Eikos Partners Framework Enables Rapid Delivery of Next Generation Applications
EPCATALYST is a rapid development platform created to deliver a stable platform, with all the display, communication, data, process management and integration tools needed to build sophisticated applications.
EPCATALYST helps you speed up development by offering you, not just a mere set of controls, but a carefully thought out application. It allows you to start with a shell, choose professionally designed themes, and add widgets to produce your own unique portal.
Creating a “One Pane of Glass” vision of the Enterprise Systems Infrastructure
Infront Consulting Group and Eikos Partners have announced a joint agreement to deliver a monitoring tool with a highly configurable visual interface to the Microsoft Systems Center Operations Manager (SCOM) technology branded “Infront InSight”. The product, based on Eikos Partners UX Framework – epCatalyst, interacts with data from the SCOM database, and provides a fast, interactive interface with the monitored services displaying. This fully customizable and extensible dashboard is built using Silverlight and exposes data through a set of selectable and configurable widgets making the presentation and organization of data limitless to the customer. The product has been built to allow for integration with other monitoring and information gathering tools allowing a customer to build a One Pane of Glass view that incorporates data from System Center, third party network monitoring tools and web analytic tools as well as in-house line of business tools. The firms plan the initial launch for June, 2012.
The pre-release version was shown and generated great interest at the Microsoft Management Summit in Las Vegas in April.
For more information or to schedule a demo of the Infront InSight dashboard solution, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Infront Consulting Group is a global Systems Integration and Management Consulting organization. We assist our large enterprise customers with the technical implementation and operational processes required to successfully deploy Microsoft System Center technologies. Our mission is simple. We strive to provide the brightest minds in the industry to our customers to allow them to effectively and efficiently deploy and operationalize technology that supports and empowers their business.
One of our core organizational values is community. Our roots are deeply integrated into the System Center community. Infront Consulting Group is a founder of http://www.systemcentercentral.com, one of the most popular community sites targeted at System Center. We employ significant number of Microsoft Valued Professionals (MVPs) who are recognized by Microsoft to be thought leaders in the industry and who regularly present at industry conferences like TechEd and the Microsoft Management Summit (MMS) as subject matter experts. (SMEs)
Eikos Partners is a New York based consulting firm built around proven domain expertise serving the financial industry. Partners have real world experience at the C-level and our team each have a track record of delivery to the industry. Eikos is an expert in using “Agile” techniques that rapidly drive the determination of a user’s requirements and deliver from an early stage a continuous stream of capability.
The firm has a deep and varied technology background, with extensive knowledge and use of Silverlight, making them a leader in deploying this for real-world business applications.
Eikos Partners has been involved in delivering front, middle and back office applications for all asset classes, as well as for credit and market risk. Clients include well-known Wall Street names, as well the hedge fund industry and retail brokerage.
203 434 4290
Eikos Launches New WordPress powered Website
Eikos launches its new website now powered by wordpress, making it easier to add content that immediately integrates into the great look and feel that we have applied to our website, we are continuing to work on providing further integration with WordPress so that we can integrate with social networking tools like Facebook and Twitter.
If anyone is interested in the Windows 8 Metro inspired theme we have applied to WordPress for our site, then please feel free to contact us at email@example.com
Numerix & Eikos Partner to Offer Numerix Powered Solutions for epCatalyst Platform Users
Partnership to provide Eikos clients with interactive access to Numerix CrossAsset pricing analytics and risk management capabilities within Eikos’ epCatalyst platform dashboard
NEW YORK – FEBRUARY 23, 2011 – Numerix (www.numerix.com) the leading provider of cross-asset analytics for derivatives valuations and risk management, along with Eikos Partners (www.eikospartners.com), a specialist in trading and risk applications for the financial industry, today announced their partnership to offer integrated access to “Numerix Powered” interactive pricing, analytics and risk display solutions within the Eikos epCatalyst platform dashboard which is available now.
Users of the Eikos epCatalyst platform dashboard, based on the powerful and flexible Microsoft Silverlight technology, which includes portfolio managers, traders and risk managers, will be able to access the extensive Numerix CrossAsset library of independent pricing models and methods to price and generate risk sensitivities across all asset classes. The flexibility of the Numerix CrossAsset library coupled with the rapid development capabilities of epCatalyst, will allow developers to tie into the Numerix pricing and risk environments to create robust solutions. Eikos epCatalyst enables front and middle office professionals to do deal structuring and trade entry on the fly, as well as calculate pricing-risk analytics and drill down on the aspects of virtually any Numerix defined or structured deal via a high impact GUI dashboard and series of interactive display gadgets.
“The tight integration of Numerix analytics within the Eikos epCatalyst platform offers users a powerful and robust pricing and risk solution. The wide variety of display solutions and available models means users can now value virtually any deal type using Numerix’s different methodologies and custom model calibrations. We look forward to a successful partnership with Eikos and to providing our customers with new and exciting ways to access and display our world class analytics,” said Steven R. O’Hanlon, President and COO of Numerix.
