Friday 29 July 2011
Job Security is as important today as it’s ever been. There are lots of people out there in the job market vying for the same job.
The other day, a colleague said to me:
“Well what do you expect, you can’t expect a Turkey to vote for Christmas”
True words indeed!
Selling software that is going to make things easier, reduce the impact on IT and empower the business user is a hard sell if you’re talking to the head of IT… less so if you are talking to the CEO or FD where the bottom line and shareholder value are more important than propping up the job market.
People’s perception of software is changing.
For the current generation of School and College leavers using software is an everyday way of life.
Whether playing Angry Birds on your phone, posting a YouTube link on someone’s wall, writing a Thesis or keeping track of your finances, we are all using software to make life easier and entertain ourselves most of our waking and working day.
People expect things to be simple, people don’t expect to go on a training course when they download the latest phone app or try out the latest Social Media gizmo over the Web.
If things don’t work or are too complicated to use, people won’t use it. They’ll look elsewhere. People are more and more independent and want to choose their preferred laptop, OS, mobile phone and applications and won’t much care for people pushing their own preferences, as there is so much choice.
So when it comes to business, who decides on what applications and gizmos you use on a day-to-day basis? Who decides what’s best for you?
Traditionally there has always been a gatekeeper when it comes to buying software.
… the IT department.
The IT department has to support the system, therefore, the IT department must be involved in the buying process.
This all sounds very reasonable however the motives of IT and the business can be in conflict with one another. Is efficiency top of the requirements for IT?
Is empowering the business user to be able to service their own information requirements top of the bill? If there is an option to buy in a product or service that will benefit the business by taking money away from the IT budget and potentially reducing the demand on IT seen as a priority?
There is a lot more choice out there today but for the traditionalists, the IT department still has a hold over which external products and services are purchased because IT, in general, is still regarded as “technical” and “too specialist”.
The new generation is a lot more IT savvy and is going to want a much bigger say in decisions over what to buy and what not to buy.
These new business users are measured on productivity, increasing sales and generating profit. These users won’t want to be held up by having to use antiquated, one style fits all products that need the nod and assistance from IT whenever the business user wants to find out something that isn’t serviced by a standard screen or report.
Our Business Intelligence product CXAIR is written for business users. Business users just get it… It uses search technology. It’s self-service BI. It’s easy and looks like and behaves like all of the other modern applications that are being used today.
So where am I going with this?
When we demonstrate our software, we demonstrate it to the business user, not IT. Trying to get IT to propose a solution that reduces the need for their services is a bit like getting a Turkey to vote for Christmas.
Unlikely to happen at best and pretty foolhardy from a Turkey’s point of view.