Using additional behavioral data from Omniture and Eloqua as well as the portal itself, Red Hat also wants to determine where customers are in their lifecycle in order to market more effectively to them.
While Mirc's goal is to transition more of his development staff to more strategic work, he insists they could not have made the shift to big data analytics support as quickly as the business needed them to.
Catalyst's developers "were able to provide that innovation support for our business customers allowing my team to maintain its operations role and [eventually] migrate to more strategic roles," Mirc says. "They were able to quickly conceptualize business objectives and were technically versatile enough to deliver on them in a span of weeks, not months." In fact, Mirc had promised the business a scalable proof of concept within six weeks.
The biggest challenge was getting internal back office administrators to meet that pace; it took longer than expected to get the outsourced team the Linux laptops and credentials they needed to get going. If he had to do it over, Mirc says, he would have started working with procurement and facilities folks a few weeks earlier. But they made up for lost time by integrating Catalyst directly with Mirc's own agile development teams and processes.
"Even if they were not here in person, they were a daily presence in our scrum meetings, interacting directly with our personnel on our communication channels, and had access to the data they needed," says Mirc. "It was a different way of working but it's an extension of our domestic sourcing approach."
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