Do your people have the skills for innovation?
By Heinz Stephan, Director Services at Westcon-Comstor Southern Africa
Gartner’s phrase “Bimodal IT” which defines a model of IT in which it is under pressure to keep the lights on, while at the same time innovating and carving a path for business in this era of digitalisation.
The challenge however is the huge discrepancy between innovation requirements and infrastructure departments in businesses. This isn’t solely, but can largely be attributed to the fact that companies aren’t investing into the skills they need to get their IT teams to change their thinking from just pulling cables and fixing disks, to a world and mind-set in which they can be creative and flexible in their approach to delivering services to the business.
How can business address this? By firstly, acknowledging that there’s a disconnect between the people and departments trying to keep the lights on and those that are trying to innovate. Secondly, by defining where they want to be as a company and the services they want to be able to deliver to the end customer. And lastly, and most importantly, ensuring that their team has the skills they need to make the leap, taking the business from where it is, to where it needs to be in terms of innovation.
Certifying network engineers to simply keep the lights on is no longer an approach that companies can afford to take. They need to equip their teams with a host of skills that include infrastructure, business and of course, innovation. In short, IT needs to become the innovation engine for the business, and people’s creativity can only be unlocked if they have the right skills, so it’s business responsibility to ensure that they do.