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Business Consultant. Works in Digital Legal Management (since 2007), Knowledge Management (KM, since 1999), Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM, since 2006), Digital Contract Management (since 2009), SaaS B2B (since 1998), Signer of the Agile Manifesto (2006). Founder of EuroCloud Italy (2010) and GM of Cloud for Europe (2016). Publishes Internet contents in different subjects since 1996. Owner and founder of the brand B|KM for SaaS B2B production. Co-founder of AltonaSpain (2021), and Noticias Altona (2022), in the audit/compliance sector for the Spanish market. Works in Spain, Italy, The Netherlands. In his private life he’s a writer, art curator, and amateur music composer.


Recent articles
How do you become data-driven? It’s a question that seemingly has infinite answers. That’s why many companies flounder in the ambiguity of data-driven initiatives absent of concrete, actionable focus areas. Forward-thinking leaders are strategically focused on a particular data-driven initiative — self-service data access and governance. But even for companies who’ve succeeded in pinpointing the core data-driven initiative of self-service data sharing, creating a plan and implementing it is exponentially easier said than done. Why? The dual mandate. It’s about much more than just collecting, storing, and processing data. IT, security, and privacy teams need to provide fast, agile data access to reduce time to insights while maintaining compliance and regulatory requirements. So, how do architects achieve and maintain the right balance of security and speed? How do they empower analytic and data science teams with safe and timely access to insights? Swing the pendulum too far to one side — opening the data floodgates to give teams data as fast as possible — or too far to the other side — locking data down with overly stringent policies — leads to severe business, security, and compliance consequences. What’s the key to the speed-security balance? Balancing data democratization with security, privacy, and compliance The key to successfully meeting the dual mandate of agile and secure data access is comprehensive, enterprise-wide data governance.  Escalating privacy regulations plus evolving consumer preferences, on top of internal security requirements, leave little room for error in an organization’s responsible data usage. In the face of increasingly tough compliance regulations, the default approach for IT and security teams has been a tight lockdown of data to ensure compliance and security. Without an enterprise-wide, centralized system of accountability, privacy and security teams often deny access to personally identifiable information (PII) and other sensitive data. This lack of analytical agility is a major blocker to becoming data-driven and a significant, growing source of friction between teams since business users, data scientists, and analysts demand rapid access to a wide swath of data. Then there’s the challenge of the expanding, diverse, and hybrid multi-service and multi-cloud data estate requiring management and data access policies.  Unified data security and access governance Savvy organizations have had an epiphany. They realize data access governance must be one of the top disciplines they need to master for compliant data at scale. Most enterprises have some form of data access governance in action, and those with automated execution have separated themselves from the pack. From onboarding new data or new users to a 1,000-fold reduction in the number of policies, enterprises that automate reap massive cost savings and operational efficiencies. Unified data access governance grants a singular experience for creating, managing, enforcing, and executing policies. This unified approach is essential to modernizing data architectures, meeting increasingly stringent regulations, enhancing operational efficiency, and keeping data flowing with secure agility.  So, what are the critical elements of a unified data security platform? Universal data coverage: Create policies centrally. Consistently and natively enforce those policies to reduce complexity across hybrid cloud multi-service data estates. Build once, deploy everywhere.Transparent to end users: No impact to query performance and no need to make changes to end-user queries when leveraging native integration and enforcement of policies across diverse data services.Automated: Policies are automatically translated into data service-specific commands. Built-in approval workflows automate access requests and new policy creation.Based on open standards: Leverages the proven Apache Ranger architecture to provide the broadest range of pre-built integrations with structured and semi-structured data sources as well as identity management solutions.Future-proof: Easy to add new data sources. Built-in support for industry compliance and regulations. Where to start your unified data security journey Privacera is a Unified Data Security Platform founded by the creators of Apache Ranger and Apache Atlas. With build once, deploy anywhere capabilities, Privacera empowers enterprise users to holistically secure and protect data with consistent and native enforcement across hybrid cloud data estates. Privacera supports the entire lifecycle of data access and security governance with an automated solution that provides sensitive data discovery, fine-grained access control, distributed native policy enforcement, and extensive auditing and reporting. All delivered through a single pane of glass. See for yourself why Fortune 100 enterprises trust Privacera’s unified data access governance — request a demo today. Data and Information Security [...]
The Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS) market is big and growing fast. Already worth more than $8 billion, analysts predict that the market will nearly triple in size to $22 billion by 2025. CPaaS is a cloud platform that exposes communications functions such as SMS, voice, video, and IP chat via programmable application programming interfaces (APIs) so that developers can more easily code these functions into applications, workflows, and systems. Recently, Ericsson’s CTO Erik Ekudden interviewed Vinod Lala, Chief Strategy Officer at Vonage, on the opportunities on offer at the nexus of CPaaS and 5G. According to Lala, one of the key drivers behind the growth of CPaaS is business-to-customer engagement through mobile apps. “As customers increasingly…‘live’ in their mobile phones, so businesses have reacted by communicating with them that way, via SMS, chat, or now even video and voice,” he said. CPaaS simplifies the deployment of multi-modal communications integration and is therefore an ideal solution for both digital native brands and non-native brands looking to reach customers through apps. The second key driver behind the evolution of the CPaaS market is the arrival of 5G APIs. As Ekudden explained, being able to connect to 5G is “very handy” for developers and enterprises as it provides access to a range of pre-built tools and capabilities including Quality of Service (QoS), network slicing, advanced security features, device status information, and precise positioning. As Ekudden noted: “There’s a real opportunity to look at what 5G already brings and how that can fuel and enhance capabilities in existing applications and enterprises.” 5G APIs are therefore profoundly important to the development of CPaaS, unlocking network controls and thereby offering a whole new dimension to developers for enhanced use cases. According to Lala, applications that rely on low latency, such as in gaming or telemedicine, will benefit the most from these capabilities. Indeed, many of the network features synonymous with 5G were built specifically to support such advanced applications. 5G APIs will therefore provide what Ekudden describes as a “missing gearbox” for developers to create new CPaaS use cases on a global scale. 5G APIs are helping to create win-win collaborations where developers on one side have the freedom to innovate, and communications service providers – on the other side –  can create revenue streams through the network value they reveal to developers. Ultimately this evolution is about exposing and enabling new capabilities that are guided by the needs of enterprises and third-party developer communities, closing the gap between the needs coming from applications, enterprises, and consumers and the network capabilities. CPaaS promises to unlock new layers of innovation both within enterprises and the developer ecosystem that supports them, which in turn will deliver better customer experiences and enhanced value for all. To learn more about how 5G is empowering and extending the expanding CPaaS market, you can watch the fireside chat in full here. 5G, Telecommunications, Telecommunications Industry [...]
When Pete Torres transitioned to the IT industry after serving in the military, he encountered a noticeable lack of Hispanic representation at conferences and events he attended. Even when he was young, the idea of a career in technology was “not really an option,” he says, owing in part to the IT industry’s decades-long issues with Hispanic and Latinx representation. Now a director of engineering at Capital One, Torres is among many of his generation seeking to change the equation — and to inspire Hispanic and Latinx students to consider IT as a viable option for developing a meaningful career. For Torres, having children of his own was a turning point, and he began to think about the importance of instilling an interest in STEM fields at a young age. He considered what he wished he knew when he was younger and looked at how to “propose this potential career path to other people that might not be aware of it,” starting him on a diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) journey that continues to this day. Inspiring a new generation — and diversifying the talent pipeline According to Pew Research, Hispanic and Latinx professionals fill only 8% of STEM roles in the US workforce, despite representing 17% of the total job market. Furthermore, their labor is valued less by employers, with Hispanic IT professionals earning just 83% of what their White colleagues make, a number that has dipped from 85% in 2016. All this, despite industry-wide efforts in recent years to rectify diversity issues in IT and STEM. Pete Torres, director of engineering, Capital One Capital One For Torres, the path forward requires operating on two timelines at once. First, Torres has worked to strengthen diversity at a professional level at Capital One. And second is his work to help create opportunities for young people to embark on careers in tech. Through Capital One’s Hispanic employee resource group (ERG), Torres and his colleagues have spent a “lot of time reaching out to the youth and driving diversity of thought” across the organization. This work includes helping to create a more diverse talent pipeline, as evidenced by Capital One’s efforts to connect underrepresented students at the college level with technology opportunities, as well as local chapters’ work with elementary schools. This outreach gives young people a chance to see people working in IT who share their “last name or similar upbringing, out there talking in a suit and tie — it just brings confidence and lets them know that is now a career path and an opportunity,” he says. Qualcomm is another company diversifying its talent pipeline through programs that take the underrepresentation of Hispanic and Latinx individuals into account. Cisco Sanchez, who got his first job at FedEx through InRoads, an internship program that creates career pathways for underserved students, worked his way up the FedEx ranks for 25 years before starting as CIO at Qualcomm just over a year ago. At FedEx, Sanchez was a sponsor of the Diversity Leadership Committee, which he has now carried over to his career at Qualcomm, where he is part of the LatinQ ERG. LatinQ focuses on identifying