Making EMV Work across New Markets

  • Source: Compass Plus
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Last fall, when Visa announced plans to drive chip card and mobile payment adoption, the question of whether the US will adopt EMV chip technology was made redundant, with two questions remaining in its place: when and how? By December 31, 2011, more than one million EMV chip-enabled cards had been issued by US financial institutions. MasterCard and Discover have since published their recommendations of how to roll out EMV in the US. With deadlines of between 2013 and 2015, financial institutions need to start planning how to protect their current infrastructure investments while meeting these new requirements cost-effectively. Compass Plus looks at the advantages of making the switch to the EMV standard and offers guidelines for successful implementation.

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Usability as an ERP Selection Criteria

  • Source: IFS
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Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software is often criticized for being complex and difficult to use—which puts up a barrier to receiving potential benefits. Systems with integrated search functionality and Web-like interfaces can make ERP solutions easier to use. Learn how to evaluate ERP software for its usability, so you can avoid investing in platforms that aren’t evolved toward usable and efficient interfaces. Read More

From VAR to Solution Provider: Five Strategies for Business Transformation

  • Source: Computer Economics, Inc.
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The traditional value-added reseller (VAR) business—comprised of companies that add features or services to an existing product and then resell it as an integrated product or complete solution—has become more challenging, with declining product margins, increasing competition, and lower-cost alternatives to proprietary products. The pressures are causing many VARs to grow their businesses from simply selling products to offering more comprehensive solutions built on a richer set of services and recurring revenue models.

For decades, VARs have been an important channel for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), like computer manufacturers and software vendors, to reach customers. The “value-add” can simply be to provide local implementation and hands-on support or it can involve adding other hardware, software, and services to tailor the OEM’s product to a specific industry, problem, or use. In many markets, customers prefer buying from VARs instead of directly from OEMs, as VARs are closer to the customer, offer local support, and are in a better position to develop long-term relationships.

The VAR business model has been attractive in the past, as it was profitable to resell OEM products. Over the past decade, however, product margins have been shrinking as the result of several long-term trends. In this report, learn about five strategies for making the transformation from VAR to solution provider. The changes needed require a new view of the business and a new mindset, to move from a deal mindset to long-term customer relationships, become invested in customer success, and transition from cash up front to realizing revenue over the life of a contract. Read More

Cash is King—And So is Your Supply Chain: How Mid-Market Companies Can Optimize Supply Chain Operations for Strong Cash Flow and Focused Growth

For companies of all sizes and across all industries, cash is not only crucial, it’s king. Just to survive, businesses have to carefully manage their cash flow, making sure that payments aren’t going out faster than resources are coming in.

There are a number of ways companies can automate and optimize their supply chains to improve cash flow, such as building strong relationships and implementing new technology. But it should be noted that making the decision to invest in technology or update a supply chain process is a cash flow decision in itself, and should thus be weighed carefully.

It is important to realize that the cost of a supply chain or cash flow failure is, in most cases, significantly higher than even the highest price tags for these investments. With that in mind, supply chain solutions and automation technologies are more often than not worth the investment for growing mid-market companies.

This white paper looks at the importance of cash flow management, especially vital for mid-market companies in the current economic landscape. Due to their size, mid-market companies have a smaller financial cushion than their larger competitors, which means they have a reduced margin of error, a thinner cushion for tough financial situations, and a smaller investment pool for funding growth.

Download the guide for more information on why you should optimize supply chain operations to improve cash flow, including explanations on how seeking out supply chain efficiencies, managing cash flow through managing inventory, and investing in new technologies can help your bottom line.  Read More

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Anticipate, Adapt, Excel: How to Respond Quickly to Changing Markets

  • Source: SAP
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In today’s Internet-connected global economy, the market doesn’t allow for companies to sit back and relax into a comfortable niche. Customer loyalty is ever harder to maintain, and you risk losing your business to competition if you can’t respond quickly to market change. Before you lose any more ground, find out how to replace your disconnected, redundant business processes with flexible and efficient ones integrated by IT. Read More

3 Things Business Decision-makers Need to Know about SOA

  • Source: IFS
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Anyone even peripherally exposed to business media that touch on enterprise application technology has seen the term service-oriented architecture (SOA) bandied about in advertisements and articles. Given the central role of SOA in information technology, it is important to get beyond a buzzword level understanding. There are three key concepts surrounding SOA: granularity, Web services, and change management. Read More

Differentiate and Grow with Profitability Insights

While digital data can provide information that can be important to profitability margins, it can also easily surpass the capacity of your current analytic tools due to the sheer volume now available to businesses. Current analytical systems may not be able to deal with the vast amounts of data now available, compromising resource allocation. New cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) tools are easy to upgrade and deal with large volumes of data effectively, allowing analytical tools to process large amounts of digital data, which can provide a clearer picture on where to best invest time and energy into your company for optimal growth. But best practices also have to be implemented in order to make this data work for you.

Access in real-time to information about trend changes and global markets is vital for businesses that deal with international markets and a variety of currencies when fact-based decision making needs to occur in real-time, and also allows for the establishment of best practice measures in order to maximize profitability.

In this white paper, learn how to become data-driven to your best advantage and establish best practices for measuring profitability, synchronizing access to financial information across a variety of departments, as well as how to develop a stronger partnership between financial and business leaders while creating A Center of Excellence (CoE) to centralize the business lexicon and homogenize business procedures.  Read More
 
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