Alongside our vendor services we provide a different kind of strategic advisory service from our team of Bloor Navigators.  These are senior-level consultants picked from our associates, analysts and strategic partners who help clients navigate today’s volatile, uncertain, and complex technology landscape.  They use our Mutable Business ™ framework alongside industry standard tools like the business model canvass and the operating model canvass.  The relationship between people, technology and business models has become increasingly intertwined and so our navigators have a broader view of the business factors and resource models needed to compete successfully, not just for today, but for the continuous reinvention we believe is necessary.  With today’s complexity you can’t plan, but you can prepare.  Bloor Navigators leverage in-house research, best practices data, and vast industry experience to meet and exceed our client’s expectations.

Bloor Navigators offer a range consulting services around strategy, quality assurance, and monitoring progress.  We can help you figure out the best approach, decide on vendors or options, but we don’t get involved with solution delivery ourselves.  At Bloor Research we are fiercely independent in terms of our advice and our opinions to guide you, but we leave the transformation itself to you and your chosen partners.

Bloor Navigator consulting engagements may include any or all of the following:

The rate of technology change and innovation has never been faster, and the opportunity to create business disruption greater. Bloor Navigators can help you to assess and evaluate opportunities and threats to your business (and market place) from the emergence of new organisations and technologies.

If you are looking to the future and considering how best to innovate, Bloor Navigators can help fully evaluate the technologies and opportunities arising, and create an adoption roadmap, risk assessment, and change plan to support your innovation.

Bloor Navigators have a unique blend of technology competency, delivery, business, and commercial experience that enables us to support your strategic planning, ensuring realistic expectations are set and risks are appropriately managed as well as the impact of change fully reflected in your business’ plans.

Bloor Navigators have huge experience tracking and applying innovative solutions, constantly seek innovation and apply best practice. Our team can assist you to create a practical vision of how developing technologies and emerging working practices create opportunities for your business, introducing you to organisations developing the innovation and by transferring our knowledge and experience to your business.

We can undertake a review of the journey you may want to take and help your team to understand the impact and full consequence of the change needed. Our team can then help to create a vision of the future resulting from the change, and assess the implications for your business.

As new technology is adopted and processes change, governance is often a last consideration. A Bloor Navigator can assist your team in implementing appropriate governance processes and reporting structures, often using experience gained from leading practitioners.

Are you considering a different way to procure your technology and services?

Our Bloor Navigators have experience of sourcing technology and services for a significant range of enterprise scale organisations globally and have significant access to third party purchasing negotiators and contracting expertise across the full range of software services, including cloud.

Often the success of getting investment for new projects is dependent on the quality of a business case, often signed off by people who sometimes don’t understand the details or complexities they are asked to authorise. Bloor Navigators have the expertise to assist in the preparation, review and presentation of complex technology proposals and can provide an objective assessment of the case at hand.

Major projects are often a significant source of risk for an enterprise, particularly for projects delivering innovation and for teams who do not handle large projects daily. Bloor Navigators can provide the experience and objectivity to assess plans for complex projects and the controls around them, as well as providing the forensic expertise to assist organisations to get to the causes behind projects failing or not delivering the anticipated benefit.

As a business whose core service has been to research technology, vendors and products and how they compare to others in their sector, we have a proven capability to undertake comparisons of major products and platforms in the market place your business may be concerned about or are considering purchasing. We can provide a detailed assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the offerings and strategies behind their development as well as an insight as to their future development.

Does your business have a major dependence on external ‘partners’ to deliver major service contracts?

Are you concerned in ensuring you can control their cost and change processes?

Are you sure of delivery of your strategy or programs?

Bloor Navigators can provide advisory and review services and support, either as problem managers or corporate advisors, to ensure you have the ability to keep your costs, and your agenda, on track. This can be achieved in a number of ways, from participating in a governance role on Project Boards or by undertaking periodic audits of the project or organisation with the intent of providing formal objective quality assurance and feedback to you and your senior team.

Our Experience / Case Histories

Bloor has worked with many organisations nationally and internationally, customers and vendors of IT systems and software, both corporate and small enterprise. Among our most important advocates are our customers. Each of our customers present unique challenges, but they all have one thing in common; the value they get from working with Bloor on any area which impacts the optimisation of their investment in technology.

Our industry expertise covers a wide range of sectors. Click on the Industries, below, to read some Case histories:

For a blue chip manufacturing organisation, reviewed the draft RFP for the outsourcing of it’s Information Technology Services. The review covered consistency and completeness, and focused on the service level definition and the ability for change to be managed with in the contract.

For a world-wide group of package manufacturing companies in the food sector facilitated a review of outsourcing including drafting an RFP to outsource the data centres, the desktop environment and the help desk facilities.

