Perhaps it’s the Users, Rather Than IT, at Fault

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Martin Brampton, over at Silicon.com, has a thought-provoking article this week regarding the interplay between IT and business, marketing, and other units.

Typically how well a given computer or other technical system functions is laid squarely at the feet of the IT department, for better or worse. However, as Brampton alludes, the IT department hardly functions in a vacuum (much though they might wish that they did). They are charged with implementing infrastructure whose function is already predefined and often next to impossible, or with retrofitting an already-existing system to perform new and “improved” and super-sized functions. Or with implementing and maintaining a system which is destined to be faulty and insecure because management has deemed that they must only use an OS developed by this partner, or software marketed by that customer, regardless of how robust or proven it is.


Brampton uses the banking industry as an example, and what a fine example it is. Even on the ultimate end-user end of some of these systems, business needs and IT plausibility sometimes are not fully in synch, even for the simplist of needs. Those of you who have not been involved would be astonished at how difficult it can be to set up something as seemingly simple, and certainly ubiquitous, as an Internet merchant payment gateway. After all, those nifty little “swipe your card” terminals have been dialing up and interacting with the credit card processing systems for decades, haven’t they? How hard can it be to translate that to the Internet?

Very, apparently, at least for some systems and some needs, and there’s your case in point.

Business units often assume that pretty much anything can be done with enough computer doo-hickeys, the Internet, or both, and without at least a rudimentary working knowledge as to how these systems work, their assumptions may go wildly astray.

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Where there is a disconnect, the blame has typically been laid at IT for not understanding business needs, however the reverse is at least as often the case.

And speaking of our “you want what when??” department, if you have a good story about being asked to implement the impossible, we want to hear it!

No Paywall Here!
The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
Click for amount options
Other Amount:
What info did you find here today?:

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