John Adair's IT Definition

The Bad Wrap of IT

When most people are asked for an IT Definition they think of computers and networking; this is a myoptic view of IT. IT's role should be to solve business problems with information technology. What is information technology? The IT Definition (i.e., Information Technology) is any technology that deals with information. Information Technology includes computers and networks; it also includes cell phones, websites, database information systems, and input devices (e.g. RFID reader, barcode reader) just to name a few.

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If you were to look at all the new devices that exist out there today — I am thinking specifically of smart phones, but you may be thinking of something else — How does your business utilize these technologies and is there room for them in your business? Is your company going to be left behind from all of the competition? What is your business plan? Does it include any information technologies? Should it?

As Winston Churchill said, "He who fails to plan is planning to fail."

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Remote Engineering and Design

One of the best ways to reducing costs in engineering is to utilize remote talent (i.e., people who know what they are doing.) This is one of the biggest reasons for outsourcing.

The problem with outsourcing engineering and design is that it is difficult to keep control over the project. Outsourcing of work often times requires substantially more Project Management. Also, because Project Management can not be 'briefed' as easily when work is outsourced, it causes a lag in decision making when issues arrive.

There are two different methods in which engineering is outsourced:

The problem with lump sum, is that projects almost always change; and as they do, your switching costs (i.e., the cost to switch to another supplier) goes up. And consequently, your cost to complete the project will too.

The problem with time and material is that your supplier can drag their feet; there is an inherent conflict of interest where the supplier is motivated to become less efficient in order to increase their profits.

There are solutions for both lump sum and time and material. Lump sum is primarily to have good Project Management; and there are tools for assisting with that.

The solution for time and material is two part:

The technologies to be used to solve these are Video Conferencing and a Virtual Private Network.

If you have read this far then you are probably interested. If you want to more about this particular solutions then click here.