Over the past 20 years, information technology has made some radical transformations. The Internet has changed the way we work, and continues to provide an excellent foundation for innovation. That said, IT executives continue to look for ways to improve operational efficiencies, reduce risk and save money. Unfortunately, with the day-to-day demands on IT ever increasing, the opportunity to innovate is an ongoing challenge. With competitive market pressures, and the pressures to lower the cost of doing business, IT organizations need to look for ways to transform themselves.
Now what do I mean by transform? Well, most IT organizations today are forced (because of resource limitations) into having to focus on the “blocking and tackling” aspects of IT (Uptime, Help Desk, Operations, Security, etc.). While a requirement, the day to day activities consumes both time and energy…not leaving much time to dwell on the strategic.
IT is the most important strategic asset (staff, information, systems, etc.) in any organization. Without IT, business can’t operate. That said, IT needs to continue to elevate it’s level of importance in the organization…and can do so by making time to innovate. This is why I believe IT has to transform itself from the position of service delivery, to critically strategic. This happens when:
1) The business leaders recognize the strategic importance of IT, and make it a priority vs. purely an necessary expense.
2) IT is enable to look inside itself…and look for ways to innovate, and employ that innovation / automation to help re-purpose the “people” assets involved in IT towards more important tasks – tasks that will help advance position of the business (i.e., Market Share, Revenue, Profitabilty, etc.)
Allowing IT the opportunity to explore and leverage the concept of innovation will have a marked impact on the capabilities of IT, but more importantly the people involved.