CODiE Awards Judges: A Conversation with the Coordinator

Nominations have closed for the 2013 CODiE Awards, and I am definitely excited about the variety and caliber of products in this year’s program. I know our judges are looking forward to reviewing the products as well. Our first round review is the core of the CODiE Awards. It is also the portion of the program that gives me the most interaction with the judges and nominees. I am constantly in contact with both groups, ensuring that everyone has a great experience.

What is the first round review?

For the first round review, two judges review each product in each category. For example, products nominated in two categories will be assigned four judges. During this first round, judges participate in product demonstration s given by the nominees. Two options are available for the products demonstrations:

– Live product demonstration: Nominations walk through their product webinar-style with the judges participating as they do the walk-through

– Recorded product demonstration: Nominees may already have a video product demo that can be sent to the judges to watch.

We recommend that the nominees keep the demos to under an hour. If it is a live demo, remember to leave time for Q&A with the judges.

The first round review also includes product access. It’s beneficial for the judges to get a feel for the product on their own, as a supplement to the guided demo. Product access can happen in several forms, including temporary online login information or by sending the physical product to the judge.

I also suggest sending as much additional information as you would like to the judges. This can be additional links to PDF’s, videos, news releases, etc.

Who are the judges?

We take great care in selecting the industry experts who volunteer as judges. Each division reviews every judge application to determine if he/she is qualified. We want to ensure there are no conflicts of interest.

For our software and content categories, the judges consist of industry executives and analysts, members of the media, bloggers, investors, and even some customers.
For our education categories, we use educators and administrators as our judges. They are the users of these products and can best determine what products may work the best in their classrooms.

Judging is a great experience because it gives the customers a chance to review the products and provide feedback that the companies can use to make improvements.

How can you help?

We are still looking for judges in several of our categories in Content, Software, and Education. If you are interested in judging or can recommend a colleague please complete our brief judge application.

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Angel Scott Angel Scott is Awards Program Coordinator at SIIA. Follow the SIIA CODiE Awards on twitter at Share|

Personal Mobile Devices in the Enterprise: What IT Needs to Know

By John Herrema, Good Technology

In today’s fast-paced world, smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices are essential in the enterprise. While some of these devices – laptops, Blackberrys, and even tablets – are provided by the company, many are not. The fastest growing mobile device categories, such as Android smartphones and tablets, iPhones, and iPads, are often purchased by employees at their own expense. These employees, who may own two or three mobile devices and insist on using them for work-related tasks, require attention from the IT department.

Organizations must accept this “bring your own device”, or BYOD, new reality and adopt policies and tools to allow employees to use a range of mobile devices securely within the organization. Fortunately, protecting data and networks while giving employees a choice of mobile tools to access Intranets, Web-enabled enterprise applications, collaboration tools, corporate instant messaging services, and to share documents, are not mutually exclusive objectives.

If you’re struggling to support the demand for user-owned devices while still protecting your network and data, you’re not alone. A study by Good Technology and independent research firm Vanson Bourne found that half of IT directors in large enterprises are being pressured to support personal devices at work, and 80% of IT departments routinely get requests to implement enterprise apps and emails on employees’ personal mobile devices. That said, only 10% of IT departments have comprehensive BYOD policies to fully support business use of personal mobile devices.

Even companies that do have BYOD policies are challenged when employees either unwittingly, or with the best of intentions, purposely disregard it. At one time or another, in the normal course of meeting their work objectives, most employees will forward work emails to a personal email account, or copy documents to an online repository. All too often, someone might accidentally leave a smartphone loaded with corporate data on a bus, airplane, or in a restaurant, or have an iPad stolen from a car.

And, of course, employees of companies without any BYOD policies in place are virtually guaranteed to use their mobile devices to access corporate apps and data anyway. This is especially true for enterprises that allow Web-based access to email (e.g., through Outlook Web Access or iNotes), or allow users to install third-party productivity applications such as Dropbox on company-owned laptops, desktops, or tablets.

How can IT departments meet the security challenges of this BYOD world? Once a company acknowledges and accepts that these new gadgets are already entering the workplace and almost certainly accessing its network and data, the first step is to proactively define a BYOD policy. If you don’t set a policy, then by default your employees are doing it for you.

Second, you need a centralized management platform that allows administrators to enforce policies and control mobile access at the both the application and device level. Third, companies must also consider “containerizing” company data and apps to ensure that sensitive or proprietary data does not leak to other apps and from there, onto social networking sites and other unsecure Web-based services. By containerizing enterprise data, companies can leave employees’ private information untouched, secure corporate data in a strongly protected environment, and enforce compliance and data loss prevention policies at the application level. By taking these three steps, IT can simultaneously embrace device choice and ensure enterprise security, data integrity, and compliance.

