Leadership

Have we reached the end of the IT era?


Deborah Nelson, a Senior Vice President at Hewlett-Packard, thinks so. Historically, the technology department in an organization had been known as data processing (DP), and then management information systems (MIS), and now information technology (IT). Those labels pretty much reflected the stuff that was being managed, and they are are a testimony to the expanding role of technology in business in recent decades.

Nelson thinks that we have reached the next stage of development and that the IT era is over. She makes a compelling argument. The differences that she's talking about are definitely subtle, but that could be because we're already in the middle of the transition. 

In an interview with Dan Farber, Nelson says,

"We are now seeing technology running every aspect of business, taking orders, hiring employees, checking inventory, getting the latest news. You can't do it without technology. We need to think about technology and how to measure it in fundamentally different ways. Instead of hardware uptime, response times and service-level agreements, we need to measure in terms of the business outcomes they achieve, such as how fast to profit for [a] new store or to deploy a new financial service. We [at HP] view this new phase as 'Business Technology.'"

So, what Nelson is saying, if I understand correctly, is that IT is transitioning from a stand-alone department to an integral component of every department and every business strategy. As such, technology considerations need to play a larger part of the company strategy at the front end of the decision-making process. 

"It’s definitely an evolution and an emerging trend... The vast majority of budgets are 70 to 90 percent tied up in maintenance and operations," she said. "We have to think about technology and competitive advantage, not just keeping the lights on. We want customers to feel this urgency–it's strategic, and not a cost reduction concept, but a way to help IT deliver better business outcomes."

That's easier said than done -- the role of the CIO has been shrinking in recent years -- and whether or not technology teams become a greater force in strategic decision-making will be a true measure of whether the plans of Nelson and HP are successful. But whether "Business Technology" ultimately gets adopted as the term for this new reality isn't as important as the fact that Nelson has put her finger on a changing view of technology in business that is already in motion and will likely require a shift in thinking for many technology professionals. This shift could also have important implications in the debate over a centralized vs. decentralized IT department (which I also talked about yesterday). 

Just for fun, I'll comment on the name "Business Technology." I think it's too narrow. Currently, "Information Technology" works not only for businesses but also for governments and non-profit organizations. So, if you want to go down that road, a better name would be "Organizational Technology" (OT). Other alternatives that could fit would be "Technology Implementation" (TI) or "Technology Management" (TM) since those are descriptive of what professionals in this field do. 

Do you believe that we're at the end of the IT era? Is "Business Technology" the right term for the next stage? What term would you prefer? Join the discussion

About

Jason Hiner is Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He writes about the people, products, and ideas changing how we live and work in the 21st century. He's co-author of the upcoming book, Follow the Geeks.

71 comments
openview
openview

For sure it is important to manage the business and not so much the technology. Wasn't it important almost from the early days of IT? And more realistic: it is important to manage the IT technologies and infrastructure having a business focused view or approach. But there are pre-requisites and if this preconditions are ignored the whole approach of business management is pie in the sky. It is simply nonsense to tell people IT operations and maintenance is not important anymore. If the IT technologies and infrastructures are not under control, at least to a certain degree, business management is a burden, but not useful at all. Under control means that (operations) management facilities are needed which are able to cope with the existing complexity and dynamics. But to cut corners it is important to have a look at other industries. Listening to IT people sometimes one can get the impression that operations management has been invented by IT folks. This is simply nonsense. Operations management is a well known and well established discipline used by almost all industries. Leveraging their experience, using their knowledge, approaches and "rules of thumb" is much more important than listening to IT vendors who are trying to sell the same approach under another name for more than ten years.

DLMc
DLMc

With "information technology" touching all parts of a business' operation, it is very frustrating to try and implement a system on a corporate network, the property of the company, not the IT department, that is not "under the control" of IT. The day that IT understand that they are a means to a business' operation and not an end in their own right will be the day that they survive with the title IT, BT or any other title. These people need to open their minds to the fact that technology is everywhere, not just in the IT domain. If IT departments continue to create barriers, people will find their way around them, even it it is by forming a new department to take over their current introspective role!

