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Published September, 2016
Volume 24, Number 9



Business Bits
 

  • Sensiba San Filippo Acquires The Resultants

    Sensiba San Filippo, an accounting and business consulting firm with its headquarters in Hacienda, has acquired The Resultants, Inc., a boutique-sized consulting firm specializing in internal audit and SOX compliance services. The Resultants team will be integrated into the Corporate Governance and Compliance Consulting Practice led by SSF Partner, Frank Balestreri.
     
    As a part of SSF’s expanding consulting practice, the group will maintain its existing emphasis on turn-key, custom and scalable solutions for small to medium sized public companies. Legacy professionals of The Resultant’s, including founder Kevin Shives, will continue to serve their existing clients as well as SSF’s growing client base in internal audit and SOX compliance.
     
    “We are pleased to welcome The Resultants to Sensiba San Filippo and welcome Founder, Kevin Shives, to SSF as a Partner,” said Frank Balestreri, Partner at Sensiba San Filippo. “As a firm, we believe that in order to strengthen the level of value we bring to clients we must grow both organically as well as by acquisition of impeccable talent. This newly combined team will blend a robust consulting practice with established SOX and internal audit specialists, making us the solution of choice for small to mid-size public companies and companies contemplating going public in the Bay Area.”
     
     
  • SmartZip’s SphereTargeting to Power Home Seller Analytics, Automated Advertising
     
     SmartZip Analytics has launched SphereTargeting, a product that offers home seller analytics and targeted marketing campaigns for real estate agents. The software’s predictive analytics engine will provide agents with data insights and seller predictions for each of their contacts.
     
    “Real estate professionals know the importance of their sphere of influence for finding business opportunities, but staying in touch over a long period of time, and most importantly at the right time, is a difficult and often expensive task,” said SmartZip CEO and president Avi Gupta. “SphereTargeting was specifically designed to create a smarter and easier way to keep an agent’s name and brand ‘top of mind’ for the long term, so they have the best shot at winning the next real estate transaction. But we also wanted to go one giant step further by applying our predictive analytics to surface the contacts most likely to sell, which ensures our client and their advertising is proactively reaching out to the right contact, at the right time, with the right message, and never losing out on repeat business from their sphere.”
     
    In its initial launch, SphereTargeting is available for existing and new clients of SmartZip’s SmartTargeting platform. The standalone SphereTargeting product is expected to launch this fall.

     
  • Oracle UX Team Collaborates with NASA on Tool for Asteroid Watchers

    The Oracle Applications User Experience (UX) team has created an automatically generated online newspaper, the Minor Daily Planet, which collects the day’s asteroid news for subscribers. Launched in August, it is a component of the NASA Minor Planet Center’s (MPC) Asteroid Data Explorer tool, which is itself the product of an earlier collaboration between the Oracle team and NASA that transforms the MPC’s dense collection of technical asteroid data into interactive, easy-to-understand charts.
     
    “The project demonstrates how the work Oracle does in enterprise applications, where we’re looking at large amounts of information such as financial data or product information, mirrors many of the same questions that generally we have about life,” says Oracle Group vice president Jeremy Ashley. For example, he says, the need for users to understand very simply what they want to find, then be able to find it, and then be able to get more information—with as little trouble as possible—prompted the UX team to stress simplicity in the design strategy for Oracle’s enterprise apps. The team used the same focus on simplicity when helping to create the Daily Minor Planet.
     
    “The Daily Minor Planet allows anybody with an interest in asteroids to participate very simply, easily, and directly,” says Ashley. “This is a philosophy we’ve been pushing with our other apps. It’s a basic human trait to be curious, and UX design should provide a path for users to get information that feeds that curiosity and answers questions.”
 
  • Veeva Survey Finds Clinical Research Organizations Benefit from New Technology
     
    A survey conducted by Veeva Systems, a publicly-traded Hacienda company which focuses on cloud-based software for the global life sciences industry, has found that a growing number of clinical research organizations (CROs) are using electronic trial master file (eTMF) solutions. The practice is providing a number of advantages, including improving the speed and efficiency of clinical trials.
     
    The survey shows that eTMFs are helping CROs maintain complete and accessible trial master files. CROs who use eTMF applications are achieving significant improvements across major inspection finding categories such as fewer duplicate documents (61%), misfiled documents (53%), and incomplete documents (51%).
     
    Given these benefits, one of the top drivers of eTMF adoption among a majority of CROs (65%) is improved audit and inspection readiness. At the same time, CROs are now less reliant on document exchange methods that are more difficult to track and provide little to no audit trail. For example, the use of email for document exchange is down significantly from 80% in 2014 to 61% today, while almost a third (31%) are using an eTMF application to share TMF documents with sponsors (up from 24% in 2014).
     
    “Over the past several years CROs have played a pivotal role in moving the life sciences industry toward more efficient clinical trial processes,” said Jill Johnston, vice president of Veeva Vault Clinical. “As clinical trials become increasingly outsourced, we’ll see that trend continue especially as demand grows for unifying systems, processes, and stakeholders across clinical operations.”
     

Stories compiled by Jay Hipps

 



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