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Intergen Smarts 18 (2008)
 

Intergen Smarts 18 (2008)

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Intergen's newsletter, Smarts, now available for online reading. ...

Intergen's newsletter, Smarts, now available for online reading.

Intergen provides information technology solutions across Australia, New Zealand and the world based exclusively on Microsoft’s tools and technologies.

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    Intergen Smarts 18 (2008) Intergen Smarts 18 (2008) Presentation Transcript

    • INT SMARTS_18_FA 11/18/08 1:30 PM Page 1 Composite C M Y CM MY CY CMY K I S S U E E I G H T E E N>> T H E I N T E L L I G E N T B U S I N E S S M A G A Z I N E MICROSOFT DYNAMICS >> TECH.ED USER EXPERIENCE DESIGN >> >> >>CRM & SHAREPOINT RAPID RESULTS >> HOT NEWS: Announcements from Microsoft Professional Developers Conference Microsoft made numerous significant announcements at its developers conference held in Los Angeles in late October, including Windows Azure and Office 14. Intergenites Chris Auld and Mark Orange attended the conference, and share their thoughts inside – see page 3 for more. Intergen still a Best Place to Work We’ve come sixth a total of four times, and we’ve made the JRA Unlimited Best Places to Work top ten again… but the actual position has yet to be announced. All shall be revealed in the next instalment of SMARTS in the New Year. MICROSOFT PDC >> 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 CASE STUDY >> INTERGENITE NEWS >> < Copyright 2008 Intergen Limited. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the permission of Intergen Limited > Behind every door, a new opportunity We are extremely proud to have been awarded Microsoft Partner of the Year for 2008. Intergen (and prior to that Glazier Systems) has been a dedicated Microsoft partner since we started out in the world in 1995. It was extremely rewarding to be recognised by Microsoft for our contribution to their success. Microsoft has certainly played a big part in our achievements over the past 13 years. During this period, we’ve had a number of opportunities present themselves to us that have made us what we are today. The challenge for any good business is to seize upon the best of these opportunities when the proverbial door opens and act on them in a timely manner. Our history and our track record have been determined and shaped by the doors that have opened to us. Glazier Systems was founded on the basis that smart business people could use a high productivity tool like Microsoft Access to build clever business systems without having to have a deep technical background. As the business grew, we began to use Microsoft SQL Server to allow us to build larger scale systems and we started to hire more technical staff. When Microsoft entered the web space with Active Server Pages (ASP), we followed and began building browser-based business applications, websites and intranets and established our hosting capability. The business continued to grow, our projects became bigger and more complex and our staff became more technically focused. In 2001, .NET came along. We embraced it, and moved into a new world of enterprise applications. At about the same time, we were introduced to a new wave of application environments from Microsoft with the likes of Content Management Server. We again stepped up, branched out and broadened the scope of what we did. More recently, as Microsoft has moved into the ERP and CRM markets we have followed suit and added those solutions to our offerings. Microsoft now affords us the opportunity to provide an extremely wide range of business solutions to our clients. We have grown our business to support the increased breadth of solutions and have supplemented our deep technical teams with a range of business-focused people covering area such as ERP and CRM consulting, knowledge strategy, architecture and business process design. Microsoft has been a great partner for us, opening the door to a wealth of opportunities. And judging by the exciting line-up of announcements at the recent Professional Developers Conference in Los Angeles, there are plenty more opportunities on the horizon. In uncertain economic times, it is important to have a partner that provides you with great opportunity and one that recognises the value you bring to them. We wish you a happy and safe Christmas and look forward to working with you in 2009. tony.stewart@intergen.co.nz
