Sunday, 10 November 2013

Technology strategies

So, I'm in Barcelona at the moment at the Gartner Symposium IT Expo. It's lovely being in one of my favourite cities, which we managed to get round on Segways this morning before the first conference session.

Did I mention I love Segways? And yes, the first session is on a Sunday. Today we're talking about building strategic technology maps.

IT strategies are usually based on supply, demand and control. Traditionally, IT depts concentrated on supply and control. But, demand is most important now. What is the institutional context, what are its capabilities, what does it need, how can IT contribute to the institution's success?

As CIOs, we should be translating the needs of the institution into the services and tools we supply.
We can use the hype cycle to map where we are with technologies. Label technologies at or near peak as experiments, not pilots. Used to stick to right hand side of cycle, but we should be looking now to use some of new technologies, we need to be at leading edge. Could be a competitive advantage.

The education ecosystem is expanding, there are increasing options, and more competition. We used to do everything ourselves, but now we use more and more tools, and buy in services. We need to stop thinking about infrastructure. Think about exostructure. Using the right standards, connectors etc, so we can make use of these tools and services easily and quickly. Need to work out what our own ecosystem is and we are positioned in it.

Lot of institutions still think of IT as a cost. But, the only way an institution is going to succeed is to invest more in IT to bring cost down in other areas.

Expectation setting and management are important parts of any IT strategy, and a funding strategy is key.

Need to know what sort of institution we are, and what we want to be . Develop IT strategy to match this and help institution get to where it wants to be.

Strategic technology quadrant can be very useful. Map what we do on a grid of improving organisational efficiency against improving student and staff experience.

Often as CIOs we are in the cold case, bottom left quadrant, thinking about infrastructure. But this has to be connected to other services in other quadrants.
Then look at how strategically important things are. Can be really good aid to discuWill also help and promote discussion in University wider than IT department.

Interesting discussion about learning stack services, including lecture capture. Conclusion was that it will be more important to have individual capture on staff laptops etc than an echo360 set up in every lecture theatre.

Define your services. Produce a service portfolio, linked to project portfolio with service catalogue at lower level.

Connect the dots
Find the white spaces
Think new things
Redo your service portfolio

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