Geek3001
Geek3001

Business Technology (BT) is as good a name as any, though Business Information Technology (BIT) might be more descriptive. BT could be used to describe non-IT things like paper shredders and forklifts, both being forms of technology that apply to business. On the other hand BIT might scare away those CEOs and others that know a little about technology. After all, computers and comm technology deals with bits and bytes behind the scenes. In any event, BT/BIT is just another acronym in the ever evolving field of automated information processing. (AIP) I like to joke that the industry changes acronyms every three to five years so we can justify new hardware and software, even if the basic reason behind IT doesn't change. When you get down to it, IT exists to reduce costs and improve decision making. Whether it is automating payroll back in the days of punch cards, or providing worldwide integrated communications in today's world, you can say that IT focuses on those two areas. Heck, double entry bookkeeping, which has been around for centuries, fits that generalized description. I suspect that the next IT acronym will be based on who gets the most media press in the least amount of time. Whether it is BT, BIT, or some other set of letters, doesn't really matter.

lourife
lourife

Great article. Not sure it's the "End" of the IT era, but will give you some reasons, from the trench, why it looks that way.....events are causing this kind of reasoning, and I will relate some. We are a 19 year old IT company. I am the VP of Marketing...the rainmaker. At TCS we are a Total Communications Solution. Our capabilities are deep. We are a true single source solution and had this designation in the late 90's before it became cool and others started using it. We can take care of a companies IT needs, nearly from A-Z. We work nationally with selected companies. Been noticing a change in the market place. Listened to a friend of ours who recently consulted with IBM getting them to stop showing technology on the TV, and started putting desks in the middle of the highway. They now want you to believe they don't sell hardware, they are "Business Consultants." He told us to get away from references to technology....deal with business problems. We now sell BITS=Business & Information Technology Synchronized. We believe IT enhances a companies operational and strategic effectiveness. Here's what I've found out. 1. Strategic business goals and IT strategic goals(if any) must synchronize. We don't approach customers from the IT perspective....we are business consultants with an IT slant! 2. CEO's and CIO's with other directors of IT departments, basically do not SPEAK THE SAME LANGUAGE. CEO's are asked to sign checks by people they don't trust (CIO's) because they don't know what they are buying, because they don't understand what the CIO is telling them when he asked for new technology/projects!! Would you purchase from a person you don't trust? 3. Many business, medical, law, manufacturing, etc. view IT as am EMERGING BUSINESS FUNCTION. Think about this for a minute: emerging???? What year is this? Do they use the Gutenberg press to copy/print??? Who's fault is this? 4. Most of the problems you find with customers are more behavioral than technical. Take doctors.........they can be their own worst enemy. Hard to get people to let go and give you control so you can demonstrate your competence. Same inside organizations, it's a people problem.....I can't talk to you, you can't talk to me, so lets go round and round distrusting each other, hiring and firing people because of a language barrier.4. IT was invented by extremely intelligent people. The big problem is translating what they know into a vernacular understood by dummies like me. No translation....no trust! I do not understand IT, but I effectively sell what it does. Recently read about 8 books all with titles similar to "From Business Strategy to IT Action", all written to educate CEO's on proper utilization of IT in their organization. In other words, trying to simplify the IT language barrier so they can finally understand what's going on. Finished them, and was still confused.....means many CEO's were left that way too. So being of a simple mind, I started wondering if people really could define IT. Are we all talking about something we failed to define years ago? What is IT? Asked two senior executives to define IT. Neither could give me something for the street...I could explain it to a CEO......kindergarten level. I spent about a month defining IT, what is it, what you do with it, why you want it inside your organization, can it help my business's productivity, and it's amazing what I came up with. Yes, there is a problem and I think we better KISS it=Keep It Short & Simple!!! Lou Rife lourife@tcstech.com

rupyoda
rupyoda

Okay, so I'm a little sentimental because I'm pounding away on an HP Tablet and my favorite college professor was named Deborah Nelson, but I still believe that the HP exec is on the right path. If one views organizational investments in technology, regardless of the nature of the organization, as Business Technology, one can quickly derive and reinforce that all in-house technologies either drive The Business or represent waste. Cost management principles like IRR and sets of sound heuristics must still be used in decision making, but the bottom line for any tech that gets money will always be "Does it empower the business?" That empowerment may come from improving customer-focused operations, decreasing tech spend on stable or increasing revenues, or gaining internal efficiencies (why hasn't every Global 2000 company moved to wikis and internal blogging?); but it all comes down to impacting the Business -- people, processes, procedures, culture, and data --not simply Information.

