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Thu 7 Feb 2008 06:00 AM

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Means to a winning end

As the nomination deadline for NME Innovation Awards 2008 nears, we have been receiving a whole lot of case studies and implementation stories, along with numerous queries. I will try and address some of them here

As the nomination deadline for NME Innovation Awards 2008 gets nearer, we have been getting a whole lot of case studies and implementation stories. We have been receiving an equal number of queries as well - What categories do the case studies fit in? What are the specifics that need to be included? What should be included in the 1,000-word written piece that accompanies the nomination?

I am going to try and address some of the questions and concerns in this piece. Since a majority of them have been on the implementation awards, I will focus on them here.

The NME Innovation Awards was created with the express purpose of honouring the best implementations, end-users and products and solutions in the Middle East. Of course, the event has also grown, over the last three years, into a platform for networking peers from across the region to meet and share the latest in the industry. Its primary purpose though remains the recognition of the finest networking work in the region. That however, does not mean the largest.

The Awards will be won by nominations which satisfy the end specified by the category in which they have been logged. The judges will be looking for a variety of factors across categories including, but not limited to, the speed of the implementation, the technologies used, the business benefits achieved in terms of return on investment, best practices that were followed and the process examples set for other enterprises in the Middle East.

None of this means that the particular implementation has to be the biggest in the lot, or necessarily even be larger than average. In fact, what it does mean is that the smallest of deployments stands an equal or better chance of winning awards, since smaller deployments have been known to meet their ends and achieve their goals much more effectively than many large projects, which can go wayward.

The written submission as part of the official nomination form (which can be downloaded from www.itp.net/events/nmeawards08) is arguably the most crucial part of the entire nomination process. It is with this written submission that you can give the judges a succinct and accurate notion of the reason for product choice and the process of deployment or the process followed to attain business benefits, as is the case for the category in question.

One of the effective ways to deal with the written submission is to avoid thinking and writing in flowery language, but to work on a structure that presents the facts in as straight-forward a manner as possible, such that the reading process becomes not only so much easier for the judges, but also pleasant. Avoid marketing lingo and excessive information about products and vendors. Keep in mind that the judges will be going through several similar documents and what they are looking for are successful implementation stories, not content that can be accessed on a website.

I would also suggest that you stick with the word limit specified for the written submission since you have the option of attaching any supporting documents that you feel are necessary to the judging process.

The nomination process for NME Innovation Awards 2008 has been made intentionally simple. All you need to do is log onto www.itp.net/events/nmeawards08, choose the category which your case study or implementation fits the most, download the nomination form from the website, fill in the details and e-mail the completed form, along with any supporting documents, to nme@itp.com. This structure has been kept clear-cut to make the process easier for you. There is absolutely no need to make it unduly complex and time-consuming.

If you have any doubts or if you need further details do not hesitate to mail me on sathy.ashok@itp.com.

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