Successful Information Technology (IT) Leadership
The primary focus for successful IT leadership is to predict the future. How can this happen with any reliability? The answer is by assessment and research based on your company’s objectives. A successful IT leader should not be a firefighter (reactively putting out technology disasters as they burn out of control). Many IT department leaders have to constantly address technology failures due to propping up old equipment and making outdated solutions operate a little longer. Successful IT leadership should not be focussed on tasks such as keeping systems online or backed up. They should not be task oriented. Successful IT leaders must be able to see forward into the future to support your company's success. They must focus on your company's technology strategy.
Successful technology leaders should analyze how they can leverage technology as a tool to enhance profit and support your company's primary endeavors. Their priority is to have an updated technology strategy in place for your company's ongoing success. It is too late to react to system failures or out of date platforms that should already have been upgraded. In today’s technologically advanced world, an IT leader should not be tasked with details such as SPAM filters or email box sizes. All of these tasks should be automated due to much better security and performance features that modern business computing offers.
A proper technology strategy addresses the security, performance, and cost effective features for a system. Not only are the system details - such as day to day support and other second and third tier tasks - able to be outsourced for better response times and resolutions, but these services can be obtained at significant cost savings. Businesses should no longer sustain their own IT departments and pay top dollar for key services when better results and cost savings are readily available. To learn more about a proper technology strategy, please click here to download a free executive report regarding technology staffing.
What should be the focus of a successful IT leader? They should assess your current system infrastructure with regard to performance and workflow. Does your system support employees to help make them productive and efficient? How do your employees feel about the reliability and performance of their technology tools? Many technology leaders are not even asking these assessment questions because they do not want to face the real answer. At this point, it is appropriate for the company leadership to be involved in this discussion. A proper technology strategy has to be a priority for all of the company leadership. It is not reasonable for an IT leader to make strategic technology decisions on their own.
Assessments should be conducted and the truth needs to be addressed. Perhaps the issue that comes into light is that there have not been enough resources provided for a proper technology strategy to be enacted. Perhaps the current system is outdated or is cobbled together based on propping up outdated system architecture. This is a clear indicator of an outdated technology strategy. Another factor can be outdated software that needs to be upgraded or replaced. These excuses are all symptomatic of an outdated technology strategy.
Once assessments are made, then further discussions can be had about company priorities and how they align with the current technology strategy. Successful technology leaders must research applications and solutions that will enable your company’s workflow to be optimized at all levels. They need to incorporate and optimize technology advancements so that they can meet your company's performance objectives. Once the proper technology strategy is in place, then a company can surpass their objectives.
Another common excuse that is constantly recited is the cost of properly upgrading a system. This is no longer an issue when you consider current cloud offerings from the right vendor. A proper solution can be obtained with no capital investment and an entire system refresh included in a fixed monthly utility fee. A crucial part of having a proper technology strategy in place is having a technology partner that can address the support and security needs for your company in a cost effective and resourceful manner.
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