AventiaNews January 2013
Vocento is looking to redesign its supply of content which should result in new products in the coming months
Ińaki Ballano, CIO and Technology Director at Vocento
Iñaki BallanoWhat are your main strategies for your operations in information systems?

We have three main ones. Firstly, monitoring operational efficiency through strict management of recurrent expenditure and overseeing the performance of development teams; secondly, delivering an efficient and flexible response to our business requirements in the shape of new products and services; and thirdly, getting the most out of systems especially in our critical areas of publishing and sales.

Vocento is currently identifying ways to increase efficiency in the various areas of the company. What do these improvements mean for your department?

We are looking at two fundamental aspects to enhance efficiency. One of them is streamlining all our outsourced services. Over the next year we are going to unify our entire infrastructure for content generation, Internet services and management to maintain hardcopy publishing systems for our titles. The other aspect is a new organisational model which brings the technical team closer to the business so that we can quickly roll out upgrades and new projects, and also brings us closer to users through support teams that are less technical and more process-oriented.

A common requirement in the media industry is for speed when offering new content and services. However, it is hard to combine this need for speed with quality assurance. What are you doing to ensure the quality of the applications and content you offer to your customers?

One of our key areas of interest has been to enhance the quality of developments that need to cope with very demanding conditions with constantly changing requirements and short deadlines. We lay the groundwork by first homogenising the map of applications and development tools. From there the next step was the recent establishment of a QA function separate from development and in operation from the initial definition stages. Plus we have also brought in automatic and secure transition between development, integration and production environments. We monitor this function using a scorecard with indicators to measure the performance of this process.

In addition to the demand for quality, another recurring challenge is content security. What is Vocento doing to ensure secure use and access for visitors to its content and services?

The rollout of the new unified infrastructure I mentioned before will enable us to put in place a common security platform for all applications with a layered design and more security features. We add to this by optimising both network organisation and also the way that people can access content.

Vocento stands out in the media landscape because of its continuous innovation. What are you doing in your department to bring out new ideas? Which of your projects would you pick out as being especially innovative?

Given the exponential growth in content consumption via smart mobile devices, Vocento is looking to redesign its supply of content which should result in new products in the coming months. Furthermore, the development of a unified vision of the user will enable us to offer each customer compelling products and appropriate advertising, thus maximising our advertising impact.

The digital content industry is undergoing a complex process of technical and business model transformation. How is Vocento addressing this change process?

The change that is taking place in content consumption models means we need to move towards audience segmentation using levers like the one mentioned in the previous point. In order to meet differentiated requirements we have to work in three directions: special personalised content for each user, but without losing the essence and hallmarks of quality journalism that identify us to our readers; secondly, developing new formats and products, with an example being the new Grada360 sports portal; and finally adding to this offer with useful services, including leisure agendas, health, motor or innovation channels and property and job classified ads.
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