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Basics of online commerce still neglected

Basics of online commerce still neglected

It's tempting to assume that selling online is now such a common concept that we can all take it for granted, but there's still enough defectively stupid sites out there incompetently hawking their goods to make me think that an e-commerce 101 course wouldn't be short of potential attendees.My broad attitude to the world these days is "if you won't sell it to me online, I probably don't want to buy it", but quite often those intentions collapse because of poorly planned sites.

November 26, 2006 by in E-Commerce

Virtual assistance is virtually useless

Virtual assistance is virtually useless

It's no surprise that software companies are keen to fob off as much of their tech support as possible to automated systems -- support is a cost, not a profit centre, unless you charge an inordinate amount for it. It's also not much of a shock that many of these automated systems are rubbish -- after all, if these companies could write decent software in the first place, they wouldn't need such complex dedicated support tools, would they?

October 31, 2006 by in Security

Keep your hand on the key

Keep your hand on the key

You'd think that a national military scandal would be enough to convince people to take a little care with portable storage devices, but apparently not.Sitting in the Qantas Club in Sydney earlier last week, I heard the following ominous announcement: "If anyone has left their memory stick in a computer workstation, could they please see staff at the business centre reception.

October 9, 2006 by in Security

What's so bad about keeping records?

What's so bad about keeping records?

Minimising red tape and administrative processes has always been a key goal for most enterprises, but occasionally you get the suspicion that such tasks are not always being undertaken from the purest of motives.There's been a certain amount of squabbling in corporate circles recently over new rule-keeping requirements imposed by the federal government's WorkChoices legislation.

September 25, 2006 by in Government : AU

Build yourself a Sol-style salary

Build yourself a Sol-style salary

Salary reviews are rarely fun, and one of their more challenging elements for senior managers working out what kind of salary/bonus structure is appropriate.If you're looking for some creative new ideas to pitch at your boss when review time comes around, why not take some handy hints from Telstra head honcho Sol Trujillo?

September 19, 2006 by in Telcos

What's not in a name?

What's not in a name?

The dullest observation you can possibly make about information technology is that it should be designed to serve the needs of the business, rather than the technology experts.That doesn't stop it being rolled out at every single conference I attend, and as such it's no surprise that moves are afoot to try and change the very phrase "information technology" itself.

September 5, 2006 by in Telcos

ActiveSync: Still rubbish after all these years

ActiveSync: Still rubbish after all these years

My rant earlier this year about the uselessness of Microsoft's ActiveSync synchronisation manager appeared to strike a chord with readers, and unfortunately that's a gong that Microsoft appears determined to keep banging.Recently, I met with Karen Carter, the director of global communications for Microsoft's mobile and embedded devices division.

August 22, 2006 by in Collaboration

Enforced device separation

Enforced device separation

At the tail end of the trip I described in my last post, I was forced to go through the same airport screening point three times because the staff couldn't clearly discern all the contents of my hand luggage owing to the plethora of gadgets, cables and chargers.Admittedly, it was an unusually large haul -- four phones, one PDA and a camera, plus all the associated connection gubbins -- so I happily complied.

August 10, 2006 by in Security

You never know which way they'll turn

You never know which way they'll turn

While IT managers have gotten a lot better at planning for new technology rollouts, there's one element which remains annoyingly unpredictable: how the end users are going to react.Alan Greig, CEO of Adelaide-based HR software developer Empower, cites an interesting example by contrasting two organisations which have rolled out Empower's software to provide employee self-service (ESS) for payroll and HR management tasks via an intranet-based system.

July 30, 2006 by in Tech & Work

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