Posts Tagged ‘Justin Mullen’
ITIL on your iPad – Connecting and displaying information onto a single screen for optimal governance
The governance of service delivery and service performance has never been more important than today. We have demanding customers and business units, less money and less staff, and extremely complex delivery models, many of which may be outsourced, multi-sourced or shared.
ITIL as a discipline and best practice is a great guide for organisations on how best to support and deliver services that are aligned with business needs. The success of ITIL however is measured by the performance (SLAs/KPIs) of those services (stats, customer surveys and feedback, proxy measures, etc.) and the effectiveness of the Service Improvement and Business Change Programs that run alongside ITIL services.
The undisputed facts about outsourcing, Part 1: Buyers are saving money, but aren’t seeing a whole lot more
I have just read the latest study from Horses from Sources conducted by the London School of Economics Outsourcing Unit on the State of Outsourcing in 2011. While it is clear to see that the cost savings targets are being met, the concerns are clear – that’s about it.
I am unsure of how many participated in this from the UK but regardless of this fact, everything we see validates the results. Even though organisations say they are chasing capability lift and innovation, the facts remain that cost is the driver and the provider chases (espicially in first generation outsouring) the delivery of those cost committments without the the loss if its profit. It has to. Thats where the focus is, and the critical measures and targets align with that.
So when does the organisation realise this is going the wrong way?
Pretty much everything in IT depends on abstractions. In the same way that the driver of car really doesn’t need to know anything about the workings of the internal combustion engine the typical user of a modern desktop computer has very little idea how it actually works. The abstraction with which they are presented (the desktop metaphor and the windowing interface) is mostly good enough to hide most of the unpleasantness beneath. Mostly good enough.
The abstraction is still leaky enough that they are occasionally presented with a memory dump – we’ve all seen the Blue Screen of Death on a plasma screen at an airport or railway station. A computer with no such abstraction would require the user to understand and manipulate individual processor opcodes. This would render it unusable for almost everyone.
As the famous saying goes “Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future”. However, it seems obvious that the era of the PC as the principal engine of growth for the IT industry is drawing to a close. In the nineteenth century there was a shift from people owning one general purpose electric motor with various specialised attachments to people owning many motors each embedded in a single use device. A similar thing seems to be occurring now.
Computers are becoming both less obviously computers and also more ubiquitous, location-aware and permanently connected. I recently replaced my wife’s ailing MacBook with an iPad. For her, as for many others, it’s probably all the computer she’ll ever really need. Ironically, she doesn’t even regard it as being a computer. She’s scared of computers. Mostly she’s scared that if she does something “wrong” she’ll “break” it. Not so with the iPad.
Today Microsoft finally announced availability of its Azure platform and the race is officially on between the big boys on who will capture the lions share of “cloudspace”.
Microsoft have been a longtime getting to market with this and many commentators suggested it may be too late however this is clearly not the case. They have been trialing Azure in the US for nearly a year now and are expressing impressive confidence in the platform even for a V1 release.
I guess it now remains to be see what will happen and who corporate will gravitate towards. The holy grail will be who can convince the corporates to load mission critical line of business apps on their platform.