Yesterday we explained why we’re here at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo: to help other companies better serve customers who expect a seamless digital experience.
During the first full day on the ITxpo floor, that reason was confirmed as we heard the struggles many companies encounter as they go digital. Among the visitors to our booth, several major themes emerged.
1. Business lines going outside IT or not being allowed to go outside IT. While this sounds contradictory, it’s really two sides of the same coin. We heard instances where a CIO was frustrated that his lines of business were going outside of internal IT to get the development they needed. We also heard from business managers who were frustrated that their CIOs wouldn’t allow them the freedom and flexibility to source their own vendors. In each case, the need for rapid response and business-driven results was clear. Both sides need to figure out a better, bi-modal way to source development work so all needs are met.
2. The need to have development teams on site working with the business. One representative from an international consumer goods company made the point that being onshore isn’t enough. When he needs a team or a project manager, he needs them in the office on the east coast. Having them work remotely from the west coast just doesn’t cut it.
3. The advantage of onshore development work. Several visitors shared stories of working with offshore providers, either remotely or to bring guest workers to the States. The delays involved with remote communication or obtaining visas wiped out any cost benefits. And if/when workers came onshore, often the cultural differences prevented them from fully understanding projects/products that targeted the American consumer.
4. Going agile while maintaining legacy systems. A representative from a well-known financial company asked if we did Agile coaching. He was trying to transition his team to Agile but struggling to balance this desire with the need to maintain existing legacy systems. The desire for transformation was there. He, and many other businesses, just need a guide to show them how.
If you are struggling with any of these problems, you are not alone. And there are solutions. We’d love to help you find them.
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