“We developed epCatalyst to create a highly flexible environment with a superior user experience, which enables users to be able to visualize and interact with the complexities of the information and services supporting their business, states David Lattimore-Gay,” Partner, Eikos. “The combination of epCatalyst and Numerix’s industry leading analytics services, brings this concept to an entirely new level, and allows our clients to create and view any pricing model and complex risk scenario using an intuitive interface in a few minutes across a diverse set of source systems.”
The epCatalyst framework coupled with Numerix’s pricing and risk management capabilities provides users with a stable platform, with all the display, communication, data, process management and integration tools needed to build sophisticated risk management applications that are essential for the financial industry.
Eikos Partners Announces epCatalyst for the Financial Services Market
Eikos Framework Enables Fast Start, Rapid Delivery of Microsoft Silverlight Applications for the Financial Industry
NEW YORK – JULY 13, 2010 – Eikos Partners (www.eikospartners.com) a specialist in designing and developing Silverlight applications for the financial industry, today announced EPCATALYST, a rapid development platform created to deliver sophisticated Microsoft Silverlight-based applications.
The major EPCATALYST framework component manages the Silverlight display objects, or “widgets.” Within the display framework, the EPCATALYST widgets take on the overall theme, and perform direct business functions. Using the services of the display platform, widgets can interact with services in other parts of EPCATALYST, or with each other to create an intuitive response to user interactions. For customization purposes, Eikos Partners designed the EPCATALYST with many generic widgets.
“Our goal was to reduce the time, costs and risks of building new Silverlight solutions, or adding them to an existing systems infrastructure” said David Lattimore-Gay, Senior Partner, Eikos Partners. “EPCATALYST represents a stable platform, with all the display, communication, data, process management and integration tools needed to build sophisticated Silverlight applications that are essential for the financial industry.”
The framework also contains other key elements that financial services rely upon such as Database, CEP, Business Intelligence (BI) and Reporting & Document Management components. These are all connected by a communication layer that functions as a service bus, and provides connection over the intranet and Internet. EPCATALYST is structured to ensure technology choice remains open, and has wide ranging flexibility to add new functions and interactions. Interaction with data and services that are provided by an existing systems infrastructure or by external services are provided by web service components.
“Our experience of using EPCATALYST with our clients is that it easily saves 4-6 months in analysis and development time, and allows immediate focus on the business problem, with the opportunity to deliver real world capability within a very short period of time. Using EPCATALYST allows the focus to be on effectiveness, efficiency, differentiation and a heightened User Experience,” added Lattimore-Gay.
Eikos Partners Creates new Portal for Cantor Fitzgerald Prime Services Division
NEW YORK – May 6, 2010 - Eikos Partners (www.eikospartners.com), a specialist in designing and developing Silverlight applications for the financial industry, today announced it has delivered a complete business portal for Cantor Fitzgerald’s Prime Services Division.
Cantor provides equity and fixed income Prime Brokerage services to hedge funds, money managers, REIT’s, professional traders, broker dealers and ‘40 Act funds.
“We are delighted with the portal delivered by Eikos,” said Noel Kimmel, Senior Managing Director in charge of Cantor Prime Services. “The portal enables us to integrate all asset classes into a single environment, and is designed to enhance the client experience.”
The portal was designed and developed in order to provide clients access to full-featured reports, trade capture services and various portfolio accounting data across all asset class. It exposes a set of services being provided by Cantor Prime Services, and is built in Microsoft Silverlight 3.0. Eikos was selected because of their experience with Silverlight, and their process, which allowed for early and continuous delivery of capability.
“This is the culmination of 18 months of work in understanding how to build Silverlight applications and deploy them for mission critical business needs” said David Lattimore-Gay, Partner, Eikos. “We have built a reference infrastructure to support our best practices, and most importantly have a team in place that can quickly turn concept into reality.”
The layered structure that Eikos employed allows for marshalling and integration of data and services from the back-end, linked to an extendable front-end that contains visual elements, or “UI widgets”, that perform the business functions. The UI widgets communicate with each other to create an intuitive feedback to the user, and the user has control of how they are organized and displayed. Eikos’s Creative Design Team worked closely with Cantor to design a rich user interface that balanced form and functionality resulting in a superior user experience.
The capabilities offered by Silverlight to deliver Rich Internet Applications (RIA), with a zero touch install, to a wide array of browsers and OS platforms were proven in a mission critical environment, so that both Mac and Windows users can access the portal.
Eikos Partners Wins Innovator Award From Windows in Financial Services for Silverlight Integration
NEW YORK – June 23 2009 – Eikos Partners (www.eikospartners.com) a leading innovative business consulting and project-based technology services to large investment banks, hedge funds and asset management organizations, was chosen by Windows in Financial Services, “The Source on Microsoft Technologies for Financial Services,” to receive a 2009 WFS Innovator Award. The ceremony will be held at SIFMA’s Technology Management Conference and Exhibit in Microsoft Corp’s suite at the New York Hilton. Eikos Partners was selected for its development of financial applications for trading on Microsoft Silverlight.
