Bringing Innovation Back to IT

Some IT leaders might recall the glory days when they had the time and budget to introduce the company to the latest ‘gee-whiz’ technology, drive innovation across the business and also actively engage their personal love of technology.

IT departments today tend to be bogged down with maintaining complex infrastructure and operations, reacting to business demand in a tactical, not strategic, way and expending resources on fixing problems rather than driving innovative projects. Add to that the latest trend of end users getting tech-savvy and bringing consumer devices, mobile apps and cloud services into the environment without IT’s input, and idea of IT as the main innovator seems to fall away completely.

InnovationEnter Business Service Innovation. This new strategic approach from CA Technologies provides a strategic approach for IT leaders to move out of the IT management morass and into an environment that fosters innovation. CA Technologies breaks Business Service Innovation in to three primary tenets: accelerate, transform and secure. Under those are six capabilities that a Business Service Innovation approach addresses: model, assemble, automate, assure, manage and secure. Where IT leaders want to start depends on their maturity or preference, but the general idea is to make a move toward a more evolved, agile IT environment that is poised to meet business, customer and end-user demand in what is being dubbed “The New Normal” by CA and other industry experts.

Now when IT leaders are asked to not only align their strategy with the business, but also to fully integrate the technology directions with business objectives, they need an updated approach to IT management. Previous strategies came of age before the era of cloud computing and the new realities that bring-your-own-device (BYOD) and social technologies create for IT. Employees and customers need an IT environment that not only responds quickly to their needs, but can also anticipate the demand of end users and tailor business services to them.

The promise of Business Service Innovation is a more agile environment that can focus at least more of its energies on delivery of new, innovative services to the business. To do that, IT needs to better understand the infrastructure resources, for instance, that will be required to support business demand and plan for capacity. IT will also need to measure if the services they deliver meet the performance expectations of end users and customers. And IT will need to enable to provide security for identities, access and data in an environment that feature off-premise cloud services, mobile applications and social networking tools. The examples could go on and on, but the gist is to help IT to continue to evolve their departments and environments from a static service provider to a dynamic business enabler.

Obviously this type of transformation will be easier said than done, but with a set of guidelines, or a roadmap of sorts, on how to mature IT to become the innovation center – again – will make the journey easier. And as with all efforts around IT management, there is no set end-date on the project. But as a start, IT leaders need to get to the point where they can shift resources from ad hoc firefighting and reduce efforts around scrambling to support business demands to proactively investing in the technologies needed to drive business objectives.

Now Business Service Innovation offers those IT leaders longing to mature the guidelines that will enable them to embrace technologies such as cloud and mobility without missing a beat. Business Service Innovation could just be the approach that makes innovation the norm in IT again.

Does your IT organization have the ability to innovate? How would you like to enable innovation in your IT organization again? Please leave a comment here, let me know via Twitter @DDubie or e-mail me directly at Denise.Dubie@ca.com.

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Denise Dubie

About Denise Dubie

Denise Dubie (@DDubie) is Principal of Strategic Content in CA Technologies Thought Leadership Group. She is charged with creating content relevant to today’s most pressing technology and business trends for industry leaders and IT professionals. Prior to joining the company in 2010, Dubie spent 12 years of her career at Network World, an IDG company, covering the IT management industry and all of its players (including CA Technologies and its competitors) as well as high-tech careers, technology trends and vendors such as Cisco, HP, IBM and Microsoft. As Senior Editor at Network World, Dubie also authored the publication's twice-weekly Network and Systems Management Alert newsletter and contributed to the Web site's Microsoft Subnet blog. Before IDG, she served as Assistant Managing Editor at Application Development Trends, managing writers and the monthly publication's production process. Dubie started her professional journalism career as a Staff Writer/Reporter at The Transcript, a small daily paper in Western Massachusetts.

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