Previously I posted, "Why Service Management" discussing the melding of IT and the business for common objectives in managing, measuring and communicating service performance. The recent Gartner Infrastructure and Operations Management Summit (IOM) also provoked the status quo of IT Operations and Cameron Haight began to challenge and discuss a new term, DevOps, where development and operations are more closely aligned. The post event Trip Report provides a glimpse into the many thought provoking challenges and discussions of the week.
The evolution of the IT organization as we know it today is underway, with or without IT. A quote of Cameron's is, “if IT operations does not change, then we will likely see an acceleration of the business going around us for their information-processing needs.” Business is already going around IT with as-a-Service options, cloud services, use of their own devices, etc. I would further expand Cameron's discussion of DevOps to be inclusive of Security. How we do business will be how we develop services, how we deploy those services, how we manage the services, how we access services and how we secure the data and information used by these services. Notice I did not say how we secure or manage the technology, devices or infrastructure.
As IT we have to re-learn how and what we control and focus on how and what we enable. Now my friend, Glenn O'Donnell of Forrester has also affirmed the convergence of Operations and Security in a recent post, "Security and Operations Have More in Common Than You Think". Combining availability, performance, and management data is nothing new in the data center as MOMs (Manager of Managers) have existed since the early 1990's, consolidating heaps of data into a more complete picture. What is different now is that we are transforming from monitoring and managing technology and are required to communicate in terms of Service Value and Service Impact.
Catalysts driving the transformation are the cloud, service providers, SaaS, social media, collaboration, mobility, BYOD, etc. There is a new generation of workers coming into our organizations and a whole new generation of customers that expect technology to help them get from point a to point b with flexibility, freedom of device and location. They expect to go to the AppStore and download the Blackberry, iPad, Windows, etc. version of their interfaces/applications to interact with one another and the companies they do business with. I have participated in conversations around Mobile Device Management. As a challenger to the status quo, I might suggest it isn't the management of the device that is relevant, but rather the enablement of the device that is relevant. It begs the question, "What are you doing to enable your customers and workers to conduct business with you as seemlessly as possible?" Business and Service Providers are figuring it out and it is a lucrative business as time to market is always the driver to innovation. Later, costs will be contained when quality of service begins to be the driver.
David Cappuccio of Gartner listed in the "Top 10 Trends that will Impact Infrastructure and Operations" session that the end of the service desk is coming. I would concur and just today InformationWeek posted an article, "Feds Begin Work on BYOD Policy" and concludes the post with similar validation. Removing control and management of devices from the environment will present cost reductions that can then be applied from the bottom back to the top line of investing in these innovative strategies. In a research document (G00147079) that Valentin Sribar discussed during the "Application 2020: The Impact of Infrastructure and Operations of Current and Emerging Trends in Applications" session, he points to the same trend of lowering operational costs at the bottom to fuel the innovation at the top - stop operating and start innovating.
Who would have listed the Federal market as a vertical leading the charge of transformation?! They lead on two fronts: 1) Enabling over controlling and 2) Convergence of development, operations and security focusing on situational awareness (availability, performance and risk) and innovating while reducing costs.
Another data point for another post, before VDI (Virtualized Desktop Infrastructure) has become widespread across enterprise organizations, it is already out of date. Now entering the picture is DaaS (Desktop-as-a-Service) where customers subscribe to common workplace applications. I would call it WaaS (Workplace-as-a-Service) as DaaS assumes a given device. The subscription or download must be regardless of device. An example is Microsoft Office and Apple's Keynote, Pages and Numbers. I use both devices and suites for the same documents. One devices is better suited, for my taste, to develop and another to display and speak from.
Transformation is occurring already and IT is already behind. I'm a slow adopter of technology even though having spent my work life in the technology world, so no worries, there is always time to accelerate business. What needs to happen:
Assess where you are, what's important in your business and where go you need to get to in 3 months - 6 months - 12 months
Make incremental improvements driving value a step at a time. No need to boil the ocean, but drive business acceleration, not IT. Identify opportunities for the greatest business gains.
Develop a holistic plan
Join forces with your application development and security counterparts driving toward the same objectives and incremental steps to develop, operate and secure your next generation technology organization.
Shift from controlling to enabling
Refocus efforts from controlling devices, infrastructure and things to enabling access from anywhere with any device. Provide application flexibility and account for various interfaces just as we have accounted for operating systems. It is the data that must be managed with level of security determined by identity, device and location. Services and data require management, not the accessing devices.
Mobility first, Workplace second
Plan for the mobile world and your customers first, workplace interfaces should follow second. Ease of doing business however the customer chooses to do business is the highest priority to accelerate business.
Develop and enable Service Brokers to measure and communicate service availability, performance and risk
Enable a constant cycle of assessment of services as their key drivers will shift as services move from innovative to operate for cost. Adopting an economic model that removes inefficiencies and applies that savings into fueling the innovation.
The only thing constant is change and to quote a co-worker, "Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine". It's an exciting time again to be in technology and as I sit here bringing this post to an end, I laugh at the acronym of this title. The acronym of what's old is new again - DOS (developing, operating and securing). Ok, I admit it, a little bit of a geek. Seriously though, those who embrace this time of transformation will no doubt lead their industries in the coming years.
Are you driving transformation or is transformation driving you?
Jun 26 2012, 02:52 PM
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