biases across the organization and helps ensure there are strong talent pipelines that give all employees the same roadmap to success, says Sanchez. Cisco Sanchez, CIO, Qualcomm Qualcomm One big move Qualcomm has made in its IT recruiting efforts is to avoid falling into the trap of hiring only from a handful of prestigious colleges and universities, Sanchez says. As someone who came from a nontraditional talent pipeline himself, Sanchez knows there are plenty of IT skills that can be taught to anyone who is motivated and has an interest in learning. Plus, Sanchez says, with the rapid pace of changing technology, a four-year degree doesn’t guarantee you’ll be up to speed on the latest skills after graduation. As such, Qualcomm has shifted to looking at candidates who have different types of schooling — certificates, non-computer science degrees, and people with no experience who can be quickly trained on the latest coding skills. “It’s this conscious effort of ‘How do we retrain our mind a bit to start to pivot into a different direction?’ When you open the ability to hire from a larger population of people, you also create the ability to have deeper and more diverse candidates,” he says. Mentoring to make a difference The value of mentorship and sponsorship can’t be understated when it comes to fostering and growing your career. But for underrepresented groups in the tech industry, it can be difficult to find mentors and sponsors inside and outside the organization. Mentorship is all about creating connections that help professionals better understand what it takes to go to the next level, says Tim Grijalva, president of GoDaddy LatinX technology and director of learning. “I think that individuals that have opportunities, whether that’s been through academic, or they’ve had mentors in their life, they’ve had more exposure to understand” what it takes to develop a career, he says. “It’s about conversations. It’s about asking questions to understand how you become manager or director. For folks in the Latin community itself, it’s a challenge because I think not everybody feels that some of those higher achievements are available to them as a Latino. And it’s often hard to understand who you can ask and who you can have the conversations with to understand .” Tim Grijalva, president of LatinX technology and director of learning, GoDaddy GoDaddy In fact, there was a time when Grijalva himself wasn’t sure if he’d be able to land a job at Go Daddy without a background in engineering. But after getting a job in learning and sales, his career grew with the organization, putting him on the path to leadership. Capital One’s Torres says he is lucky to have found strong mentorship opportunities throughout his career and credits his mentors as allies whose faith and trust in him helped give him a platform for his career. And now, Torres is paying that support forward. “I see myself now as being in a position where I can push or pull up people, and that’s extremely important to me. The importance of having that mentorship, awareness, ability to bounce ideas off someone, and to gain perspective and understanding of the way other people think was invaluable to my growth and my development,” says Torres. The power of ERGs and opportunities to build a path to leadership Another way companies are helping have an impact is in facilitating — and empowering — ERGs. These groups give employees a safe space where they can connect with others who share similar backgrounds or experiences, giving them stronger connections at work. Such environments can be crucial to empowering employees to voice their opinions and give authentic and genuine feedback, which is vital in moving the company forward. “In my experience, we come together, and we are very authentic,” says Torres of his ERG experience at Capital One. “We wear our hearts on our sleeves and it comes across very naturally. Again, that’s probably a result of our upbringing and our experiences. What I’ve learned is that somewhat intimidating by others, and that it wasn’t coming from a place of fear, it was coming from a place of lack of understanding. So I’ve spent a lot of time in my leadership career focusing on creating that safe place for people to be themselves and to be authentic.”   ERGs also give employees a chance to connect, network, and grow their careers within the organization. A huge part of DEI is not only who and how you recruit and hire but also whether your diversity efforts continue all the way up the organizational ladder. Building diversity in leadership is about creating and exposing underrepresented groups to opportunity. At Qualcomm, diverse hiring panels help ensure there are fewer biases in the hiring process, says Sanchez, who adds that the company’s panels reflect the diversity they want to see in the organization. Once candidates are hired, internal coding bootcamps can help open new opportunities within the organization. As for leadership opportunities, Torres says Capital One works closely with nonprofit groups such as Hispanic IT Executive Council (HITEC) to develop leadership and emerging executive programs and tech college classes for employees to work on developing new skills. Giving back and pushing forward Like Torres, Grijalva also believes in the power of helping to uplift the next generation. To that end, Go Daddy’s Latinx and Technology ERG has built a partnership with a local high school in Arizona that has a majority Hispanic and Black demographic, where they review resumes of juniors and seniors. They also help students better understand how their background and experiences can boost their resumes and even help them in interviews. Grijalva says they hold conversations with the students about how to show up to job interviews, what challenges they might face, and that “you don’t have to speak perfect English in order to nail your interview,” he says. “Because most of the time when you’re going for a job at a job interview, leaders are looking for commitment and dedication. And by having those conversations younger, they really start understanding that it doesn’t matter much about the color of skin or accent in this meeting. Really what it comes down to is having a mentor showing a roadmap,” Grijalva says. Making a difference indeed. Diversity and Inclusion, IT Leadership [...]
