Deloitte to sponsor U.S. Olympic Committee and U.S. Olympic and Paralympic teams

by Editor 3/31/2009 4:42:00 PM
Deloitte will sponsor the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC), the 2010 and 2012 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams, as well as the 2011 U.S. Pan American Team and the 2010 U.S. Team for the Youth Olympic Games, the company announced yesterday.

As a result of its commitment to provide the strengths of its organization for maximum social impact, Deloitte and its subsidiaries will provide support to help the USOC and U.S. Teams operate efficiently and successfully throughout their journey to the Olympic, Paralympic, Pan Am and Youth Olympic Games.

As the Official Professional Services Sponsor of audit, tax, consulting and financial advisory services, Deloitte's subsidiaries will contribute by offering a variety of in-kind professional services to the USOC.

Deloitte CEO Barry Salzberg said: "We believe the business community has a powerful role to play in answering the call to service to help nonprofit organizations deliver results. There is no better opportunity to put the intellectual capital and business knowledge of our people to work than through the delivery of our exceptional professional services capabilities for the strategic, operational, and financial benefit of the USOC and U.S. Olympic and Paralympic athletes and hopefuls."

"We are proud to welcome Deloitte to our family of sponsors and appreciate the expertise and support they bring in preparing America's athletes for the Vancouver 2010 and London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games," said Stephanie Streeter, USOC Acting Chief Executive Officer. "This contribution and the breadth of capabilities they bring will be instrumental in our mission to enable America's athletes to realize their Olympic and Paralympic dreams."

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CSC wins IT contract extension with Kmart Australia

by Editor 3/31/2009 4:29:00 PM
CSC has won a five-year contract extentsion with one of Australia's largest discount department store retailers, Kmart.

The new information technology contract, which extends the deal CSC signed in 2004 with Coles Myer, which owned Kmart at the time, is valued at approximately $25 million.

CSC will continue to provide comprehensive infrastructure systems and operations support services for more than 400 Kmart, Kmart Tyre and Auto retailers.

Ian Baily, chief operating officer at Kmart Australia, said: "CSC has worked hard to build a strong relationship with Kmart and the professionalism and quality of service from them has been a contributing factor in this major decision. We are working closely together and leveraging skills to drive improvements that benefit both companies."

"During tough economic times, this contract extension is a testament to our ability to deliver the results our clients need," said Nick Wilkinson, president of CSC's operations in Australia. "We are 100 percent committed to continue working alongside Kmart to help them fulfill their business objectives and look forward to further strengthening an already solid relationship."

CSC is a leading provider of IT services in Victoria with a portfolio of clients that include ITSS, Powercor-Citipower, D&B Australia and Tenix Solutions.

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Accenture opens Management Consulting Innovation Center in Singapore

by Editor 3/30/2009 4:54:00 PM
Accenture has officially opened its Management Consulting Innovation Center in Singapore to serve as a regional hub for developing innovative strategies that focus on maximizing opportunities and minimizing risk in a rapidly changing economy and increasingly global business environment.

The Center will enable clients to work with experienced consulting teams to further develop and align their business strategies in such areas as operational excellence, cost management and sustainability. Accenture will provide tangible solutions through case studies, diagnostic tools, simulation scenarios and hands-on demonstrations of leading-edge practices. The Center will also be a resource to help clients identify and enter new markets, increase revenues in existing markets and deliver their products and services more effectively and efficiently.

On a rotating basis, Accenture experts from around the world will work with clients in collaborative workshops and will develop thought leadership, research and intellectual property. These consultants will also work with professionals in other Accenture innovation centers and teams around the globe to integrate management consulting capabilities with insights from the company’s technology consulting, systems integration and outsourcing experts to better serve clients in the Asia Pacific region.

“We have created a unique environment in Singapore that brings together highly skilled individuals with the experience, knowledge, tools and technology to help our clients lay the foundation for their future growth,” said Mark Foster, Accenture’s group chief executive, Management Consulting & Integrated Markets. “With businesses facing issues more challenging than ever, those who regularly review, refine and adopt their strategies to respond to market trends will come out of the current economic climate better positioned for the future. Our Innovation Center is designed to help clients adopt strategies that will ensure that success.”

