Why has IT management become so cursed with Binary Thinking? No. 3: IT is internal or outsourced Binary Thinking: Organisations can get their IT services from an internal IT department or they can dispense with their IT department and their CIO and get all of their IT services under contract from an IT outsourcer.
Why has IT management become so cursed with Binary Thinking? No. 2: Control of IT can be centralised or distributed Binary Thinking: CIOs need to make a fundamental decision for their organisation. Either they will control all IT staff, assets and projects across the enterprise centrally or they will delegate everything out to local managers on a geographic and/or business-line basis. Unless a CIO chooses the centralised option they should probably resign.
When Alan Turing was developing his ideas about computing he was not constrained by the binary number system so why has IT management become so cursed with Binary Thinking?
Why has IT management become so cursed with Binary Thinking? No. 1: There is IT and there is business Binary Thinking: Everything that exists within an organisation (strategies, policies, processes, people, teams, assets, budgets, requirements, projects etc) can have a label of “IT” or “Business”. Nothing can carry both labels. Organisations need to work hard to make sure all of the “IT” things and “business” things are aligned but merging any of these things would be a mistake. Usually “business” people prevent “IT” people from participating in “business” activities. If “business” people work with “IT” suppliers it is bound to cause problems.
This is first of a series of follow ups to my blog post about a service-oriented operating model for IT. These posts are based upon some of my insights and experience of putting this model into practice and I hope they will either help you develop your own thinking or provoke you to share your own ideas. In these follow up posts I am going to cover: engaging the rest of the organisation mapping out the IT value chain developing the IT bill of materials designing the IT organisation structure aligning funding and resources implementing the change. Most of the comments and reactions to the original blog post concern organisation so I am going to start there although, logically, it is the fourth step.