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Productivity Gains Through Culture, Visuality, and Collaboration (Part 3): Extended Workplace Visuality and Pervasive Collaboration

In Part 2, I explained why organizational culture and leadership are probably the most important factors contributing to gains in employee productivity and innovation. This week, I’d like to describe two additional, highly essential enablers: extended workplace visuality and pervasive collaboration.

Extended Workplace Visuality: A visual workplace is one in which information needed to collaborate, engage, and stay productive is made available at the right time and place, rather than hidden away in spreadsheets and other documents on various employees’ laptops.

Visual displays have complemented lean manufacturing practices on the plant floor for many years, significantly reducing work-in-process inventories and manufacturing lead times, while driving cost and quality improvements. Visual thinking has also been adopted in environments such as airports and hospitals to improve operations, customer service, safety, and quality. Read More »

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BYOD on a University Campus: A Student’s Perspective

There is a new generation of college students out there, I would know as I recently was one of them.  Information being at your fingertips is no longer a luxury, it is a necessity.  Professors’ expectations of their students have increased dramatically due to the wealth of information on mobile devices.  Every class I attended leveraged some form of wireless access to the web.  Instant message in response to real-time questions and online submissions are just two of many examples of how network access has been integrated into the education system.  Professors would consistently use online tools such as online drop boxes for projects and web conferencing tools.  According to MarketWire 92% of college students feel a laptop is a necessity, this indicates that the requirement of mobile access at a university is a given and the college experience is defined by the ease of that access. 

Professors are on tight schedules and are generally available only at certain times of the day.  Imagine- wanting to contact a professor during open hours only to fall short because your laptop had difficulty getting any kind of connection.  I remember the frustrations of wanting to revisit PowerPoint presentations on a class website in the library, only to realize that I was sitting by the one window notorious for being a wireless dead zone.  Dorms were infamous for spotty coverage.  Having the dorm room located closest to the access point for best access was purely by luck of the draw.  I was not so lucky.  In my dorm, you would not get any wireless access unless you were sitting right next to the hallway.  That’s why I am especially envious of the students of Colorado University, whose alma mater upgraded to enterprise-class coverage. 

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Cisco’s Investing in Partners, Offering Rewards; So Don’t Miss VIP 20 Enrollment

It’s a fact that Cisco combined with our partners form the largest collection of networking experts in the world.

We value your relationship with us, and as we have demonstrated to you with our Cisco Partner Value Proposition, your profitability is very important to us. It’s our goal to support and reward your efforts and talents around key industry trends.

Cisco has invested more than $1 billion (US) in partners through VIP (Value Incentive Program), a popular program designed to increase your overall profitability, technology architecture growth, and operating profits.

VIP enables Cisco Specialized and Authorized Technology Partners (ATP) to earn even more margin and profit for investing in and focusing business practices on four key Cisco architectures or tracks: Collaboration, Borderless Networks, Data Center, and now, Express.

What’s new with VIP 20?
Curious about how you can get rewarded for earning a profit?

The year 2013 marks the 10th anniversary and 20th consecutive period of VIP with VIP 20! We’ve just made some key program updates to VIP 20, too, all designed to streamline your path to profit, including:

  • Integrating Express as a track in the VIP 20 program. This will make it even easier for our SMB and Commercial segment focused partners to take advantage of Cisco’s flagship profitability program.
  • As in prior VIP periods, the Product SKU lists are updated to ensure we are rewarding partners for selling the most current solutions – please see the VIP Playbook for more details.
  • Plus, we have fine-tuned the rules around program enrollment, payment cycles, and order processing.

To take advantage, just enroll in our ever-popular Value Incentive Program (VIP 20)—from July 29 through September 7, 2012. All partners must enroll to take advantage of the program.

Ready to take advantage of VIP 20?
Go to the Partner Program Enrollment (PPE) Tool to enroll anytime between July 29 and September 7, 2012. VIP 20 eligible SKUs will be available on August 3. Once you’re on the VIP 20 site, be sure to utilize the product matrixes in the VIP Partner Playbook to maximize your VIP payments. And don’t forget, all partners including Express, must enroll for VIP 20 to take advantage of the program.

Don’t miss our handy VIP 20 infographic for a quick snapshot of the program, key updates, and enrollment information.  Read More »

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Wendy Bahr to Lead Cisco’s Americas Partner Organization

Today, I’d like to thank an old friend and welcome back a familiar face.

Jim Sherriff, the leader of the Americas Partner Organization and previously the US and Canada Partner Organization for the past two years, has accepted a new role working with Rob Lloyd on the Worldwide Sales Operations team.

Among other responsibilities, Jim will lead our global efforts to bring greater capabilities and efficiency to our sales process by assuming sales leadership for ACT (Accelerated Cisco Transformation). ACT is Cisco’s multi-year program to fuel growth by enhancing our operating model, ensuring world-class execution, efficiency, and ease of doing business. Jim will report directly to Rob Lloyd.

The Americas Partner Organization has made great strides in driving partner profitability under Jim’s direction through three key areas of focus: enabling partners to capture new markets faster, increasing customer segment impact, and driving improved operational efficiency.

Jim and his team initiated and led the “the 1% solution,” a series of initiatives to improve operational efficiency with early successes including the Audit Certification team that helps partners reduce the cost of re-certification, and introduction of The SELL (Sales Enablement Learning Lifecycle), a valuable resource for our partners to help them on-board and develop their sales professionals.

I’d like to thank him for his exceptional leadership and many contributions. He will be a great advocate for The Americas sales organization in his new role.

With Jim’s move to Worldwide Operations, I’m pleased to announce Wendy Bahr as our new SVP, Americas Partner Organization.

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Summary: John Lewis Changes the Face of Shop Operations by Using Video

When John Lewis (JL), a leading U.K. retailer, faced challenges with running its new, geographically distributed at home shops, Cisco IBSG knew that the problems could be solved through the innovative use of video technology.

Working with John Lewis CIO Paul Coby, Cisco IBSG and JL picked two critical concepts to pilot for the core retail use cases:

  1.  High-definition, real-time video conferencing based in each store for communicating among the at home shops, and between the shops and head office
  2. A video portal for sharing and viewing videos on demand (via each shop’s PCs)

The pilot’s results proved the value and the business case for video in shops, including estimated annual savings of 28,000 man-hours across the eight shops, and estimated annual travel savings of 20 percent to date.

Read the full article John Lewis Changes the Face of Shop Operations by Using Video

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