The new year brings with it enthusiasm for new priorities and accomplishments to come, resolutions to seize opportunities and overcome challenges, and the opportunity to assess takeaways from the previous year and turn the page on projects and missteps past. In the ideal beginning of the year scenario, organizations would have completed celebrating and cerebrating on accomplishments of the previous year and performing forensic root cause analyses of the smattering of initiatives that failed to meet expectations. Now, rolling into Q1 with heads held high and bursting with confidence, the enterprise should be enthusiastically embarking on programs designed to realize the full promise of explicitly articulated goals and objectives. This, however, is not the situation in many — probably most — IT and digital organizations today. Having just completed my walkabout of the C-suite in 12 vertical markets, I have found that the three words most frequently used to describe the general attitude toward 2023 were “uncertainty,” “headwinds,” and “conservative.” This has led me to conclude that the No. 1 job of IT and digital leaders in 2023 is to “un-cancel” the future. They have to get their organizations to believe and behave as if 2023 is going to be better than 2022.  Navigating a tsunami of macro-pessimisms The general message from a multiplicity of disciplines is lack of hope and optimism. “Doom Porn” — for example, books resembling Paul Ehrlich’s The Population Bomb and Nouriel Roubini’s MegaThreats: Ten Dangerous Trends That Imperil Our Future, And How to Survive Them — continues to top non-fiction best seller lists. Forecasters at my former hangout, The World Bank, tell us that growth will be a less than breathtaking 1.7%. My classmate at Carnegie Mellon, hedge-fund manager-extraordinaire David Tepper, told CNBC viewers that they “can’t fight the Feds” and that equities are not going anywhere in 2023. “More than two-thirds of the economists at 23 large financial institutions that do business directly with the Federal Reserve are betting the U.S. will have a recession in 2023,” according to The Wall Street Journal. In the foreign policy community gloom has become commonplace across the “West” in recent years. Important voices in the environmental movement counsel that we are to adopt a “future of less, a restricted life, purged of joy.” Robert Silverberg, in his introduction to This Way to the End of Times: Classic Tales of the Apocalypse, reminds us, “the market in apocalyptic prophecy has been a bullish one for thousands, or more likely millions of years.” We may like our fictional future dark and dystopic but science-fiction novelist William Gibson is concerned that people have given up on the future they will actually live in: “All through the 20th century we constantly saw the 21st century invoked. … How often do you hear anyone invoke the 22nd century? Even saying it is unfamiliar to us. We’ve come to not have a future.” Re-branding the future The fact that the macro-picture is less than rosy is not an excuse to sit back and coast through 2023. IT and digital leaders need to re-introduce stakeholders to a future they want to live in. 2023 can be a great year. For this to happen IT and digital organizations need to re-establish trust that their agency will make things better. Step one: IT/Digital needs to clean house. We need a skills- and attitude-driven purge of the incompetents who inhabit so many critical positions. Cheryl Smith, former CIO at Keyspan, McKesson, and West Jet and author of The Day Before Digital Transformation: Unlocking Digital Transformation for Business Leaders, has long lamented the lack of credentialing in the CIO/CDO arena. Lawyers are required to master a basic body of knowledge. As are doctors, nurses, and accountants. Any yahoo who can steam a mirror can be a CIO/CDO. Debra Hockemeyer, who has designed and managed multiple digital transformations in multiple industries, is similarly shocked at how IT/Digital is being managed in many major enterprises today. “There is a way to consistently, reliably, and affordably deliver the benefits of digital,” she says. Put very simply, basic IT blocking and tackling snafus such as those that recently devastated Southwest Airlines and the FAA should not be allowed to occur. Applying the words of Glenn Kelman, CEO of Redfin, to the tech and digital arena, we need to “stop doing stupid stuff.” US Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg is spot on when he demands a root cause analysis of exactly what happened. The names of the sic IT professionals who brought the entire aviation infrastructure to a screeching halt should be plastered over every science classroom in the country with the admonition, “Don’t be these guys!” The contractor they work for should be banned from all government work for no less than five years. Let me be perfectly clear: I am not against making mistakes in the IT/digital realm. This is the only way our discipline can grow. I am advocating that we make new mistakes. We cannot — like so many organizations — be so afraid of “breaking something” that we conduct no experiments and stifle all innovation. The blow ups at Southwest and the FAA were not innovations gone awry. They were malfeasant acts by incompetents. Step two? Collaboratively imagine a future that works — and that we can work toward. Emerging Technology, Innovation, IT Leadership, IT Strategy [...]
