As an advocate for business readiness, digital innovation, and global information strategies, Lee Congdon, CIO, Red Hat, is an experienced voice in the IT community.
Earlier in this blog series, Mr. Congdon discussed the changing role of IT unitsand open organization. In this piece, Mr. Congdon comments on how business can structure itself to respond to fast-breaking market opportunities.
Getting the right culture, intention, and people in place to respond
Change is certain. Sweeping developments in technological capability are driving enterprise to rethink old models to remain profitable—and relevant. Open source HR platforms like OrangeHRM give users access, ability, and transparency. With open source in a creative business community, the future is wide open.
For any size enterprise looking to incrementally adjust—or restructure—Mr. Congdon offers some comments on key issues to consider:
Need for speed: IT organizations must enable business partners to quickly recognize, respond, and capture business opportunities. “IT organizations cannot afford to be unable to deliver for their enterprise because of budget constraints, legacy system constraint, lack of skills, or ineffective vendor partnerships.” Alignment toward more flexible, agile IT might include:
- Streamline IT organizations to move more quickly
- Aggressively retire legacy technology debt
- Incorporate a cloud, or open hybrid cloud portfolio of solutions
- Implement Agile and DevOps technologies
- Select vendor partners that move quickly and respond with agile and flexible solutions
- Free up costs in the legacy base to afford investment in new technology
- Re-frame culture and tone within IT organization toward efficiency, transparency, and speed
Along with speed, IT organizations must realign to drive new opportunity and confidently lead business partners when needed.
Resolve differences: New market realities call for scalable, responsive businesses and IT partners. This means cultural shifts toward an environment that supports a shared sense of purpose across the entire organization. Enterprises can create a collaborative culture less likely to dissolve into factions by promoting concepts such as the following:
- Full, honest disclosure on project status
- Trust-based, open relationship between IT organizations and business partners, rather than nurturing insularity and competition between units
- Shift toward transparency
- Joint decision making and shared accountability
- Repair and move forward, rather than blame and attribute
Promote change: Organizational shifts are difficult. Even highly adaptive employees can have difficulty with the open approach. Notes Congdon, “You must have the right people and culture, and that is a long-term investment.” Steps to promote change include:
- Focus on getting the right people for reliable production and deliverables
- Set vision and focus on tactical steps to build credibility for change
- Put the right people and processes in place at the appropriate level
- Retain people willing to learn skills, and viewed by business partners as vested in enterprise success
Reiterates Congdon, “It takes a while to get the right culture, intention and people in place to establish those capabilities.” Mr. Congdon emphasizes IT organizations cannot, by themselves, effect change across the enterprise. “The leadership, the culture, and the incentives need to align to get people moving in that direction.” IT organizations can be leaders—but they need partners.
In October, Mr. Congdon will speak at OHRM Con in New York City. Along with David Axmark, Dr. Richard Johnson, and others, Mr. Congdon will share his view of technology and the future of the Open community. Register today.
Learn more about Mr. Congdon’s views on leadership and HR challenges.