william.purcell
william.purcell

Outcome Based Planning (OBP) has been around for many years--I showed companies how to incorporate IT into OBP back in 2000. The real problem is that most organizations do a poor job of Strategic Planning in the first place. OBP takes a lot of effort, but when done effectively it can make the difference between record success and closing the doors. Planning future business strategies without effectively incorporating your information needs (and therefore the information technology base) is missing the boat. The CIO (by whatever name in the organization) must be an integral part of the strategic planning process. Is "Information Technology" fading away? I think not. But hopefully more organizations are beginning to realize that information is one of the most valuable resources they have when it comes to planning for the future. Those that learn to do effective OBP that fully incorporates IT will clearly prove the benefits.

Chaz Chance#
Chaz Chance#

Just as we have seen telephones and radio merge to become mobile (cell) phones, IT is merging with, er, well, everything! And if you need IT skills for almost any non-manual job, what future is there for people who only do IT? One of my first jobs in IT ("Computing" we called it back then) was teaching secretaries how to use a wordprocessor so that they would remain employable. Today, most companies have dispensed with secretaries and put PCs on executives and salesmens desks and told them to get on with it. They are expected to have skills that previously were the territory of the secretary. A brief comparison of searches at a UK recruitment site reveals more jobs in IT. I went on to teach "desk-top publishing", at a time that marked the demise of printing as a trade. Even further back, when I left school a university would not consider you for a "Computing" course unless you had a high level of mathematics. Today you are more likely to finish school with the ability to program than to have that same high grade in math. Finance and accounting departments are shrinking, and managers are expected to develop financial skills. Just look at the proliferation of "finance for non-financial managers" courses. In the company that I work in today, most hires have a university degree in mechanical or electronic engineering, or in business. It is expected that any IT skills needed for the job will be picked up as and when required. Jobs here are never advertised on the IT boards, and my "Computing and IT" degree was not an essential for my job, despite the fact that ninetyfive percent of what I do is traditionally thought of as IT (AI, machine vision, HCI). To believe that IT will continue as a separate entity from the other professions except for a small minority of cases is the modern equivalent of being a "flat-earther".

ed.fletcher
ed.fletcher

Interesting. I?ve seen a team called "Technology Business Management" in an organisation (2-3 years old now) specifically staffed with people who speak both technology and business. They are the interface between IT and Business, and manage the demand (requirements) into IT.

tim
tim

The obvious desperation of these vendors (SAP, MS,HP,Oracle, IBM, etc.) to move product by 'any means necessary' is clearly apparent in this interview: "It?s definitely an evolution and an emerging trend. But, we need to be out in front and lead for our customers. The vast majority of budgets are 70 to 90 percent tied up in maintenance and operations. We have to think about technology and competitive advantage, not just keeping the lights on. We want customers to feel this urgency?it?s strategic, and not a cost reduction concept, but a way to help IT deliver better business outcomes." Getting customers to "feel this urgency" is 100% marketing, and shouldn't be confused with technological decision making.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

in business, at home as well. My washing machine has more processing power than the first computers I used. However as soon as you read software making decisions like hiring employees, you know this a fool spouting off. Software does not make decisions, hard or fuzzy logic, it is merely an implementation of a process defined by a bunch of humans, the decision are pre-packaged. Until true AI comes, differences are mere a matter of degree of complexity.

Mafig
Mafig

I completely agree with the eventual change of name to Business Technology. I've been in the same industrial company for the last 20 years, although not the same place or work, and I could see the changing role of technology. A name is just a name but it's good to show to the non-tech people that our job / work objectives are more and more pervasive.

Why Me Worry?
Why Me Worry?

What a crock of B U L L S H I T she is spewing!

