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IT Maturity Part 4: Conclusions for a Successful IT Organization

You have to be pretty careful in trying to draw conclusions from our little survey, because we deliberately didn't look at some of the things which absolutely impact an organization's ability to succeed with IT. We didn't look at managerial experience. We ignored their operating system choices and other vendor decisions. We ignored important things like time-in-profession for top-tier IT staffers. We thought those were all pretty obvious in terms of tactics to achieve success; we were looking for less obvious markers.

If we had to put our finger on one major success precursor, it's hiring. Should be obvious, but we think most organizations do a terrible job of hiring, and that the labor pool simply doesn't supply enough good candidates in all the right places.

We'd also say that a culture of support was in evidence within our successful companies. Administrators got the tools they needed, instead of being asked to do everything manually -- but had no hesitation to hack out something home-grown if that was the only way to get the job done. "I am doing this manually, once, and never again," was such a clear, consistent and resounding sentiment that we can't help but feel it must have some positive impact on those organizations. Employees in successful organizations seemed to feel -- and we hate using this word, but here it is, straight from Oprah -- empowered. They knew what needed to be done, and didn't have to fuss around much to get it done.

We definitely saw more successful organizations having more flexible policies and processes, but we think that's pretty obvious, too. There's a very fine line between using processes to control and manage change, and using them as a blunt weapon to slow things down and make people miserable. Some managers are better at walking that line than others, and it does seem to correlate to a more successful IT team -- but not as strongly as some of the other correlations we observed.

So, your thoughts? Are you in a successful IT organization? If not, what's the problem? If so, what's your secret?

Read the rest of this blog series here:

Posted by Don Jones on 05/07/2012 at 1:14 PM


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