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In defence of complexity - part 2
The strongest arguments against simplifying IT architecture involve the role of IT in the organisation. We have to decide whether the arguments for simplification or the arguments for complexity will win.
Continuing from last week, there are subtle arguments against the simplification of IT architecture into independent systems that are aligned to organisational responsibilities:
We have now come to the end of my heretical journey. I have described the arguments in favour of a radical simplification of IT architecture, and the arguments in favour of retaining current complexity. We need to ask whether the arguments for complexity will continue to hold sway, or the arguments for simplification will overcome.
This is not a silly question about predicting the future. It is a serious question about what direction we want to take.
We can stick with the status quo, and continue with IT architectures designed for the convenience of those who provide IT. We can continue to use IT as a political tool for driving business change. We can continue with our current organisation and management of IT. Our big IT management problems will stay the same: we will battle to deliver major IT projects, fight legacy systems and struggle with skill shortages.
Alternatively, we can radically simplify our IT architectures to create truly independent, decoupled systems that are aligned to organisational responsibilities, and which do not share technology layers with other systems. This will keep IT focused on simple information automation, and out of organisational politics. It will, in time, dismantle our current IT organisation and management, and merge IT into general business management. It will reduce major project failures, the decline into legacy, and skill shortages.
I have shown you my vision of where we could, and should, go with IT. Do you share this vision? If not, what is your vision for the future of IT, and what are you doing to make that future a reality?Next: Today, tomorrow and for ever
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