Canadian technology professionals should expect to deal with convergence of operational roles, relationships between buyers and sellers as well as changes in compute models, according to those who spoke at the IT 360 conference this week.
The three-day event, produced by IT World Canada, included tracks on business management, open source and networking technologies but might be best summed up by a session held late Wednesday afternoon, which was simply titled "Managing Change in Your IT." Russ Atkin, principal of Markets of One Consulting in Cochrane, Alberta, led a discussion on the theme of operational convergence -- the idea that not only technologies but people are being more tightly interested within the enterprise to take better advantage of their IT.
Atkin, who spent eight years working at a telecommunications firm, urged IT 360 attendees to start developing a "responsibility matrix" which would outline who in a company should be directly handling things such as help-desk problems, and who should merely be assisting or advising on those kinds of responsibilities. Creating a responsibility matrix is more difficult among technology groups, he added, because terminology is not consistent across departments.
Telecom-focused employees and IT-focused employees might both use the word "latency," for example, but might associate it with different meanings.
While most companies are aware of a SWOT analysis -- a breakdown of an organization or team's strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats -- Atkin said they should consider another acronym as well. PEST refers to the political, economic, cultural and technological realities that face IT as they try to develop their strategy and meet expectations.
"The 'economics' area could be referring to a reduction in your capital budget," he explained, "which is something we're all faced with at some point. That's a reality. The culture of the team and the individuals -- those are things you can't afford to ignore, either."