Criteria for judging and selecting were based on the end result enabling a concrete resolution to an impending issue, solving practical business problems. Winners were selected for clearly implementing technologies on the Microsoft software platform that will redefine a new tomorrow in technology and demonstrate a clear-cut advantage in their particular sectors of the marketplace.
Eikos Partners was recognized for developing a zero-touch equity trading system running on Microsoft Silverlight with tick-by-tick position, P&L and sophisticated stock charting that allows users to annotate charts with news and even online chat sessions. The charts update in real-time, and the news and annotations made by users appear on the charts immediately. In addition, moving a mouse over a stock instantly brings up a choice of buy and sell actions, allowing users to make trades in a single click. The system culminates a year of work by Eikos Partners in studying different possibilities for Silverlight. The system also uses Enterprise Gateway from Kaazing to push real-time updates to the client, and Microsoft Azure for back-end processing.
“Silverlight is emerging as one of the most scalable and flexible visualization platforms for the financial arena, and Eikos Partners has been one of the pioneers in program development and customizing solutions,” said Craig Saint-Amour, U.S. capital markets industry solutions director, Microsoft Corp. “Its award winning technology reflects the key elements that are important to financial organizations: ease of use, rapid updates, and ability to process and share data in a customized environment.”
“We’re honored to be recognized by Windows in Financial Services,” said David Lattimore-Gay, Senior Partner, Eikos Partners. “Our approach redefines how real-time applications will be built, and raises the bar dramatically on performance, speed, availability and reliability, and most importantly, the user experience. Our goal is to future-proof functionality to parallel the presumed expectations that users demand as the scope and capabilities of financial technology services grows.
“We believe that the next generation of client side applications will have to have real time data, news and transaction services as a means of competing for market presence,” added Lattimore-Gay. “Web delivery means that solutions have to be reliable and have true scalability, as well as be technically agnostic. Kaazing fully meets those needs.” “Eikos has utilized the Kaazing Enterprise Gateway for what it does best—creating an entirely new user experience that’s only possible with low-latency delivery and reliable two-way communications,” said Jonas Jacobi, CEO of Kaazing.
“Innovation at the financial sector is proving to be a challenge accosting all entities in the financial realm, especially due to an economy that has had seismic rumblings,” said Joe Viviani, publisher, Windows in Financial Services. “This year’s 2009 WFS award winners were able to capture, isolate and overcome a business issue with a solid innovation – and extended its capabilities beyond the traditional limits. Whether on a local or global scale, each of these winners has been able to seamlessly integrate their new technologies into the daily workflow DNA and as a result, save time and worry. We salute all the entries and the winners who took the time to utilize their resources through the Microsoft technology platform to find the right business answer for their distinct business needs.”
Eikos Partners Teams With Kaazing to Deliver Cutting Edge Technology for Financial Services Organizations
NEW YORK – June 4, 2009 – Eikos Partners (www.eikospartners.com) a leading innovative business consulting and project-based technology services to large investment banks, hedge funds and asset management organizations and Kaazing Corporation, makers of real-time web acceleration technology, announced a partnership to collaborate on holistic application development, including the Microsoft Silverlight platform for financial technology customers.
The alliance of the two organizations was based on a mutual core expertise in the financial arena as well as business synergies. The collaboration will provide a comprehensive delivery solution for mission-critical, client-facing applications needing the ability to stream market data, news, chat and transaction services.
Eikos Partners recently developed a zero-touch equity trading system running on Microsoft Silverlight with tick-by-tick position, P&L and sophisticated stock charting that allows users to annotate charts with news and even online chat sessions. The charts update in real-time, and the news and annotations made by users appear on the charts immediately. In addition, moving a mouse over a stock instantly brings up a choice of buy and sell actions, allowing users to make trades in a single click. The system deploys Enterprise Gateway from Kaazing to push real-time updates to the client and Microsoft Azure for back-end processing.
“We believe that these capabilities in the next generation of client side applications will be important as a competitive benchmark for market presence,” said David Lattimore- Gay, Senior Partner, Eikos Partners. “Web delivery means that solutions have to be reliable and have true scalability, as well as be technically agnostic. Kaazing fully meets those needs and is the logical partner to take us forward. The blending of our expertise will be beneficial for our collective customer base since we both have deep level experience working with Silverlight, the next generation of application efficiency.” Part of Eikos’ solution is the Kaazing Enterprise Gateway, which speeds messages between Message Delivery Networks and real-time web clients. Applications like those built by Eikos must meet exacting performance and reliability requirements regardless of the technologies being used.
“Eikos is a recognized leader in the development of Financial Services applications,” said Jonas Jacobi, CEO of Kaazing. “We’re excited about pushing the boundaries of what’s possible with enterprise web development alongside them; we’re convinced that the applications we create together will set the standard for tomorrow’s financial service clients.”
Kaazing’s solutions, based upon their patent-pending HTML 5 WebSockets Acceleration technology, make it possible to deploy Rich Internet Applications that can handle unprecedented amounts of traffic quickly and reliably. As such, they’re the ideal partner for the high-traffic, low-latency web applications that Eikos develops.
