Balanced Investments (Part 1 of 2)
‘Rise of the Machine’
For all its claims, even ‘Big Data’ and ‘The Cloud’ are still continuously evolving.
There are however two certainties that can be predicted:
1) As experience grows with these highly touted concepts and capabilities, constraints and shortcomings will be realized
2) Something new will evolve
Most Information Technology pundits and futurists advocate for the newest evolution of products to ‘answer’ whatever business need presents itself. However, history has proven that a more elegant technology in the future will provide a ‘better solution’. Each generation of new technology is always accompanied by its own set of seductive promises of impressive business benefits and returns on investment.
While technology can perform human tasks with increased levels of speed, efficiency and accuracy, the human contribution remains the key element for success in many job domains. In these job domains, organizations need to ensure balance between investments in sophisticated technology tools and the work force that use them.
Balance Before You Jump
Technology and its ‘consumerization’ has without doubt benefitted industry from innumerable perspectives. But, has technology reached a point where it is the answer to everything? While the expansion of technology has reached a point where it is a ubiquitous component of our everyday lives, it does beg the question of balance.
Has the enterprise focus shifted too rapidly to technology investments looking for quick fixes and benefits before exploiting what they already have in place? Has the human factor been undervalued and underinvested where the KPI’s are actually a direct reflection of hour-to-hour, and often minute-to-minute decisions being made by people on the front line.
Before making new and often expensive technology decisions, ensure that current capabilities are generating maximum benefits and serving the needs of the community of employees whose judgments actually drive the business. To be continued …
Bruce is a senior Oil and Gas professional with four decades of experience in delivering business benefits through innovative Information Technologies and over thirty years in the real-time process manufacturing industry.
Upon his retirement from Suncor Energy’s Colorado based operations, where he managed their integrated ERP deployment and served in a leadership role supporting Suncor’s Operational Excellence program, he is now an Industry Consultant with IT Vizion.
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