    • INT SMARTS_18_FA 11/18/08 1:30 PM Page 2 Composite C M Y CM MY CY CMY K < S M A R T S - T H E I N T E L L I G E N T B U S I N E S S M A G A Z I N E . I S S U E E I G H T E E N >>> I N T E R G E N I T E N E W S>>2 With more than 200 staff in New Zealand and Australia, it’s getting harder to keep tabs on everybody. What we can report – on good authority – is that yellowness continues to spring eternal. Here’s what’s been happening in the past few months. The end of the year is in sight (and what a year it has been) and it’s almost time to don some yellow jandals, kick back in a deckchair, reflect on ’08 and look forward to ’09. So, in recent news… Back in August we won the Microsoft New Zealand Partner of the Year award. This was an extremely significant occasion for Intergen, and external recognition of our exclusive commitment to Microsoft technology since way back last century (well, only just last century). It’s something we’re really proud of and a real endorsement of what we live and breathe every day. We’ve also made it to the Best Places to Work top 10 again. At time of writing this, the results are still out in the ether. We’ve come sixth in the awards four times now, so although we don’t want to appear ungrateful, we’re aiming to crack fifth or higher! The Wellington office got a face-lift (complete with padded yellow doors); the Christchurch office turned four and Dunedin employed its very first member of the fairer sex (see Intergenite profile page 8). Then there was Tech.Ed. Every year the bar is lifted and this year the reports were glowing. We were there in force (all 24 of us, going incognito in bright yellow Huffer-designed T-shirts and the trusty old yellow camos). We also sponsored the Hands on Labs and handed out 2500 cans of V and recovery packs to make sure delegates’ blood sugar was kept at an appropriate level and that they had earplugs, Panadol, screen wipes and massage therapists on hand to get them through an intense three days of unadulterated geekiness. Speaking of dressing up, our trusty Director, Paddy Payne (who has been known for his occasional sartorial kookiness), represented Intergen at the annual Women in Technology debate. Arguing that green technology has been overhyped, Paddy and his team dressed up as flower children and brought peace and tranquillity to their audience. For the second year running, Intergen Wellington rocked out at the ever-popular Rocktober event – the perfect opportunity to unwind and release our inner bogans. The photos say it all, really (and there’s plenty more where these came from), and another notable Director-in-costume mention must be made to Wayne Forgesson, who, as master of ceremonies, made an extremely fetching Alice Cooper – or, more correctly, a very convincing bogan. We’ve had some excellent THINK events lately, including a Microsoft directions session presented by Microsoft National Technology Officer, Brett Roberts. And recognising the growing importance of social media, we brought Andreas Stjernstrom of EPiServer Sweden out to New Zealand to run sessions on how online communities can be harnessed to create real business benefit for organisations. We’ve had a new MVP join the ranks (Dave Roys – the first Microsoft Dynamics NAV MVP in Australasia), bringing Intergen’s total to four; Craig Keenen was appointed Subject Matter Expert for NAV, representing New Zealand; we’ve got staff members writing and contributing to books; our wares have made it all the way to the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference (see page 3 for more on this); Rob Stewart, one of our 2007 graduate intake, has been invited to present at the Microsoft OfficeDev conference in Sydney; and we’re active as ever in community groups and meetings around the country. We’ve had international lunches, murder mystery parties, loud shirt days and our Dunedin office even did some swashbuckling in honour of International Talk Like a Pirate Day. We’ll be bedecked in yellow at the Special Children’s Christmas parties in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. And if you see a flash of yellow pass you by when you’re out and about this summer, it’s most likely an Intergenite in costume, as you know how we love to dress up. We’ll be back with another issue in March. For more information on any or more of these goings-on, please email marketing@intergen.co.nz. Whether it was rocking out at Rocktober, or debating important industry issues, Intergen contributed its unique flavour to proceedings. Recent adventures of intrepid Intergenites