Kaazing Enterprise Gateway, the company’s flagship product, is built to the exacting demands of industries like financial services, telecommunications, social networking and online gaming. There’s no software to deploy on the client, and a wide range of protocols, browsers, and Rich Internet Application clients are supported. “Eikos has utilized the Kaazing Enterprise Gateway for what it does best—creating an entirely new user experience that’s only possible with low-latency delivery and reliable two-way communications,” continued Jacobi. “Kaazing’s patent-pending HTML 5 WebSocket Acceleration technology helps financial services clients redefine how realtime applications will be built, and raises the bar dramatically on delivery speed, message volume and dependability.”
Worldflow and Eikos Partners Form a Strategic Alliance
NEW YORK – May 13, 2009 – WorldFlow, a leading provider of software and consultancy services to the financial services market, and Eikos Partners, a leading innovative business consulting and project-based technology services to large investment banks, hedge funds and asset management organizations, have formed a strategic alliance to better serve their clients with innovative end-to-end solutions on both sides of the Atlantic.
Both firms have an established track record of providing solutions to Investment banks and Hedge Funds using a deep understanding of the businesses needs and innovative approaches to meet them.
Eikos Partners “right shore” model balances the strength of its highly skilled New York staff with the cost efficiency of its team of professionals based in Panama, specializing in Microsoft .Net 3.5 technologies.
Eikos has developed a set of User Experience Frameworks that takes the traditional interactive UI for trading and financial applications to a dynamic new level. EP Trader is Microsoft WPF based, and EP Trader its Silverlight solution set.
More Eikos Sites
Explore a gallery of Rich Internet Applications designed for our clients.
The site features high resolution screen shots of applications created with Silverlight, WPF & HTML5.
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Our R&D site is a collection of prototypes and cutting edge experimental applications. The current site is a clone of the
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Facebook for Work meets skepticism
We previously mentioned on this blog how Facebook is entering the enterprise space with its new "Facebook for Work" app, which officially launched in mid-January. However, the new tool is being met with skepticism by critics, who question whether the social network giant is capable of meeting the demands that are unique to mobile business applications.
"Facebook's big issue is that they have no enterprise presence outside of ad sales and marketing analytics," Daniel Rasmus, founder and principal analyst at Serious Insights, tells CIO. "Facebook's algorithms aren't keyed to enterprise work, and over the years it has been demonstrated time and again that work communication is fundamentally different from social or public communication. So what is known about consumer communications may be useless — or worse, wrong — when applied inside the enterprise."
Meanwhile, a recent TechTarget article questions whether Facebook for Work has adequate data security measures to protect sensitive corporate information. The source reports that it's unclear whether messages and other communications will be permanently stored, potentially leaving them subject to audits and lawsuits.
While it is certainly interesting to see a consumer-facing company like Facebook making its foray into the enterprise sphere, it is also true that the demands of business applications are in many ways unique. Enterprise apps must have the elegance and intuitive interfaces that users have come to expect and demand, but they must also often handle a vast amount of information efficiently and securely. That's why, whether you are building a new app from the ground up or customizing an existing program, it is best to consult with an experienced, third-party developer like Eikos Partners.
New Alibaba venture shows growing importance of enterprise apps
The tech world is abuzz with the news that Alibaba, the largest e-commerce company on the globe, has launched a social media app meant for internal use by small- to mid-sized businesses. The program, called DingTalk, is still in its beta testing phase.
DingTalk allows users to communicate one-to-one and also to engage in conference calls and group messaging. The beta version of the app launched last month.
"DingTalk is a versatile mobile communications app that fills a gap in the market for corporate mobile messaging," an Alibaba spokeswoman told the media.
The company launched a previous messaging app that failed to gain traction with users, underscoring the challenges inherent to enterprise apps. While these mobile business applications must be as delightfully designed and intuitive as consumer-oriented apps, they also often need a higher degree of utility and more functions in order to serve the varied and complex needs of the professional environment.
Alibaba isn't the only global tech company turning its attention to enterprise apps. In fall of 2014, Facebook acquired WhatsApp, another messaging application.
While more big companies are beginning to offer enterprise apps, most businesses will find that a program doesn't meet its particular needs right off of the shelf. That's why it is so imperative to work with an experienced, reputable third-party app developer like Eikos Partners. We can customize existing programs so that they present the highest possible degree of utility, maximizing your return on investment. We also build new, proprietary apps from the ground up. When you ensure that your company's enterprise apps are designed to perfectly complement your in-house workflow, you dramatically increase employee adoption rates. Contact us today to learn more.
Forbes: Enterprise apps are ‘critical’
A recent article in Forbes Magazine calls enterprise apps "critical" for businesses, urging any companies that have not already done so to invest in implementing mobile business applications. Contributor Ben Kerschberg, who reports on the intersection of business and technology, points to several factors, including:
According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), the number of mobile enterprise apps will grow four-fold by this time next year. Other industry observers, such as Carl Weinschenk from IT Business Edge, agree with Kerschberg that it has never been easier or more affordable to develop a proprietary business application. To maximize return on investment (ROI), be sure to work with an experienced firm like Eikos Partners.
