These days I spend a considerable amount of times working with CIOs discussing strategies to embrace modern enterprise software techniques such as big data or enterprise mobility within their organizations. One thing that still amazes me is the large number of obstacles that enterprises still encounter embracing innovative technologies.
The sad contradiction is that, in any organization, you can find talented IT leaders that are eager to bring innovation into their companies. Contrary to popular believe, great developers and managers in IT are also eager for innovation. However, time and time again, these forward thinker leader struggle against processes and policies that were created decades ago in a time on which uncontrolled IT innovation could have been, in fact, harmful to an organizations.
But IT organizations need to understand that those times are gone!
The idea of constraining innovation in the name of security, compliance, stability is simply ludicrous. In the era of cloud computing, open source dominance, software as a service, software virtualization the costs of experimenting and innovating are almost insignificant compared to the potential benefits.
In a nutshell, IT organizations need to move away from the contradictory position of wanting innovation while enforcing the policies to shut it down. The new technology revolutions have brought enterprise software back from the dark ages but IT organizations need the forward thinkers, the innovators, the linchpins to implement great solutions.
In this new renaissance of enterprise software, aspects such as IT policies, compliance rules and business processes should be established to help innovations to be applicable in the enterprise but never to constraint it. At the end, the harm that lack of innovation can cause enterprises in terms of talent, morale, competitive differentiation and even culture are significant larger than any potential damages they can incur by fomenting innovations.