    • INT SMARTS_18_FA 11/18/08 1:30 PM Page 3 Composite C M Y CM MY CY CMY K >>3>> M I C R O S O F T P D C < S M A R T S - T H E I N T E L L I G E N T B U S I N E S S M A G A Z I N E . I S S U E E I G H T E E N > Along with a handful of other New Zealanders, Chris Auld and Mark Orange represented Intergen at the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference in Los Angeles from 26th to the 30th October. PDC is arguably the most important Microsoft conference held anywhere in the world, as it is the place where all the new and important technology, product and strategy announcements for the next 12 to 36 months are made public to the market. Despite a crowd of over 6,000 geeks from all around the world, for some reason we still found it easy to stand out in the crowd. Having content built by Intergen presented during a number of conference sessions, including a keynote, certainly helped give us visibility. The opportunity to get up close with the upcoming Microsoft technologies and products was almost as important as the opportunity for us to meet and build connections with the Microsoft people and community experts who actually design, build and evangelise these technologies and products. From the well known products, such as Office 14 and Visual Studio 2010, to the evolution of Live Services, to the revolution of Surface and Windows Azure, it was full steam ahead for five days of geek paradise. Here are some highlights from the action-packed line-up: Silverlight 2.0 There are many significant enhancements to version 2.0 of Silverlight, but the most important is the cut down version of the .NET 3.5 Common Language Runtime that is now embedded in the Silverlight client. Finally we can run managed code directly on the client and provide a truly rich user experience through the browser. Microsoft has worked very hard to keep the Silverlight download below 4mb to ensure a low barrier to adoption; so we’re going to be seeing a lot more Silverlight applications appearing over the next 18 months. Make way for the future – Microsoft Professional Developers Conference Windows Azure Intergen has been working with some of the technologies that make up Azure for about 18 months now but it was still super exciting for us to see the covers come off the fully branded version. Azure is the long awaited ‘Operating System for the Internet’ that Microsoft has been talking about. It provides an abstraction above both the hardware and the underlying Windows Operating system that allows the deployment of massively scalable cloud hosted applications. Intergen will be hosting some of the first Azure events in the world throughout New Zealand in early 2009. Windows 7 On day two, Windows 7 was unveiled, the next release of the Windows operating system that will supersede Vista. The initial challenges with the introduction of Vista have been overcome. Now that the PC ecosystem (operating system, software, hardware) properly supports Vista, we’re ready for the evolution to the Windows 7 operating system. In particular, this prepares the way for the new wave of multi- touch computing or NUI – Natural User Interface. NUI is the next evolution from GUI (Graphical User Interface) which has been with us since the late 1980s. It’s all about ditching the keyboard and mouse for many applications and using multiple fingers to touch the screen and interact with the application. Not only is this a leap in technology but there is now going to be an inevitable leap in interactive design and user interface design to match. Don’t think dumb kiosk with a touch screen where a single finger replaces the mouse, think multiple fingers and multiple people interacting with a whole new world of solutions and experiences. Oslo, Dublin and the M Language ‘Oslo’ is the forthcoming modeling platform from Microsoft. Intergen has been involved as one of the external ‘advisors’ for Oslo since June 2007. The business goal behind Oslo is to break down the silos in enterprise IT by providing a model- based toolset for expressing and executing complex business applications. Oslo will provide visual modelling tools to cover the entire application lifecycle and ultimately these models will be executed in ‘Dublin,’ the new application process server being built into Windows. Oslo models are expressed in a new modelling language called ‘M,’ a language for textually describing domain models. Office 14 plus Live Mesh – The More Connected Office Have you ever wanted to have multiple people collaborate inside the same document by editing different sections? What if one of those users was working through a browser from the other side of the planet? Well, that is exactly what Microsoft demonstrated with the new Office 14 versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote and the Live Mesh platform, all planned for release late next year. Leveraging Silverlight 2.0, through the browser, Microsoft delivers a rich viewing, editing and collaboration experience for these core Office applications without requiring the full client applications to be installed on the user’s computer. Live Mesh provides a reliable storage platform in the cloud that can store these documents and automatically keep them in sync across all your different devices including PCs, Macs and mobile phones. As always, we’d love to hear from you and we’re always happy to provide a detailed briefing on any of the current or future Microsoft platform components that we cover. And look out for Intergen Twilights on Azure, Oslo, M and Dublin in the New Year. Email us at strategyandinnovation@intergen.co.nz.