WKL
WKL

as any other corporate managament-type that honestly believes that "reality" is just what they decide and say it is, spouting typical corporate newspeak as though it were a new global paradigm in an attempt to impress her peers and advance her corporate standing. I would advise her to be content just being a housewife and forget it. Those people are more concerned with labels, appearances and politics than with what technology is or could be in reality. The truly technologically creative among us provide the fruits of our talent and ingenuity, providing the true source of economic value, while it's the bullshit artists, educated beyond their intellect, Peter-Principle promoted to positions of authority, that usurp our work, use it to gain political power, and foist their grandiose delusions off on the rest of society. It's one reason why I will never offer my creative talents to such people, ever again. I would encourage everyone to withhold their efforts and skills from people like her, all over the world.

WKL
WKL

YES, damn it, technology IS everywhere, and you damned well better believe that it takes technically adept people to deal with it. You actually think that we can be replaced by people who know and understand absolutely nothing about the technology they depend on? You actually think that the corporate exec, marketing and sales bullsh!tters are going to do a better job than we do? Now THAT I've GOT to see! DO IT! BRING IT ON! RIGHT NOW!!

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

that's part of the argument against having a centralized IT department -- there's a feeling that IT is integral to the success of any organization and so it needs to be located closer to the customers (which are the users in the various departments in this case).

jtrxrogers
jtrxrogers

As lourife said (this thread) a company without IT (or other acronyms) is dead in the water. Finance and marketing people, however, control the cash flows that IT departments/staff depend on. So while we can rage against the machine, in a corporate env we are the ultimate hostages in a war of "who needs whom" to survive. As an associated sign that the "IT professional" era may be waning, check out three TV commercials: CDW: presents the local IT staff as an arrogant/smart mouth to the somewhat perplexed office staff; CompUSA: The name Geek Squad says it all. IT Tech School: Listless 20-30 something languishing on couch states he did not know what to do with his life, so he went to IT Tech school - now he is one of US! Is this the best way to promote a career profession? Visual media has impact...any manager who has a budget and sees this kind of "IT" skills marketing has to be wondering "why do I pay these IT people what I do? No, the underlying technology (and purported process improvement) will not go away. But managers will still spend it how and when they want, which is what will drive a change in how IT is structured within large companies.

lourife
lourife

You are absolutely right. Business today is information intensive and nothing works without IT. Sometimes it appears people cannot toot their own horns. Without IT, a business is dead in the water!

WKL
WKL

... that what you are actually endorsing here is a kind of degradation of the IT discipline. Just from the standpoint of sheer complexity of the subject and the amount of information you have to know, not to mention the level of experience and developed skills one must have in order to claim any sort of competency in "computing and IT", I would think that maintaining IT as a separate entity from other professions is entirely justified, and is universally applicable to any business, regardless of its nature. Unless, of course, you're willing to settle for such degradation of the level of competency in such a technical discipline as to delude yourself into thinking that you can just "pick up" IT "skills" on the fly with no understanding or prior experience. Which is precisely what I believe that I'm witnessing in many areas - people who have bought into the "social phenom" mindset of computing who know just enough to be dangerous, yet consider themselves gurus because they think all problems are solved by "adding more RAM" and "defragging the disk". Perhaps the truly competent among us need to make the effort to take over businesses altogether? After all, if you actually have the wherewithal to handle a complex technology, what kind of challenge can the typical business pose?

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

BS, SOL, SNAFU, TCP/IP, MS-DOS, or MIC, KEY, MOUSE. Just as long as the direct deposit keeps hitting the bank.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

I think she is saying that software is running the process behind all of these actions, and not that software is actually "taking orders, hiring employees, checking inventory." The software is simply helping people do those things more efficiently and handling all of the data flow on the backend.

jtrxrogers
jtrxrogers

Your role is listed as consultant. Give us the benefit of your perspective. My experience (only a few months) of working on my own is quite a bit different than the much longer time I have spent in the cube farms. While no post/blog is universal truth the rise and fall of IT (DP, MIS, etc) as she describes is not all bull. I work for a 40,000 emplyee company that is sending IT staff into the business units, sending server builds to an imaging 'factory', and setting up a support org in India (read the World is Flat by Friedman). We *are* at the end of an era of a monolithic IT department/career in a corporate environment. What does it look like from your side?