IT departments can no longer afford to bury their heads in the sand, or take a hodgepodge, device-by-device approach to mobile data and application management. The benefits of a consistent and company-wide BYOD policy supported by tools and processes are clear:

  • Higher productivity because employees use their mobile devices to work at all hours of the day;
  • Increased employee satisfaction when employees are allowed to choose their own devices based on personal preferences, and;
  • Potentially lower overall costs when employees buy their own mobile devices and pay for their own monthly service plans.
Consumers will continue to buy more and more personal gadgets and it’s fruitless for CIOs and IT managers to pretend they can keep them at bay. The only viable strategy is to embrace, not fight, this mobile device revolution. The key is to do so proactively, consistently, and with a keen focus on security, data loss prevention, and compliance.

CODiE Finalists: Content Management Solution & Database Solution

Congratulations to the 2011 CODiE Awards finalists in Best Content Management Solution and Best Database Solution!

Best Content Management Solution recognizes the best software or platform that enables the creation, management and modification of information on the web, intranet, or other information resource. It includes content creation, categorization, workflow, publishing and delivery tools.

Finalists are:

Best Database Solution recognizes the best solution for the storage, organization, management, search and retrieval of large quantities of data in a business environment for any range or combination of activities, including financial, contact, records management, research, documents, and other sources.

Finalists are:

  • Cvent Supplier Network, Cvent
  • TrackVia Cloud Application Platform, TrackVia

All winners will be announced at All About the Cloud on May 25th.

CODiE Finalists: Ed Use of a Device-Specific Application & Instructional Solution in Other Curriculum Areas

Congratulations to the finalists in Best Educational Use of a Device-Specific Application and Best Instructional Solution in Other Curriculum Areas!

Best Educational Use of a Device-Specific Application recognizes the best educational software solution, either curriculum or administrative, designed for integration and use with unique devices. Such devices include interactive white boards, testing/diagnostic equipment, etc. This solution may be designed for the K-12 or postsecondary markets or both.

Finalists are:

  • SuccessMaker Collaborate, Pearson

Best Instructional Solution in Other Curriculum Areas recognizes the best teaching application focusing in non-core curriculum areas for students in the K-12 market. These areas include art, foreign language, music, technology or multi-disciplinary topics.

Finalists are:

Join SIIA at the 2011 Ed Tech Industry Summit CODiE Awards Dinner on Monday, May 23rd where the winners will be announced!

CODiE Finalists: Cloud Management Solution & Collaboration/Social Networking Solution

Congratulations to the CODiE Awards finalists in Best Cloud Management Solution and Best Collaboration/Social Networking Solution!

Best Cloud Management Solution recognizes the best application or service used for managing operations or management programs, services, or applications in a cloud computing environment.

Finalists are:

Best Collaboration/Social Networking Solution recognizes the best application for facilitating group interaction via the Internet. Includes groupware, real-time conferencing, social networking applications and other services that allow for collaboration over the Web. This category also includes digital communities.

Finalists are:

Winners will be announced during a special luncheon at All About the Cloud on May 25th.

CODiE Finalists: Cloud Infrastructure Application & Cloud Infrastructure Platform

Congratulations to the 2011 CODiE Awards finalists in Best Cloud Infrastructure Application and Best Cloud Infrastructure Platform!

Best Cloud Infrastructure Application recognizes the best solution for delivery of cloud services over the Web. Includes all software used to help deliver cloud services including dynamic provisioning, virtualization, billing, automatic deployment, load balancing and performance optimization.

Finalists are:

Best Cloud Infrastructure Platform recognizes the best solution for providing access to, and operation/maintenance of, cloud-based applications, services, development environments, storage and backup in a seamless, scalable, and flexible manner.

Finalists are:

  • LiveOps Contact Center Cloud, LiveOps

Join SIIA at the All About the Cloud CODiE Awards Luncheon where the winners will be announced in all categories.

CODiE Finalists: Education Community Solution & Education Game or Simulation

Congratulations to the 2011 CODiE Awards finalists in Best Education Community Solution and Best Education Game or Simulation!

Best Education Community Solution recognizes the online system designed to provide social networking and education community support for K-12 or postsecondary students, teachers and administrators. It includes teacher communication, collaboration and planning tools, wikis and other interactive solutions.

Finalists are:

Best Education Game or Simulation recognizes the best application designed for K-12 or postsecondary students that uses entertaining or scenarios that imitate real-life environments to educate students. This solution can be either an instructional, diagnostic, or assessment tool designed for students or instructional/administrative leaders.

Finalists are:

  • ABC-CLIO Databases for Higher Education, ABC-CLIO
  • Hospitality and Tourism Interactive, Pearson

Winners will be announced at the 2011 Ed Tech Industry Summit on Monday, May 23rd.