    • INT SMARTS_18_FA 11/18/08 1:30 PM Page 4 Composite C M Y CM MY CY CMY K come down to what you can’t see when you look at the Microsoft CRM application. Most (custom) development projects start by building the plumbing – the framework and fundamental aspects of the system, including security models, data models and, of course, the user interface – and later focus on the functionality required to support the business processes. Often this means you are spending up to 75% of the project effort on the bits below the surface, the bits that you can’t see. Microsoft CRM provides this for you in an extensible platform, framework and SDK (Software Development Kit). You might think that this is standard practice by CRM and ERP vendors, but the difference is that Microsoft CRM was built as a platform, not an application, and 100% of the framework is provided to you through the SDK. This means that, unlike typical commercial software packages which normally allow you to extend only 20 to 30% of the application, Microsoft CRM provides you with exactly the same SDK and open framework it provides its own developers, the developers who built and continue to extend Microsoft CRM, the application. Because of the broad extensive range of entity-based LOB (line of business) applications that are now being developed using the Microsoft CRM platform, the term ‘xRM’ is being used to better describe these applications. Intergen has a large team of professionals highly skilled in xRM application development using the Microsoft CRM platform. If you are keen to talk to us about this article or your business needs, please contact Simon Bright at simon.bright@intergen.co.nz or on 04 472 2021. < S M A R T S - T H E I N T E L L I G E N T B U S I N E S S M A G A Z I N E . I S S U E E I G H T E E N >>>4 >> M I C R O S O F T D Y N A M I C S >> INTERGENITE: Simon Bright What do you do? I wear two hats. As the Dynamics Practice Principal at Intergen I am responsible for the overall quality of the projects and people Intergen provides to our clients; as Chief Solutions Architect I am responsible for the quality of the overall solution we deliver for our clients using the Dynamics (ERP and CRM) platforms. How do I make a difference? By removing any roadblocks that hinder or prevent our teams from delivering the best solutions we can for our clients in the areas of Financial Management, Enterprise Resource Planning and Customer Relationship Management. I have more than 15 years’ experience in the packaged application business and understand how to take a business problem and solve it through a combination of our team’s skills and the applications we work with. What do I love about my job? Intergen is made up of intelligent extroverts who are the best at what they do. I love the fact that every way I turn I see talented people excelling at what they do and absolutely loving it. A bit about yourself... I was born in Liverpool, moved around a lot, as my dad was in the forces, was shipped off to boarding school in Winchester and then landed in the place I now call home: Wellington. Before my induction as an Intergenite, I spent a large portion of my working career with Ernst & Young, CGNZ and HP. More and more New Zealand-based organisations are turning to Microsoft Dynamics CRM (Microsoft CRM) to build line of business applications – why? Before we consider this question head on, let’s consider how we got here. At the start of the decade, Microsoft set out to build an extensible and flexible development platform that could be used by its partners and customers to rapidly build business or industry specific applications. Their vision was to provide the building blocks that support rapid application development and not to build (at that time) a specific product. The situation changed, Microsoft decided to build an application to showcase the platform, and Microsoft CRM 1.0 was born! So, what is Microsoft CRM? It is as much a platform and framework as it is a business application. For a developer, each part of the application is an entity that displays certain characteristics and relationships depending on its role in the application. The easy way for us to look at this is to say the most commonly used entity, the ‘accounts’ entity, could just as well be a generic entity that each different organisation names and uses to suit its own purpose. For instance ERMA NZ uses the entities and workflows in Microsoft CRM to track and report on applications relating to hazardous substances and new organisms, supporting its role in managing the requirements under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996. Similarly, the Charities Commission uses Microsoft CRM to track communications, information and activities relating to the application and management of grants. To answer the questions: Why are so many organisations turning to Microsoft CRM as a framework for building multiple business applications? While Microsoft CRM was built with this in mind, what makes it fit for purpose? The answers It’s not always about what you can see! The origins of Microsoft Dynamics CRM
