Unisys says don't build or process without IT Blueprints. (APP Dev News Review).What if you could design and model the processes that embody your business with an electronic tool that allowed you to map it onto your IT infrastructure, much as a CAD/CAM CAD/CAM
in full computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing.
Integration of design and manufacturing into a system under direct control of digital computers. program embodies the design of a product and helps turn it into a real product through the manufacturing process?
Well, Unisys Corp has come up with a combination of products, services, and methodologies for industries in which it has deep expertise that it says offers this functionality, which it is calling Business Blueprinting.
While IBM (International Business Machines Corporation, Armonk, NY, www.ibm.com) The world's largest computer company. IBM's product lines include the S/390 mainframes (zSeries), AS/400 midrange business systems (iSeries), RS/6000 workstations and servers (pSeries), Intel-based servers (xSeries) Corp, Hewlett Packard Co, and Sun Microsystems Sun Microsystems, Inc. (NASDAQ: JAVA) is an American vendor of computers, computer components, computer software, and information-technology services, founded on 24 February 1982. Inc are battling out the future of computing with their respective On Demand, Adaptive Enterprise, and N1 initiatives for virtualized, utility computing (1) Pay-per-usage processing provided by a service organization that uses its own computers and facilities. Customers access the computers via a private network or over the Internet and are charged according to how much computing time they use, such as CPU seconds, minutes or hours. , Unisys is taking a slightly different tack on generating new sales in new areas. Rather than adopting any of these initiatives or trying to compete against IBM, HP, and Sun in this religious war about how to build future computer systems, middleware, and systems management software for automating the running of these systems, Unisys wants to change the topic of conversation away from on demand, virtualized computing--automating the systems--to the automation of business processes that map onto IT infrastructure. That, in short, is what Business Blueprinting is all about.
Unisys unveiled its Business Blueprinting initiative at the Rainbow Room For the Los Angeles nightclub, see Rainbow Bar and Grill.
The Rainbow Room is a well-known upscale restaurant and nightclub on the sixty-fifth floor of the GE Building in Rockefeller Center, Midtown Manhattan, New York City. at Rockefeller Center Rockefeller Center, complex of buildings in central Manhattan, New York City, between 48th and 51st streets and Fifth Ave. and the Ave. of the Americas (Sixth Ave.). The project was sponsored by John D. Rockefeller, Jr. in New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of , drawing in a large crowd of analysts, press, and customers. Unisys has a respectable share of the enterprise system sales System sales is a business term used in the franchising industry. Franchisors provide supplies, marketing and administration services to franchisees in return for a part of the franchisees' revenues. Some franchisors also operate some outlets directly. at insurance and financial services The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view of the subject.
Please [ improve this article] or discuss the issue on the talk page. firms in the New York area, so packing the room doesn't necessarily mean anything in terms of enthusiasm about Business Blueprinting. But it does indicate that Unisys is taking the Business Blueprinting initiative very seriously, and that the company is confident enough about the current IT environment to fork out a lot of dough to host a major media event. This is a good barometer.
In fact, during the launch of the Business Blueprinting initiative, Unisys chairman and CEO (1) (Chief Executive Officer) The highest individual in command of an organization. Typically the president of the company, the CEO reports to the Chairman of the Board. Larry Weinbach said that there is a backlog of demand for IT projects, but that the uncertainty in the business environment and past excesses, especially during the Y2K See Y2K problem and Y2K compliant.
Y2K - Year 2000 , ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) An integrated information system that serves all departments within an enterprise. Evolving out of the manufacturing industry, ERP implies the use of packaged software rather than proprietary software written by or for one customer. , and dot-com booms where IT organizations around the globe spent $60bn on IT gears and wares with little return or business justification, are keeping a lid on spending. In 2001 and 2002, Weinbach said that IT spending fell by 15%, and that profits at IT companies were down 35% to 40%, and that many companies are under water.
Business Blueprinting is an attempt by Unisys to identify and fix the real problems with IT projects, which anyone in the industry will immediately identify with. Surveys done by Unisys as it was preparing the Business Blueprinting products and services for market are illustrative. According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. those surveys, says Weinbach, 26% of companies reported that they completed less than half of the IT projects they start, and 80% of those who do finish projects do not deliver applications within their budgets.
"Industry analysts who reviewed our survey data say the numbers are worse," says Weinbach. "But it doesn't matter if it is worse or in between. The situation is bad." To bring it on home to the audience, Weinbach said that the current way that companies implement applications is akin to a person building or remodeling remodeling /re·mod·el·ing/ (re-mod´el-ing) reorganization or renovation of an old structure.
bone remodeling a house without a blueprint only to find out that they have the plumbing going to one side of the house and the bathroom installed on the other side. And, in a comment that will probably resonate with the increasing IT temptation to offshore and outsource application development to countries where labor is cheaper, Weinbach added: "If you don't have a blueprint, you can't go offshore. How can you get people to build something without explaining what you are doing?"
It makes one wonder what IT organizations have been doing all these years. If you ask George Colony, the founder of consultancy Forrester Research Forrester Research is an independent technology and market research company that provides its clients with advice about technology's impact on business and consumers. Corporate facts
The Business Blueprinting scheme that Unisys has come up with aims to solve this problem, which is just as costly to a business in terms of lost IT dollars as having cranky crank·y 1
adj. crank·i·er, crank·i·est
1. Having a bad disposition; peevish.
2. Having eccentric ways; odd.
3. , incompatible systems that take boatloads of people to manage. (IBM and Sun are focusing in this latter part of the IT budget with their On Demand and N1 initiatives, and HP is aiming for similar things with major part its Adaptive Enterprise initiative).
