Influencers Weigh in on How to Balance IT, End-User Technology Needs

The dynamics of the office are converting, a part of the sweeping IT and Digital transformation developments disrupting enterprise. When you imagine the converting demographics of the office, era is positioned squarely in the middle of the forces reshaping how we paintings. With Millennials now comprising the biggest section of the group of workers, expectancies and calls for on IT are heightened. In a up to date survey through Forrester Consultants, “68% of Millennials said the expectations of the younger workers are pushing IT to keep technology current, but there is a palpable gap between what employees are demanding and how IT responds to them.” (1)

We reached out to era influencers for concepts on what steps can IT leaders take to stability office era calls for of finish customers and the wishes of IT managers. Here’s what they informed us.

Balancing the wishes of IT with the ones of finish customers for office era calls for conversation — and a whole lot of it. Understanding the enterprise first is significant conserving each events satisfied and productive. And technique, coverage, and the real era issues as neatly. But conversation takes heart level for our influencers.

Kevin L. Jackson, founding father of the GovCloud Network, endorses a cooperative way. “IT managers must focus on collaboration over confrontation with end users,” Jackson says. “Know and understand the business model and metrics so that common goals can be identified and targeted.”

At Lynx Technology Partners, CIO Will Lassalle has been proactive. IT leaders can take steps to stability the wishes of finish customers and IT Managers through speaking with the tip person neighborhood,” he says.  “What we do is have technology committees that contain different end-user representation; we have an internal Wiki where ideas and concerns are shared. And lastly, we really embrace change/agility to prevent the proliferation of Shadow IT from end-users that choose to do IT themselves rather than depend on the Technology team. The many open lines of communication helps us balance the demands & concerns of the aforementioned stakeholders.”

It’s up to IT leaders to have their colleagues’ backs, says Systems Engineer Martha Cisneros.

“IT Leaders should always support IT managers and handle expectations from end users; be the bridge that translates business into IT operations and the other way around,” she says.

And, conversation is a two-way side road.

“We often receive the request ‘the system is slow, we want a system that is fast,’” says Cisneros.  “Those are very vague requests from end users that often times escalate to the meeting board. IT managers should work directly with end users to define what is ‘slow’ and what is the expectation of the user —  do they want to reduce 20% of the system processing time? Or more? or less?”

Listening is necessary, says Larry Letow, President of LG-TEK. But IT should now not lose sight in their safety mandate.

“IT Managers need to do a better job of listening to the needs of the end users,” says Letow.  “Truly understand what is required, what they would like and what is preferred as part of their job performance and balance that with the security and IT needs of an organization without creating [security] openings in the infrastructure.”

Bill Swavely, CIO at Pharm-Olam International, argues for a user-friendly way.

“IT leaders need to engage end users and listen to truly understand their needs and challenges – and provide solutions that make technology less daunting, such as self-service tools, governed solutions that emulate consumer applications, comprehensive training and change management for all corporate systems and procedures,” he says.

A business-Centric Strategy

“IT leaders need to align themselves with the business,” says Will Kelly, technical creator & content material construction supervisor. “Then they need to get involved in business-side of strategy planning and become a technical advisor.”

It’s tempting to suppose organizations are beginning with a technique or plan for end-user era. Mark Thiele with Edge Computing Engineering at Ericsson says now not so speedy.

“The best strategy for an IT group when looking at expanding use of new end user technology is in having a strategy to begin with,” he says. He recommends IT leaders “define and publish an MVP of service access, security requirements, new solution review, and support levels. Obtain and publish the strategy with C-Suite support and be clear that when demand is there, new options will be enabled per the standard.”

Jason Wankovsky, CTO and VP of Consulting Services at Mindsight, breaks it down into 3 parts:

“People. Policy. Technology. That’s how IT leaders need to frame their thinking,” he states.  

“People: determine what end users are demanding – like BYOD, work-from-anywhere, and work culture flexibility. “Policy: create strong policies that set clear boundaries. Technology: provide support, both in terms of head count and resources, that enable IT managers to adopt the security initiatives necessary to allow for those demands.”

Agility, Flexibility Across Disciplines Ensures Progress

Tim Mackey, Senior Technology Evangelist at Synopsys, cautions about the result of getting it flawed.

“When an IT policy impacts an end users’ ability to deliver value to their organization, the user, or their manager, will seek a workaround,” Mackey says. “These workarounds are the basis for Shadow IT and increase risk to the organization. When combined with IT policies designed to evolve with threat landscapes, a balance can then be struck between user expectations on IT and the regulatory and security demands placed on IT leadership.”

Freelance Technology Writer/Journalist David Geer’s recommendation: stay it easy.

“Narrow the list of workplace technologies that your employees are demanding to those that are most likely to increase efficiency and productivity,” he says. “Select the top two or three that put the least strain on your IT manager. Implement one at a time over a reasonable period.”

And keep in mind, says Tim Richardson, Enterprise Architect OCSL, a CANCOM corporate, exchange is excellent.

“The best thing that IT Leaders can do to maintain this delicate balance is to embrace change,” he says. “Realize that the technology landscape is changing rapidly and that if operating models and mindsets are stuck in pre-as-a-service modes, your competitors will out innovate you and your users will be bemoaning their legacy desktops which inhibit their productivity. The business must be open to and encourage change, and enable those responsible to affect change, unencumbered by old ways of working.”

1 Redefine Your Workforce Enablement Through Productivity — A Custom Technology Adoption Profile, Commissioned By Dell, November 2016

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