Stories by Susan E. Fisher

Keys to Delivering Quality Executives

The ad might read, "In search of the right CTO. Must be compatible with company culture, have a solid background in both technology and business, have good communication skills, and be able to command admiration and respect."

Health Care Marketplaces: Will They Deliver?

A virtual turf war is breaking out in the health care industry as emerging dot-com companies, established manufacturers, distributors, and traditional brokers scramble to establish competing Internet marketplaces for buying and selling everything from Band-Aids to MRI machines. At stake are potentially billions of dollars in revenue, savings for hospitals and their IT departments, and a controlling interest in the way health care goods are bought and sold in the future.

Online Health Care Contends with Fraud

Online pharmacies are looking for a prescription for trust. By policing themselves, these health care retailers hope they can convince more customers to feel confident about buying drugs online and assuage regulators' growing concerns.

Urban Media CTO Pushes Broadband Envelope

When it comes to data, Paul Mockapetris has a need for speed. Best known as a creator of DNS (Domain Name System), Mockapetris has spent his professional life pushing the envelope in technologies that hasten the delivery of information.

Metrics for E-Success

What happens when your CEO hauls you into the corner office and asks, "What will this e-commerce initiative contribute to my business?" How will you respond when the CFO throws up a challenging remark, "We're giving you the budget you demanded, what's the return?"

Web Retailers Set Out for Hardware Frontier

With hopes that consumers will be just as eager to buy hammers and hedge trimmers on the Web as books and CDs, both startup and traditional retailers are taking the home-improvement business online.

Changing of the Guard: CIOs, CTOs in flux

Don't bother telling Dawn Lepore that the Internet has made the CIO's job passe. As CIO of the discount brokerage firm Charles Schwab & Co. since 1993, she's tackled some of the toughest strategic and operational challenges that the Internet can throw at a company.

Scoping for Hot Talent

What do an Austin Powers look-alike and a lava lamp giveaway have to do with e-commerce hiring? Give up? Just ask Lante.When the rapidly growing e-commerce consulting company had a mere four weeks to open and staff its office in Austin, Texas, the company did what many self-respecting technology companies would do. Lante threw a party -- an "Austin Power" party, baby.

Internet Shakeup for Insurance

The slow-moving insurance industry has woken up to the Web, according to industry analysts and insiders, but the dawning of the e-commerce era means headaches as well as opportunities for the IT professionals supporting insurance companies.

Siebel CEO Preaches Seamless E-commerce Service

To succeed in e-commerce, businesses have to serve customers through multiple sales and service channels seamlessly, said Thomas Siebel, the chairman and CEO of Siebel Systems, speaking at a CRM (customer service relationship management) exposition here yesterday.

Web ASPs Raise Service Level Concerns

Your company is paying thousands of dollars each month to tap into a ready-made Web collaboration tool and avoid implementing one in-house. But when users start to gripe because they can't access the program and the company is losing precious, productive time, who's to blame?

'E-warranty' Services Extend Sales Options

CUSTOMERS BUYING a big-ticket item such as a household appliance or an electronic device know they won't leave the store without fielding the pitches of a slick salesperson. But before they get to walk out the door, they'll be hit with another pitch: to buy an extended warranty.

MS Exec Challenges IT to Seize ASP Opportunity

Peter Boit, vice president of Microsoft Corp.'s eCommerce Business Solutions Group, encouraged IT professionals at the Chicago Software Association's one-day ASP conference here yesterday to pursue opportunities in the nascent market for application service providers (ASPs), but he cautioned that many business issues must be addressed for the market to take off.