Friday, February 25, 2011

Company going south? Blame IT?

At the time I wrote this I had not read Ben's post about David's post (which I do not agree with entirely). But will post on this soon.

Ever notice how companies that are teetering on the edge of bankruptcy suddenly decide to do major changes in their IT?

Change mail systems, go to the Cloud, bring in an ERP solution, take on Sharepoint, go Linux or whatever comes to someone's mind.

Why?

Admittedly we have that magic in IT, but not as a last ditch effort to save the bus from driving off the cliff.

Isn't that what executive management is for? But who loses in the end? Never executives. They get paid no matter what happens.

So what is IT supposed to do? In speaking with a motivational company they feel that the leadership and sales teams need to be clued in, but my perspective is IT MUST be filled in too. And not just the CIO.

If IT does not provide their buy-in to helping the company, you will not get very far as a company.

How do you get IT to care? The last 10 years or so have not been nice to most IT staff members. They are what keeps your business running, not your sales people, not your executives. If all your servers stopped tomorrow could you work or get anything done? Ever thought about what happens when IT revolts? An Atlas Shrugged moment indeed.

Maybe you let IT know how much you need them , maybe you don't. If not, why? When have you ever asked your IT staff what they are playing with or what they have in mind for the business to help it move forward?

How often do we hear about paper processes, long time to approve something(that's another post), billing a half hour to enter data in a CRM or ERP system or an expense system? THESE are IT's fault. No question. Bad UI or lack of advanced applications. But who pays for it seems to be an issue at times as well as which platform to write it or upgrade it. If IT looked at these and said we need to fix this, they could, but there is no buy in from IT to do so. The disconnect between management and IT and sales does not have to continue.

Should IT people be paid the same as sales people? That's another post entirely. But don't treat IT like you treat your school teachers.  It's not IT's fault if your company is going down, usually it's your sales teams fault...or the executives but how many companies can say IT is what killed their company?