Aligning the range of opinions about your IT department’s role
Question: Why is your enterprise’s IT like Quantum mechanics?
Answer: From the end user’s perspective, the intrinsic complexity of enterprise IT is mostly acknowledged, abstract, little understood, however seems to provide the platform on which modern life appears to depend!
Quantum mechanic’s Schrödinger’s Cat paradox has its counterpart in Enterprise IT, as both have the multiple and concurrent versions of reality – all of which may be correct at the same time.
Applying this analogy to organisations, there are often multiple simultaneous versions of reality held by key business stakeholders on how, what, when and where enterprise IT technologies and systems should be applied – all seemingly valid.
The key challenge facing organisations coming to grips with enterprise IT is that everyone is a consumer of technology in one form or another, and therefore is entitled to an opinion……
The combined influences of both individuals and businesses having direct access to an increasingly compelling range of business ready technologies which appear to meet short term commercial imperatives, make fertile grounds for the self-empowerment of line-of-business executives and functional managers in taking control over key elements of enterprise IT. Essentially, IT’s influence on the enterprise’s view of the use of technology is being diluted.
Executives with accountability for areas such as enterprise risk, compliance, cost and governance are faced with the constant challenge of effectively managing these multiple versions of reality associated with enterprise IT, from influential stakeholders. This is not a trivial exercise, as there is no longer a single source of truth.
The seismic shift from the “build it and they will come” to the “here it is, IT Department, it’s implemented, now support it” represents both opportunities and challenges for IT departments. Additionally, achieving all IT departmental KPIs and service levels alone is no longer a measure success – that’s a given.
Effective IT leaders play a pivotal role in:
- Proactively challenge and steer the transformation of the organisation through the deployment of appropriate technologies, and in
- Educating key stakeholders about optimal adoption of existing, new and emerging technologies with known cost, known value and known risk in terms that users understand in the context of your organisation and industry.
If you work within the IT department in your business, what specific strategies are you adopting in managing these multiple and concurrent stakeholder’s perceptions of enterprise IT? If it’s ‘someone else’s job’ think again!