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As I was watching this thread develop
with various comments from people that live and breathe IT, one thing
kept coming to mind. IT people often try and justify new technology with
technology reasoning. It's analogous to answering a question with
Far too often, because IT has almost always been looked at as a
cost-center and measured for ROI based on cost-reduction or productivity
improvements, technologist feel the need to drive the justification for
a new project based on cost.
- How will it be cheaper than the last project?
- How will it reduce spending for the business in some way?
- How can this eliminate something that isn't as effective as this new technology?
The right answer is DevOps.
Huh? Why would I use a technology term, "DevOps", as the answer to the
question when I just got done saying we shouldn't use technology to
explain technology? Because the technology use of "DevOps" (short for
the combined model of Development + Operations) has created the wrong
way to shorten the appropriate words. To answer the question, "How to Connect IT and Business?", think of "DevOps" as Developing + Opportunities.
While IT often thinks about technology as a challenge, or a learning
experience (or a career-path), the business only sees technology as a
potential means to an end. An end that is often focused on the top-line
of the company's P&L or Balance Sheet. The business is focused on
how to develop that next opportunity to grow the business or position it
strategically to alter the market dynamics. The means to that
development could be through capital (new investments in people,
equipment, partnerships, or technology), or new operational models that
involve technology. Its success is ultimately measured in revenue or
marketshare, but it has interim measurements like "time to market",
"share of audience attention", "customer satisfaction levels". Things
that technology can have a direct impact upon.
So if you want to be the IT professional that can better connect the
technology you deliver to the business, take a step back from focusing
on costs or the nuances of the technology, and instead focus on the
right kind of DevOps. Be knowledgeable about how to refactor the IT
project list to better impact a new business DevOps and you'll find the
business beginning to come to you more often with a desire to partner
for the overall business success.
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