According to Teo Lay Lim, Accenture’s country managing director for Singapore, “Singapore serves as the regional headquarters for more than 4,000 multinational corporations, is a regional hub for innovation and also boasts one of the most highly skilled workforces in the world. This was the basis for our decision to open Accenture’s first Management Consulting Innovation Center here. As we help organizations navigate the new business landscape that is unique to Asia Pacific, the Center draws on Accenture’s global intellectual property and insights from the region and around the world, and combines that with innovation and technology to help drive business results.”

Accenture has partnered with the Economic Development Board in Singapore to open this Center. "We are delighted that Accenture has chosen Singapore as the location for its innovation center. Accenture can leverage Singapore’s position as the ‘home base’, away from home for these multi-national companies to address business challenges faced by clients across the different cultural, political and socio-economic climates in Asia," said Dr. Beh Swan Gin, managing director, Singapore Economic Development Board.

Through tailored workshops, Accenture’s management consultants will work with clients initially on six key business imperatives:

• Rapid and sustained cost management

• Operational excellence

• Sustainability

• Effective mergers and acquisitions

• Customer acquisition and retention

• Innovation

Accenture established operations in Singapore in 1975 and today has a strong presence in the market, serving domestic and international clients on transformation programs across a wide range of industries, including energy, telecommunications, high technology, financial services, consumer packaged goods and transportation, as well as with organizations in the publicservice sector.

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BearingPoint wins federal information technology contract

by Editor 3/30/2009 4:52:00 PM
BearingPoint, Inc., one of the world’s largest management and technology consulting companies, announced that the General Services Administration has awarded the company an Alliant contract to provide information technology solutions to federal agencies; BearingPoint was one of 59 firms to receive an award. Alliant, a 10-year multiple award indefinite-delivery indefinite-quantity contract with a $50 billion ceiling, is the largest government-wide acquisition contract (GWAC) ever issued and will provide federal agencies with the opportunity to use competitive sourcing for regional and global IT services to improve efficiencies and maximize cost savings. The award features a five-year base and one five-year option, and replaces two older GSA GWACs (Answer and Millennia).

“GSA-Alliant presents BearingPoint with a tremendous opportunity to work hand-in-hand with the federal government, and it provides government agencies with the opportunity to work with a trusted partner,” said Robin Lineberger, executive vice president, Public Services for BearingPoint. “We look forward to providing GSA and other federal agencies with innovative and practical management, technology and enterprise solutions that will enable them to reduce costs and streamline operations.”

The scope of GSA’s Alliant GWAC covers all components of an integrated IT solution, including any current and new technologies which may emerge during the life of the contract as well as IT systems, products and services in support of national security systems. As a provider of management and technology consulting services, BearingPoint provides a full range of client solutions combined with deep industry knowledge to provide sustainable results for our clients.

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Deloitte appoints new leaders

by Editor 3/30/2009 4:51:00 PM
Nick Tommasino, Chairman and CEO of Deloitte & Touche LLP, has announced the following key leadership deployments.

Steve Van Arsdell has been appointed Deputy Managing Partner of Deloitte & Touche LLP with responsibility for the Professional Practice Network, succeeding Jim Schnurr who will become a Senior Client Partner in Deloitte's Audit and Enterprise Risk Services practice. The Professional Practice Network supports Deloitte's clients by providing tools, policies and guidance to Deloitte's client service teams and by addressing accounting, audit, risk management, regulatory, reporting, and quality assurance matters.

"Steve brings an ideal combination of client service, technical and team leadership skills to the position Throughout Steve's 35-plus year career, he has served as the Lead Client Service Partner on some of our most prominent clients and across various sectors, including aerospace & defense, manufacturing, financial services, and consumer products," said Tommasino.