Big data is playing an increasingly vital role in almost every industry, allowing companies unprecedented insight into their business and giving them an edge on competitors. "Analytics-based and data-infused business intelligence informs enterprises of marketing opportunities or inefficiencies that can be address," writes Kerschberg. "For example, on the floor or a manufacturing plant or visibility into large-scale systems such as global supply chain management. Each of these marks a critical point: big data is not about data; big data is about business."
The importance of accumulating data in a streamlined format that makes analytics easy has led Eikos Partners to become a leading developer of customized Excel solutions. If your company is ready to polish its approach to big data, we can partner with you to build a solution that meets your specific needs.
Kerschberg also touches on the indisputable point that workers are more mobile today than ever before. They need to be able to access work-related materials from virtually anywhere, whether on a smartphone or a tablet. Enterprise apps help them do just that.
The 3 stages of enterprise app development
As any experienced app developer or IT professional knows, creating enterprise software is not exactly a walk in the park. At its best, a thoughtful and strategic process leads to an app with high adoption rates and satisfied users. At its worst, a haphazard approach results in a failed application and a waste of resources. In a recent article for Enterprise Innovations, contributor Nuno Pereira writes humorously about the three stages of enterprise mobility: denial, grief and acceptance.
He posits that many businesses initially believe that they do not need an enterprise app. However, the rapidly growing prevalence of bring your own device (BYOD) policies and the global smartphone culture means that nearly all companies do. Employees, partners, clients and customers expect to be able to connect seamlessly on-the-go and across devices.
As Wired Magazine correctly points out, mobile business applications cannot simply be shrunken versions of their PC counterparts. They must be designed with the smartphone and/or tablet user's needs in mind, which are quite different from the needs of someone sitting at a desktop. An enterprise app needs enough functionality to optimize utility and productivity. However, it must also be streamlined and intuitive enough that it is easy to use on a diminutive screen while on the move. Additionally, Pereira points out that you will likely need to make the app available on iPhones as well as Androids, particularly if you employ a BYOD or choose your own device (CYOD) policy in which both are accepted.
"Rapid adoption of a mobile app is led by the user experience, and as such, good UX skills need to be cultivated internally," Pereira writes. "Greater collaboration also needs to exist between the different stakeholders in the process, whether developers, business analysts and users. A successful mobile strategy is only as good as the sum of its parts. You also need to release apps as early as you can, engage efficiently with users, and in turn be able to tune the apps to users' needs fast."
So from where does the grief come? It is simply not feasible that your in-house IT department, already saddled with all of the full-time demands of your company, will also execute the kind of elegant, agile and sophisticated app design that you need in order to maximize project return on investment (ROI). The best solution is to hire experienced, proven third-party consultants like Eikos Partners.
Working with Eikos Partners can help you avoid the grief stage of development entirely, expediently leading your team into enthusiastic acceptance of your new enterprise app. We actively collaborate with all project stakeholders, emphasizing user experience to ensure maximal app adoption and ROI. We can then further execute new iterations on design to nimbly improve existing workflows and position your company as an industry leader.
Does your business need an enterprise social network?
A recent article from TechTarget suggests that more businesses may soon be investing in enterprise social networks, rather than simply relying on self-contained email and consumer-oriented platforms. Here are some potential benefits of an internal network:
- Camaraderie: With a growing number of employees working remotely at least occasionally, it's important to provide a venue for casual communication and repartee. An internal social media system allows for workplace bonding that is unlikely to happen otherwise.
- Company identity: Assuming that your company's workers embrace the social network, it provides a common digital meeting ground where you can build and reinforce your corporate identity. This can significantly influence culture and values within an organization.
- Productivity: Enterprise apps with a social focus can improve productivity by facilitating conversation and collaboration among teams and departments of all sizes in real time. This can be especially useful for companies with telecommuters. Social networks can also decrease the number of inefficient email communications that happen at work, saving time and avoiding the waste of employees' time and energy.
- Seamless integration: Because enterprise social networks can be fully customized, they are able to seamlessly integrate with employees' daily tasks. This makes communication among team members far more effective, as they are not separately contained from the actual project at hand.
If you are interested in implementing an enterprise social network at your company, it's important to approach the task strategically. Do so haphazardly, with an off-the-shelf program, and employee adoption rates will likely be low. Maximize your return on investment by consulting with an experienced, proven third-party developer like Eikos Partners. We can help execute a custom web application development strategy, or customize an existing platform to meet your particular needs.
Excel expected to be integral part of enterprise app strategies in 2015
Until recently, Microsoft Office was not a dominant force in the enterprise app world, as programs like Word and Excel were more or less chained to the desktop computer. However, that changed in 2014, when Microsoft introduced an Office suite for iPad, garnering rave reviews from technology analysts like Will Kelly of TechRepublic. He pointed out that Microsoft's familiar interface is accessible to business professionals, positioning it to "slide into an existing mobile first or BYOD strategy." In other words, the learning curve associated with Microsoft Office for iPad is likely substantially gentler than a totally foreign interface.
