The hallowed day has arrived. Actually it arrived on 27th June but I have been busy training my new colleague Vicki in advance of my departure from the IIA so apologies for not noting this sooner on the blog.
But before you dash off I thought I would draw your attention to our new categories.
We have done away with a few (sorry!), updated three (mobile app developer, social media & digital marketing) and created 4 entirely new categories:
- Best Open Data Initiative
- Best Breakthrough Brick to Click
- Best Cloud Service
- Best Rookie
We’re particularly excited about these 4 categories (yes, yes, of course, you’re all winners to us) because they reflect changing technologies, society and practices. We devised Best Breakthrough Brick to Click to recognise some of the amazing cases we’ve heard about over the last year and a half or so while running our 8 Ways series for Online Retailers (although nominees don’t have to be just retailers!). Best Rookie was devised to recognise not only graduates who are making a splash in online business but also those who have made a change to their career to get involved in any aspect of online business.
After the success of Open for Business it made perfect sense for us to celebrate Open Data Initiatives and we’re hoping the shortlist will be an inspiration to many other initiatives in the future. Best Cloud Service acknowledges some of the fabulous and innovative cloud projects that have grown up, many of them wholly Irish, in the last few years.
So now you are dismissed to go and nominate to your heart’s content. Nominations close 29 July 2011.
It’s nearly 2011. If you haven’t renewed your company’s IIA membership for 2011 we really hope you will. In fact for your sake we really hope you do before 31st January 2011 because we are giving every company who renews before then 25% off one training event in 2011. You will also be included in a draw for a pair of tickets to the 2011 Annual Conference which will take place in May.
All of this applies to companies who join before the end of January too.
It’s not like you even needed this extra nudge with all the value and benefits that come with membership but we like to help you renew early so that we can concentrate on maximising that membership for you during the rest of the year.
The Irish Web Awards return again this year and have moved to the lovely surroundings of the Mansion House on Dawson Street, Dublin 2. The hundreds of nominations have been whittled down to the shortlists which were announced this week.
A big congratulations to the IIA Members who made it this far. I’ll be there on the night rooting for you all! Maybe I should get a vuvuzela…
In a shameless bit of backslappery, two of us here in IIA HQ are up for awards for our own projects. My very own, The Rosie View, a podcast about what’s on the telly box with Rosemary MacCabe, is shortlisted in the Best Independent Podcaster category. Darren Byrne’s site Culch.ie, a pop culture blog run with a number of Ireland’s best bloggers, is shortlisted in the Best Web Only Publication and Best Entertainment Website categories.
Our boss Joan is inordinately proud of us and made me write this blog post. I swear.
The bad news for procrastinators and shilly-shalliers and latecomers is that the IIA Diploma in Digital Marketing brought to you in association with Irish Times Training and Prosperity Recruitment is SOLD OUT. The good news is that we will be running it again so don’t shilly-shally the next time! That’s you told now!
Jokes aside if you would like to ensure that you are the first to know about the next run of this Diploma, sign up for Events Alerts today. Email events at iia dot ie with “Subscribe” or click here.
The extra good news is that we are holding a training event next week which if you were really pretentious you might describe as a soupçon of the Diploma in Digital Marketing. I guess that makes me really pretentious. Eoin Kennedy of Slattery Communications presents a half day training in Online PR which will cover:
- Changes in the Irish media environment.
- Evolution of the press release.
- Landscape Mapping and research.
- Building a social media strategy
- Social media guidelines
- New PR tool kit
- Blogger outreach and online relations.
- Online Crisis Management
- Irish case studies
The course is aimed at anyone responsible for their company’s communications, be it your sole responsibility or part of the everything that you do for your start-up. This course will help you approach your communications in a more organised manner and give you a better understanding of the landscape. Eoin will be presenting on this topic as part of the Diploma in Digital Marketing so it will give attendees an opportunity to check out some of the content of the Diploma. As an added bonus (like you need one!) we will give all attendees at the Online PR course a voucher for the Diploma when we next schedule it.
Now I wonder does Eoin discourage the use of words like soupçon…?
Do you remember when having your head in the cloud was a bad thing? I suppose the back to school vibe has got me thinking that way! However the times, they are a-changing and getting into cloud is a must for any smart business. At the very least it’s imperative to know enough about it to know whether your company should or shouldn’t be. As ever the IIA are here to help! (Not only with an event, information and content but a discount code below too!)
I’ll admit, straight-up, that my knowledge of cloud computing was quite fluffy. It was greatly improved this time last year when I proofread the IIA Cloud Computing Working Group‘s (IIA CCWG) first draft of “Cloud Business: Assessment of the risks versus the benefits” which was made available last March.* This whitepaper gave me an understanding of the pros and cons of cloud computing, including a section that specifically focuses on SMEs’ use of cloud computing. It also includes analysis of survey data which queried types of cloud computing being used, adoption rates and future plans among Irish companies.
The reason I mention all of this 6 months after its publication is that the CCWG are holding an event next week on September 23rd in partnership with Engineers Ireland. Among other speakers at this event, Gerry Power, chair of IIA CCWG, will present findings of this year’s Cloud Computing Survey, a first step towards the collation of longitudinal data about Irish Companies and the cloud.
A copy of the results and first analysis of this survey, as well as a copy of “Cloud Business: Assessment of the risks versus the benefits” will be made available to delegates at this half-day event “Cloud Computing in practice: How companies are moving to the cloud“. Speakers at the event will security experts, adopters and cloud vendors. And there’s breakfast!
