Frequently Asked Questions
What is S4E’s Vision?
An improvement in the understanding and use of business and IT standards for enterprises worldwide.
What is S4E’s Mission?
To provide a resource for business operations and IT professionals that will facilitate their access to and understanding of business standards for enterprise.
S4E is the brainchild of Scott Palmer who has spent the last two decades working with companies to improve how they operate through the use of standardized approaches to enterprise operation. Mr. Palmer believes the proliferation of standardization is a good thing, and business people now need help sorting through them all and determining which ones can be most beneficial.
What is S4E?
S4E is a repository and compilation of known business standards – these are standards that companies can use to improve how they operate. S4E brings vital information on business standards together into an easy to digest body of knowledge, thereby saving corporate executives time.
How do S4E members find the right standard (or part of standard they are interested in)?
Mr. Palmer has developed a “Standards Navigator™” that helps S4E members visualize where various standards fit in the enterprise so they can match their needs and requirements to the benefit of the various standards.
How does the Navigator work so that a company with a specific business problem can find the right solution to it?
There are a number of approaches an S4E member can take to addressing his/her challenge. One approach is to “do it yourself”. A company can apply its own time, money and talent to researching the problem, understating the standards, and applying productivity improving practices. A step up from DIY is engaging one or more of the solution providers who also will be part of the S4E community to assist in-house staff. Thirdly, a company might engage a solution provider to work in-house under a contract to deliver a turn-key solution.
How will you ensure S4E doesn't become a commercial resource for consultants offering their services?
The founders of S4E have decades of experience working with industry and all of its components including practitioners, consultants, hardware vendors, educators, nonprofits, and media. Each and all of these “components” have a contribution to make to improve company and industry performance. Where there is a need, i.e., company executives who wish to improve their company operations, there will be solution providers. S4E is fulfilling its mission of facilitating practitioner members’ improvement of their operations by bringing these various industry components together.
What is ‘open’ standard?
An open standard is a standard that is available to any individual or company to use. The opposite of an open standard is one that a fee is required to access and/or a schedule of payments is required for its use.
What is a ‘de facto’ standard?
A de facto standard is a standard that is generally accepted by some group or constituency who feel they or others benefit from its application.
What is a ‘standards institute?
In the United States, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) may be viewed as the ultimate standards organization. However, ANSI does not really develop standards. ANSI oversees the standards development process undertaken by others. ANSI owns standards development procedures that any ANSI-recognized standards development organization is required to follow in order to achieve ANSI recognition of their standard(s).
What is a trade consortium?
A trade consortium, also known as an association, federation, or syndicate is customarily an organization of companies recognized by government as contributing to society. These types of organizations are typically not owned by any individual, and are exempt from paying taxes on their income. There are fees to be part of these organizations paid by the company; and the member companies typically designate representatives to participate in the consortium’s activities. These organizations engage in activities that are intended to benefit the members.
What is a professional society?
Like the consortium or association, professional societies are typically recognized by government as nonprofit organizations and thereby not owned by any individual. Membership in these organizations is usually for the individual – not the corporation. These organizations often engage in educational programs intended to improve the knowledge and skills of their members. These educational programs lead to certifications for their graduates, i.e., certified public accountant (CPA). There are many certification programs in industry. The value of certification is the cache having such certification adds to the individual seeking employment, or employed by a company that values such certification.
How can individuals and companies be involved in S4E?
The intended primary beneficiaries of S4E services are corporate executives who wish to improve the operation of their companies. These individuals can join, or subscribe, to S4E services for a modest annual fee. A corporate membership for less than one thousand dollars will allow for all employees to have access to S4E’s body of business standards knowledge. Solution providers including consulting companies and software companies can contribute to the success of the S4E community through sponsorships. A number of ‘scholarships” in the form of access and content will be available to university professors who wish to use the S4E body of knowledge for research and in their classrooms. Representatives of the working press and nonprofits can gain complimentary access to the S4E community upon request. All of these options are clearly explained in other sections of the S4E web site.