power consumption savings as they are able to consolidate their database management systems.

Announcement:  IBM Introduces New Software to Help Customers Identify Critical Insights and Manage Business Content

Kristin Hansen, Director of Marketing for Enterprise Content Management, joined us to talk about advancements in ECM, with a specific focus on the announcement of the IBM Case Manager product - the first formal product as part of IBM's Advanced Case Management strategy.

Kristin described why IBM Case Manager is such an important release for the ECM business and for IBM, as it symbolizes the effort IBM is making to move into the solution software space.  While it may be led by the ECM team, it represents a cross-brand offering with in IBM, bringing in elements from Lotus, Business Analytics, WebSphere, and others.

IBM Case Manager integrates content and process management with advanced analytics, business rules, collaboration and social software. The new software offers a more integrated way for businesses to handle growing, increasingly complex caseloads and shrinking resources in areas such as insurance claims management, credit dispute management, fraud identification and resolution, and contract execution.

The end result is that it compresses the time it takes to bring a case management solution to the business (by taking the legwork out of bringing people and processes together).  What a company might have otherwise had to do as custom work now is in templates.  

The press release highlights a number of businesses already benefitting from these and other ECM-related capabilities, including the State of North Dakota (which is saving 200 employee hours a month by eliminating the need to request, manually retrieve and re-file documents).  NTT DOCOMO is using IBM Content Analytics in its customer service operations, using unstructured data to improve customer churn detection and customer voice analysis.  And in the area of Information Lifecycle Governance, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennesee is archiving and indexing more than 400,000 daily emails and attachments for rapid search and retrieval.

Announcement:  IBM Analytics Helps Medical Researchers Detect Complication In Stroke Patients

We were also joined by Roger Rea, Product Manager for InfoSphere Streams, Nagui Halim, Director, InfoSphere Streams, and Dr. Michael Schmidt director of neuromonitoring and informatics, Neurological Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Columbia University Medical Center.  

Dr. Schmidt is working with IBM on an initiative to apply InfoSphere Streams to identify patterns in intensive care patients that may lead to the early detection of potentially life-threatening conditions.  In the first phase, currently under way, InfoSphere Streams is analyzing physiological data streams such as EEG feeds, blood pressure, blood oxygen levels, and temperature readings in conjunction with persistent data, such as lab test results, patient information, and symptoms reported by medical professionals and patients.

The analysis of this information may be able to uncover hidden patterns in test results that are difficult to correlate without the help of analytics. There as many as 200 variables that doctors and hospital staff must look through and assess in order to gauge changes in condition in a patient, and this is far too many for a person to easily be able to understand and identify patterns on their own.

The goals of the initiative are to get all data into one spot (not a trivial process), understand the data (which the current initiative is focused on), and then display it in way useful to clinicians.

You may recall a similar initiative being done to monitor premature newborns (I wrote about it here), and it was actually that press release that resulted in Dr. Schmidt reaching out to IBM.  (And for those of you curious on an update on that initiative, they have expanded monitoring from the original 7 beds to all 42 beds in the unit, and Dr. McGregor has been establishing relationships with other hospitals interested in performing similar types of analysis.)