December 02, 2008 08:00 ET

New IBM Software Helps Companies Reduce Costs, Paper Consumption by Transforming Business Processes

ARMONK, NY--(Marketwire - December 2, 2008) - IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced new software to help organizations automate their business processes, thereby lowering operating costs and reducing paper consumption.

Despite predictions that the spread of information technology would reduce paper consumption, 90-95% of business information is still stored on paper. Today people rely heavily on paper to perform everyday duties, despite the high cost associated with lost documents, risk of document obsolescence and labor inefficiency.

For example, the average American office worker disposes of 100 to 200 pounds of office paper per year. Typical IT departments focused on delivering software rely heavily on paper intensive processes such as word processing, printing documents and paper-based sketches.

In this era of globalization, companies are looking to transform business processes, making the process of software delivery more automated, collaborative and agile. New and enhanced IBM software will help organizations reach their peak productivity and increase speed to market by automating and enhancing inefficient, paper-driven processes.

For example, the process of global software delivery emphasizes documentation and the average size software applications can generate hundreds of pages of textual requirements. IT teams are accustomed to creating paper-based sketches, scribbling diagrams on paper, using whiteboards, or text-driven word processing tools. When approached using traditional methods, defining and managing project requirements is paper intensive with geographically distributed stakeholders printing documents and spreadsheets that can reach several hundred pages.

With the new Jazz-based IBM Rational Requirements Composer documentation becomes more visual, digitizing lines of text into diagrams. In addition, IBM Rational Requirements Composer turns paper requirements into storyboards similar to how movies are made. These storyboards can be shared globally for in-house and outsourced teams to collaborate via the web, thereby reducing the consumption of paper by an organization.

Furthermore, IBM Rational Requirements Composer ensures a development project is aligned with business objectives, reducing project failures which cost organizations US $300 billion* annually. Currently 30% of software development projects are consumed by poor requirements definition and management, and reworking project requirements can cost an average $7,600 per project**. IBM Rational Requirements Composer's collaborative features can reduce risk by improving collaboration using Web 2.0-style linking, tagging and conversations to drive consensus amongst all levels of business and IT involved with a project. Using the IBM Jazz technology platform, IBM Rational Requirements Composer improves access to a project's requirements by all stakeholders, no matter where in the world they may reside.

"The mass of paperwork is too much for stakeholders to wade through," said Emmet B. Keeffe, III, CEO and co-founder of iRise. "Through our work on thousands of Fortune 1000 IT projects helping businesses visualize applications before they're built, we know first hand that Rational Requirements Composer will make the daunting requirements definition process more visual and reduce paper consumption for our customers."

IBM and its partners are delivering new software offerings based on the IBM Jazz technology platform to help organizations automate and collaborate to transform business processes. The Web 2.0 features of the IBM Jazz technology platform helps break down the walls that inhibit organizations from truly collaborating with partners, suppliers, customers and their employees.

For example, iRise is integrating its application visualization solution and Ravenflow is integrating its visual requirements validation offering with IBM Rational Requirements Composer to help organizations move away from large text-only requirements documents. In addition, the new IBM Rational Quality Manager helps businesses collaborate on quality assurance standards, without the burden of paper, before ever releasing a product to the public. Also, the new IBM Rational Team Concert helps globally distributed teams collaborate using instant messaging, wikis and blogs to deliver software in a coordinated and transparent manner.

Automating paper-intensive aspects of the software delivery process is key to reducing paper consumption for IT teams. With IBM's integrated software delivery platform, IBM is helping organizations collaborate in real-time without using paper. Without paper as a bottleneck for this business process, greater automation and transformation can be achieved.

For more information on how IBM Rational software can help organizations reduce time to market and improve product quality, visit

* The Standish Group, Comparative Economic Normalization Technology Study, CHAOS Chronicles v12.3.9, June 30, 2008.

** IBM Internal Study.

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