It is no secret that today’s IT managers and executives operate in a challenging environment. They must wrangle shrinking budgets, build high-performing teams and navigate fast-changing technologies – all while finding the time to influence their organisation at a strategic level.
The good news is that many of these difficulties are simple to resolve. This blog post will outline the top five challenges faced by today’s IT leaders, and provide actionable tips for how to overcome them.
1. Leading and educating teams
The average IT professional works 52 hours a week. However, with competing priorities – from endless meetings to keeping IT systems functioning – many CIOs and IT managers still struggle to find time to train and mentor others.
Without effective leadership and ongoing development, IT team performance suffers. This can make it challenging to complete day-to-day tasks, especially if team members aren’t up to date with the latest technologies.
As such, making time to implement strategies to enhance professional development can yield rich results. Are there tasks you can delegate or outsource to a third-party provider?
Don’t forget: it is easiest for CIOs to teach others if they have strong support systems and processes. This frees up time to commit to personal development for themselves and others.
2. Collaborating with business units
Just as Wilbur Wright could not have invented the first successful aircraft without Orville’s assistance, organisational teams cannot develop well-rounded initiatives in isolation. However, when it comes to collaboration in the office, competing priorities and departmental silos can cause tension.
Silicon Valley companies such as Facebook favour all-night hackathons for encouraging people from different parts of the business to work together. Other organisations have hired ‘liaison officer’ roles to facilitate collaboration across teams.
Our less extreme tips for fostering inter-department collaboration include:
- Actively encouraging feedback from other sections
- Co-locating teams that you want to work together
- Assigning people from different groups and work areas on projects
- Expanding the use of enterprise mobility and online collaboration tools
3. Managing disagreement with proposed business strategies
Developing effective, strategic IT plans involves dealing with supervisors across sections, noting their requirements and understanding their business drivers.
While some disagreements are inevitable, CIOs can minimise resistance by proactively seeking feedback and involving other executives at each stage of the strategy development process. Engaging a third-party to conduct a strategic IT review may also help ensure that all stakeholder interests are considered when planning for future technology investments.
4. Maximising return on IT investments
In a world of shrinking IT budgets, CIOs must figure out how to maintain operations while improving efficiency and moving systems to the cloud. This complex, dynamic activity is often best navigated with the support of an IT services provider.
The benefits of partnering with an expert IT services provider to deliver all aspects of IT are extensive. They include:
- Cost-effective pricing models resulting in reduced costs
- Reduced overheads and a competitive difference by accessing infrastructure-as-a-service
- More time for CIOs to focus on core business
- Innovative, efficient work practices that minimise risk
- Seamless administration of your IT systems and/or infrastructure.
5. Getting results from large-scale software implementations
It’s a rare software installation that doesn’t run into challenges. Successful deployment hinges not only on technical issues and change management but also ongoing factors that impact user adoption.
CIOs know that any IT solution also hinges on confidence in the chosen partner. Appointing a provider with solid background and experience is critical. CIOs and IT leaders can avoid potential problems by selecting a vendor with:
- A proven record deploying similar business solutions
- Experts who can contribute to handling change-management processes
- Proven strategies for facilitating user adoption
In today’s fast-changing IT world, even the most experienced CIOs and IT managers face challenges. Fortunately, there are endless strategies for addressing these issues with ease – including partnering with the right company to fulfil organisational requirements through high-quality, value-based IT services.
To find out how Virtuelle Group can help solve your biggest CIO headaches, contact us today.