I sit on a few boards and am constantly asked why a new software/hardware/infrastructure tool failed to turn a business problem around. One company is struggling with an Enterprise Service Bus (ESB), another is having trouble with a major hardware/cloud purchase, and yet another is foiled by a Big Data play.
I almost always find one of two problems. (I used a car analogy at a recent board meeting, so I’ll continue that here.)
We need to have lots of tools in our tool belt, but we must know which one to use. And that can be tricky. When I first joined the state as CTO, I killed a project creating a monolith environment that included an ESB, Identity Management and a whole host of other tools that – while they would have been nice to haves – weren’t required for the business problem. We saved millions and the new project delivered on time and budget. Plus, we didn’t stand up a huge software solution requiring maintenance for years that we didn’t know how to support.
Before you add a new technology into your environment, you should perform an assessment around it.
Of course this isn’t a comprehensive list, but you get the idea. Ensure you are buying the right part and have the right skills to maintain it. If you need a hammer, buy a great hammer. But, if you need a screwdriver, that hammer is going to look awfully rusty in a few years.