A basic truth that applies to about 99% of companies is: your IT system does not need to be as complex as it is.|
IT systems for large organizations tend to be patchworks of old technology, outdated methods, incompatible networks, all held together by 20 years or more of bandaid solutions. The result is a system so complex that it obscures visibility and so expensive that it hurts profits.
However, even when companies realize that they’re losing money due to the Frankenstein monsters that they have created, they often still have problems fixing it. Here’s why.
IT complexity can only be solved at the Enterprise level.
Many executives refuse to see the whole as more than the sum of its parts. They think that by pouring money into small efficiencies in a few small parts of their IT system, they can improve the efficiency of the whole. However, all they get for their trouble is more complexity, more incompatibility, more band aid solutions, and lower visibility and profits.
To truly achieve an effective IT system, every part of the system must change to work better with the whole. The logic of the system should be consistent across every IT unit. Every IT employee should understand the logic and strategy of the whole system. Enterprise-level IT is a holistic approach. The goal is to combine IT and analog organizational design into one logical system. The same organizing logic that governs your company as a whole is applied to the IT system. Enterprise-level IT designs takes into consideration your infrastructure needs, corporate strategy, management structures, and accounting practices.
The ideal end result is an IT system that everyone in your company can understand. This IT system should be as lean as possible. Any repetitive tasks should be outsourced to firms that specialize in them to keep your overhead down. The system should be flexible enough for it to be easy to add or subtract new units to suit changing needs or strategies. When designed at the Enterprise level, an IT system ceases to be an obstacle and instead becomes a tool.
How to implement Enterprise-level IT solutions
Enterprise-level IT is a job for true professionals with deep understandings of Informational Technology. In short, it is a job for consultants. In the past few years Enterprise-level IT has gone from obscurity to one of the most sought-after business consulting practices. You can find reputable Enterprise-level IT solutions by searching for Enterprise-level in the Harvard Business Review or similar reputable publications.
When searching for a consultant, be willing to spend top dollar. The efficiencies made by a great consultant more than make up for their higher fees. An IT consultancy should be to ensure the needed level of consistency. This is the only way to prevent idiosyncrasies and band aid solutions from dragging the system back down into disorganized clutter.
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