Automating management results in projects being completed 30 percent faster,
employees saving four hours per week – 200 hours per year – and
companies realizing a 31 percent improvement in the quality of project results,
according to a recent Cardwell survey.
“Taken as a whole, we estimate that companies can significantly improve
bottom line, organizational effectiveness, and quality through automation of
management processes,” says Jim Cardwell, CEO of Cardwell. “It also
frees up leaders for the real job of leadership – such as strategic management
and decision making, and building bench strength with their executive team.”
State Employee Credit Union (SECU; Linthicum, MD, $1.2 billion in total assets)
was recently profiled in Bank Systems Technology for its investment
in management automation software. “Our executive team proceeds with 10
projects a year that are major corporate wide initiatives,” says Ed Blickenstaff,
IT Projects Manager of SECU in the article. Blickenstaff explains that, prior
to implementing Connections Online, every department worked independently and
often-repeated technology and other functional efforts. “It didn’t
take into account organization wide issues,” said Blickenstaff. Joselie
Wright, AVP of human resources and organization development, agreed and added,
“It has become a great partnership between departments.”
Automation of management is a unique software niche, yet a growing trend in
credit union management. It was once only a savvy management tool affordable
to the biggest companies, through software packages such as SAP or PeopleSoft.
The management automation software package Connections Online was selected as
CUNA Tech Council’s Best of Show during the 2004 Bank Administration
Institutes (BAI) Retail Delivery Conference and Expo. The criteria
were: an innovative solution for credit unions, demonstrates a commitment to
both the industry and open standards, and prices products to deliver value to
a broad spectrum of the marketplace.
Credit Unions Coast Hills, Sandia, Pennsylvania State Employees, and Washington
State Employee’s were also recently profiled in Bank Technology
News for using a collaborative web-based application that integrates
with Microsoft Outlook to automate their management processes. Coast Hills CEO
Jeff York noted optimism “from a superior understanding of his business”
as a result. Washington State Employee’s CTO Ben Morales notes that WSECU
uses it to “complete its ‘one Washington service’ brand initiative
– a three-year effort tied to improving web-based banking and overall
customer service and sales.” Pennsylvania State Employees uses it to “minimize
slippage” according to President/CEO Gregory A. Smith. All credit unions
profiled were using Connections Online.
“Adoption of such collaborative management tools is not just for executive
assistants and their bosses anymore,” says David Coleman, managing director
at Collaborative Strategies in the article. The “market should reach $9
billion by 2005” for such tools, he says.
About Connections Online
Connections Online 3.1 is a fully-integrated software suite designed for web
deployment and includes integration with Microsoft's Project and Office Suite.
Modules are applied to organizational leadership (Organization Connection),
project management (Team Connection), people management (Individual Connection).
The Connections Online solution from Cardwell starts at just under $30,000,
which includes 200 site licenses, a “Quick Start” set up, training, review by
top Cardwell consultants, and first year’s maintenance fee. For more information
about Connections Online, call (800) 395-1410 or visit www.connectionsonline.net.
Cardwell is a software development and management consulting firm that helps
clients succeed by improving organization-wide alignment and cross-functional
collaboration. Jim Cardwell
and Karla Norwood, the firm's
current CEO and President, founded Cardwell in 1983 as a leadership development
and management process consulting firm.
In response to strong client demand, Cardwell set out in the mid 1990s to transfer
its extensive knowledge in these fields into a stand-alone software product.
In 1998, the company launched Connections Online, one of the first organization-wide
software solutions designed to address executives' challenges to leading companies
towards their strategic goals.
Currently installed in more than 60 organizations across various industries,
Connections Online consistently improves profitability and leadership effectiveness.