When the suite was launched in April of 2014, mobile content management provider Doug Winter told TechRepublic that he expected it to have a big impact on the enterprise mobile landscape.
"Going forward, I expect to see an explosion of tablet usage by business professionals — from sales reps winning new customers, to executives making more informed decisions on-the-go because they have access to the information that they need in the format that they grew up using," Winter said. "Long term, we'll see mobile friendly business applications that enhance the productivity of Office — not strain to replace it — provide the competitive advantage to the largest companies across industries."
By many accounts, Winter's predictions have already been borne out, and analysts such as Kelly now say they expect to see Microsoft Office for iOS and Android become a mobile productivity standard in 2015.
"The launch of Microsoft Office for iOS in 2014 was indeed disruptive. I expect Microsoft's iterative development strategy and future iPad launches grow Microsoft Office feature performance well into 2015 and beyond," Kelly writes. "While there are a number of capable mobile word processing and Office productivity apps available, the business world still runs on Microsoft Office documents … The option of opening Office documents on a mobile device while maintaining document format parity is going to play an increasingly important as more Mobile First, BYOD, and CYOD initiatives gain ground in 2015."
This is where experienced third-party development consultants like Eikos Partners can advance your company's interests. We have years of experience helping industry leaders build apps to meet their specific business needs, with a particular emphasis on Excel application development. It is true, as Kelly points out, that Excel's familiar interface and user-friendly design makes it ideal for corporate use. However, unlike in the consumer app world, enterprise applications are rarely "one size fits all." Eikos Partners will develop a proprietary add-on or plugin that can dramatically improve your company's workflow, increasing productivity and maximizing return on investment.
The benefits of this kind of customized solution can be unexpectedly far-reaching, even helping to attract and keep top talent. After all, in an increasingly competitive hiring market, workers will grow to expect a sophisticated yet easy-to-use mobile business interface.
Contact us to learn more about how we can help your business lead its industry in 2015.
New Year’s resolution for businesses: Build or customize an enterprise app
A recent article in TechCrunch proposes a New Year's resolution for American businesses that have been slow to adapt to changing technologies: Finally create and implement an enterprise app strategy.
"Despite the fact that the iPhone was first released in 2007, and virtually every employee today carries a smartphone, many companies have only scratched the service of mobile app development," writes TechCrunch contributor Ron Miller. "Big businesses with big bucks still often crudely force enterprise applications into a mobile package with little thought. Fewer still have developed imaginative custom apps that take advantage of the device, or designed a coherent mobile strategy for the organization."
However, the enterprise app landscape is evolving rapidly, and more businesses are realizing that they need a sophisticated mobile business application strategy if they are to lead their industries, compete for top talent and retain their best employees. In fact, market research firm International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that the number of custom apps will double in the coming year.
Of course, for busy executives, this is all easier said than done. It can be difficult to objectively assess your company's digital needs and craft an application that will meet them. For the sake of simplicity, you may even be tempted to buy one of the new turnkey enterprise apps. However, it is unlikely that these ready-made options will prove adequate right out-of-the-box. Consider partnering with an expert third-party app developer to develop and execute your mobile strategy. Eikos Partners has years of experience developing custom apps and adapting existing ones to better serve our clients. Contact us today to learn about creating an enterprise application for your business in 2015.
2015 to be the year of ‘mobile first’
The end of another year means one thing in the tech world: Predictions for what's ahead in 2015 are flying fast and furious. A recent article in TechRepublic posits that this will be the year of "mobile first." Many analysts believe that we will see more and more businesses investing in custom-made — or, at the very least, customized — enterprise applications. Here are some related trends to watch for:
Enterprise app stores: As a growing number of businesses use enterprise apps, some chatter has emerged about whether a dedicated marketplace will emerge as the clear leader. The New York Times recently reported that SAP is preparing to launch such a platform. Meanwhile, TechRepublic contributor Will Kelly predicts that a number of stores will appear, capitalizing on the growing prevalence of bring your own device (BYOD), choose your own device (CYOD) and mobile first initiatives. Regardless of where businesses purchase ready-made apps, they will almost certainly still require customization to meet their particular needs. Third-party development agencies like Eikos Partners can help develop and execute such endeavors.
Internal data collection: Kelly also anticipates that businesses will begin tapping into the wealth of data available once a mobile first strategy has been implemented. By collecting information about how employees are accessing and using enterprise apps, companies can gain valuable understanding of their workforce and company. An article on the Forbes website suggests that this kind of internal data will increasingly be used to keep and develop internal talent.
If you, like so many other American businesses, are ready to invest in custom web application development in 2015, contact the experienced and skilled professionals at Eikos Partners. We can help you lead your industry while recruiting and retaining top talent, thanks to your sophisticated enterprise app strategy.
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center using Excel to interpret Big Data
We recently mentioned on this blog how Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), one of the nation's top hospitals, is using Excel to interpret Big Data. Now we want to take a closer look at this interesting case study, which has important implications for all health care institutions, as well as businesses in other industries.
Don Wood, Manager of Database Administration at BIDMC, tells Microsoft that as the hospital's needs grew, it was struggling to process the growing volume of data quickly enough. Queries were taking as long as 45 seconds, which could literally be the difference between life and death in some high stakes health emergencies.
