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Category: Posted: October 27, 2013 0 comments

A new study from Oxford says that 47% of the jobs in America are at risk of automation.  There is a lot of fear that a job automated is equivalent to a job eliminated. It is the same fear that fueled the Luddites, however history shows that fear to be misplaced then, as it is now.  Automation drives a transformation of the workplace, not an elimination.


The report by Carl Frey and Michael Osborne at Oxford University is called “The Future of Employment: How Susceptible are Jobs to Computerisation?”  says:

… Based on these estimates, we examine expected
impacts of future computerisation on US labour market outcomes, with the primary objective of analysing the number of jobs at risk and the relationship between an occupation’s probability of computerisation, wages and educational attainment. According to our estimates, about 47 percent of total US employment is at risk. We further provide evidence that wages and educational attainment exhibit a strong negative relationship with an occupation’s probability of computerisation.

Pretty scary, right?  Almost half the workforce — gone.  In the early 19th century...

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Category: Posted: August 21, 2012 0 comments

Here is an article I wrote for Workforce Solutions Review, a well produced magazine from the International Association for Human Resource Information Management (IHRIM).  It seems that there is some interest in Adaptive Case Management from a HR perspective — and for good reasons.  When I get the details of the publication issue I will include that here.  Meanwhile, this post outlines a vision for ACM and Human Resources & Management.


In the past two years we have seen a dramatic increase in interest in a new approach for systems that support office workers.  Much of the focus for information technology deployment has been on automating or even eliminating less skilled jobs.  This has been largely effective, and organizations today are able to much more with fewer people. People today spend less of their time on routine tasks, and more of their time on things that make a difference, than was possible just ten years ago.

The challenge is to determine how to support higher skilled modes of work.  We call this kind of work “unpredictable work” because one cannot predict in advance the exact course of what will be done.  This is technology for the rest of us: managers, decision makers, executives, doctors, lawyers, campaign managers, emergency responders, strategist, and many others who have to think for a living.  These are people who figure out what needs to be done, at the same time that they do it, and there is a new approach to support this.

The trend goes beyond being just a technology...

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Category: Posted: March 15, 2012 0 comments

Want users to use your cloud-based web site?  Follow these guidelines, so that users can sign up easily and use it.  Sadly, there are soooo many ways that web sites can do this wrong.  The result is a bewildering variety of inconsistent and sometimes incomprehensible mechanisms that unnecessarily annoy the very users you are trying to attract. Heed these guidelines carefully!

As a technology analyst my job requires me to sign up for and access hundreds of different web based applications, most of them cloud based.  Those that perform right are a pleasure.  Most, however violate one or more of these guidelines.  As far as I can tell, this comes from a failure to think through all the consequences of the design.  After a particularly egregious example this morning I compiled this “Bill of Rights” that a user should enjoy in order to...

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Category: Posted: January 18, 2012 0 comments

There is an interesting video “Your Storytelling Brain”  from Cognitive Neuroscientist Michael Gazzaniga who talks about how we remember things.  He describes a part of the brain called “the interpreter” which functions to organize memories into plausible stories.  This is great most of the time, but causes a type of memory distortion that is gets in the way of designing appropriate business processes.

You memories are not perfect, but the interpreter can help to fill in details which are plausible.  Evidence of this is seen from how people who have suffered trauma that eliminates some of their real...

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Category: Posted: November 18, 2011 0 comments

John Hagel III co-author of the book “The Power of Pull” was invited on stage for a discussion with Dr. Pehong Chen, CEO of BroadVision about how companies are (or are not) adopting of social technologies at the Enterprise 2.0 conference in Santa Clara yesterday. I am a big fan of him and his latest book, so I took notes on how he sees companies resolving these difficulties.

PC: Do you think most companies “get it?”

JH: Most companies are still trying to figure enterprise 2.0 / social business technology out.  They don’t know what it is about, nor how to adopt it.

PC: What are some patterns that people use to get into it. ... 

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Category: Posted: November 14, 2011 0 comments

While Case Management has been a universally hot topic in the past year, there are various modifiers put in front of it: Advanced, Dynamic, and Adaptive.  In this post I attempt to explain why "Adaptive" is the right concept and why that is so important.

In A Nutshell

Whenever you hear about an adaptive system, you should think about muscles.  If you want to increase the size or strength of a muscle, you exercise it.  The use of a muscle triggers a response to build the muscle.  Conversely, lack of use causes muscle atrophy. ...

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Category: Posted: November 10, 2011 0 comments

Personal Cloud was the unusual subject of Frank Gillett’s talk at Forrester Forum not long ago.   Traditional IT: prepare for something deeply disturbing, yet inevitable.  It is important to understand this to see where Adaptive Case Management (ACM) will be going in the future.  Look for a few related posts to come out soon. 

The key concept is easy: there are many cloud services now that help people manage their own files and information.  You know them: Box.net,  DropBox,OxygenCloudSugarSync,FilesAnywhereBrainLoop, many more, as well as a large number of collaboration services in the cloud that also allow for file storage.  It is not just files, but many other things, like email archives, password and key … Read the article