JamesRL
JamesRL

Its easier to criticise and offer absolutely nothing in return. What did she say that you disagree with? How do you see it? James

maxwell edison
maxwell edison

I'm simply amazed at people like you who actually believe people like Deborah Nelson, a Senior Vice President at Hewlett-Packard, is successful because she's stupid. Most of the time, I've found that it's only a target to blame for one's own failures. It's amazing how so many failures believe they're the smart ones, and the successful people are the dumb ones. I'm not suggesting you're a failure, because I have no way of knowing. But even if you were, you'd never admit it. Failures rarely do; and they often blame others for it. And speaking of paradigms, you would do yourself a favor by shifting yours.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

Attack the idea. Don't attack the person. You are more than welcome to attack Deborah's ideas and you have a legitimate point in your message, but by attacking Deborah with your misogynistic housewife remark, you stepped over the line. Remarks like that will make people not want to read your stuff or take your ideas seriously.

Server Queen
Server Queen

There are still some IT functions that ought to be centralized in larger organizations. Network architect. Email administrator. SQL enterprise DBA. Things like that. There IS still a role for us back-office types.

online
online

WKL, how do you define "competence?" I'm more than competent in IT, but not in business. The story of the computer industry is full of people who are technically competent but failed utterly at running businesses, or who had the smarts to bring in people whose competence was business. However much we in IT may laugh at them, our employers need marketing and sales people as much as they need us.

humphreyb
humphreyb

I don't think that IT (or whatever the preferred term is) will go away as a discipline, but the simple fact is, most people come to bat with a certain amount of IT-related skills. While this by no means makes them IT experts or gurus, it does mean many people involved in all facets of an organization are going to have some basic (and possibly more) knowledge of IT structures, IT requirements and some level of competency in everything from simple desk-top publishing software to more advance skills in database creation and networking. This can be viewed as a good thing (though I know the "just enough to be dangerous" feeling myself, we have one individual who keeps mucking up our database with her desire to make interactive forms)though. It means there are people in every department who have some common terminology to work with when discussing IT requirements for an organization. Unfortunately, it is not always the people who are in management. And unfortunately, some people will not realize or admit to their own limitations in understanding IT related issues. And, unfortunately, sometimes the IT personnel, deliberately or not, make it difficult to create a dialogue as well. The whole point to this is, IT related systems and requirements affect almost every part of an organization, whether public, private or non-profit. IT requirements needs to be considered at the strategic level of an organization, with input from actual IT professionals. Management needs to understand that its IT department can do more than just "keep the lights on" - that with the right communication, can be involved in meaningful strategic planning that can benefit the company in increased values, smoother work-flow processes, decrease man hours for redundant tasks, and provide new opprotunities for business. The point of her comments I believe is that this IS now becoming the focus - that IT is, finally, getting its seat at the "strategic table", or at least starting to. I think that is a good thing - its much better to have a hand in shaping the future, especially if your the guy (or housewife) who knows the most about the future of IT. As for taking over businesses all together - what fun would that be? You'd spend all day developing HR policies, planning corporate employee days and taking meeting with stakeholders (what in the world is an actual 'stakeholder' and how did they get such an awful name) and never get to actually "do" anything. :) brenadine

Freebird54
Freebird54

This view would not take long to sink you. It might surprise you to know that a highly competent and effective sales force is the real engine of a successful business. It is not something that most IT trained/experienced people do well. We can implement and deliver the solutions - but if no-one buys it - so much for the direct deposit! Why are IT people usually not great in sales? I suspect it is the unforgiving nature of today's computers - they don't accept anything that has already been through the cow (so to speak) - an apparently important skill :)

lenyabloko
lenyabloko

Dinasaurs too did not care. I guess you don't care about them as well. But I think those who wright your check do. Good luck.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

that they are sadly behind the times. IT as an enabler in all facets of business has been around for over a decade in the businesses I've been in. That's a mixture of huge and small, established and new players. So what exactky is this big change? The world was different when she woke up?

