Monday, November 23, 2009

IT failures ? Business' challenges

I recently read about the global annual cost of IT failures wherein the author based on certain assumptions puts the figure at US$ 6.2 trillion. It’s almost half of the US GDP number and that is indeed something to think about. Never mind the assumptions or the math behind the figures, the reality is that this humungous number is being labeled as IT failure. The Standish Group report on reasons behind the lack of success in projects with significant IT components indicates that IT contribution to unsuccessful projects is less than 10%. So in reality the number would be closer to US$ 620 billion. And that is about half the GDP of India !

Knowing a bit about IT, I would label this as a business failure to capitalize on the potential that IT could have offered to them. Why does every initiative have to result in painful change management that the IT organization has to drive ? What prevents the business users from embracing new technology solutions despite their vocalization of the requirements in some form or other ? Lots of questions, are there any answers that provide the holy grail to impact the crazy figures out there ?

My Oh I See moment happened many years back when my obstinacy to not start a project without a signature from the business leader delayed the project commencement by 11 months. And when we did complete the project within the stipulated time of 6 months, it was like water to the desert weary traveler who has even stopped believing in mirages. So don’t push hard to implement the next SCM, CRM, or whatever TLA (Three Letter Acronym) technology you believe will make the difference, because it will not if no one uses it.

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