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Spotting Opportunity in a Time of Crisis

Recently, I had the opportunity to attend and present at a conference in Madrid commemorating the 25th anniversary of NessPro, a key Syncsort partner in the EMEA region. More than 100 IT professionals attended the event at the core of Madrid’s financial district, La Torre de Cristal (The Tower of Glass) in the neighborhood of La Castellana. The theme of the event was increasing business profitability while reducing costs.

It’s hard to imagine a more appropriate topic for an event being held in a country struggling with growing debt and high La Torre de Cristalunemployment. Indeed, the financial crisis has underscored the need to cut costs and improve productivity. However, there was a great sense of optimism and excitement on the 50th floor of La Torre de Cristal. As another presenter mentioned, the word crisis in Chinese is the combination of two characters: danger and opportunity.

There is definitely an opportunity today for organizations to optimize business processes. Information holds the keys to reduce inventory costs, adapt in real-time to customer demands, streamline operations, uncover new business opportunities, improve productivity, and more. That’s why organizations continue to invest significantly in IT solutions that enable them to uncover a vast array of opportunities.

This is especially true in the competitive banking industry. For instance, RSI (Rural Servicios Informaticos), a joint NessPro and Syncsort customer, presented at the event on how the company is using Syncsort technology to achieve up to 9x savings by gradually migrating most of their applications off the mainframe to open systems. Today, RSI supports Grupo Caja Rural, one of the top 5 banks in Spain with more than 7 million customers, running 75 percent of their batch loads on the open systems. Syncsort’s technology is delivering up to 60 percent faster processing times and is enabling significant savings – helping RSI remain competitive and successful during challenging times.

In the end, opportunity is not just about money. While reducing costs is an opportunity to increase profitability and competitiveness, I was very pleased to see that for my Spanish colleagues, there’s also a strong sense of corporate responsibility. There was a lot of discussion about reducing energy consumption and minimizing waste to preserve the environment, and ultimately bring sustainable economic growth and leadership back to Spain. There are green initiatives in many areas such as reducing paper use, printer toner, PC power consumption, and more.

Special thanks to all my colleagues at NessPro Spain for a very exciting event and equally productive week with the characteristic Spanish hospitality. And of course, many thanks to Alberto, who not only worked closely with me to ensure a successful presentation, but also volunteered to take me through a culinary “tapas” tour at the popular Mercado de San Miguel.  For me, it was the perfect close to a great day of talking about technology and the opportunities ahead.

I wish nothing but the best for Spain and its people.  I have no doubt they will emerge stronger from the challenges they have been facing. ¡Hala, España!

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