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Management Strategies

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The Tech Vendor Landscape: More or Less

June 30, 2006

***The brevity of this message is backed by about 450 pages of research about what's going on in the world of bank technology. Here's just one glimpse:

This year, there are 84 companies in the report. That's 17 percent fewer than last year, and the reason is a common one -- mergers and acquisitions. ... But the number of solutions increased by 11 percent to 246.

Outsourcing Gaining Ground

June 26, 2006

***In 2005, new-buy decisions among banks, thrifts and credit unions were as follows:

In-house: 56 percent

Outsource: 44 percent

In the years before 2005, outsourcing ran at about 23 percent. The reasons most bankers give for this turnaround is the increased complexity of maintaining a fully compliant and secure system. Another reason is the expansion and power of present-day systems.

Here's my take: "When the goin' gets tough, bankers rely on strong third parties."

Patience Is Still a Virtue

June 20, 2006

***The most popular gripe about technology is, "It takes too long for vendors to deliver new stuff." ... When has Microsoft delivered a new product on the original scheduled date? ... Some things just take forever. And the culprit is people. What technology does in nanoseconds, people have to conform to Gantt charts that are plotted in years or even decades. ...

The answer is: Use wisely what you already have.

Job Hunting

Don't let your boss catch you surfing on, which lists job openings for banks across the country, from teller to president, from community to the nation's largest banks. Hiring managers may also want to list openings on the site.

Hurricane Lessons Learned?

A report prepared by the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council member agencies and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors outlines several "lessons learned" from financial institutions in Hurricane Katrina's wake. One sample finding: "The location of any backup site can be critical to successful recovery efforts." The document also asks vital questions pertaining to each lesson and is a must-read for those responsible for their bank's disaster recovery planning.

Ticker Watch

The America's Community Bankers Nasdaq Index includes more than 525 community banks with a combined market capitalization of nearly $220 billion. Nasdaq has given the index the symbol ACBQ and disseminates an intraday price, which is updated every 15 seconds on the Web site.

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