"As a healthcare organization, performance is a key requirement. We manage a lot of patient care systems, from obstetrics to the intensive care units to the emergency departments. As the volume of data expanded and performance slowed, we looked for ways to improve our services," Wood said in the case study. "Aggregating hundreds of millions of records was a painful process and it took forever. But with SQL Server 2014 and features like the in-memory columnstore index and Power Query for Excel, we can eliminate that step. Users can query the raw data themselves."
Strategic use of Excel thus helped not only improve data processing, it empowered employees to manage the information themselves, on the ground. BIDMC uses the software to handle auditing requirements — to comply with HIPAA privacy laws — and to engage in some predictive modeling.
If you are part of a hospital or other health care organization, and you are interested in learning how your group could leverage Excel to gain better insight into your data, contact Eikos Partners. We have the experience and skills to find Excel solutions to meet your particular needs.
The rise of mobile: More Americans have smartphones than bank accounts
As many of the nation's top tech and business analysts scramble to make insightful predictions for 2015, one fact is indisputable: Mobile devices will continue to play an increasingly important role in the workplace.
Astonishingly, Forbes recently reported that more Americans own smartphones than have bank accounts. Meanwhile, Ben Bajarin, the director of consumer technology at a market intelligence and research firm and a well-known tech analyst, anticipates that the number of smartphones shipped in a single quarter of 2015 will outperform personal computers during their best 12-month period on record. He bases this prediction, which he outlines on his blog, on data from Gartner.
"Mobile computing devices will become more powerful and more capable," Bajarin earlier wrote in Time Magazine. "This reality will continually challenge legacy devices that require a consumer be stationary to get the full value of the product. The share of compute time is already shifting from fixed to mobile devices. This reality is upon us. The PC has been decentralized and mobile is the new center."
"There's an app for that," no longer just applies to consumers and their needs. Increasingly, American businesses are using mobile business apps to attract and keep top talent, stimulate productivity and increase efficiency. The market for enterprise applications appears poised for a major boom, as more and more IT executives realize the importance of implementing a strong mobility strategy in the workplace. Mobility is "the new center" of our professional lives as well as our personal ones.
To maximize your return on investment, it's important to tailor your enterprise app to meet your business' particular needs. Eikos Partners has the experience and expertise to guide you through the custom web application development process.
Numerix HPC with Azure
This fully customizable workstation application enables users to easily see all of the positions in a portfolio across a wide range of asset types such as: Interest Rates, CDS, Equities, Fixed Income and more. more...
Cantor Fitzgerald Portal
The portal was designed and developed in order to provide clients access to full-featured reports, trade capture services and various portfolio accounting data across all asset class. more...
Fixed Income Trading
The FI Trading Application UI Framework is a set of display components, built using WPF that reflect the common requirements of trading applications. more...
Kaazing Real-Time Data
An equity trading system with tick-by-tick position, P&L and sophisticated stock charting allowing users to annotate charts with news and chat sessions. The charts and annotations update in real-time. more...
Numerix High Performance Computing With Azure
This fully customizable workstation application enables users to easily see all of the positions in a portfolio across a wide range of asset types such as: Interest Rates, CDS, Equities, Fixed Income and more. Using this intuitive browser-based interface, portfolios can be re-priced based on specific conditions or changes in market data. In the world of derivatives, many organizations could only run these calculations once a day. Now they can be done on-demand, all in a fraction of the time, thanks to integration with grid environments such as Microsoft Windows Azure. Decisions can at last be made on a near real-time basis using dynamic market conditions.
For example, users can select a portfolio of 1,000 complex FX trades, select a market environment, change it, and submit the selection for pricing and see the result all within seconds. Secure, user-based permissions enable the Back Office to use this workstation to perform End-of-Day Valuations across all portfolios based on the same underlying pricing and analytics information in Numerix.
From the same workstation, Heads of Trading Desks, Risk Management and Operations executives can also leverage PowerPivot to access historical pricing and analytics data stored in very large databases, such as Microsoft SQL Server. These detailed reports and dashboards let business users analyze what traders are doing across all markets whenever they want, wherever they want.
This solution augments existing trade capture, lifecyle, OMS, PMS, and risk management systems. Built using epCatalyst, the intuitive interface and integration framework from Eikos Partners, it runs on top of Numerix Cross Asset Server, the industry’s most comprehensive and sophisticated pricing and analytics engine. epCatalyst is a Silverlight Application Framework built entirely with the Microsoft software stack. It allows integration of multiple systems and data sources into a comprehensive infrastructure, and enables data and services to be transformed into actionable information.
The result is an equally superior experience for desktop, web or mobile users. Applications built with epCatalyst interact with Numerix CrossAsset Server to price all major asset classes, including: fixed income, inflation, credit, equity, foreign exchange and commodity instruments, as well as hybrids. Seamless integration with the underlying grid environment’s scheduler, such as Microsoft Windows Azure, enables authorized users to see the workflow of this request, which servers and how many nodes in the cluster are being utilized to price this complex portfolio.
