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The Boardroom vs. IT: Who drives change?

Eric Tabor  |  March 30, 2016

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When it comes to ensuring business continuity and keeping all parts working properly, it’s crucial for communications between departments to be easy and effective. You especially want interaction between executives and IT administrators to be productive. In those conversations, if there is any kind of disconnect with either party, bottom lines could suffer.

How does the proper implementation of IT impact corporate objectives? Having the right technology solution in place can make a difference in the long run across the board, but decision-makers sometimes don’t consult their IT departments before investing in something new. According to InformationWeek contributor Andrew Froehlich, this may be due in part to the fact that new technologies are constantly coming out, sometimes so quickly that tech staff can’t keep up.

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Shadow IT is creating cybersecurity vulnerabilities for enterprises.

Shadow IT is compounding this issue even further. With the continued implementation of bring-your-own-device policies, extraneous technologies make their way into companies’ networks. Employees are carrying their smartphones and tablets into the workplace and downloading different – and perhaps unapproved – applications to use in their jobs. This creates cybersecurity and compliance issues due to the entrance of unknown actors on the network.

For instance, one study from 2014 on the information systems of health care organizations found that the average provider has 928 cloud services running on its systems – only 10 percent of which are known to their IT departments. In addition, only 7 percent of the total systems on the cloud comply with industry-specific standards. These kinds of statistics illustrate why it’s crucial for the IT department to be involved in the decision-making process of any company. To ensure compliance and maintain security, technology teams and executives need to be on the same page.

Different departments need to work together to elicit the best outcome for a business – meaning that to achieve the best bottom line, communication between IT staff and the executive board needs to be efficient. Computer Weekly contributor Marc Cercere noted that the agendas of both the business technology and IT departments are equally as important to focus on and improve.

For instance, due to the increase in shadow IT and the continuing focus on cybersecurity across every industry, the IT department should be consulted about any change to technology strategy. Instead of implementing tech “solutions” that may or may not solve a company’s problems, getting the go-ahead from the IT department allows every portion of the company to work in unison toward the same goal.

In today’s business climate, technology should align with corporate objectives. You want IT to work in your favor. If relationships within your business between executives and the IT department aren’t up to par, costly disconnect can occur, and business processes can be hampered.

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Eric Tabor

Chief of Staff | Vice President- Strategy & Operations at ISG Technology
Eric joined ISG Technology in 2012 bringing with him experience from ISG’s parent company, Twin Valley Telephone, Inc. He is a member of the Twin Valley senior management team that managed the company’s organic and acquisition growth strategies resulting in the company tripling in size from 2005-2010. Prior to joining Twin Valley he held sales and operations leadership roles at Southwestern Bell/SBC in multiple Midwest locations. He holds a B.A. in Mass Media and Communications from Washburn University. Eric currently resides in Olathe, KS with his wife and their two children.
About

Eric joined ISG Technology in 2012 bringing with him experience from ISG’s parent company, Twin Valley Telephone, Inc. He is a member of the Twin Valley senior management team that managed the company’s organic and acquisition growth strategies resulting in the company tripling in size from 2005-2010. Prior to joining Twin Valley he held sales and operations leadership roles at Southwestern Bell/SBC in multiple Midwest locations. He holds a B.A. in Mass Media and Communications from Washburn University. Eric currently resides in Olathe, KS with his wife and their two children.

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