IT Getting Pushed Out

Bradley Chambers put up a good post tonight titled Managed Service Providers And Employees Who Don’t Need the IT Department. I recommend that any person working in IT go on over and take a look at what he has to say about the future of IT departments everywhere.

Server Cabling

While I don’t think I can agree with the entirety of the post, I happen to think that one key passage says a lot about where IT departments should be aiming at the moment.

You’ve got to become more than just a broke/fix person or a SysAdmin. You’ve got to help turn your IT department into a solutions department. You’ve got to be able to do things that the MSP can’t. You’ve got to be able to solve business problems with technology that create operational efficiencies (now you are paying your own way). You need to be able to connect puzzle pieces.

That about sums it up. It is not enough to just “keep the lights on” anymore, but it is time to start pushing things forward in different areas to try to stay ahead of what people are doing. Sadly, working in IT can be a very reactive place (the network is down, you need to fix that).

However, and I say this for myself, time needs to be spent on trying to find areas to help push things forward in a good way. It might mean that I need to get out of my comfort zone, but it also means that the zone might expand just a little bit at the same time.

2 Replies to “IT Getting Pushed Out”

  1. I’ve been seeing this writing on the wall for a while now. It’s really made me re-focus my career a little differently. I really enjoy the SysAdmin work: it really fits with my mechanical aptitude but that’s the most easy outsourced part of what I do. To keep myself relevant I’ve been working to channel that aptitude into something that isn’t easy to find – big picture vision. IT is a cog that management has a tough time fitting into the machinery. Understanding how it functions to drive an organization forward is difficult (even for people who know what they’re doing!). I guess I’m trying to turn myself into a visionary for the business. I wonder if I can find a way to have enough success that I can claim the title “Oracle”?

  2. I think you nailed it, but I tend to also think that the push to “outsource all the things” is a grave and dangerous trend with unknown and unforeseen consequences. What happens when all of the technology knowledge is outside of your own organization? What happens when things don’t work as you need them to?

    There are huge benefits to having IT internalized and an actual part of the business … not just “another cost center”. That is the way IT has been working from the beginning, but it is time to bring those people out of the basement and into the rest of the organization. Technology isn’t something to be trivialized, but something to use as an advantage for differentiation.

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