Van Arsdell, who will continue to be an Advisory Partner to a number of Deloitte's premier clients, is currently Vice Chairman of the Deloitte LLP Board of Directors and serves as Chairman of the Board's Governance Committee, positions he will hold through the end of his term later this calendar year. He will continue in his role as chair of succession planning committee of Deloitte LLP.

He is also a past Chairman of the Board's Risk and Finance & Audit Committees. Prior to joining Deloitte, Van Arsdell worked for the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) as a member of the technical research staff and as a technical assistant to the board's chairman.

"We are delighted that Steve is assuming this new and critically important role. At the same time, I am pleased that he will continue to serve as Vice Chairman of the Board until the conclusion of his term and also as Chairman of the succession planning committee," said Sharon Allen, Chairman of the Board of Deloitte LLP.

Schnurr served as Deputy Managing Partner with responsibility for the Professional Practice Network for the past three years and is credited with expanding and broadening the scope and quality of services provided to Deloitte's clients and practitioners through the Professional Practice Network. Most recently, Schnurr served as co-chair of a task force that undertook a comprehensive assessment of Deloitte's professional practice organization.

In his new role, Schnurr will focus on assisting select Deloitte clients and will address significant accounting, auditing, and financial reporting issues. He will also continue to participate in, and represent Deloitte among, various regulatory and professional groups in which he currently is a member, including the Standing Advisory Group of the PCAOB.

"Jim's leadership has helped guide AERS and our clients through a time of unprecedented change to both the regulatory environment and the accounting profession," said Tommasino. "His stewardship of our Professional Practice Network has been one of the critical elements that has helped us successfully navigate an increasingly complex environment."

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Accenture reports financial results for second quarter, lowers forecast

by Editor 3/27/2009 4:48:00 PM
it consulting jobs,uk consultants
Accenture has reported financial results for the second quarter of fiscal 2009, ended Feb. 28, 2009, with net revenues of $5.27 billion, a decrease of 6 percent in U.S. dollars and an increase of 3 percent in local currency over the second quarter last year. Diluted earnings per share were $0.63.

Operating income grew 6 percent, to $677 million, and operating margin expanded 150 basis points, to 12.9 percent.

New bookings for the quarter were $5.98 billion, with consulting bookings of $3.14 billion and outsourcing bookings of $2.84 billion.

“We delivered a solid quarter, given an economic environment that is as challenging as any we have ever experienced,” said Willian Green, Accenture’s chairman and CEO. “This increasingly uncertain environment is affecting business broadly and has had a dramatic impact on some of our clients. Against that backdrop, we grew revenues in local currency, grew operating income, expanded operating margin by 150 basis points and delivered solid earnings per share. We also generated significant cash flow, and our balance sheet remains exceptionally strong.

“We continue to stay relevant and responsive to our clients to help them adapt to their changing needs. We are revising our business outlook for the rest of the year to reflect the continued uncertainty in the global marketplace. That said, we continued to grow market share, and our results in the second quarter reflect our intense focus on the disciplined management of our business. We believe we are well-positioned to continue to deliver significant value to our clients and shareholders.”

While speaking to analysts later, Green said: "People came back to work after the holiday in January and things just slowed down. If you look at what happened from mid-December through the beginning of January as it relates to the economy, it was very profound."

He added that the consultancy lowered its full-year revenue forecast to flat to 4 percent growth, compared with its previous estimate of 6 to 10 percent gain.

Eugene Zakharov, an analyst at Technology Business Research, commented: "Even a bellwether can succumb to pressure, and Accenture is showing that it is not immune to the challenging economic environment."

Accenture’s Second-Quarter Fiscal report is available here: http://newsroom.accenture.com/article_download.cfm?article_id=4815

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Capgemini releases European Energy Markets Observatory Report

by Editor 3/27/2009 4:03:00 PM
Capgemini, a leading global consulting firm, has released the results of its ninth edition European Energy Markets Observatory (EEMO) report.

The results highlight significant security of supply issues which are impacting the European energy markets including, the security of future electricity supply in relation to Europe’s CO2 emission targets, the security of the supply of European gas being threatened by a clash between Russian and European Union’s strategies and little progress towards fully fluid and competitive markets.