JamesRL
JamesRL

Computers aren't hiring people, for example, but those people hiring use computers to sift through resumes, generate interview sheets, and track progress. In the old days we looked for paper processes to automate. How many paper processes do we have left. When the courier comes to my door with a package I sign electronically, and that signature attachs to data with a timestamp - all much more compelling than a piece of paper. James

WKL
WKL

I'm sure poor little Debbie appreciates your coming to her defense, Max. Maybe you ought to suck up to her a little more, she might give you a position as Assistant Bullsh!tter or something. As long as we're speaking in broad generalities anyway, I readily admit being a failure. I failed, for example, to realize early on just how venal, mean, manipulative, crazy and stupid some of these people are and I failed to just walk away and withhold my talents from them immediately when I did realize it. You're right in your point about the dumbest people thinking they're the wisest, that's only natural. But I'm constantly amazed by people like you who seem to fall all over themselves supporting any crap that comes out of some veep's mouth simply because of their title. Ooh, she has a Corporate Title, she MUST be wiser than me! Yeah, right. Corporations are a Frankenstein's monster entity created by a legal fiction, that represents the very antithesis of human rights and freedoms, and democracy. You would do yourself a favor by reconsidering your business philosophy.

jck
jck

I got a chuckle out of his remarks...of course, I chuckle at orangutans eating their own excrement too...even though it is disgusting. :D But even amongst the litter, he has a not-so-trashy point...even you admitted that. I think she is delusional. Having a "Business Technology" unit takes away the divider that seperates the technical from the non-technical. Next thing you know, Deb will want to make the job requirements for a personal assistant look like such: - must type at least 75 wpm - must be able to take calls and interface respectfully with the public - knowledge of Oracle 10g - knowledge of PC repair and assembly Keep secretaries typing and answering phones...keep managers managing projects...and keep programmers writing code. About the only reason I could see to integrate operations with support...would be to task employees with more duties as to make redundant more people and fire them and raise profits. Gotta love throat-slitting execs.

WKL
WKL

Suggesting that women could and even should be housewives is "mysogynistic", and not Politically Correct. My apologies (heh,heh). OK, then, I would suggest that she stick to making and selling printers and spare us her "feelings of urgency" over how she is going to label and market HP's new line of "Business Solutions". Fair enough?

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

NOC engineer and systems architect. You're right. There will definitely be some jobs that will still need to be part of a central IT group.

WKL
WKL

Now, THAT was the most lucid expression of the matter I've read so far. I largely agree with it. You could probably write a book about the difficulty in creating a dialogue with technical adepts. But again, this reflects the fact that IT, after all, IS a technical discipline, with specialized jargon to deal with complex concepts having to do with technical reality, not marketing and sales puffery and hyperbole. Regarding "stakeholder", I always thought that it was just that - someone who held a "stake" in something, i.e., a claim, share or wager. But I know what you mean, it sounds like it describes someone holding a spike, perhaps positioned to drive into the heart of a vampire or something. :^D

WKL
WKL

The reason that "not accepting anything that's been through the cow" is an important "skill" is because you cannot deal with technology by BSing your way through it. This is a point that sales and exec types typically fails to grasp. Technical adepts generally have a deep respect and commitment to scientific/technical realities and facts. I'm sure you would call it a personality defect, but things just wouldn't work at all otherwise. It is why "IT people" don't make good salesman, (or good management types for that matter), since the cultural expectation is that you have to be good at generating copious amounts of cow manure to entice people into buying whatever it is you're selling. Something that is antithetic to the mindset of any competent technical nerd.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

Never heard of it. Googling it yields only one inappropriate result. "If you don't see connection to dinosaurs, ..." Business Communications 101 - Lack of understanding of the message is ALWAYS the fault of the sender. If I'm not getting your point, why not try explaining it in simple English instead of continuing to dance around it with metaphors? Go back and look at your first post. What does the subject "Size matters" have to do with my lack of concern about what the department is called? Then you refer to dinosaurs not caring. Not caring about what, their size or their names? Then you assure me my corporate superiors care about dinosaurs. No, they don't. I'm trying to get your point. Would you mind coming right out and clearly stating it? Why should I care whether the department I'm in is called DP, MIS, IT, or BT?

NgunnawalJack
NgunnawalJack

I'm not sure that correct spelling is a necessary selection criteria for an IT profeshunal

lenyabloko
lenyabloko

that the quality of your work may soon be as irrelevant as your check. If you dont see connection to dinosaurs, then may be "telephonyst" will ring a bell.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

don't care about dinosaurs, and neither do I. My corporate superiors are interested in the quality of my work. Did you have a point? I've worked in departments called all of the names previously mentioned. I don't care if the department is called Support and Hardware Infrastructure Technology; it's just a name. When you have skills, you don't need luck.