For a steel manufacturing company reviewed a proposed project to replace the core systems supporting the business. The overall client/server architecture and vendor ERP product technologies were judged against best practice.

For a world-wide seed manufacturing group facilitated the formulation of an application architecture. The key business drivers were developed and a set of critical success factors for the adoption of the strategy generated. A top level architecture was drawn up and filled with best of breed application products including SAP as the core software. Consulting facilitated the process using time-box techniques.

For a leisure manufacturer reviewed the business requirements, identified the key drivers pertinent to the formulation of a technical architecture strategy. Created organisational and financial control solutions to improve the application of IT to the business issues.

For a car manufacturer, formulated a telecommunications strategy. Reviewed the business drivers, created alternative options and facilitated workshops with internal staff to create a consensus strategy and migration plan.

For the market leading vision technology company supplying the silicon chip industry with test equipment carried out a technology and application architecture strategy assignment. The core ERP application was chosen to be SAP.

For a aluminium tolling plant, elicited the business key drivers and facilitated a workshop to create a top level IS strategy to meet those business needs.

For a local authority carried out a review to identify the advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing their IT service. Formulated a strategy and made recommendations to the Members. The IT service included development and maintenance of application software, support and operational services.

For a local authority carried out a review of their in-house software development group to identify if the service should be outsourced or be retained as an internal service. Reviewed the goals of the Council and facilitated the senior staff of the development team to product business goals, strategic plans and tactical plans.

For the Revenue created a unified IT procurement process. Developed innovative processes to take cognisance of the Competitive Dialogue feature in the EU mandate. The processes enabled the goals of MEAT to be clearly met.

For the Revenue, reviewed the draft published IT strategy for completeness and consistency against research best practice.

For Revenue carried a review of their collections case management requirements, developed a proposed architecture and a set of recommendations for implementation.

For a local authority reviewed the county wide communications architecture against the corporate needs of the authority. Formulated a set of key drivers based on information gathered by interview and document review. Identified the main issues that underlay the problems the council was facing. Based on research best practice created potential solution paths and facilitated a workshop with the relevant staff.

For a land registry organization, reviewed their infrastructure strategy. This infrastructure is to run a new system to support the core business activities of the organization. The aim is to integrate the GIS and commercial elements in a single unified system. The strategy was mapped onto technical architecture strategy models and compared to research best practice. A series of workshop were run: technical, user steering group and ultimately the main board.

For a public transport company, reviewed a set of tenders for a replacement spares and stores management system. Attended the bid defence meetings and compared the technologies offered against research best practice. Presented the results as a SWOT analysis of the tenders and the products offered.

For a world-wide distribution organisation for the shipping industry, formulated a strategy for the core system. The key business drivers were captured, the sourcing options were reviewed and a decision for an ERP package solution was made.

For a major national airline, reviewed the proposed network management solution for a new cargo terminal. The architecture and its components were judged against research best practice.

For a major travel organisation carried out a review of the procurement of a new core package holiday system. Reviewed the project, SI team, architecture and performance. Identified areas of weakness and potential solution paths.

For a global logistics organization developed a global infrastructure strategy including the disaster recovery capability and design principles.

For a European-wide logistics organization carried out an independent review of a data centre consolidation project; disaster recovery being a major issue.

For a leading international courier and airline carrier, lead a team to formulate a business driven strategy covering application architecture, technology architecture, physical architecture and governance. The strategy was to meet the world-wide needs of the group of companies in 220 countries and to create an umbrella vision across three divisions operating as separate organisations.

For a Port Authority, facilitated a workshop to review a set of business and IT scenarios for the next five years. A generic IT scenario was created based on research strategic planning assumptions extrapolated out to that year. The workshop brought new insight to the potential for IT to impact on the world-wide business options.

For a country wide rail transport company reviewed a proposed infrastructure strategy against research best practice. Identified issues relating to inappropriate specification and suggest a way forward.

For a national airline, carried out a review of their core platform strategy. The growth needs of the business were compared with the capacity planning group’s predictions. The estimation techniques were also critiqued. A multi-site strategic vision was developed to act as a framework to judge the short term upgrade steps.

For a freight forwarding company, reviewed their IT strategy against the needs of the business and facilitated a workshop comparing the strategy, the business needs and using research best practice as a baseline.

For a leading shipping group carried out a IT strategy review. Identified the needs of the business including liner, trucking and warehouse operations, reviewed the current IT infrastructure and identified the major issues. Recommendations based on research best practice were formulated and accepted by the group management.

