No Such Thing as an IT Project

In the feedback section of a magazine that I read there was an interesting perspective that at first blush seems like a new idea, but I think is just a matter of semantics. Dan Crawley, an IT Manager, suggests that, "There is no such thing as an IT project excluding basic things like regular maintenance. Any project or initiative should have a specific business purpose, and therefore be acknowledged as a business project and led by someone outside of IT."

He goes one to say that, "within business projects, there is often an IT component, such as implementing or enhancing a required piece of technology or software, but that's it. This is not to say the IT component isn't critical; often it is. Technology does not, however, exist for technology's sake — or at least it shouldn't. It should always be driven by a business need. An IT project manager should lead the specific component of the project as it relates to technology, not the entire project. Failure to recognize this is the arrogance that many in our industry still have yet to come to terms with."

I think Dan is focusing too much on the label given to projects. It's been my experience that a project becomes an IT project when IT accounts for a large portion of the work. I don't think calling a project an IT project is necessarily a bad thing and it doesn't reflect a level of unwarranted arrogance. At worst, it just means that some of us are sloppy with our project terminology.

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1 Comment

  1. "Dan Crawley" is absolutely correct. Outside of the IT industry perhaps, "IT" is a business resource and as such its deployment, development, change must be a business-led decision. That's not to say that there are many businesses where management are at best unaware of business leverage that IT Can deliver however the decision to invest in IT deployment continues to be business-driven: this fact being supported by the rare inclusion of IT Directors within the main Executive Board of any Company or Corporation.

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