According to Fred Dillman, vice president of technology and architecture for Unisys' Global Industries unit, Business Blueprinting creates digital descriptions of business processes and IT infrastructure that companies can play with to see where there are redundancies in their systems and processes that can be streamlined to cut costs and improve customer service. In addition to what effectively is a digital simulation of a business, its decision making processes, its transactions, and the IT infrastructure that supports (and cost estimating tools that can predict what changes in applications will cost), Business Blueprinting includes lots of services. As such, the cost of Business Blueprinting is difficult to fathom, but an initial assessment just to reckon what to do to implement Business Blueprinting, according to one Unisys source, could run from $25,000 to several hundred thousands of dollars, depending on the complexity of the environment or the business.
Dillman, who has been spearheading the Business Blueprinting effort, says that it will be delivered to the market in three different ways, and with complete agnosticism agnosticism (ăgnŏs`tĭsĭzəm), form of skepticism that holds that the existence of God cannot be logically proved or disproved. Among prominent agnostics have been Auguste Comte, Herbert Spencer, and T. H. for server platforms, operating systems Operating systems can be categorized by technology, ownership, licensing, working state, usage, and by many other characteristics. In practice, many of these groupings may overlap. , middleware, and applications (legacy or third party). The first way is through a straight systems integration mode through the services unit at Unisys. Rather than integrating systems, however, this would really be an integration of company management with IT management and infrastructure. The second way to get a Business Blueprinting package is to buy one of several Unisys application suites the company has developed for its mainframes and Wintel platforms; the company is deploying new applications (in the same healthcare, financial services, insurance, and government industries) using new technologies like J2EE (Java 2 Platform, Enterprise Edition) A platform from Sun for building distributed enterprise applications. J2EE services are performed in the middle tier between the user's machine and the enterprise's databases and legacy information systems. and .NET. The third way to get this product is to engage Unisys in a Business Process Outsourcing Business process outsourcing (BPO) is the contracting of a specific business task, such as payroll, to a third-party service provider. Usually, BPO is implemented as a cost-saving measure for tasks that a company requires but does not depend upon to maintain its position in contract, basically shifting the responsibility for the IT infrastructure to Unisys and using the blueprint to keep the outsourced applications current with business needs. Dillman says that one of the dirty little secrets in the IT outsourcing business is that when you outsource, the company you outsource to has very little incentive to change or update applications to keep them modern and relevant. So what happens over the course of five to ten years (a term for an outsourcing contract) there is a tremendous gap between what a companies needs in terms of applications and what it gets from an outsourcer. By putting apps on a blueprint and always keeping them current, Unisys reckons it can still make money on the outsourcing contracts and end up with customers who want to re-up for their outsourcing contracts.
The trick to making Business Blueprints work is saving money for customers, of course. Unisys knows this and backed up its claims with some early statistics from the products and services it has developed under the blueprint. According to Joe McGrath, executive vice president of the Enterprise Transformation Services unit at Unisys, the company has implemented the methodology across the applications it uses to control its eleven worldwide development labs. An unspecified number of early adopter customers, including Dutch banking and insurance powerhouse ING Group and the Belgian court system, have used the methodology, too. McGrath says that Business Blueprinting improves cycle times for work by 25% to 40%, improves programmer and end user productivity by 75% to 100%, and reduces redundancies in systems by 30% to 50%. When you do the math on the budgets, that came out to a cost savings of 25% to 60% for IT and related costs in the businesses where they implemented Business Blueprints. At ING, which used the blueprint methodology to better automate its process for accepting new insurance customers and getting policies processed, Business Blueprinting increased the level of straight-through processing straight-through processing
The direct exchange of cash and securities. Straight-through processing is a major objective for cross-border transactions that are generally much more costly to settle compared to domestic transactions. from 10% to 60% for all policies by tweaking tweaking Vox populi Fine-tuning to produce optimal results the way these policies were handled by people and systems.
Overall, policies required 40% less handling, and the time of delivering a policy dropped from several days down to several minutes. The cost of getting a policy processed dropped by 75% at ING, and the overall reduction in the IT budget as related to policy processing was 25%.
Unisys can't do this alone, of course, and had been planning to tap Microsoft Corp, its long-time ally in the modern enterprise computing Refers to information technology in the larger company. See enterprise data and enterprise networking. space, to help it push Business Blueprinting. Unisys was also working with tool provider Rational on an alliance prior to its acquisition by IBM, and now Unisys has a stronger alliance with IBM by virtue of that acquisition. Unisys seems keen on encouraging customers to move to a Web services model using .NET and J2EE, and has partnered with Microsoft for .NET tools and middleware and IBM for Rational tools and WebSphere middleware.
Unisys is delivering Business Blueprinting for the following areas in which it has deep expertise from its 50 years in computing: life insurance, pension plan administration, property and casualty insurance, banking and mortgage, enterprise payments, airline reservations, heath claims processing, health and human services Noun 1. Health and Human Services - the United States federal department that administers all federal programs dealing with health and welfare; created in 1979
Department of Health and Human Services, HHS , justice and public safety, tax and revenue management, registry and ID, cargo security, multimedia messaging, newspaper and Web publishing, and integrated trade replenishment.