Happy holidays from the TopITconsultant.com team!

by Editor 12/24/2008 11:37:00 AM

As the year draws to a close, we at the TopITconsultant job board would like to thank all our clients, consultants and readers for supporting us and visiting the site.

We hope you and your families have a safe and joyous holidays season.

Best wishes in the New Year and may it be a happy and prosperous one!

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MiPro Consulting gets Oracle Certified Partner status

by Editor 12/23/2008 11:04:00 AM
IT consulting firm MiPro Consulting has announced that it has achieved Oracle Certified Partner status in the Oracle® PartnerNetwork. The IT consultancy specializes in Oracle's PeopleSoft Enterprise consulting services.

MiPro Consulting joins a select group of companies that have been able to demonstrate superior product knowledge, technical expertise and a commitment to doing business with Oracle.

Chris Bishop, president of MiPro Consulting, said: "MiPro's focus has always been to provide our customers with the best array of services for their PeopleSoft Enterprise needs. As we have continued to develop our service lines, our relationship with Oracle has grown significantly. Our Certified Partner status is a testament not only to our ongoing efforts to provide a superior consulting experience that complements PeopleSoft Enterprise solutions, but also to our commitment to our customers and their investment in Oracle technology."

Oracle Certified partners have access to additional resources within the Oracle organization including technical, training, marketing, and more. These resources will give MiPro Consulting even more tools to help strengthen their services arms and serve Oracle customers in the best way possible.

John Webb, Oracle vice-president of Product Strategy, said: "MiPro has been a leading provider of consulting services PeopleSoft applications for years. Their services help our customers extend their PeopleSoft solutions in new and dynamic ways. MiPro's new status as a Certified Partner is well-deserved and we look forward to our continued relationship."

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Wipro names Kirk Strawser new global head of the consulting division

by Editor 12/23/2008 11:00:00 AM
Indian IT services company Wipro Technologies has appointed Kirk Strawser as global head of the company's Consulting Services division.

Strawser was previously Americas leader of CRM at Ernst & Young, global leader of CRM at Capgemini, and president of consulting services at Capgemini Americas.

T K Kurien, president of Wipro consulting services, communication and media, global programs, and strategic initiatives, said:

"We have seen a significant increase in demand for our consultancy business recently, especially for our cost optimization and business transformation services. Our customers were asking for higher level advisory services to complement our world-class IT and BPO services. This has helped us set the agenda for strategic cost reduction, capital efficiency, and customer experience in transformation-related programs."

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IBM wins $100 million contract from Czech Ministry of Finance

by Editor 12/23/2008 10:54:00 AM
IT giant IBM's branch in Czech Republic has signed a contract with the Czech Ministry of Finance to provide and implement the Treasury Integrated Information System. The deal is worth approximately $100 million.

IBM signed the agreement after being recommended by the tender commission named by the Czech Government.

IBM's Treasury Integrated Information System is designed to enable the transparent administration of state finance providing efficient handling of state budget resources and public finance. The Treasury Integrated Information System is already deployed by many European Union member states.

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KPMG reports 14.5% revenue growth in 2008

by Editor 12/18/2008 10:14:00 AM
KPMG, the global network of professional service firms providing Audit, Tax and Advisory services, today announced that member firm combined revenues increased to US$22.69 billion for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, versus US$19.81 billion for the prior fiscal year, reflecting double-digit growth across all of KPMG's service lines.

KPMG's combined revenues for fiscal year 2008 represent growth of 14.5 percent in U.S. dollars and growth of 8.4 percent in local currency terms.

"All of our businesses recorded solid growth last year, despite the deepening and acceleration of the global financial crisis in the last quarter of KPMG's fiscal year," said Timothy P. Flynn, Chairman, KPMG International.

Across KPMG's geographic regions and member firms, the Asia Pacific region grew fastest in 2008, while Russia saw revenues rise 64.5 percent in U.S. dollars. In India, revenues jumped 48.9 percent, in China revenues rose 25.8 percent, and in Africa revenues increased 16.5 percent, all in U.S. dollars.

