Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Act Now! Top Opportunities for IT Transformation Services...

It's become obvious of late that cloud computing is not a technology end-in-itself, but rather an enabler of broader IT  transformation. I've heard it from CIOs, CTOs, and even EMC's own IT department. All said, it's clear that IT transformation affects the entire organization - its consumption model, operations, organization, finance and more.It's not just about products anymore.

IMO there is a massive opportunity for leading change-management organizations to work with IT organizations to help them assess and execute this transition. Technology alone will not make IT more competitive.

So I'm a bit shocked that this era isn't a windfall for services providers who will help shepherd IT organizations through the change management process. It should be. To me this seems like thre's a huge investment opportunity to develop service practices. And, it's a huge opportunity for IT organizations to take pause and assess what their structure, operational model and business model will be a few short years from now. And how they plan to get there.

Follows are a few observations - and opportunities - I've made in the hope that a rising tide lifts all ships:

No Show Offs?

Where are the services providers, consultants and change-management professionals at trade events?

Given the tons of IT, cloud, and tech related trade shows, I'm continually amazed at how 99% of floor exhibitors are hardware or software firms. The show managers occasionally include special floor sections for "cloud" or "security" and such, but never for services providers or consultants who would assist the attendees in implementing the technology and change management needed to leverage technology.

I'd like to see an "IT Transformation Services" section in the large shows (i.e. VMworld, Cloud**, etc.) including consultants, organizational design firms, HR firms, IT training and talent management organizations, certification boards. etc. This would be where firms could hawk their services and compete for the non-product enablers for the CIO. Show producers ought to offer incentives to capture these firms and the value they provide.

I'd also like to see more intentionally-produced tracks at the shows that talk about real-world IT transformation successes... without inclusion of product or technology. Topics?  Financial transparency. Organizational design. Service-oriented design. Line-of-business customer focus.

Where Are the Big Guys?

Next, why aren't Accenture, Deloitte, CSC, Cap Gemini, Accenture etc blazing the IT change management trails? Perhaps they have IT change management practices. But I read next-to-nothing from these folks regarding philosophy, approach or successes. I'd like to know more about what they're doing and/or planning.

From where I sit, most System Integrators and management consultants either have 'low-level' practices where they thrown technologists at a problem, or high-level management consultants who produce reports and strategies. I'd like to see the middle-ground, with practices that work with the CIO and their lieutenants, to assess what type of transformation(s) would make the IT organization most valuable to the lines of business.

Where are the books, keynotes, articles and methodologies developed to show-off the IP I *hope* these folks are developing? 

And What of Professional Certifications?

No, not technology certifications; I mean IT Skill certs. Cloud Architect. Cloud Engineer. IT Services/Product Management. IT Marketing (inbound, outbound). IT Business Liaison. IT Financial Services Management. Not all of these are traditional IT roles, but they will be in demand shortly as IT re-tools itself to act and operate as the equivalent of an internal Service Provider.

And while we're at it, I'd *love* to see more business and MBA programs offer technology leadership and change management for CIO's style coursework.  Technology leaders will no longer need to be technologists themselves.

And in closing...

At EMC's recent IT Leadership council, it was clear to attendees that Transformation of the IT org was not about the technology anymore. It was about skills, roles, organizations, culture.

I am continually impressed by what EMC's IT department has done in most if not all of these domains. And I know that our own EMC Consulting arm has deep bench strength in this area. And as a company, we're going so far as to offer professional certifications in these emerging domains.

But as I said above, a rising tide lifts all ships.... I'd like to see broader activity in all of these areas from partners and competitors alike. The best way to make the new cloud computing paradigm successful is to make the IT departments successful in their transition. So, where is the help?

Post-Blog Updates
  • Recent announcement from Deloitte for Cloud Service Providers 

1 comment:

TimeBackPacker said...

Hi Ken,

Great article with valid questions. Maybe the real change artists are not visible because they dont belong to any of these big names that you mentioned.

Googling IT transformation only shows technologies, transformation seems to have only one meaning, use new technology and throw out the old.

Real transformation is in changing the ways of working... The practice is still in its infancy and growing.