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Sometimes I feel like I want to break down and cry!

As a technology consultant living in a world that is moving at such a ridiculous pace it can feel very lonely. Businesses can feel the same, smart competitors constantly snapping at your heels, vendors and suppliers offering too much choice. Finding a trusted partner to help you through the techsand is essential.

Today my brain hurts! In fact, on a daily basis my brain hurts, it’s a pain that can’t be cured by the swallowing of a paracetamol, it’s like a cloudy fog that has descended and is taking up residence within my skull.

This is what it’s like being a technology consultant. The world is a complex place at the best of times, but the accelerating pace of change in technology is frightening.

If you are not careful it can become so overwhelming that it leads to paralysis. A state where you find yourself constantly surfing the web for help and only result in opening more and more tabs. It’s a condition I like to call cyber staring.

Moore’s law states that processing power for computers will double every two years, and visionaries like Ray Kurzweil state that the total power of all computers will be equitable to the total brainpower of the human race as early as 2019.

There are many predictions like this which can amplify the fear. The trick is to not be scared, to embrace change and to find a way to move out of the techsand and make technology work for you.

Embrace technology, embrace progress, embrace change

It’s easier said than done, I recently presented to a group of IT professionals who were discussing the risks of the new world of IOT and machine learning. The lawyers present were laying out the new threats posed by sensors publicly storing data sets. Two good examples used were Alexa being aware when you are in and out of the house and pattern management sensors used to support dementia sufferers who want to stay longer in their own homes, both data sets in the wrong hands will show when homes are unoccupied and where vulnerable people live.

The conversation continued to play out along a similar vein with different technologies looked at in a negative, we are all doomed fashion. Until one person stepped up and commented, “well if you knew then of all the bad things the Internet can be used for, would you still have invented it?”

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The consensus was a resounding yes, and a sense around the room that we should all look at the good in things first. Embrace technology, embrace progress, embrace change then look at working with the challenges to adjust, shift and head towards transformation.

How can you possibly navigate your way through safely?

It can be a daunting landscape for a business, with new solutions that promise the world, with your competition always seeming to embrace these new technologies faster than you can. How can you possibly navigate your way through safely? It’s all about small fast steps.

Be prepared to try out new things, but don’t take your eye off the things you do really well. Success within technology needs to be about balance. A balance between the continuation of the things you do well, mixed with a hunger and desire to discover new avenues that your business can go down.

The other important point is that you move at the right pace, and keep moving. Build the right technology foundations that will facilitate and complement your future transformation plans. For example, if you are under pressure to move or have a desire to move to the Public Cloud, do so in a controlled way at your own pace, move to a hybrid environment before you go full Public Cloud.

In my day job, I jump from one technology conversation to another, from BlockChain to Big Data, from Haptic Feedback sensors to Hashing Algorithms. It can be a complex world.

At one of my particularly foggy moments I decided to create a mind map of all of the technologies that had crossed my path over the last few weeks. I call it my crow’s nest, I imagine myself every now and then taking a quick shimmy up to my crow’s nest so I can look out and take in the chaos that lays around.

We are technologists not accountants

If you have the right technology partner they will talk to you about finding the right pace for your business. Whether it’s starting to look at IoT trials and the way sensors will benefit the way you do business

Or how you can become infrastructure-free or how sweating the assets that you have invested in can complement a next generation strategy. When we created our consultancy, just over a year ago the best piece of advice we received was to hire someone to look after the books.

Find the right partner who understands your business goals and objectives, let them help you through the techsand, so you can reach your transformation goals.

We are technologists not accountants. The same could be said of the network and technology. Find the right partner who understands your business goals and objectives, let them help you through the techsand, so you can reach your transformation goals. Move at a pace that doesn’t break your business, finding that perfect balance of sweating what you do well verses trying new things. Now I am off for a quick shimmy up my crow’s nest.

Article written by Che Smith, Technology Associate

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Innovative Video Solution Proven to be Transforming Stroke Care

The East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust has calculated that it saves up to £150m* annually on stroke care, thanks to its continued use of innovative video technology provided by Intercity Technology.

Birmingham-headquartered IT specialist, Intercity Technology and telecommunications and service provider Virgin Media Business, has worked with the Trust since 2011 to implement the first fully managed ‘out of hours’ stroke service across Lancashire and Cumbria residents.

The Telestroke Network, which uses diagnostic-quality video and high-quality audio technology, allows clinicians across the UK to carry out initial remote assessments for acute stroke patients.

This is increasing the speed at which patients are diagnosed, which is crucial for patients suffering from strokes. In these cases, there is a critical period of four hours from the onset of a stroke occurring to treatment being started in order to affect a positive outcome for the patient.

To date, the Telestroke service has assessed over 1,800 patients, treated 875 patients and saved an estimated £150 million annually. From 1st July 2016 to 30th June 2017 alone, 216 assessments have been carried out, 132 patients have been treated and 459 advice calls have been taken.

Dr Nick Roberts, Telestroke clinical lead and stroke consultant at East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust commented “We’re truly grateful for the life-saving work that Intercity Technology has helped us deliver over the past seven years”.

“We’re truly grateful for the life-saving work that Intercity Technology has helped us deliver over the past seven years”.

The numbers speak for themselves. As well as allowing us to deliver vital care to a greater number of patients, this technology has also helped us to save money, which we can reinvest to ensure that we maintain the highest standards of care.

Ian Jackson, Chief Commercial Officer at Intercity Technology, said “With over 100,000 people affected by strokes in the UK each year, identifying new ways of assessing, diagnosing and treating patients is crucial. The Lancashire and Cumbria Stroke Network is the perfect example of a forward-thinking service. We’ve worked closely with the team to offer a service that is truly life-saving, and allows clinicians to focus on what’s most important – the people.

The service has been in operation since 2011, this latest extension will see technologically and service improvements resulting in even greater patient care, we are extremely proud to continue to support the trust in such a way These outstanding results show that, when embraced, technology can massively facilitate the provision of high-quality care.”

“The Lancashire and Cumbria Stroke Network is the perfect example of a forward-thinking service. We’ve worked closely with the team to offer a service that is truly life-saving, and allows clinicians to focus on what’s most important – the people.”