    • INT SMARTS_18_FA 11/18/08 1:30 PM Page 5 Composite C M Y CM MY CY CMY K >>5>> C A S E S T U D Y < S M A R T S - T H E I N T E L L I G E N T B U S I N E S S M A G A Z I N E . I S S U E E I G H T E E N > management, procurement, production and business processes, right through to inventory management. Intergen’s Richard Malloch explains: “Dynamics provides an excellent foundation to support the core business processes. Dynamics NAV manages the unique supply chain planning requirements of the dairy industry. It has been integrated with export documentation, treasury management, pallet tracking, Dynamics CRM and Business Intelligence systems to provide fully integrated business processes. Dynamics CRM is the foundation to support customers, suppliers and employers.” Clear business outcomes have been delivered in a concise timeframe. By leveraging the Microsoft stack of technologies, Westland Milk Products now has the foundations for a series of integrated business systems that deliver new efficiencies, knowledge and the end-to-end visibility needed to support their total value chain. The benefits of this have been very evident. Last year Westland saw increased performance, providing a high milk payout to its farmer shareholders. And Intergen didn’t go unrecognised. Microsoft awarded Intergen membership to the exclusive Presidents Club, an honour reserved for the top 5% of Microsoft Dynamics partners worldwide. Westland Milk Products is an independent New Zealand co-operative dairy company producing a diverse range of products for nutritional, food and beverage applications, including milk powders, milk fats and milk protein products. With a 70-year history behind them, when the dairy industry was deregulated and most New Zealand dairy companies amalgamated into Fonterra, Westland was determined to remain independent, with a vision to deliver better value to local farm supplier shareholders. This necessitated a change in business model, from being a producer only to a full value chain model that would give them a competitive advantage to perform successfully in the New Zealand and global markets. Westland needed to integrate and discover synergies between diverse areas of its business, including milk collection, manufacturing, research and development, transport, export shipping, in-market and international marketing, sales and logistics. With a number of disjointed processes operating across disparate systems, Westland decided upon a cohesive IT strategy to support their business vision, and one that leveraged exclusively Microsoft technologies right across the Microsoft stack. To help them do this, they decided to form a long-term partnership with Intergen, embarking on a significant programme of work. Westland’s CIO, Darren Wilson says: “We undertook a rigorous search for the right partner who could demonstrate proven competencies with Microsoft technologies. In particular, I was looking for a depth of knowledge in Dynamics NAV. We needed a partner to support our vision, and Intergen with its Gold Certified Partner status was the best company to integrate all the components into a cohesive whole. Intergen showed they understood how to apply technology to business processes and business processes to technology.” Integrated technology pays out The way forward was based on the following technologies: • Microsoft Dynamics NAV for ERP and supply chain planning • Microsoft Dynamics CRM to support customers, suppliers and employees • WhereScape RED to create a SQL Server Analysis Services data warehouse for Business Intelligence • Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS) to provide a common knowledge management framework and an intranet • Microsoft Office 2007 and Microsoft Exchange 2003 for desktop productivity A core element and critical milestone in the strategy was Westland’s upgrade to Dynamics NAV from Navision (an early version of Dynamics NAV). By instituting a solid platform, Westland could turn their existing financial systems from sales order-led tasks into a full enterprise resource planning system that would provide tools for invoicing,
    • INT SMARTS_18_FA 11/18/08 1:30 PM Page 6 Composite C M Y CM MY CY CMY K >> INTERGENITE: Steve Scarbrough What do you do? I’m a Business Development Manager specialising in Microsoft Dynamics NAV, AX and CRM. My primary objective is to support clientsintheirpurchasingdecisionandensure we actively work to help them realise benefit from their new business solution. How do you make a difference? I listen and act in the best interests of my clients – no two companies are the same. My background is in accounting and business consulting; having hands on experience can make a big difference to my clients. I spent many years helping clients select ERP/FMIS and CRM solutions, so I appreciate just how important and difficult it is to make the right decision. What do you love about your job? The challenge of getting it right for my clients! I’m happy to have the hard conversations, and challenge them to get the best outcome from current and future technology investments. A bit about yourself… I live in Albany on a five-acre bush block which is a little piece of paradise – two young kids keep my wife and I busy! I love sport and play basketball, golf and frisbee golf when I find time. I’ve had some success gaining national titles in both basketball and frisbee golf (yes it is a real sport!) – so I’m very happy being part of another Champion Team at Intergen. < S M A R T S - T H E I N T E L L I G E N T B U S I N E S S M A G A Z I N E . I S S U E E I G H T E E N >>> T E C H . E D>>6 Each year, hundreds of Microsoft aficionados converge on Auckland for New Zealand’s largest technology conference: Microsoft Tech·Ed. Primarily a conference for developers, Tech·Ed is the best local opportunity to hear Microsoft and its partners talk about Microsoft technologies. The majority of the speakers are Microsoft employees, with most of those brought in from overseas especially for the event; the remainder comprise local in-country experts, from respected partners such as Intergen. Held in September, this year was no different, and was bigger than ever. With 140 sessions across 11 tracks, involving more than 100 speakers over three days there was an intense amount of information to take in, absorb and apply. With few exceptions, the