Confronting Economic Challenges

"As we witnessed the accelerated impact of the credit crisis in recent months, it became clear that businesses in every region and in every sector are being confronted with unprecedented challenges to maintain liquidity, anticipate fluctuating customer demand and maintain operating performance," said Flynn.

"In a period of profound and unprecedented changes, our profession, and in particular KPMG firms are well positioned and committed to help clients address the significant challenges ahead," he said.

Flynn added, "KPMG provides a portfolio of governance, liquidity, and operations related service offerings through our core Audit, Tax and Advisory businesses that will help clients as they seek to re-define their risk management structure, achieve better cash management, sell assets, optimize costs, restructure their debt, prepare for the new regulation yet to come, and improve the depth and transparency of their financial reporting."

Service Line Revenues

Revenues in 2008 were strong across all three of KPMG's core businesses. For Audit services, where a faster rate of overall growth was recorded this year than in 2007, global revenues increased 13.9 percent to US$10.69 billion.

KPMG's Advisory services also achieved growth in all regions, with revenues increasing 13.0 percent to US$7.27 billion for the year.

Revenues for Tax services rose 18.3 percent to US$4.73 billion, again on the basis of strong performance in all regions globally.

Asia Pacific Region

The Asia Pacific region led the growth pace among KPMG's three global regions, with aggregated revenue growth of 21.6 percent to US$3.11 billion in FY08. KPMG China demonstrated particularly strong growth in the Asia Pacific region, with 25.8 percent growth in U.S. dollars. This year, member firms in the region also agreed to move toward a more aligned practice, in order to add to the strength and depth of client service in Asia Pacific.

Korea is expected to adopt a global accounting standard in the coming years. Japan has started to consider possible adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) in the foreseeable future. In response to this move, the firm in Japan established a 280-person practice to assist with IFRS conversion.

EMA Region

For the EMA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) region, combined KPMG member firm revenues increased 16.3 percent to US$12.41 billion.

In the EMA region, FY08 revenue results were particularly strong in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), at 34.4 percent in U.S. dollars, the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) at 62.1 percent in U.S. dollars, and in Africa, at 16.5 percent in U.S. dollars, as well as in such national markets as Spain, which grew at 28.8 percent and Denmark where revenues rose 24.8 percent, both in U.S. dollars.

Also in the region, KPMG in Spain and KPMG in the Netherlands voted this year to join the KPMG merger in Europe - alongside the UK, Germany and Switzerland. KPMG Europe LLP is Europe's largest fully integrated accounting firm.

Americas Region

In the Americas region, FY08 revenue rose 8.8 percent to US$7.17 billion. KPMG in Brazil led national practices in the Americas with growth of 39.5 percent in U.S. dollars. In Canada, KPMG was selected this year as one of the 10 best employers to work for in 2009 from all companies in that country.

Among the innovative programs behind the recognition in Canada's Financial Post competition was KPMG's "Audit 1" program, which provides an unprecedented opportunity for a select number of new hires to receive global training.

In regulatory developments in the region, the United States, as well as Brazil, Mexico and Chile, among others, are expected to transition to International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) during the next several years. KPMG has delivered IFRS conversion services to more than 1,400 clients globally, and is bringing that depth of talent and experience to assist companies in the Americas as they convert to a global standard.

BRIC Countries

KPMG's outstanding overall performance in the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China), saw aggregate revenues rise by 37.4 percent in U.S. dollars in the past year.

Thinking Beyond

"An economic crisis like the one we're seeing gives virtually every business permission to drive change - from how it develops and delivers its products and services to how it approaches the market," said Flynn. "I'm confident that KPMG's ability to 'think beyond' borders and immediate economic concerns - and our focus on global industries and our deep understanding of clients' businesses - will prove to be a real advantage for our clients in helping them emerge stronger after this crisis."