Cantor Fitzgerald Prime Services Portal
The client, a major US brokerage, was entering a new line of business as a Prime Broker. The firm already had in place many of the services and systems needed to support the business, but they required a single, highly automated, means for prime broker clients to be able to monitor and manage the flow of business.
The client also wished to have this “portal” be a differentiating factor, against competitors, in the launch of this business.
Using a basic framework structure to separate the interaction of marshalling the movement of data from/to the backend systems, from the user interaction, our people worked with the client using an Agile approach to develop mock-ups of the client services.
The delivered portal, used by internal support staff, as well as external clients, allowed user to create and manage their own “dashboard” view of the data and services using a selectable set of gadgets.
The portal was designed and developed in order to provide clients access to full-featured reports, trade capture services and various portfolio accounting data across all asset class.
The portal allowed the user to select and view, request and search reports, manage trades, file uploads. Considerable design effort was given to reducing user interactions, and to have intuitive responses from the portal.
It exposes a set of services being provided by Cantor Prime Services, and is built in Microsoft Silverlight 3.0. Eikos was selected because of their experience with Silverlight, and their process, which allowed for early and continuous delivery of capability.
The layered structure that Eikos employed allows for marshalling and integration of data and services from the back-end, linked to an extendable front-end that contains visual elements, or “UI widgets”, that perform the business functions. The UI widgets communicate with each other to create an intuitive feedback to the user, and the user has control of how they are organized and displayed.
The work was all performed in Silverlight, with web services as the back end integrator. The capabilities offered by Silverlight to deliver Rich Internet Applications (RIA), with a zero touch install, to a wide array of browsers and OS platforms were proven in a mission critical environment, so that both Mac and Windows users can access the portal.
Eikos’s Creative Design Team worked closely with Cantor to design a rich user interface that balanced form and functionality resulting in a superior user experience.
Fixed Income Trading Framework
Our people have worked designing, implementing and deploying an anonymous Fixed Income Trading environment. This included:
- Designing an application that provides anonymous auction capabilities for a number of different Fixed Income products.
- Providing for ASP deployment capabilities which allow the application to run in a hosted environment and provides the user with a secure downloadable application that can be run on their desktop.
- UI’s were built also for WPF and Silverlight, WPF for the Desktop, and Silverlight for Web Users.
Eikos Partners have created a platform to achieve a dramatic improvement in how user facing applications are built, and the experience that a user gets, by taking full advantage of the capability of WPF to separate the development of the UI from the need to have detailed understanding of the business function.
This allows UI designers and developers to focus on developing new UI solutions while another set of developers focuses on the business logic. This decoupling allows change to happen faster as well as providing a cost effective solution to the need for tailored individual solutions. Eikos Partners uses SOA services; techniques and best practices to further enhance the separation between designer and developer.
The EP Trading Application UI Framework is a set of display components, built using WPF that reflect the common requirements of trading applications. There was no linkage between the designer involved with the UI and the developers of the business logic, in fact they were in differing locations, using a human ergonomics graphic designer in New York, and our team of highly qualified developers in Panama.
Eikos Partners is active in extending the framework to cover a wider set of classes and functions, and is adding display methods that change the user experience dynamics, such as display cubes. Key design elements are creation of an easily customized intuitive environment, and the ability to be able to interact with significant amounts of information without visual clutter.
The framework is designed to meet both the needs of building new applications, as well as “re-skinning” current applications. Microsoft’s .Net environment is flexible and allows it to operate easily with other technologies, allowing new development using the optimal technology infrastructure, as well as legacy applications to benefit from dynamic improvements in the user experience.
The system was built using .NET 3.5, WinForms, WPF, Silverlight, C# and SQL Server. Eikos Partners is taking advantage of Silverlight to create the same capabilities, and a feature rich user experience, delivered over the web to the browser.
Kaazing Real-Time Data Delivery
To further convey our R & D capabilities, we recently developed a zero‐touch equity trading system running on Microsoft Silverlight with tick-by-tick position, P&L and sophisticated stock charting allowing users to annotate charts with news and even online chat sessions. The charts update in real‐time, and the news and annotations made by users appear on the charts immediately. By moving a mouse over a stock symbol, it instantly brings up a choice of buy and sell actions, allowing users to make trades in a single click. The system also uses Enterprise Gateway from Kaazing to push real‐time updates to the client, and Microsoft Azure for back‐end processing.
We believe that the next generation of client side applications will have to have real time data, news and transaction services as a means of competing for market presence. Web delivery means that solutions have to be reliable and have true scalability, as well as be technically agnostic. Our partner Kaazing fully meets those needs.
Communications between the client and the back‐end application run across an HTML 5 Web Socket. If the connection fails, the Kaazing Enterprise Gateway will reconnect automatically; the connection is secure, fast, and able to tunnel through firewalls and proxies.
We believe that the future of the Web looks like this: fast, reliable two‐way connections fronted by intuitive, visually engaging user interfaces that maximize user productivity. Kaazing’s patent‐pending WebSockets Acceleration makes this possible.