focus of Tech·Ed is on Microsoft technologies that are being shipped today. Depending on the year, and the products that have been released, the focus of the event can shift from talking about products that have been here a while, to talking about products and services on the horizon. For example, this year there were a couple of roundtable sessions on cloud computing, a rapidly-evolving area for Microsoft. Of those who went to Tech·Ed this year, there were three key themes they reported back on, which have been consistent with recent market thrusts from Redmond: • Virtualisation. With the movement to improve manageability and the use of fewer resources, virtualisation has been a significant focus for the industry in the past 12 months. Microsoft’s offering, with Hyper-V for Microsoft Windows Server 2008, has proven to be more than competitive with the industry leaders. • Cloud Services. While Microsoft will make some major announcements at the PDC, discussion and speculation around what has been revealed so far has started. • Key Microsoft platform components. .NET 3.5, Vista and SQL 2008 – all received significant attention at this event. For Intergen, Tech·Ed always represents both a significant opportunity and investment. On any given year, we typically provide around half a dozen speakers to Tech·Ed, giving these individuals an opportunity to showcase their talents to a high profile audience. Tech.Ed: Bigger than ever For the past few years, we have also been responsible for the ‘Hands on Labs’ – a classroom-style environment comprising dozens of PCs with hours of training and interactive lessons. Preparation for all of this takes a significant amount of time and effort, and is well appreciated by those who hear the speakers and participate in the Labs. As a strong supporter of the Microsoft development community, Intergen encourages members of the community to get involved: people learn best from people. By contributing to the community, experts can showcase their skills, raise their profile, and generally give back to other developers and experts. For those people active in the Microsoft space, Tech·Ed represents a great opportunity to pass on your experience to others, either as a speaker, or as part of the contingent helping out at the Hands on Labs. Such contributions need not only be made by Microsoft or partners such as Intergen, though. Customers are welcome to participate in the Voice of the Customer sessions which highlight how these technologies have been applied in the real world, and the benefits that have accrued. Intergen regularly runs Twilight seminars immediately following events such as Tech·Ed in order to distribute the knowledge and themes of the event to those who were unable to attend. To subscribe to our events list, contact events@intergen.co.nz. When the going gets tough, the tough get yellow.
    • INT SMARTS_18_FA 11/18/08 1:30 PM Page 7 Composite C M Y CM MY CY CMY K >> U S E R E X P E R I E N C E D E S I G N >>7< SMART S - TH E IN TELLIGEN T B U SIN ESS MAG AZIN E . ISSU E EIG HTTEE N > >> CREATIVES & CODERS IN HARMONY Although a relatively new set of Microsoft tools, the Expression Studio suite has already become an impressive addition to our Intergen arsenal. Picking on one product in particular (close to this author’s heart), Microsoft Expression Blend focuses on Windows Presentation Foundation desktop applications and Silverlight web applications, and tackles collaboration between creative designers and our code-based developers. Forever a hot issue for project managers across the globe... this product/tool looks to manage it very impressively. In brief technical terms, all the visual elements created using Expression Blend are fully accessible as ‘XAML’ code and so can be easily integrated with the developer’s workflow (even directly with Visual Studio). In brief practical terms, this allows designers significant and even direct control over the visual and interactive experience throughout a project, without imposing on developer’s technical and database requirements. In terms of designers and developers working in harmony, this is by far the best solution we (as designers and developers) have seen to date, as it cleanly allows both facets of design and production to focus on what they know, smoothly integrating to provide a higher quality solution and user experience. in the Web Futures panel and Usability talks as a shining example of getting user experience right. In fact, there was an unusual amount of acceptance of Apple products, with the pointed use of a MacBook Pro laptop in the big screen Live Mesh video which set the stage for the keynote speech to start with. Plus Microsoft’s General Manager, along with a notable number of senior Microsoft staff, commenting candidly on stage about how they owned and used various Apple products, as well as their prized PC goods. There were a few gasps from the lingering die- hards in the audience, but being a jolly user of both PCs and Macs, I just felt a warm glow. So, having expected a stonewall response to ‘competitors’ and certainly not expecting a decent UX push, this conference opened my eyes to a Microsoft which openly professes an understanding that our web future needs a broad outlook to match user expectation. The modern Software + Services focus is moving well beyond the mentality of closed fence environments to secure customers, with interconnectivity, interoperability, openness, standards and partner community all being specifically labelled as key to the Microsoft ecosystem. All very, very good to hear, and, as ever, Intergen likes to get stuck right in to making it all happen now. So we sent a spy to Tech.Ed It’s likely that by now you will have