Where’s the real battle for transformation?
“It’s what we call the fog of war. You can either sit around worrying what’s real and what’s not, or you can realize the enemy hasn’t got a clue either and fire off a few rounds of psychology. A truly great army is one that only has to rattle its saber to win a war.” — Karen Traviss, Author
Engineering and developer resources are eternally constrained in attempting to manage an ever-expanding hybrid IT application and data estate. Most company CIOs struggle just to keep the lights on with the resources they have, and the IT backlog is well documented
Even if a company allocates more than a standard industry share of its cost basis to increasing its developer headcount, services partners and infrastructure, the rate of growth of the technology stack will easily outstrip the company’s ability to hire and retain engineering talent. Further, the ever increasing demand in IT for digital solutions has made it so that IT has to prioritize specific, high-impact initiatives which results in other needs going unmet.
The good news? Your company is not alone — and even your closest competitors share serious technical constraints to digital transformation.
I’ve often recommended that companies need to up level their technical acumen and be more open to adopting tech-based solutions, especially if this can be done from within the ranks of the company rather than solely through recruiting or acquiring outside resources. Admittedly, that may be easier said than done.
The movement of technical involvement happening away from IT is happening at a rapid pace today. According to recent Gartner® research, “Dependent on industry, business technologists make up between 28% and 55% of the workforce.” ¹
For most companies, transforming business professionals into full-stack developers would be nearly impossible, given their ongoing duties and existing skill sets. Adopting Agile methodologies or DevOps approaches can be very useful for project engagement with developers, but the investments can have diminishing returns if non-technical resources can’t crack the code.
What levers can companies exploit to get more of the business productively involved in software delivery and highly performant operations?