Stop Fearing IT Automation…It May Just Save Your Job

Josh Upton

by Josh Upton

 

When was the last time you walked into the gas station and said, “Please put $20 on number four.” Although I’m sure it’s happened occasionally it’s probably once a year thing at best.

Automation has taken over our lives and as consumers we couldn’t be happier. In a world where we already feel as if we don’t have enough time technology, in theory, gives us the belief we can steal some of it back.

Automation Changes the World
  • No more getting money from the teller
  • No more using a map to get somewhere
  • No more visiting a travel agency
  • No more call the movie theater for accurate show times
  • No more not using Google for… everything!
  • Uber…need I say more
An IT Story

In our fictional story, Roger is an up and comer at a large Financial Services Organization. He has put in the years and shown the right ability to make the right decisions at tough times.  Roger, deservedly so has just been promoted, and is now managing technology systems for all of dev ops. This is a huge deal, and Roger is very excited!

However, as he’s settled into his new position and the weeks/months roll by he’s starting to feel a sense of frustration.  Seemingly easy decisions are becoming nearly impossible with the red tape he must battle through from a political standpoint. In fact, Roger is coming to realize that while his authority has increased his ability to enact change has not risen with his expectations.

Sound familiar?

What is IT today?

Candidly it doesn’t matter whether or not Roger is a CIO, VP, Director or Admin, because Roger is in IT and the view of IT has changed substantially over time. Ten or fifteen years ago, IT was the hero, but today the overwhelming view seems to paint IT as the villain, or at the very least a cost center with little to no value.

The unfortunate reality is much of the time IT is broken. Dozens of business silos create dozens of IT counterparts. Furthermore, no standardization across platforms, and an inordinate amount of decision makers make it extremely difficult to produce what the business wants, and in the time frame the business demands.

What do we do now?

 

It’s not okay to be just good at your job anymore. Public Cloud has turned the world upside down in many ways, and forced all of us to take a hard look at what kind of value we’re actually driving.

Try to look at it this way. Let’s say you bought a house that needed a substantial amount of work done. You can either focus on the massive project ahead and become completely overwhelmed, or you can see a bunch of small projects that you’ll have to tackle one by one.

If your organization is fighting to incorporate cloud into the mix, or you simply trying to figure out how to better deliver IT services to the business then start by tackling smaller winnable projects.  Each win will produce measurable results and as the wins build up you’ll provide a better overall user experience.

Prevent Defense Doesn’t Work

Easy buttons do exist, but there is no magic pill you can take, or one stop shop software platform that solves every problem you have. Successfully navigating through your automation journey takes time, effort, patience and dedication. Sometimes change is painful, but the cost of doing nothing far outweighs the risk of standing still.

The word Pivot literally means, a pin or shaft on which a mechanical part turns. Pivoting, in this sense, creates a scenario where you’re the focal point, and as the focal point you provide a center to everything and anything around you. In the simplest form pivoting creates stability.

My point? I’d rather embrace change and pivot rather than fall back and hope things work out.