The personal touch Buying cycles are getting longer, but still people like to meet face-to-face, reveals the B2B Buyer Experience Report from Showpad. This states that while 53% of B2B buyers say their buying cycle is getting longer, 70% still demand interaction with salespeople. More than one third (38%) say they prefer to interact with a salesperson than gather information on their own and more than half say they rely on salespeople for additional information, with 54% calling them and 56% emailing them to find answers to questions. Face-to-face communications are still highly valued, with 40% of B2B buyers favouring face-to-face visits and 38% opting for on-site demos from salespeople. The content buyers find most helpful are technical specs (54%), case studies (49%), personalised content (39%) and ROI calculators (38%).
IT outages avoidable More than half (53%) of IT outages and brownouts experienced by UK businesses – and 97% have experienced them – are avoidable, claims LogicMonitor, provider of a SaaSbased performance monitoring platform for enterprise IT and IT service providers. According to its new report, IT Outage Impact Study 2019, the most common causes of disruptive downtime are network failure, software malfunction, usage spikes/ surges, third party provider outages, human error and configuration error. LogicMonitor suggests that many of these incidents could be avoided by identifying when critical hardware or software performance is trending steadily downwards or when usage is trending towards a danger level (e.g. when there is more traffic than the network can efficiently handle or when a primary storage share is running out of space).
Manchester top for IT Manchester is the best city in the UK for IT jobs, reveals analysis by IT trade association CompTIA. Its inaugural Tech Town Index ranks 200 UK cities based on a number of factors such as availability of IT jobs, opportunities for career progression, salaries and cost of living. Manchester emerges as the best place in the UK for IT pros, just ahead of Bristol and Leeds. They are followed (in order) by Birmingham, London, Cambridge, Edinburgh, Bath, Basingstoke and Reading.
Too busy to work Office workers in the UK, US, Germany and the Netherlands are spending just 40% of their working week on the job they were hired to do, warns work management application platform provider Workfront. Its 2020 State of Work report reveals that 60% of workers’ time is spent on meetings, collaboration, email and ‘meaningless tasks’. Almost half (43%) of workers complain that the number of applications and software programmes they use at work makes them less productive.
Flaws to manual
Ivanti has produced a new report highlighting the productivity and security benefits of automation within employee onboarding/ offboarding. Its survey of 400 IT professionals found that currently 85% of new employees don’t have all the resources they need to be productive on day one, with 27% of IT professionals saying it can take a week or more to give them everything they need to do their job. The report also highlights the weak security of predominantly manual processes, with more than half of IT professionals claiming to know someone who still has access to a former employer’s applications and data (52%). One in four (26%) says it can take more than a week to fully deprovision an employee.
What a waste
Businesses are wasting £8.8 million a year on unused cloud services, equating to over £24,000 a day, claims IT services provider Insight. A survey of 1,000 European enterprises for the 2019 European Insight Intelligent Technology Index reveals that businesses in Europe are spending £29.48 million on cloud services, 30% of which they never use.
3D first Nourished is the UK’s first 3D-printed, made-to-order vitamin supplement. Combining seven active ingredients, out of a choice of 28, the chewable vitamin stack is tailored to each person’s nutritional needs. Customers complete a short online questionnaire, from which Nourished creates a bespoke blend of vitamins, which it 3D prints and encapsulates in a sugar-free, vegan gel. A month’s supply is sent through the post in plastic-free, home compostable packaging.