For a major bank, developed an IT architecture and RFP to procure a funds transfer product for a world-wide service. Developed a security architecture using public key and smart card technologies, created a communications architecture to link to the central systems, and formulated a software tool and database strategy for the development. Facilitated the creation of the functional requirement specification.

For a major clearing and commercial bank, carried out a review of an outsourced branch automation project for 1,700 branches. The review centred on the operational readiness of the application software, middleware and the client/server platforms.

For a leading securities trading and custody bank, reviewed an outsourced project to replace the core business applications. Developed a set of key business drivers to form a framework to provide an independent validation and verification of the project plan, resources and ability to complete successfully. Recommended an alternative approach that focused on resolving the major uncertainties based on system design and quality driven stages.

For a major bank carried out the RFI process for the outsourcing of the all of the IT resources. A review of the IT was carried out, the RFI document produced, a list of potential vendors created, a bid marking framework based on AHP was agreed with the stake holders in the Bank, the issuing of the RFI document handled, the bids marked in conjunction with the bank and the decision meeting was facilitated to create the RFP short list.. An RFP process was launched.

For a major bank, carried out an independent validation and verification, IV&V, of the core account application architecture and migration strategy. Interviewed a range of business and IT staff. Abstracted each of the technologies of the strategy and validated and verified them against research best practice with special reference to re-engineering and reuse.

For an asset management company in the City, reviewed the financial impact of the loss of it’s IT functions. A business strategy for recovery was built and financial risks quantified.

For a building society, carried out a survey of emerging future technology to facilitate the creation of a business vision.

For a leading retail bank, reviewed the strategy for the main branch delivery systems. The bank wished to make major business facing changes and needed the IT solution to support these goals. The key business drivers were identified. Technology solutions were contributed to the team and strategy meetings facilitated. A short term action plan was created and adopted by the Bank.

For a leading commercial bank in conjunction with internal staff, formulated alternative strategy options for server platforms. Cost models were created and migration paths identified. A decision matrix was formed and the results of the decisions adopted by the bank.

For a leading long-term finance bank, created a technical architecture strategy. Facilitated the creation of a set of key business drivers, developed the architectural strategy and facilitated the promulgation of that strategy to the business.

For one of the major UK clearing banks, reviewed the IT support organisation and a set of proposals to reorganise these functions. The review focused on the achievement of end-to-end performance throughout the life cycle of a service.

For a major bank carried out a technology, application and organisation architecture strategy assignment. A top-level application architecture was developed that met the needs of the business over the planning horizon. A technology strategy that reflected the needs of the business was created.

For an oil and gas production company, carried out a review of six major outsourced projects, is the right thing being done and is the thing being done right. The major recommendation focused on technology, procurement and organisation issues.

For an oil and gas production company, reviewed the business case and the processes used for the justification of the case for an IT procurement. Advised on the justification and recommended changes to the process used. The aim was to facilitate early adoption of technologies with controlled risk.

For an international oil and gas exploration company carried out a technical architecture strategy project. The business managers were interviewed, the business drivers understood, a workbook created from research practice and a workshop facilitated with the senior IT managers of the company. Particular issues included the impact of the geotechnical applications and technologies to bridge between platforms.

For a major oil company reviewed the business requirements, created a strategy and model for the international distribution of credit card stop lists. The model provided a unified way to assign financial risk and a mechanism to minimise loss by feedback of results.

For an electricity utility, reviewed their middleware strategy. The goal was to provide a pan corporation framework across some thirty companies that would facilitate a new vertical market focus. The needs were analysed and a outline strategy devised. A work shop was ran and the recommendations were accepted.

For a leading supermarket chain, provided specialist support for the procurement of disaster recovery facilities for the core business systems. Activities included: RFP review, technical due diligence of proposed solutions, bid defence meetings, response marking and final decision support.

For a retail and distribution group, reviewed the benefits and issues relating to outsourcing elements of the IT service. The principles for the SLAs were identified.

For a book, CD and video distribution company reviewed an outsourced project to upgrade the core operational systems. This upgrade to provide better integration between the warehouse operation and SOP applications. Advised on the procurement and system integration to minimise risk and maximise business benefit.

For a leading global FMCG organisation, facilitated decision making for the harmonisation of core ERP software across the world. SAP and Oracle were the extant solutions.

For a retail mail order company, review the requirement for all the business processes including: mailing list facilities, purchasing, SOP and fulfilment.

For a magazine and newspaper wholesale company, reviewed their technical architecture against the needs of the business. Also facilitated a workshop to initiate the IT planning process.

For the leading food producing group in the UK, reviewed the Group-wide server platform strategy against the needs of the fifteen companies. Facilitated a series of workshops with the corporate function, the finance directors and the IT managers.