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Company Attitude Towards IT Managers

By Hockeyist ·
I would like to know if the attitude towards IT Managers by upper management and other peer managers has changed over the past five years.
I have been involved in IT for over 20 years. In my experience and those of my colleagues, the attitude seems to be better in the last 3 years. Could this be the result of IT Managers educating themselves in business skills? Could it be that IT skilled people are making it to the upper management level/board level?
In my opinion, in the past, upper management are the ones to blame for the distrust that exists between IT and "the business" often have senior management thrown money at an IT problem in the hope that the problem will "go away". I know, when I was a young IT administrator, all I had to do was ask for a budget and the money flowed and it was duly consumed, no questions asked.
It's easier to train IT Managers in business skills than to train Business Managers in IT skills. There have been a number of MBA IT trained IT Managers popping up in the market. Could this be the reason for the attitude change (if there is one) in the past five years?

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The blinders are off

by dafe2 In reply to Company Attitude Towards ...

What I see going on is IT is now led by Finance.

We (IT) usually have a seat at Governance. Mostly in IT today you DO need a strong backround in whatever - Business/Industry/Commerce or Government.

The attitude change you see is simply a maturity in the industry, that is, slowly getting rid of techs that have no people skills or relevant background in the Business/Industry/Commerce or Government they are working in.

After all you do need relevant knowledge or skills to solve problems.

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I can vouch...

by johnnywatt In reply to Company Attitude Towards ...

...for poor attitude towards IT. I recently wrote a letter after my the IT supervisor resigned, that whoever is put into position to direct IT, whether it is me (we'll see...) or another person, that the company must stop thinking of IT as a burden or a necessary evil to support individual department's desicions. We have departments that have ordered software without any IT's involvement. Of course, you can only guess how well that is going!

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you'll get blamed for that purchase

by Hockeyist In reply to I can vouch... a few years because business can blame IT without stepping on other managers toes...LOL

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No Different

by PokerJohn In reply to Company Attitude Towards ...

IT people are just like anybody else. In accounting, the ones
that understand the entire business and can communicate
become CFO's and sit at the highest level of management. In IT
it's the same thing.

The ones who think in term of US against THEM probably won't
be taken as seriously.

As far as departments buying software without involving IT,
what I've heard (as a former software sales person) many times,
that the IT guys treat some of the department heads so crappy
that they don't want to deal with IT.

There's always two sides of a story.


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I really have to disagree.

by johnnywatt In reply to No Different

Really. I've don't have the attitude of US agaist them, it's just simply that. And I disagree with IT guys treating department heads crappy. I've always been more than willing to coorporate with all departemnts. The real issue is department heads looking at IT as having more control or too much control over their them. "Road blocks" is what one manager called IT. I guess because we like the idea of lower TCO and implemented security on our workstations. <- As an example of course.
But honestly, if the department heads feel crappy about IT, then there needs to be addressed. And, I haven't heard those needs yet.

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IT Rules

by jon_baumgardner In reply to No Different

I have worked in IT for 16 years. I am now Project Manager. I find that where there are mergers, there are IT people forced to make the business people understand that the reason there was a merger was to savev money. The only way to save money is to streamline operations. That means that all the business units have to have the same procedures and automation, integration and electronic commerce will cause the savings to happen. OF course defining the business rules and getting everybody to agree to them is painful but the requirement to do so comes from the CEO. Often times, IT is forced to gather these business rules in order to automate processes and in force the Business to think about their processes write them down, refine them and buy into the process.

This gives lots of power to IT.

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These are all good points

by DC_GUY In reply to Company Attitude Towards ...

Another is that as the Paradigm keeps Shifting, the portion of a company's activities that are completely dependent on IT or simply now ARE IT (e.g. banking) continues to rise. You could hardly expect to run a business in the finance sector in this century without knowing quite a bit about IT.

Virtual businesses like e-Bay and Amazon are taking a huge bite out of the cash flow of more traditional companies. Being IT savvy has finally become essential to survival.

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Only thing permanent is change

by binoy_hotmail In reply to Company Attitude Towards ...

Since the world of business is changing rapidly, it is essential that the managers, including IT managers, need to adapt. Code optimisation & latest technologies sometimes take a greater importance than the overall business objective of that of increaqsing the value. As long as the manager keeps learning and adapts, the company's attitude will not be perceived to change.

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I agree

by 4rd4fun In reply to Only thing permanent is c ...

as an "IT Manager" I think it is our responsibility to understand as much of the business process as we can to facilitate growth. The more we are involved in the process, the more we can tailor our security and access to help the entity and thus making our IT department look better to top management

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Business value is the driver

by Jonas G In reply to Company Attitude Towards ...

What I've seen overe the year's (26 and counting) is more and more emphasis from both sides on answering why IT needs money. What will it do for the business, in dollar terms, i.e. save costs, increase revenue, etc. It managers who can link IT changes to business initiatives get along much better with "upper" management, since they've learned to speak their language.

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