heard a fair amount about Microsoft’s impressive Tech.Ed 2008 conference in Auckland. The largest conference in NZ, apparently! If not, we recommend you take a look through our blog to see how successful Intergen has been in providing numerous key speakers as well as hosting all of the official ‘Hands on Labs’ (Microsoft’s mini training sessions). While typically a priority platform for our technologists and developers, Intergen’s investment in Tech.Ed was such that it allowed for a ‘creative’ such as me to join the attendant Yellow Horde! Go me! I went specifically to see whether the Microsoft SharePoint and Microsoft Expression Suite sessions there would be beneficial for a creative/usability chap such as me, or whether they would be mostly code-focused. That a Tech.Ed ticket also meant a free ticket to see Op Shop play at the closing party had nothing to do with it (cough). Something I happily noted right off the bat was a concerted push by Microsoft to highlight the value of user experience (UX) in the whole Software + Service approach. This was particularly impressive, I thought, given the focused developer-filled audience, typically a very UX-sceptical crowd. However, Microsoft minced no words in trying to underline the ‘Power of Choice’ for the user and the need to make that choice as easy and intuitive as possible. The Microsoft folks showed a frank, healthy interest in existing market successes and the iPhone was highlighted DAVE KEYES - Interactive Designer
    • INT SMARTS_18_FA 11/18/08 1:30 PM Page 8 Composite C M Y CM MY CY CMY K +64 9 966 3070 +64 4 472 2021 +64 3 964 0017 +64 3 477 5648 +61 2 9969 0088 +61 434 122 880 Intergen has recently launched a series of new offerings designed to help organisations implement key CRM and SharePoint solutions quickly and inexpensively. Called Rapid Results, we are launching these for two key strategic solutions: Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS), with other solutions planned for 2009. While the specifics of these offerings are different, the goals are the same: to provide a repeatable solution that can be implemented quickly, delivering a core set of functionality, within a fixed timeframe and at a fixed price. So, what’s the problem we’re solving? Many organisations – large and small – want to take advantage of the capabilities of leading solutionssuchasDynamicsCRMandSharePoint, butdon’tnecessarilywanttoinvestinsignificant projects – at least not immediately. Similarly, they may not know exactly what they want, or they want to dip a toe in the water to gauge how they could use those solutions – either within a department or even across the whole organisation – and understand more about how they can be used and what benefits can be delivered. The Rapid Results offerings are designed for these situations: we provide a core set of functionality, implemented in a fixed timeframe for a fixed fee. This is ideal for smaller organisations who want to take advantage of industry-leading products; and for teams or departments within larger organisations who want to get started with CRM or MOSS without going through a lengthy requirements and selection process. And for those organisations that have unique requirements – and most of us do – then these offerings provide you with a solid platform upon which you can add your own capabilities. Intergen can implement the core offering that comes as part of the Rapid Results solution, and work with you to evolve these features to meet your more specific requirements. In other words, think of these solutions as the foundation, and then – as time, budget, or requirements permit – add more capability – just like building a house. Fast, easy and cost effective – what more could you want? To find out more, contact rapidresults@intergen.co.nz or talk to your Intergen Business Development Manager. >> INTERGENITE: Diana Hennessy What do you do? I am the Solution Manager with Intergen Dunedin. My main roles are project management, business analysis and ensuring our clients get great quality solutions and service across the board. How do you make a difference? I think I make the most difference in ‘gaining forward momentum.’ I love to get things moving and growing, and am usually the first to volunteer to try new things. I am really enjoying implementing the new PMO structure within our office, which will increase productivity and make for easier/faster/better delivery of solutions to our clients. What do you love about your job? I really enjoy the variety of roles I play within our team environment – I definitely never get bored! It’s also rewarding to know your opinion is valued at all levels within Intergen, and you are given the opportunity to influence changes within the company as a whole. I also enjoy playing with cool new software as it becomes available – I am a closet techie! FIND OUT MORE ABOUT INTERGEN: Auckland: Wellington: Christchurch: Dunedin Sydney: Perth: info@intergen.co.nz www.intergen.co.nz www.intergen.com.au A bit about yourself… I have a varied professional background, mainly in Marketing and Business Management roles. I owned my own business for several years, and I am also a qualified freelance makeup artist. I enjoy spending time at our crib (bach for anyone who isn’t from the south) in Warrington, 20 minutes out of Dunedin, where you will find me most weekends with my partner and 15 year-old daughter. I was born in South Otago and have always considered Dunedin my home city – as the advert says: ‘It’s all right here’ (but with a lot less traffic!). New out of the box offerings deliver >> C R M A N D S H A R E P O I N T < S M A R T S - T H E I N T E L L I G E N T B U S I N E S S M A G A Z I N E . I S S U E E I G H T E E N >