The IT manager: the corporate juggler of the 21st Century
ICT is becoming increasingly strategic in nature, which is affecting the IT manager’s job. These days, everyone “knows ICT” and it’s becoming easier for employees and managers to purchase new information systems themselves. If you’re not careful, your company can be overrun with ICT systems in no time.
ICT clients expect a customer-focused and proactive attitude from the ICT department. The IT manager has to be on the same page as the business, while also functioning as a vendor. If the business isn’t satisfied with the speed of service, they’ll open their wallets and buy their own solution. That’s the most important reason for “shadow ICT”.
The world is changing
Technology is developing more rapidly than ever before, and the IT manager is caught in the middle of this upheaval. They have to use existing infrastructure (hardware and software) to deliver services at lower costs than before. The IT manager has to keep a lot of balls up in the air while spending as little money as possible. Hence the expression that they’ve become the corporate juggler of the 21st Century.
What are the most important trends for IT managers?
Organizations are changing quickly, and ICT has become strategic. This is known as “the digital revolution”. This is the undercurrent and source of a lot of insecurity, including among ICT organizations. Modern IT managers are arming themselves for the future by formulating answers to trends like:
- Consumerization of IT: this trend has been on-going, at first mostly in hardware. But now it’s becoming easier to purchase and connect software, too.
- Cloud and mobile: the rise of cloud and mobile has made ICT available 24/7 for everyone in the organization. This has also enabled cost flexibilization. Together, they’ve caused a revolution in the amount of applications and available functionalities.
- Security and Master Data Management: protecting (customer) data and making it available in a singular way is becoming an increasingly challenging aspect. Thanks to the cloud and the internet, existing ways of data protection no longer suffice, and security is becoming more important. Legislators are putting increasingly stringent demands on data storage and use.
- Analytics is key: Business Analytics is becoming more important. BI used to be situated within ICT or Finance departments. The BI department is often focused on internal (financial) management data. The rise of market data, customer data, and Big Data is changing this role.
- Competencies of ICT employees are changing: all these developments place high demands on the competencies of ICT departments. Many employees have to be retrained, and new competencies are often rare.
These aren’t all the trends, of course. Virtualization, the app age, and advanced customer architectures also require attention. The future-proof IT manager is searching for answers to all these trends.
What should future-proof IT managers be aware of?
The most important factors:
- What new skills should IT managers possess?
- What’s the job description of the future-proof IT manager?
- What are the benefits of hiring an IT manager through Passionned Group?
- How do you demonstrate success amidst all this upheaval?
- How do you find a future-proof IT manager, or become one?
What are the most important skills for a future-proof IT manager?
The skills of the IT manager are shifting from technical to a more organizational focus. The infrastructure is no longer central, but the service the ICT department provides to its end users. What are the most important changes?
- Firstly, the organization must become completely customer-focused. The ICT department and the manager have to put the needs of the customer first.
- They have to apply the most important trends to their own organization, for example mobile and data visualization software, without disrupting service. So they have to be able to keep a lot of balls in the air.
- ICT managers have to be able to work with not just their own (technical) employees, but also end-users.
- They have to have strong negotiation skills. Why? Because more and more aspects of the service are delivered indirectly.
- They have to be able to work with data while keeping in mind security and privacy concerns.
What can you do to become (or stay) future-proof?
The IT manager is facing increasing demands thanks to the rapid developments in the IT field, and ICT becoming strategic. Obviously, reading trade literature is a must in order to stay up-to-date. But ICT managers also often have to act as CIO, usually informally.
They have to have answers to important questions like: how can I make my organization customer-focused? How can I handle data in a modern way? How do I approach developments in the field of Big Data and data security?
Interesting literature and training
Passionned Group has written books you may find interesting. If you want to take concrete steps to learning practical lessons, our Academy has a wide range of training courses. We also offer all of our training courses as in-company training.
Our offering doesn’t stop at training courses. We also offer personal coaching and organizational advice. Everything is focused on directly and practically working on your challenges. Our goal is to make you develop into a future-proof IT manager.
Do you want to hire a customer-focused ICT manager?
ICT management can be hired in a variety of places. Passionned Group, however, only works with highly-experienced IT managers. They’ve proven that they can keep many balls in the air in practice, by using the right management methods.
Our approach is transparent. After placing a request with us we’ll usually contact you within 24 hours to determine the kind of candidate you’re looking for. Then we’ll start looking for the right candidate. After you choose one of our candidates, we strive to complete the process within 48 hours. After this, the manager can quickly start working in your organization.
The benefits of Passionned Group’s interim IT managers
Our interim IT managers are highly experienced and have a broad range of expertise. They implement changes based on measurable results. In other words: Passionned Group’s interim IT managers work on (their own) KPIs and use them to steer. We don’t see change as a one-time thing, but as a continuous process. This method is also called “the intelligent organization approach”.
On top of that, Passionned Group has access to a very extensive knowledge base which is available to the IT manager, as well as your organization.
A future-proof ICT model for the entire organization
ICT infrastructure is no longer just a PC with software installed, operating in a closed company network. More and more employees use their own ICT resources and want 24/7 access to all these products. This trend is known as “consumerization of IT.” ICT is getting a more strategic place within organizations, and has to adapt to all the changes in the market. The challenge for IT managers is to stay flexible to keep up with changes while implementing solutions seamlessly.
Data-driven processes and steering
ICT resources and data are the organizations’ main assets these days. This all has to be available 24/7, and be reliable and secure, without it obstructing the business. To this end, we’ve designed a data warehouse and data governance training course. Here we’ll teach you all about the ins and outs of data-driven working. Future-proof and customer-focused ICT provision are, now and in the future, the most important challenges for IT managers. And they have to achieve this while lowering costs, at the request of the business.
Opening IT manager
We’re regularly looking for customer-focused IT managers who can make the difference to our clients. Are you an IT manager looking for a new challenge with the Passionned Group? Leave us a message and we’ll contact you as soon as possible.
Do you want to discuss what you’ve read, or do you have anything to add? Contact us, we’d love to discuss these topics with you.