IT departments will soon see sweeping redundancies unless they promote themselves internally, and get close to business colleagues, according to experts.
Speaking as part of a panel at a recent web seminar from V3's sister title Computing ‘Cloud mix and match, getting the balance right', Ray Bricknell, managing director of Behind Every Cloud (pictured), said technology staff must now see their roles as being to help the broader business to innovate.
"We're going to see wide scale redundancies in traditional IT roles if IT fails to see they must engage with the business, and help the business differentiate, and also be innovative in how it supports the wider organisation," said Bricknell
Also on the panel, Jon Forster, global programme director, Fitness First agreed.
"The idea that IT is just in a back room is gone, you need to ask ‘how can we help the business?'" said Forster. "You need now to say this is how we can make your business run an awful lot better. And it's not about doing the same for less, it's doing things better," he added.
Bricknell gave the example of the way IT departments see their roles in software roll-outs.
"Lots of organisations tried to roll out [Microsoft product] SharePoint in the last few years," said Bricknell. "The reality is that most projects fail because business units haven't been engaged in the adoption of the technology, they haven't been walked through the process. That's where IT's real benefit should be, getting the best from applications, mapping those applications to business processes, and identifying the best use of technology to differentiate from your competitors," he argued.
The growing trend of automation is seen by many as heralding the end of a variety of jobs. Those roles in IT set to suffer first are likely to include project and programme managers and web designers.
And in recent months engineering firm Aecom has announced hundreds of job cuts amongst IT staff, following the decision to outsource its technology function to IBM.
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