Denise Dubie over at NetworkWorld has posted an interesting piece on how enterprise IT leaders looking ahead to 2010 may find themselves coming up short on staff and high-tech skills needed to grow their business during an economic recovery.
Dubie points to research from various sources who all have found that high-tech suits are fearful about how to handle business in the coming year if left with a lean staff. Robert Half Technology, for example, found that 43 percent 1,400 CIOs polled recognize that their IT departments are either somewhat or very understaffed in relation to current workloads.
"Many companies have cut technology staff levels too deeply, making it challenging for IT departments to keep pace with demands," said Dave Willmer, executive director of Robert Half Technology, in a statement. "Although businesses may be able to operate with stretched teams in the short term, being perpetually understaffed isn't sustainable and can detract from the overall productivity and morale of the organization."
Let's also not forget that there remains a question of whether IT workers will remain loyal once the recession ends. In that same report, Willmer noted that "staffing cuts and the reduction or elimination of benefits have left many employees feeling overworked and undervalued."
Maybe the economy is recoverying after all, or so analysts are saying after Cisco reported fiscal first-quarter earnings that nudged ahead of expectations and showed strong sequential growth.
The network security firm reported a quarterly profit of $1.8 billion, or 36 cents a share. That's down from last year, when Cisco posted a profit of $2.2 billion, or 42 cents a share, but up from last quarter. Revenue for the first fiscal quarter climbed to $9 billion, which is more than the $8.75 billion analysts had expected.
"Our ability to launch four proposed acquisitions, the ecosystem-shifting coalition with EMC/VMware, and five new products and industry solutions into the Cisco pipeline in the past few months alone underscore this momentum," said John Chambers, Chairman and CEO of Cisco. "Our build – buy - partner innovation engine is clearly running on all cylinders, while our operational machine is pulling costs out of the business even as we scale new models for growth. Execution and results over time will demonstrate the long-term impact of this vision and strategy— but a new model of productivity based on collaboration is clearly emerging and we believe this may be the most profound opportunity for businesses in our 25 years as a company."
Cisco has been on a spending spree as of late, having recently agreed to purchase Starent Networks for a cool $2.9 billion and ScanSafe for $183 million.
The OEM reported Thursday that profit fell 23 percent and sales tumbled 22 percent in the May-July period, which doesn't sound like much to get excited over. But the results beat out Wall Street's forecasts, enough so that shares shot up 6 percent following the news.
According to company CEO Michael Dell, the better-than-expected revenue will continue through the second half the year so long as current demand trends continue. However, "aggressive" pricing and rising costs for components like memory and LCD screens have tempered the company's enthusiasm.
Some analysts also remain tempered by the overall picture.
"It's hard to say something positive when you have such a significant revenue decline -- it was not a great quarter," said Charles Smulders, a vice president with market research firm Gartner Inc. "HP had a tough time too, but clearly they have a stronger focus on consumer PCs, so that plays in their favor, since much of the demand is coming from the consumer market."
Dealing with your data is a critical part of the Windows experience. "No, really," you ask? I know, I know. But the kinds of file operations you perform on any given day represent the bread and butter of your operating system. You drag your pictures around, copy and paste your documents to other places, maybe send a file or two over email. It's simple stuff. That's not a value judgment, just a comment about the basic functionality that everyone uses on a modern OS.
When you're ready to step out of this minor league of file management and head into the majors, you'll find a host of freeware applications waiting to hit a pitch or two. These applications take the common elements of your Windows file operations and inject them with a dose of raw energy. For example, you can customize and jack up the very process of copying files from one directory to another. You can also beat back Windows' default system for batch file renaming and instead transform a large number of files with very specific titles and extensions. You can even map out just how much space your files take up on your drive, giving you the perfect opportunity to catch up on some spring cleaning across your battered hard drive.
While these kinds of processes are a mainstay of this week's roundup, I'm also taking a look at two additional programs that pack additional functionality into your operating system as a whole. So what are you waiting for? Quit your file transfers, click the jump, and get ready for a brand new world.
More likely than not, you’ve been asked in the past to help fix one of your friend’s or relative’s computers. Most of the time, the problems you’ve been brought in to remedy are basic malware or virus infections that you can address by grabbing the appropriate diagnostic and software removal tools stored in your trusty USB toolkit. But once in a while, you’ll be faced with a novice struck with the most basic and frustrating of problems: forgetting their Windows administrator login password. With no way to get into the system, you can’t even perform basic maintenance, let alone a thorough tune-up. Formatting is always an option, but we consider that a last resort. (Plus, guess who’s going to have to help reinstall all the programs lost after a wipe?) But all hope is not lost. There are a few ways to actually retrieve a lost Windows account password. Read on and we’ll show you the light.