Will the new “Unbundling” EC package be more effective than the previous Directives?

By assessing the results of the two first Directives, the reports analyses whether the new “Unbundling” European commission package, will be effective at creating fluid and competitive European energy markets. The report finds that with a few exceptions, all EU Member States that have opened their electricity market to competition for more than three years are facing above EU average electricity retail prices. Therefore, the question remains as to whether a 3rd Directive will improve competition in Europe as there are no observed results on price decrease from the two previous Directives. Capgemini advises that other measures such as simplifying administrative procedures to decrease investors risk, providing financial incentives (notably; through adequate tariffs) to enable investment in interconnection electrical lines and pipelines, and extending new transmission and wholesale exchanges management schemes need to be implemented in order to reap tangible benefits.

Colette Lewiner, Energy, Utilities and Chemicals Global Sector Leader at Capgemini believes that: "Any proposal must guarantee electricity and gas security of supply and unbundling is in itself not sufficient to create a fully fluid European market."

Is improvement in the security of electricity supply compatible with EU CO2 emissions reduction targets?

The report shows an improvement in the security of electricity supply in Europe but, progress seems incompatible with the EU CO2 emissions reduction targets. On the positive side, in 2006, Utilities have continued to invest in new power plants to meet the increase in electricity consumption however, the situation is much less rosy when comparing these projections to the EU Climate Change 2020 objectives as 81% of the intended new plants will use fossil fuels thus, increasing the CO2 emission volumes. Capgemini advises that in order for future investments in new power plants to be consistent with European Climate Change objectives, EU, National Governments and Utilities companies need to realign their policies.

Is gas security of supply threatened?

Finally, the Capgemini EEMO report warns that the security of the gas supply is being threatened by a clash between Russian and EU strategies. The EU, in its ownership unbundling measures published in September 2007, has included a “reciprocity” clause. This would prevent foreign investors, including Russian companies, from taking over European gas and electricity transportation assets, thus responding to fears that Gazprom might grow to dominate these EU networks as it is already controlling an increasing number of gas pipelines entering into the EU. However, as the unbundling measures are aimed at giving easier market access to the new retailer entrants, it could even help Gazprom in its strategy aimed at dominating the end to end gas value chain. With divergent strategies, one can easily predict that the EU/Russia battle for gas supply and value chain control is only the beginning.

Commenting on the report, Colette Lewiner said: "The report highlights the fact that in 2006 and 2007, security of supply remains of concern and that investment in infrastructure needs to be boosted in coherence with the new environmental targets set by the EU. The latter will be difficult to meet without strong political support, stringent National Allocation Plan and a long term scheme for CO2 emissions rights,” She concludes that; “Many of the key players across the sector need to change in line with the present tense oil supply situation and the new regulatory and competitive environment, by optimising their asset portfolio, adapting their client relationships and fully implementing new energy and information technologies." 

For a copy of the abstract report, please visit: http://www.capgemini.com/eemo

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IBM and KANA roll out new Service Experience Management solution

by Editor 3/26/2009 4:32:00 PM
Customer service solutions leader KANA Software, Inc. and IBM have announced a major milestone in the rollout of their Service Experience Management (SEM) strategy, first announced in 2008.

Under the terms of an OEM contract, with IBM, KANA has completed the integration of IBM’s Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) Foundation and DB2 database software into its core Service Experience Management solution, KANA Service™.

KANA Software, Inc. is a global multi-channel customer service solutions company. It offers solutions that allow businesses to deliver consistent service across all channels, including email, chat, call centers, and Web self-service, giving their customers the freedom to choose the service they want, how and when they want it. The clients, which include about a half of the Fortune 500 companies, have reported double-digit increases in customer satisfaction, while reducing call volumes by an average of 20%.

Expanding on the traditional OEM model, IBM is offering Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) such as KANA additional support beyond that of a typical OEM agreement by providing sales force alignment, technical integration, support in reducing development cost, and quicker time to value for joint customers.

