28 May 2019
Wrapping up this series on evaluating technologies and services is actually fairly simple. Determining the outcome of an evaluation is, in fact, mechanical. That is to say, that you shouldn’t have any emotion or subjectivity in your determination of the outcome. When I think back at all the evals I’ve led or participated in over my 20+ years (damn, I’m getting old… get off my lawn), I can separate them all into two categories: those that went well and those that didn’t. If I’m truly honest with myself, the reason for the difference is fair and easy to see. That difference is subjectivity. The moment you add feelings into an evaluation you’ve lost.
28 January 2019
Welcome back. In the last few articles we discussed how to set up an evaluation that’s both defensible & provides value to your immediate needs, and, maybe, more clearly defined what good pizza is. In this edition, I’ll address the importance of the process of the execution of testing. We’ve already talked through defining the problem, and the success criteria. Now it’s time to actually run tests that will give you results you can defend and live with. The good news is, there are rules that govern this sort of thing, and they’re pretty good. I’ll break the sub-components of testing down into three parts: define the testing framework, execute with consistency, trust the results. Let’s talk through those here.
28 November 2018
If you’ve read along so far, we’ve summarized the process of evaluating and choosing something new. We then helped you to define a specific problem to be solved. Whether you need a specific niche new tool for the toolbox, or are replacing some software completely across your organization, evaluations are critical. Getting through the evaluation process isn’t trivial, and in order for the process to be truly successful, both the buyer and seller should feel like they got what they wanted. This doesn’t always mean that the seller will make a sale, or that the buyer will find what they’re looking for. But at this point, what’s critical is having a repeatable, objective, and defensible way to make a decision based on specifically defined success criteria.
23 October 2018
I need a better pen. That statement may mean something dramatically different depending on who just said the words. In some cases, like with me, it means I want more consistent ink and a body that fits comfortably in my hand for longer periods of time. To you that may mean something different. In the introductory article of this series, "The Evaluation – Four Phases to Finding “Better” Solutions", the foundation was laid with general descriptions of the four phases. This month's entry goes a little deeper into Stage 1, the definition of the problem to be solved. The word "definition" itself means the condition of being definite, distinct, or clearly outlined1. I couldn't have said it better myself.
22 August 2018
Whether you’ve spent your career in cyber security on the vendor/provider side or the enterprise side of the table, you’ve no doubt participated in the circus that is the ‘evaluation’. Whether you’re the buyer trying to make a smart purchase, or the seller trying to make a smart sale, the evaluation is a fact of life. That said, evaluations are […]
10 May 2018
What we learned this week from the news is that, even after that catastrophic breach that Equifax had where the credit histories and records of over 145 million Americans were exposed to attackers, the entire board was re-elected. Let’s sharpen that a bit – they were re-elected by shareholders after recommendations against that course of action by two different proxy […]