About KPMG International

KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax and Advisory services. We operate in 144 countries and have 137,000 people working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International, a Swiss cooperative. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.

The financial information set forth on these pages represents combined - not consolidated - information of the separate KPMG firms that perform professional services for clients and is combined here solely for presentation purposes. KPMG International performs no professional services for clients nor, concomitantly, generates any revenue.

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IBM launches new initiative to help IT firms improve efficiency

by Editor 12/18/2008 10:05:00 AM
IBM has unveiled an initiative to help organizations reduce costs and improve the efficiency of their information technology (IT) and product engineering teams. To help companies overcome the challenges associated with today's rapidly changing and global business climate, IBM's new offerings will empower companies to use their software as a strategic business asset.

Organizations too frequently waste valuable time, money and resources by failing to ensure software and systems projects meet business requirements prior to delivering them to the marketplace. Even if business objectives are clear, most companies experience a serious gap in the ability of IT to execute against these goals. With 62% of projects failing to meet deadlines, 49% of projects suffering budget overruns and 41% failing to deliver on expected business value or return on investment (ROI)*, software and systems projects are not providing the level of return of investment required by today's businesses.

For example, if an automobile manufacturer is forced to recall a significant number of cars due to defects in the software, or a large organization reports a loss due to problems in its ERP system, they are wasting valuable time, money and resources that could have been saved by ensuring their software and products met business requirements prior to marketplace delivery.

To help address these challenges, IBM is announcing new software enabled by Jazz, IBM's collaborative technology platform, to help companies balance the rising cost of IT operations with the need to generate results with fewer resources. To derive greater value from their software investments, companies must collaborate across geographical and organizational boundaries, automate work flow based on up-to-date information and continuously report progress against desired business outcomes. These new offerings will help transform how business leaders and IT organizations work together to:

• Act quickly to seize new business opportunities by analyzing ROI scenarios, the impact of change and the alignment of business and technology investments which are key to successful business transformations;

• Achieve precision in desired business outcomes by building consensus among business and technology leaders and by making better decisions based on accurate and real-time information;

• Execute with reduced risk and cost, delivering higher quality solutions and improved IT and product engineering efficiency through real-time team collaboration, automation and reporting.

"Historically, when companies have looked for ways to reduce costs, they have often overlooked the importance of assuring that information technology is efficient," said John Lutz, general manager, Managed Business Process Services, IBM Global Technology Services. "In today's rapidly changing economic climate, organizations must drive business and product differentiation with greater agility and confidence. This 'agility at scale' will be crucial to the future of many businesses."

New and enhanced software facilitates collaboration and business transformation The challenges of globalization and technology outsourcing are forcing companies to become more nimble, using an increasingly geographically dispersed, virtual and agile workforce to remain competitive. In the world of software delivery, this means around the clock collaboration to improve the success rate of software projects. IBM's Jazz technology platform helps geographically dispersed teams collaborate to improve business processes and align business and IT priorities.

• IBM Rational Requirements Composer -- new software that helps business and IT teams partner to deliver business differentiation and improve the business results tied to their investments in software. Built on Jazz, IBM Rational Requirements Composer helps geographically distributed teams work together in an open, real-time and transparent manner to more effectively define the scope of a project and build consensus among business and IT leaders.

IBM Rational RequisitePro -- enhanced software that tightly integrates with IBM Rational Software Architect to ensure delivered solutions meet business requirements and priorities.

IBM Telelogic System Architect -- enhanced software that helps business and IT teams work together to prioritize investments to support business goals and seize new business opportunities by visualizing, analyzing and communicating enterprise blueprints of business and technology architectures. Integration between Telelogic System Architect and IBM Rational Software Architect links strategy, processes and IT infrastructure planning directly with solution and system implementations. IBM Telelogic System Architect XT, the System Architect web client, includes new, out-of-the-box templates that improve how business and IT information is captured and consolidated, making the data more visually appealing to CTOs and business leaders. In addition, new web-based dashboards provide executives with the insight about IT projects they need to quickly seize new business opportunities.

