If “IT doesn’t change “IT” stays the same.

We are in the midst of interesting times. Is there ever a day when the bulk of the dialogue isn’t about the implications of “change”. Now more than any time in the last 25 years the rate of “IT” (Information Technology) change is more likely to fill the average enterprise decision maker with dread rather than the childlike excitement of yesteryear. But is “IT” really as transformational as commonly inferred – is the digital DNA always discussed that underpins modern business and society really that fundamental?

A very important topic but one often only discussed in economics or business schools is one of General Purpose Technologies (GPTs). A GPT and there have been less than 25 identified and universally accepted, is a technology introduction that permeates society then fundamentally transforms a whole economy (the real definition is much much longer than that). If we roll back in time the advent of the steam or the internal combustion engine and also electricity are examples of GPTs that are easy to quantify when based on transformational impact.  It should be no surprise that “IT” or Information Technology is also considered a GPT but the in my opinion the current and future resonance of “IT” equips it with the potential to surpass many of the better known GPTs to date by a magnitude (please note, this is a very loose concept as for example without electricity, “IT” doesn’t function).

We have witnessed and been affected by “IT” over the last 40 years to a previously unimaginable degree. However the last ten years has propelled this beyond the realms of science fiction or even the minds of the freest thinking individuals.

We are bordering on an era of IT evolution and advancement potentially tempered only by a lack of imaginative thinking or dare I say it initial financial funding, rather than capability. It now seems virtually anything is possible. And there lies the problem, paradigm or opportunity, the expectations of users / customers of IT are now at a level where they also believe that “anything is possible” and potentially pour scorn on anyone who fails to help them to realise it. This means that not only must “IT” continue to change but so too must the services and solutions providers that deliver “IT” outcomes.

Successful infrastructure product supply and installation services are expected, not optional.  Moving forwards the primary “IT” value add is to help individuals or organisations to realise the transformational affect or outcome of an IT solution deployment that is personal to them. This will not only require a different sales and consulting approach from today’s services and solutions providers but also an attitude change from customers who may need to revise how they position or frame the business benefits they seek from any deployed solution.

Never has the “IT” landscape looked more exciting with the promise of the future truly inspiring to an indescribable degree. In summary. if “IT” doesn’t change “IT” stays the same – we know for certain it will change and therefore we MUST all continue to change.

Until next time.

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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