Tallan Blog

Tallan’s Experts Share Their Knowledge on Technology, Trends and Solutions to Business Challenges

Selling an IT Vision: How to Make Sure Your Boss Sees the Same Value That You Do

Whatever your job is, I’m sure your overarching goal is to improve your organization.  For some people that means driving revenue by making sales; for others, it’s implementing technology that solves a problem, creates efficiencies, or saves time.
For those of you who fit into this second category, it’s likely that you’ve had a great idea or two in your time.  And, hopefully, you’ve brought these ideas to your boss or leadership.  If you executed everything properly, they saw the same value that you did, and together you charted a path to move forward.
But that’s not always how this scenario plays out.
Unfortunately, there are a lot of amazing ideas that never make it past a proposal.  At Tallan, we recognize the importance of seeing these ideas through to execution and implementation proving that they truly do provide the value you’re proposing. …

Getting Started Processing and Converting the Quill.js Delta Format

There are many WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editors out there just waiting for you to drop them into your website, but one reason to choose Quill.js is for its ability to represent its contents as a JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) object.  Doing so allows you, the developer, to process those contents easily and convert them to another format. Also, it’s free, which is always a good thing.
For this, we will be focusing on some of the basics of how Quill.js expresses its contents in the Delta format and how you might go about processing those contents to fit your needs.  The examples below begin after the JSON string is converted to a C# object. For the features that are being covered here (bold, underline, italic, font color, and numbered/bulleted lists) the class structure might look something…

Exploring Buffer Overflows In C, Part One: Theory

Intro
Cybersecurity is one of the fastest evolving tech fields and the stakes are high. Mistakes can be in the order of millions of dollars. Computers have invaded all aspects of our everyday lives. Although this means I can access millions of cat pictures with the touch of a button, it is dangerous to assume that everyone using a computer is in it for the fuzzy felines. Credit cards, passwords, and social security numbers are moving across the internet just as quickly as cat pictures but with a lucrative black market. There is a lot to gain from a successful hack and hackers will be doing their best to break into the systems we rely on and use daily. Ranging from high-tech exploits such as 2018’s Spectre and Meltdown to low-tech exploits like phishing and social engineering, it is important for…

The Future of Human Resources

The stigma is over! What is often thought of as a distant, uninvolved, and discreet department is evolving and becoming so much more. But how did we get here?
It seems HR positions are habitually filled with individuals simply looking to push policies and procedures while not at all worried about their coworker’s success. Human resource professionals should be helping their colleagues with their professional goals and providing guidance. But that is not always the case. Even with so much potential we still have our blemishes.
Businesses now have become heavily dependent on their human resource departments. We are no longer shut off to the idea of change and pursuing new technologies. We are focused on the development of our employees and being the best coaches and mentors we can be. This starts with being open to understanding the root of the…

Design Patterns – Factory Method

The Factory Method design pattern is a creational pattern for simplifying construction of similar objects through means of subclasses and a superclass or interface/class relationships. Makes perfect sense right?  Alright, more simply it helps reduce the complexity of your code when it comes to creating similar objects and taking action with them.
So… where is this pattern helpful?  For the sake of this post, imagine you run a popular website where users can come to get rewards for activities or purchases they have made, and that your site currently only lets users receive payouts from PayPal. More than likely the application will have a lot of code written with only PayPal in mind, scattered throughout the code base with conditional behaviors at every step of the way. Now, let’s imagine that times are changing and your users would rather be paid…

How I Found Myself Involved in #WomenInSTEM

#WomenInSTEM isn’t a movement I ever expected to get involved in, even as recently as six months ago.  That said, I couldn’t be any happier that I’m part of a team that is taking on this subject head-on.
So – backing things up a bit – I joined Tallan in May of 2018.  I quickly noticed that our own office is, by a vast majority, male consultants.  This made it all the more exciting to learn about the scholarship program we put in place at the beginning of 2018 to promote the #WomenInSTEM movement.
Plans to keep the scholarship going in 2019 were in place before my arrival, but the team that put the program together wanted to do more, and I wanted to be a part of that.  I worked with some of our own #WomenInSTEM, alongside a few fantastic educators…

Chosen as an advocate for Women in STEM

Most of my life I have been the only female in the room in a male-dominated profession.  No matter what obstacles I faced, I persevered and found myself at a great company called Tallan. I was honored when Ben Fischbein, a colleague of mine here at Tallan, approached me and acknowledged my achievements as a female programmer.  He shared his findings about the scarcity of women in STEM while offering me the opportunity to present to the students of Conard High School about the importance of women in these fields during their Computer Science Education Week.
To open my presentation, I wanted to connect with the students about why there is a gender gap in STEM.  I had asked the students what they had thought an artist looked like and I featured a picture of a painter, a musician, a male…

Why Insurers Should Be Helping Their Customers Complain More, Part II

Let’s jump right back into the thick of this topic.  In the first part of this blog series, we discussed why insurers should be empowering their customers to complain in fairly general terms.  Check out the link to our Decision Maker’s Guide to Complaint Enablement for more background on this topic.
This post dives deeper into a few key metrics: retention rates, customer lifetime value, and quantity of feedback gathered.  To do so, we’ll take a look at the financial impact of non-complainers.  While you read, it may also be helpful to consider whether you are currently measuring or utilizing any data to achieve similar goals.
Before getting to specifics, here’s a quick recap of what was covered last time:

J.D. Power’s 2018 research tells us that the industry average score for providing a satisfying purchase experience is 839 out of 1,000.1
For an…

Migrating SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS)

For most Microsoft IT professionals, migrating or updating a native mode SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) installation from one version to another is a rare, if not once-in-a-lifetime, event – and probably one you would prefer a root canal to.  Because software upgrades of all types tend to get postponed as long as possible, if you find yourself finally tasked with such an upgrade, several unpleasant things are likely true:

The effort is in crisis mode, driven by software (SSRS, OS) going off support, hardware becoming unreliable, or a line-of-business application that must itself be upgraded but cannot be until SSRS is.
The current installation was not done by you and whomever did is long gone, so you are not that familiar with it and would frankly rather not be. SSRS is not your “thing”.
The current installation is poorly documented, if at…

Live Webinar on 11/29! How Digital Strategy Helped American Financial Resources Compete

Do you have lunch plans next Wednesday, 11/29? If not, why don’t you plan to treat yourself to some takeout, and register for our Webinar.
Our Live at Lunch Webinar features Bill Packer, the Chief Operating Officer of American Financial Resources (AFR) and our New York Region Managing Director, discussing the strategy surrounding AFR’s decision to transition to cloud-based infrastructure.
In an hour we plan to ask our client’s advice on what to consider when prioritizing a digital strategy, whether he’ll give us some insight on what he could have done differently – if anything, and how this modernization has empowered his employees as well as his customers (both in the B2B channel, and direct-to-consumer) to take control.
I bet you wouldn’t believe that he was actually hired specifically for his attitude toward innovation to transition AFR.  Mortgage banks are in the financial…

\\\