Freebird54
Freebird54

That she woke up. The change (as is stated in the article) has been going on for some time already. Perhaps - the larger the company, the slower they are to realize what is happening? At least in upper management :) This has been going on for years, especially in smaller companies where the impact on the bottom line is not diguised by a tendency to budget on the 'use it or lose it' principles of management metrics....

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

You must have some reason you think she's incorrect. What exactly do you think is silly, and why? For example, I don't think it's important what the department is called as long as the job gets done. She may have a point, but I don't think the department name is important. To me the idea is in the same league with calling employees "associates" or calling used cars "pre-owned".

WKL
WKL

Don't mean to hurt your feelings, I'm just ribbing you.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

I plan on keeping in mind his comments here whenever I see his alias. They give me a reference point to know where he's coming from.

WKL
WKL

The meaning of life? Gimme a break.

WKL
WKL

How about some immaturity for a change? Or just plain good old fashioned slapstick? Or maybe just the ever-popular bird? ....(\?`\ ......\\....\ ........\\....\ ...../?`\....\?`\ .._|.\....\....\...\.\ (..(.\....)....)....).) .\...\/................/ ...\................../ .....)............../ ...../............./

WKL
WKL

I don't throw rocks at things, I swing clubs at golf balls usually and see how far I can hit them :) I started working in tech three DECADES before 9/11, but I don't see much difference between before and after. Did I say something that you found particularly irksome?

online
online

Perhaps it's my worldview vs. yours, but is being able to write a program of any sort essential in today's IT world? I would say "not for everyone." I work with a number of successful IT workers who couldn't write a batch file to save their life yet successfully support end users, keep servers and applications running, and even manage departments full of other non-coders. As someone who *can* write a batch file (but not much more) and has successfully run an IT shop, I wonder if (for most computer workers) the ability to code is as critical as the ability to use a command line in today's world...

online
online

... WKL's vituperative posts really don't encourage me to read any more from him...

bwilkins
bwilkins

That's about the most sensible thing you've said yet. If you're that bored don't you have an ex- to pick a fight with or a rock to throw at a can stuck on a tree-limb? Anger is a double-edged sword--be careful when you swing it. I worked in the corporate world but in sales, not IT, and it was everything you say--but it was my choice, and it was my choice to leave, and it was my choice to never go back. Actually--I can identify with parts of what Deborah is saying. I work in a large community-based non-profit facility. We are currently in the process of replacing two of our software programs--each of which will do exactly what the old ones do--but based on today's technology and software--not software from 10 years ago. Each department is excited at the prospect of being more productive, although they have the same capabilities now, simply because the new programs are designed in a way that they can individually understand and operate better. It's a perception--not necessarily a reality; but if they like it, hey--my job's that much easier. I started tech school three weeks before 9/11 -- right before the bottom dropped out of IT. What I do now is NOT what I thought I would be doing, but it's the greatest job I've ever had. And yes, each and every department in my three building complex looks to me before they do anything in the way of upgrading anything--it's all technology based, grounded, and surrounded. Funny how that term "Generalist" doesn't pop up nearly as often as you'd think.

WKL
WKL

I'm not looking for ANY kind of credit whatsoever, from anybody, my friend. If anything, I'm being deliberately provocative simply because I'm bored. Don't worry about me, I am calm, and I _have_ calmly just walked away from it in my time, thank goodness. It allowed me to retain my sanity and perspective, unlike so many others who have tried to deal and get along with the kinds of people I alluded to, much to their ultimate detriment.

lpresson
lpresson

Well said, just because they are Corporate executives doen't mean a thing. I retired from a computer vendor and I can tell you most of the executives have never and could not write a "Hello World" program let alone run an IT shop in todays business environemnts.

Chaz Chance#
Chaz Chance#

WKL said "...and I failed to just walk away and withhold my talents..." Please, please, please just walk away. You obviously feel so threatened that you appear to have become emotional, as demonstrated by postings which do seem a little irrational and are very abusive. No one suggested that someone with a title is wiser than you personally. Please do calm yourself. However, a clear and well thought out argument has been presented, and deserves more respect than you are showing. Your response does you no credit at all.

maxwell edison
maxwell edison

.....you're a failure. And your message reinforces it to all who read.

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