Outsourcing the fast speed of two-speed IT

Many companies have embarked on a digital transformation of their business in an effort to increase sales and support customers through online systems, apps and social media. IT organizations are encouraged to develop a “fast” or “second gear” mindset capable of operating at internet speed and being focused on a digital transformation. Carrying out this shift while simultaneously supporting legacy systems that cannot be changed as rapidly is a tall order for many IT organizations. In-house IT departments must either learn to reinvent themselves so they can adapt to the fast-paced evolution of technology or outsource these efforts to quickly gain the expertise needed. IT outsourcing, or more specifically, outsourcing the creation of innovative and dynamic software apps and systems, is a reliable way for companies to ramp up a development team for the required fast gear.

My previous article focused on outsourcing the slow speed of two-speed IT. The two-speed IT strategy is popular because it helps companies understand the difference between the traditional “slow” focus of IT, centered around maintaining internal business-critical systems, compared to the “fast” UX design and DevOps focus needed to create dynamic online and mobile, customer-facing apps.

The rapid growth in new technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), mobile apps, big data analytics, and seemingly unlimited cloud storage and compute power has profoundly changed every industry. Companies like Amazon, Facebook and Google have aligned their technology and IT systems with their business goals. They limit the size of their software engineering teams to support efficient agile and Kanban methods of development. Product managers think about entire user experiences instead of single features. Leading internet companies rely on frequent testing, experiments with the user interface and collecting data about consumer behavior in their products to learn what works and what doesn’t, even at the risk of failure.

The building blocks of digital enterprise architecture

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