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Software // Information Management

Process Gets Boost from SOX

The work SOX requires is a great start for process improvement, automation and control.

Anyone looking for jobs or customers should know that U.S. federal spending on e-government is projected to increase 38 percent in the next five years, up to $6 billion in fiscal year 2009, according to Input, a government market intelligence advisory firm. The Department of Defense will continue to lead the way in e-government spending, with the Department of Homeland Security at the forefront for federal civilian agencies.
"Bane" may still be the key syllable in Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX), but some companies can make the best of a bad situation. The work SOX requires is a great start for process improvement, automation and control.

"The corporate world will move from auditing and process documentation into rigorous and real-time management of control points," predicts Sanjay Srivastava, COO of Aceva, which offers revenue and receivables management systems. He says many companies will use business activity monitoring (BAM) to "proactively alert for exceptions."

"2005 is the year when the worlds of business integration and business intelligence draw much more closely together," says Steve Craggs, European Vice Chair of the nonprofit Integration Consortium. "Already BAM allows KPIs to be set within integrated environments to give management some performance-based control of operations, but this is only the tip of the iceberg."

Craggs says vendors are working on early projects that combine BI and business process integration technologies to create systems that improve operations automatically (see chart below). For example, a cutting-edge retail operation might be able to respond to a dramatic spike in regional demand by automatically increasing distribution to the affected area and reducing inventory thresholds in other regions temporarily.

Most have already integrated BAM and are moving toward Complex Event Processing
Many are strengthening their partnerships with EAI and BAM vendors
Tilos (, for example, offers "smart process" capabilities for collaborative productivity, combining a portal, process and content management, and analytics

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