As part of this strategic relationship, KANA solutions are standardized and optimized on IBM hardware and software to offer the highest levels of performance and ease of management. The new solution will enable companies to design and deliver ideal service experiences that drive customer retention and cost savings. KANA Service is scheduled for release in the second quarter of 2009.

KANA Service is designed for companies that must deliver superior customer service in the face of limited resources, increased competition, and constant business change. KANA Service enables organizations to easily deliver the ideal Service Experience based on customer profile, business context, and cost constraints. The solution gives customer service executives unprecedented control over the end-to-end Service Experience -- enabling them to adapt to change in minutes, not months, and make customer service a strategic differentiator for their business.

KANA Service is built on IBM’s market-leading SOA and Information Management foundation, which breaks down traditional barriers to integration. IBM’s SOA foundation puts an end to painful point-to-point integrations, enabling “information on-demand” by simply connecting applications once to the middleware layer.

Rob Thomas, IBM’s Worldwide Vice President of Business Development for Information Management, said, “KANA and IBM have worked closely over the past year to develop a new Service Experience Management solution, combining the latest customer service capabilities from KANA with market-leading SOA and Information Management middleware from IBM, along with a joint go-to-market plan. Our partnership is a model of how ISVs can take advantage of IBM’s software solutions and resources.”

“In today’s economic climate, Service Experience has become the differentiating factor in highly competitive industries,” said Michael Fields, chief executive officer, KANA. “Companies need a new generation of customer service solutions that will allow them to adapt quickly to economic and competitive pressures. The KANA SEM solution incorporates IBM software and will enable companies to deliver optimized, one-to-one Service Experiences in an ever-changing business environment. We continue to work closely with IBM to bring our SEM solution to market in the second quarter of 2009.”

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Deloitte survey: shared services leaders focusing on cost and customer satisfaction

by Editor 3/26/2009 4:27:00 PM
Cost reduction and customer satisfaction are top of mind for shared services leaders as they work to support their businesses through the recession, according to a new study presented by Deloitte today at the 13th Annual Shared Services Week in Orlando, Florida.

Deloitte surveyed 265 shared services leaders around the world who provided data on 733 individual shared services facilities. Participants came from companies in all major industry groups. The median annual revenue of responding companies was approximately $10.5 billion.

Shared services are defined as the practice of shifting support processes out of a company's business units or divisions and into a separate service-focused organization. The 2009 survey marks the fifth in Deloitte's continuing series of research studies about shared services organizations (SSOs).

"Across the globe, organizations are trying to minimize their overall structural costs, so it is not surprising that cost control was one of the most prominent themes in this year's results," said Susan Hogan, principal with Deloitte Consulting LLP and leader of Deloitte's shared services practices. "Even though cost reduction has always been a primary goal of shared services organizations [SSOs], it's obvious that the recession has increased the sense of urgency around delivering financial savings to the bottom line."

Cost reduction was the most frequently cited driver for a number of planned shared services initiatives, including:

• Shared services center relocation. Among respondents who planned to relocate one or more of their shared services facilities, 92 percent reported that cost reduction was an important reason for the anticipated relocation.

• Changing the number of shared services centers. Forty-eight percent of respondents planned to increase the number of shared services facilities over the next five years; of these, 46 percent reported that cost reduction was the main driver of the increase. Of the 16 percent of respondents who reported they planned to decrease the number of shared services facilities over the next five years, 71 percent cited cost reduction as the main driver of the reduction.

Driving incremental value. Seventy-two percent of respondents reported that cost reduction was one of their top three priorities for driving incremental value from their SSOs in the next two years. In addition, 62 percent reported that improving processes - a vital contribution to cost reduction - was among their top three priorities.

Survey respondents are also placing greater emphasis on customer satisfaction than they did in 2007. "In a tough economy, shared services leaders know that they have to not only deliver value, but strengthen relationships with their customers and with corporate to work effectively," says Hogan.