IBM Rational ClearQuest, Rational Build Forge, Rational Asset Manager and IBM Rational ClearCase -- a collection of enhanced software which improves team productivity and the ability to execute against desired business and technical requirements at lower cost and risk. With new collaboration, automation and reporting features taking advantage of Web 2.0 and Jazz technologies, customers can more easily implement software delivery best practice processes, helping them deliver higher quality solutions and improved IT efficiency. Organizations can now achieve better visibility into projects and provide traceability across the software supply chain using around the clock global monitoring.

For more information, please visit www.ibm.com/software/rational/announce.

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Axon takeover approved by UK court

by Editor 12/16/2008 12:51:00 PM
HCL Technologies' 441 million pound offer to take over British consultancy Axon was confirmed Saturday by UK's High Court of Justice.

"The High Court of Justice has made an order confirming the reductionof Axon's share capital in connection with the HCL Scheme by which HCL EAS's acquisition of Axon is being implemented," the UK-based SAP consultancy service provider said in a statement.

Earlier, the court had sanctioned the HCL scheme at a hearing held on December 10. India's fifth-largest IT company HCL would conclude the acquisition on December 15. The HCL Scheme will become effective upon the HCL court orders being delivered to the Registrar of Companies(and in relation to the HCL Reduction Court Order, by the Register of Companies) which is expected to take place on December 15, it added.

With this deal, HCL will become one the largest SAP implementation companies in the world. Axon shares were temporarily suspended from the official list and the London Stock Exchange's mainmarket for listed securities from December 11.

The listing and admission to trading on the London Stock Exchange's main market for listed securities of Axon shares will be cancelled at 8 am on December 16, the day following the anticipated effective date of the HCL scheme," it added.

On 26 September 2008, the board of HCL Technologies announced that it will pay 650 pence in cash per Axon share, valuing the entire share capital of Axon at approximately 441.1million.

India's second largest IT company Infosys was also in the lead to acquire Axon and had made a cash offer of 407.1 million for the same. But Infosys was subsequently outbid by HCL Tech.

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100 Tips for Consulting Firms to Survive & Grow in a Recession - Equiteq

by Editor 12/16/2008 12:47:00 PM
In order to help consulting and IT services companies navigate the economic downturn, mergers and acquisitions advisory firm Equiteq has published a new guide titled '100 Tips for consulting firms to survive and grow in a recession'.

Managing Partner Paul Collins said that the last recession left some painful memories and he wanted others to benefit from his team's experience in how to survive and grow during a recession.

Paul said: "There are some incredibly challenging times ahead, and any prudent owner of a professional services firm should be asking themselves: how am I going to survive the next two years and maintain the income and value in my company that I have built to-date?"

The guide is divided in to two sections. The first is for owners who have time on their side, and wish to strengthen their business in advance of tricky times, focussing on key actions in critical areas such as sales and profit growth, market proposition and client relationships. The second part is a more urgent '30 tips to avoid going bust' for firms where cash and time is already running out.

The Equiteq team is well placed to offer advice, having survived the last two recessions as a consulting business, they know the ropes and helping other firms achieve sustained profit growth is their expertise.

Paul smiles: "We learned what to do and what not to do the hard way! Recessions have a nasty habit of taking you by surprise and cash can run out quickly if you're not prepared, firm owners need to take decisive action now. World class firms see opportunities in recessions to take market share, get it right and you could be stronger in 2010 than you are today. Make the recession work for you!"

To download '100 Tips for consulting firms to survive and grow in a recession', please visit http://www.equiteq.com/100RecessionSurvivalTips.

