IT departments work hard to make sure their company’s equipment is functioning properly, but what happens when everything is working the way it should? Although solving computer problems and other technological issues is no small task, an IT department that only focuses on putting out fires is not living up to its full potential. IT department productivity requires that teams have the time and flexibility to focus on strategic business goals, not just responding to requests.
Outside of the department, IT teams are perfectly poised to solve problems within their companies and drive forward company innovation. With an intimate knowledge of the company’s technological systems, IT specialists have insights that are valuable to any number of company issues or initiatives. Their involvement could lead to forward-thinking solutions with technology seamlessly integrated, saving them the future work of trying to incorporate company systems into a policy, service, or product that wasn’t designed with technology in mind.
By encouraging IT specialists to do work in other departments, they also have the opportunity to see the way other employees use company technology. This could lead to better practices and the streamlining of processes, saving both time and frustration among employees. When IT department employees are in problem solving and task groups, the company gains new perspectives that could lead to better solutions.
Within the IT department, teams should be collaborating to set expectations and business goals. Teams should know exactly what their job entails, including all duties. If they know what they are doing, why they are doing it, and the end goal, IT specialists will feel more motivated and engaged with their work.
In addition to company-set expectations, IT teams can also take the initiative to better their companies. Due to the fast pace of technology development, constant learning and research is practically a requirement in IT fields today. New technologies could address company issues or improve upon current practices, but the only way to know what’s available is to stay on top of the market. By advising on investments in new technology, IT teams can drive the company forward with more efficient processes.
When thinking about IT department productivity, it is also important to consider any roadblocks or impediments there may be to efficiency within the IT department. Teams with access to infrastructure and tools that make their jobs easier are more productive than teams with less effective tools at their disposal, and teams that collaborate and work well together get more done than departments in which every worker approaches his or her job independently. If the department has the ability to complete day-to-day work quickly and well, they will have more time to devote to long-term projects and goals.
IT departments are already huge assets to their companies, but they have the potential to do so much more than the traditional IT tasks of troubleshooting and fixing company devices. As the world becomes more saturated with technology, so do companies, creating a business environment that can be driven forward by technological innovation. By taking a critical look at productivity, IT teams can lead that charge.