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How 5 IT leaders beat their toughest technical challenges

John Brandon | May 18, 2016
Just as technology is always evolving, so is the role of IT leaders. In the not too distant future, tech execs will face new challenges and take on new roles. The most successful IT leaders are the ones that can recognize and adapt to those changes.

4. Creating your own product

OutfrontMedia, a provider of advertising displays for public spaces, once faced a unique technical challenge: How to make a digital version of its own product. Andy Sriubas, executive vice president of strategic planning and development, says Outfront didn’t want to make digital signage just by, say, mounting an iPad on the wall. It needed an ecosystem to support the signage. And that ecosystem would ideally include data analytics capabilities, an app to deliver content to the displays, a way to connect to existing advertising systems, and a way for customers to do their own support. He says the answer was to build a custom Android app and turn to Amazon Web Services (AWS) for storage and analytics.

5. Finding a workaround for spotty Wi-Fi

For traditional retailers, there are two big challenges: brick and mortar. They interfere with Wi-Fi, so in-store wireless networks tend to be unreliable. Revel Systems, which provides retailers with an iPad-based point-of-sale system,had to come up with a creative solution. Instead of just living with the poor access, Revel created “a hybrid architecture, one that enables Revel to run offline by automatically connecting to the iPad’s local network,” says Revel co-founder and CTO Chris Ciabarra. With the hybrid setup, he says, “businesses can run undisturbed even during Internet outages.”


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