Equiteq provides merger, acquisition and growth services exclusively to the business consulting and IT services industries. We help investors to find and acquire their ideal company and SME consulting firm owners to grow profits and equity value and/or successfully sell their firm. For more information - http://www.equiteq.co.uk.  

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IBM signs strategic systems integration contract with UK Border Agency

by Editor 12/16/2008 12:43:00 PM
The UK Border Agency (UKBA), responsible for securing the United Kingdom borders and controlling migration in the United Kingdom, today announced it has signed IBM as the Strategic Systems Integration Partner for its Immigration Case Work (ICW) Program.

The first phase of the new three-year contract awarded to IBM, with options to extend for a further 4 years, is the beginning of a new strategic partnership between IBM and the UK Border Agency. Working in conjunction with UKBA, IBM will provide consulting and systems integration services and deliver the overall design of the new IT system to support the applications process for visas and immigration.

UKBA states the ICW is key to delivering its objective to streamline immigration processes, promote new ways of working and make substantial improvements to IT.

Head of Immigration at the UKBA, Matthew Coats, said, "I am delighted that IBM has been appointed as systems integrator for the ICW program. I look forward to working together to deliver a first class case working capability. The ICW program is integral to our work as we carry out the biggest shake up of the immigration system for a generation. It will help us to make fast and fair decisions and manage migration for the benefit of the British public."

Graham Perrott, Public Sector Leader, IBM Global Business Services, said, "Following Project Semaphore, part of the Government's e-Borders program, this agreement extends an already successful relationship with UKBA. As a globally integrated organization, we've been able to draw upon similar contracts won around the world."

The contract was signed in December 2008.

Browse and apply for the latest IBM jobs in the UK on our job board.

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VendorRate names top rated IT vendors for customer satisfaction in 2008

by Editor 12/16/2008 12:40:00 PM
VendorRate (www.vendorrate.com), the only Web-based business information service that offers quick, confidential performance ratings and comparisons of technology vendors, announced today that ChemSW, Informix, Salesforce.com and Intel were the top rated vendors for overall customer satisfaction in 2008.

IBM Servers & Systems, Hewlett-Packard Printers, Amazon Web Services, VMware, Apple Desktops and Notebooks and Research in Motion completed the year’s top ten in ratings by more than 3000 business-to-business IT professionals on the VendorRate website and at trade shows, professional conferences and virtual events.

The five vendors posting the lowest overall scores for the year were Sprint Nextel, SunGard Data Systems, SAP Large Enterprise, Computer Associates International and Datamaxx Group.

“By rating vendors independently, thousands of IT executives and managers are helping other companies choose the best services and avoid costly mistakes with performance information that is more important than ever in this challenging economy,” said Rick Schaefer, CEO of VendorRate.

VendorRate users rate vendors confidentially on ten specific performance criteria that include customer service, reliability, integrity, budget and effectiveness. The results produce a cumulative score up to 100.

Chemistry software maker ChemSW received the highest overall score of 95. Informix, IBM’s relational database management system, posted a 91. CRM services provider Salesforce.com ranked third overall with an 89 and was the number one company in ratings by IT pros at enterprise companies with more than 2500 employees. IT products and services company CDW was the top rated reseller (87).

During the year, VendorRate also forged partnerships with three major IT user groups, the International Sybase User Group, the SQL Server Worldwide Users Group and the International Informix Users Group.

The full 2008 report also contains breakdowns of ratings submitted by small, medium and enterprise companies, the highest and lowest scores in each of ten performance criteria, and top category scores by software, hardware and service providers.

The report summarizes customer satisfaction ratings entered by technology professionals at the VendorRate website, trade shows, professional conferences, and virtual events. VendorRate also collects rating information by cooperating with user groups, trade associations, event management, and IT and telecom departments from organizations of all sizes. VendorRate is vendor neutral and accepts neither vendor sponsorship nor advertising.

The report is now available free on the VendorRate site at http://www.vendorrate.com/News/2008-12-15-VendorRate-Annual-Report.pdf.

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