*This publication is available free to IIA members or for €295.00 to non-members. Please contact me at members at iia dot ie to get your copy.
A big thanks to Laura Kelly from IIA Member Company AXA who submitted the following review of our recent event “Driving Self-Service Online”. A special thanks for her patience as I grappled with the recent blog issues while her concise review languished in my inbox. Her review shows that this event did not stop at examining online customer service. Of course this is exactly how any customer service should be: multi-faceted. I also attended an event similar to this by IIA Member Company iQContent at their Bootcamp last summer and agree with all her points. (But I would, of course, so it’s nice to get an unbiased opinion!)
Colin Bentley of iQContent proved to be a worthy guide on the journey through the topic, warning us all from the outset that it’s not as easy as we like to think!
Starting with the link between self service and customer experience, Colin gave us some great examples of online customer experiences that worked, and more importantly and often remembered those that don’t (all companies shall remain nameless here!)
Key Steps in the Online Self Service Journey
- Convince your CEO that online self service is right for you,
- Really listen to what your customers have to say, and understand the areas in which they seek help
- Be clever about the medium you use to answer your customers questions. Examples include forums, avatars (e.g. Anna for Ikea) and Twitter
- Understand more about the type of tasks you want to provide online, and how appropriate it is for the user and you. Tasks can range from useful, to usable, to lovable where companies really go the extra mile.
Finally Colin finished up a very informative half day by discussing the promotion of online self service, including educating staff and customers, as well as less subtle strategies such as financial incentives for transacting online.
A very informative and well presented seminar – my thanks to Colin Bentley from IQ Content and Irene from IIA.
- Laura Kelly, AXA.ie
(And the appropriateness of a CAR insurer writing a review of DRIVING Self-Service Online has just dawned on me. Ever the quick one on the uptake, Roseanne!)
Many of you have completed our recent survey (and there’s still time – it remains open until 5pm today) where we picked your brains on what kind of events, formats and prices you would like to see in our events calendar in 2010. Our events manager, Irene Dehaene, in particular would like to thank you very much. She and I would also like to remind you that there’s not only still time but also a chance that you might win two tickets for the 2010 IIA Congress & Net Visionary Awards taking place next May.
Speaking of which we would also love to do a bit of online brainstorming with you, our resourceful readers, here on our blog. What themes would you like to see addressed at next year’s Congress? What are the biggest opportunities for online business that you would like to hear more about? What are the biggest pitfalls that you need more information to avoid? What have you been reading, watching, hearing about that you think more businesses here need to know about? Have you had a revelatory experience using a new technology that you think would make an awesome case study? Have you heard an inspiring speaker that you think all Irish online business people should have an opportunity to hear? What other questions could I possibly ask to get your brainstorming buds a-tingling?
Don’t worry about what themes we addressed in previous Congresses, don’t worry about whether you’ve attended before or not, just speak (write) your mind.
I have a ticket for next year’s Congress for the best comment below so please stick your oar in!
If you didn’t manage to make it to the event organised by the IIA User Experience Working Group on Tuesday never fear! Help is here!
After attending the event, Aoife Ní Chionnaith of Clickstream wrote a great post on their blog which basically pulls together what she considers the most important points that the speakers made on the day. She also includes plenty of links to where you can find more information.
Also you can access the presentations (or decks as I hear all the cool kids are calling them these days ) in the IIA Resources section. These are currently openly available but will be available only to members next week.
If you also attended this event and blogged about it please let me know (leave a comment) or if you don’t have a blog but would like to write a post for this blog, please do – we LOVE guest bloggers
A guest post from Randall Snare of iQContent
Good websites are great business. That doesn’t mean that offices everywhere will soon be human-less and we’ll all have to bow to the mightly computer as it tells us, “I cannot do that, Dave.”
iQ Content knows good websites
The theme of this year’s iQ Content Boot Camp is ‘make money, save money.’ Better websites do improve your bottom line, not because one computer can do the work of five people, but because a good website increases productivity, sales, services and publicity; freeing up your staff to do the work a website can’t do.
And more. We have over 20 courses from 9th – 11th June at the Radisson SAS Royal Hotel. IIA members and readers can get a 20% discount if they book online. Use the code ‘IIA’ to receive this special offer.
We’re giving away one full 3 day ticket to Boot Camp. To enter, go to www.iqcontent.com/bootcamp and answer this question:
Who is presenting Information Architecture that Works?
Email your answer and contact information to Cory-Ann Joseph, at firstname.lastname@example.org by end of business day Friday 5th June.
Many of the delegates at IIA Congress 2009 shared their impressions, notes and photos of the Congress and now I’d like to share them with you! Please leave a comment if I have missed your review, photos or other media about the event and I would be delighted to add it.
Krishna De shares some really evocative photos of both the Congress and the Net Visionary Awards - have a gander you may see yourself there! Speaking of which you might like to check out the “official” IIA shots on Pix.ie
Keith Shirley gives a very measured review of the two days and his feedback is appreciated. He was involved in our breakout sessions as a members of the Social Media Working Group and he also stepped up as a Social Media mentor on Day 2 so big thanks to him!
Gita of Agile Technologies includes reviews of the 3 breakout sessions she attended and are well worth a look.
Fred from Channelship managed to interview two of the plenary speakers from the Congress and I’m including the vids below for you. You can hear the complete speeches from Colm Lyon, Realex Payments, Trey Harvin, dotMobi, Ronan Harris, Google and Colm Long, Facebook as MP3s on the IIA site.