The New IT Rulebook: Not For The Faint Of Heart - InformationWeek
The New IT Rulebook: Not For The Faint Of Heart
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
User Rank: Moderator
2/14/2012 | 6:20:34 AM
re: The New IT Rulebook: Not For The Faint Of Heart
While I don't disagree with the general idea behind this article that IT must adapt to changing business needs, I do strongly disagree with much of the detail in the article.

A few examples:

1. Much of the benefits of the cloud and social media are hyped by the vendors selling those solutions, not IT professionals or professionals of any sort within companies. These concepts are discussed as if they have equal benefit to all companies, in any industry, and of any size. This is just not fact. Retail and consumer products companies with a target demographic from 10 to 40 years old should embrace social media. I fully believe it can make a positive impact. However a chemical company selling business to business is going to get little to no benefit from any kind of social media solution. Similarly, public cloud services can be a real benefit for a start up or smaller companies below the $500 million mark. However, there comes a point of critical mass where it makes more sense for a number of reasons (cost being one of them) to develop infrastructure capability internally.....and it may be a private cloud, but that's for the company to decide the best architecture.

2. It's interesting that the only business function where this discussion is held is IT. HR, Sales, Marketing, and Finance all want their own IT independent solutions their way. However, no one but HR gets to set employee policy and no one other than finance determines how accounting entires are made. But everyone in the company is an expert on IT because they use technology as a consumer? As part of IT adapting to this new rulebook as you call it, some parity should be established. IT should work with business functions to quickly enable relevant and business case driven technologies while at the same time it is fair for IT to comment on finance inefficiencies or the poor sales planning processes, etc.

3. Speed in and of itself deliveries no value and at worst can create havoc. There's a keeping up with the Jones's mentality about implementing Cloud/SAAS solutions in many business functions, but there is no business case or strategic direction behind the implementation and little to no process design. As part of IT adapting new and speedier solutions, business functions must step up and deliver a business case for action and work hand in hand with IT by delivering an adequate process design to be automated. The development/technology implementation work is rarely the long pole in the tent. It is usually getting the solution to match requirements or match business process (because the business does not know what it wants) and organizational change management that make projects last so long and in some cases business integration (not technical integration) issues when the solution crosses functional areas. It would be so refreshing to see someone write an article chastising the business functions for lack of vision, little to no strategic direction, and no ability to articulate or design business process as a big part of the speed to delivery problem. But unfortunately, most of the articles are written by those selling cloud, SAAS, etc to the business functions so all we get is hype. And now we can add Information Week to the hype bucket. It would be nice if you actually provided some real answers and support for your target audience, but instead you write an article just like a vendor.
Jason Sharp
Jason Sharp,
User Rank: Apprentice
2/3/2012 | 10:58:39 PM
re: The New IT Rulebook: Not For The Faint Of Heart
Spot on, Rob. This is so reminescent of the late 90s when business demanded online offerings for their customers, and IT was in full agreement *as long as there was no business data exposed through the firewall*. That is, as long as only static, generic data was presented on the web server.

Today's perfect storm of shrinking/scarcity of in-house staff and skills, focus on rapid and agile results, and availability of nimble cloud/SaaS options, is forcing IT somewhere they know they need to go, but at a pace too darned fast for the "faint of heart". In their defense, few IT shops remain with the resources to adequately tackle new. Too many have been gutted to where maintaining what they currently have is a tall order by itself. Which kinda emphasizes the need to get over the hump to the next brave new world...

How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of IT Report
In today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll