Editor's Note: Celebrating Traffic And Aligning IT
Gauging people's confidence in the economy and in their company's business can sometimes be amusing. Rarely do I hear anyone say things like, "Business is great, we're growing, revenue is up," or anything to that effect without a bit of nervousness or the obligatory knock on wood. That's not criticism. I've done it myself plenty of times.
But here's a bit of a wacky gauge of confidence: traffic. While I was out in the San Francisco Bay area last week, two people told me how good it felt to be in heavy traffic on Highway 101 again. It's a sign of a recovering economy--of more people making their way to their Silicon Valley offices that have had sparse parking lots over the past two years. Bring on the cars! That sentiment probably won't hang around too much longer as commute times increase, not to mention the price of gas. But for the time being, let's celebrate traffic!
Confidence in the IT job market will probably continue to require a few knocks on wood for a while, but here's a great bit of advice I heard from a business-technology executive that puts job stability into the proper perspective. "People who know how to do their jobs well will always have a job. But people who know why they're doing their jobs will always be the boss."
In other words, if you're a database programmer for a retail company, is your job to program databases? Or is it to serve the retail customers? If you're an infrastructure manager at an automotive company, is your job integrating complex networks or is it helping your company sell cars? How deeply IT is aligned with business goals and business processes will make all the difference in how you answer that question.
To discuss this column with other readers, please visit Stephanie Stahl's forum on the Listening Post.
IT's Reputation: What the Data SaysInformationWeek's IT Perception Survey seeks to quantify how IT thinks it's doing versus how the business really views IT's performance in delivering services - and, more important, powering innovation. Our results suggest IT leaders should worry less about whether they're getting enough resources and more about the relationships they have with business unit peers.
What The Business Really Thinks Of IT: 3 Hard TruthsThey say perception is reality. If so, many in-house IT departments have reason to worry. InformationWeek's IT Perception Survey seeks to quantify how IT thinks it's doing versus how the business views IT's performance in delivering services - and, more important, powering innovation. The news isn't great.
InformationWeek Must Reads Oct. 21, 2014InformationWeek's new Must Reads is a compendium of our best recent coverage of digital strategy. Learn why you should learn to embrace DevOps, how to avoid roadblocks for digital projects, what the five steps to API management are, and more.