Just because they make “IT” in your size doesnt mean “IT” suits you ! – Long live ROI

There is a rather brutal statement in fashion that utters “just because they make it in your size doesn’t mean it suits you”. As a somewhat crazy comparison with technology, at times products and solutions are acquired because of familiarity and proximity. There is an awareness of the technology and brand, the funds and access to the solution are within reach – with the result someone will subsequently convince or emotionally justify the need.

Often luck and good fortune ensures the acquisition finds its niche and delivers value (and in many cases not the originally envisaged value but at least some value), in all too many other cases the value can’t be realised, the introduction of a “somewhat distorted” solution adds to the overall complexity across the estate and any likelihood of an ROI just isn’t a discussion.

This journey through the dawn of this IT centric business revolution was previously acceptable, at times the norm and viewed humorously because it was all too common. However in these times of austerity, IT complexity, and the need for “accelerated time to value or real world ROI”, white elephant IT purchases can greatly hinder an organisation and its market leading aims.

The solution is not a difficult one, but does involve a behavioural and psychological shift. It means IT decisions made for technology reasons (upgrade, end of product life, new model) without a business impact analysis should be referred for further scrutiny. And that scrutiny whilst best validated via robust financial ROI aligned ideals could equally be driven via a more operational “value based” validation that may be less numerate (for the non accountants) but will still calibrate technology introduction and change against a realisable “business related” outcome.  You may say, this is surely the norm today and at times you will be correct, but all too often ROI & benefits realisation become afterthoughts over “get the solution in and get it in now !!”.

The onus is on IT systems integrators to help customers via intelligent probing, consultative solution sales engagements and “thought leadership”, to hold all accountable for the measurable benefits expected from the solution. As market aware trusted advisors that’s the minimum duty of care that will not only spotlight “business transforming” systems integrators from general services providers, but equally deliver the success criteria that both the customer solution buyer and systems integrator should measure success.  Its the Computacenter way…..

To return to the start of this blog, great systems integrators like Computacenter will ensure not only your “IT” clothes fit but you will look and feel good in them too (increasing your likelihood of trading with that systems integrator again).

“Happy IT solutions shopping”

Until next time (Happy Christmas and get ready for a fantastic 2013)

Colin W

Twitter @colinwccuk

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About Colin Williams

Colin is Computacenter's Practice Leader for Networking, Visual Collaboration & Security @colinwccuk

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