In this year's study, maintaining high customer service levels displaced output quality as the most frequently cited people challenge, with 27 percent of the 2009 respondents identifying it as an "extremely significant" challenge. Forty-three percent of the 2009 respondents also reported that increasing customer satisfaction would be a top priority over the next two years. The concern with cost has also not kept SSOs from striving to increase their value to the business. SSOs continue to expand into advisory services, a trend that was especially noticeable in areas that have historically been slower to migrate into shared services, including facility management, fleet management, engineering, marketing, R&D, and production planning. Fifty-seven percent of the 2009 respondents reported they planned to increase the number of advisory processes in their SSOs, up from 47 percent in 2007.

Respondents had a very positive view of the impact of their SSOs on the business. Ninety-one percent of respondents reported that their SSOs had improved process efficiency, and 91 percent reported shared services had improved process quality. Eighty-six percent reported that their SSOs had had a positive impact on cost reduction, and 85 percent reported that shared services had improved service levels. In addition, more than 90 percent of respondents reported that their SSOs had achieved consistent annual productivity improvements.

As in previous surveys, internal controls and compliance continue to be one important area in which SSOs reduce costs. 79 percent of respondents reported that their SSOs lowered the cost of maintaining and complying with internal control requirements (such as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002). Additionally, 85 percent believe that their SSOs will play an active role in the adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards.

Talent is another area in which SSOs deliver business value. Sixty-three percent of respondents reported that SSO employees "sometimes" (51 percent) or "very often" (12 percent) move to positions in the business, suggesting that many companies are coming to view SSOs as a breeding ground for talent.

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SAP names Deloitte 2008 BusinessObjects(TM) Global Alliance Partner of the Year

by Editor 3/25/2009 4:12:00 PM
IT consulting jobs,deloitte jobs,it jobs, sap jobs
Software giant SAP has named Deloitte the 2008 BusinessObjects Global Alliance Partner of the Year, North America. Awards were granted by SAP America, Inc. and SAP Canada, Inc. at a special awards ceremony held on February 23 in San Diego at Partner Summit Americas 2009 to the top-performing SAP channel organizations and SAP BusinessObjects organizations in North America for outstanding contributions in revenue, marketing and customer service.

Deloitte is a market leader in Information Management consulting and implementation related services, covering strategy through implementation activities, with deep capabilities and service offerings in all of the relevant areas: Business Intelligence, Data Warehousing, Performance Management Technology, Master Data Management, Web Channel Solutions, Enterprise Content Management and governance, risk and compliance.

The Partner of the Year award celebrates the success of an initiative that began two years ago when Deloitte and SAP first expanded their long term alliance relationship and entered into a global agreement to collaborate in the development, marketing, selling and delivery of services and solutions to help clients in their efforts to improve governance, risk management and compliance. The collaboration has continually grown to include SAP's expanding portfolio of performance management and business intelligence offerings, most notably after SAP's acquisition of BusinessObjects in February 2008.

"By leveraging the full range of capabilities from the SAP BusinessObjects portfolio and Deloitte's unique depth and breadth of skills and services in the information management arena we distinguish ourselves from the competition," said Jane Griffin, Deloitte Consulting LLP principal and leader of Deloitte's Information Management practice. "With solid relationships and strong collaboration, we will continue to leverage the SAP BusinessObjects portfolio to bring services and solutions to our clients to help them address their ever-demanding needs."

"The value of the Deloitte alliance to SAP cannot be understated. Deloitte has been a leading SAP BusinessObjects global alliance organization providing considerable value to both SAP and our customers," said Gord Breese, vice president, Global Service Partners, SAP BusinessObjects division. "Deloitte increased its focus on SAP BusinessObjects in 2008, which turned out to be an exceptional year as the alliance truly moved to the next level. Deloitte demonstrated leadership in providing world-class services and solutions to customers, in an effort to help them address their real-world business problems and improve their ROI."

The latest award builds on earlier successes. In May 2008, SAP recognized Deloitte with two SAP Pinnacle Awards for the same initiative. A key focus of the ongoing collaboration is on industry sector and functional offerings designed to help companies address their specific business needs. This includes investing in services and solutions designed to provide significant value to the customer, staying focused on their needs, and fostering continued growth of their professionals and capabilities in the business user arena.

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