By now, you’ve heard the good news: The business world is embracing data-driven decision making and growing their data practices at an unprecedented clip. The pandemic may have forced their hands, but they’ve seen the value of data and will never go back to making decisions based on hunches. Here is the so-so news: They’re moving so fast that they’ve amassed more data than they can analyze. Organizations, on average manage, 10 times more data than they did five years ago. They are struggling to use their data in a way that is efficient, compliant, intuitive, and secure.  What if the problem isn’t in the volume of data, but rather where it is located—and how hard it is to gather? After all, the average enterprise has 900 applications, but only one-third of them are connected. Nine out of 10 IT leaders report that these disconnects, or data silos, create significant business challenges.* These commonly include cost inefficiencies, data integration errors, missing, or inaccurate data, and culminate in an overall lack of trust in data. Therein lies the opportunity that businesses have today. If they connect their siloes and harness the power of data they already gather, they can empower everyone to make data-driven business decisions now and in the future. The way to get there is by implementing an emerging data management design called data fabric.  What is a data fabric design? A data fabric is an emerging data management design that allows companies to seamlessly access, integrate, model, analyze, and provision data. Instead of centralizing data stores, data fabrics establish a federated environment and use artificial intelligence and metadata automation to intelligently secure data management.  As leaders continue to refine strategies to elevate productivity and mature analytics, the data fabric is a single architecture that can address the levels of diversity, distribution, scale, and complexity in an organization’s data assets. At Tableau, we believe that the best decisions are made when everyone is empowered to put data at the center of every conversation. We’ve infused our values into our platform, which supports data fabric designs with a data management layer right inside our platform, helping you break down silos and streamline support for the entire data and analytics life cycle.  Tableau helps strike the necessary balance to access, improve data quality, and prepare and model data for analytics use cases, while writing-back data to data management sources. Let’s take a quick look at each of those capabilities. Analytics data catalog. Review quality and structural information on data and data sources to better monitor and curate for useMetadata management. Surface robust metadata where users need it most across their analytics journey, while ensuring bilateral communication with enterprise toolingData quality and lineage. Monitor data sources according to policies you customize to help users know if fresh, quality data is ready for use. Shine a light on who or what is using specific data to speed up collaboration or reduce disruption when changes happenData modeling. Leverage semantic layers and physical layers to give you more options for combining data using schemas to fit your analysisData preparation. Provide a visual and direct way to combine, shape, and clean data in a few clicksData, security, and resource governance: Nurture data across its lifecycle with policies that remain consistent with every use. Ensure the behaves the way you want it to— especially sensitive data and accessData integration. Gain useful insights from data stored across different platforms and data sources, such as data warehouses, data lakes, and CRMsVirtualization and discovery. Increase understanding of data sets on hand for data integration or data analysisOrchestration. Automate coordination of data happenings, like data quality or flow failures, right in the workflowAugmented analytics. Nurture and use AI to make analytics processes—like data management, data prep, and analysis—easier to complete in a few clicks The analytics-first approach Business leaders have long recognized the importance of data analytics to the future of their organizations. International Data Corporation, a global market intelligence firm, reports that 83% CEOs want their organizations to be more data-driven and are investing in growing their Data Cultures. Those who are leading with data are now 23 times more likely to add customers and 1.5 times more likely to grow revenue by 10%.  As organizations begin their data fabric journey, it’s critical they remain focused on where value is being generated for the business. If this is analytics for you, as it is for most, stay your course. Data fabric implementation will take several years, so it is important to set near-term goals to be able to showcase value and keep stakeholders engaged.  With Tableau as part of your data fabric design, you can overcome some classic problems that pop up during the last mile of data initiatives. For example:  Lack of adoption by the business. Rev adoption by thousands of users by working where the business is already working, the platform becomes the collaboration zone or federated environment for business users to access data and governance analysts/IT to implement their enterprise projects Slow implementation of governance standards. Create trust and verifiability where viewers consume their data. Tableau provides information in context around data freshness, certification status, data quality warnings, field definitions, data sources, and overall usageLoss of visibility after data leaves EDW. The beauty of data today is that it can be used in so many different ways—which is also a challenging pitfall for governance. With metrics on who is consuming data and how data consumers are interacting with data, IT can get true insight into what data sources are providing the most value and discover and remediate sensitive data use automatically  Learn more about data fabric design, and explore Forrester’s take on the data fabric market by reading “Now Tech: Data Fabric Vendors Q1 ’22.”  Data Governance [...]