Every week, I try to cover a variety of integration- and, increasingly, data-related issues. In any given week, that can mean writing about data/application/systems/cloud integration, master data management, data quality/governance, standards, some architectural issues, business intelligence, occasionally BPM and the solutions that support all of the above.
Analysts, IT departments, tech content providers and vendors also tend to divide themselves among these and other issues. And it makes sense because for a long time, these issues have been very isolated, both in terms of the projects and technologies.
What has me thinking about this issue is this recent post by Julie Hunt, an independent software analyst. She starts with data governance, but expands into what she sees as a convergence of all these disciplines. She sees a lot of potential with this trend:
The solutions surrounding the management of information, data and intelligence are emerging from artificial silos to acknowledge the greater overlap and interrelationships of these technologies and practices. Deliberate initiatives to tighten up the convergence of these solution spaces will not only improve the better overall functioning of all of these solutions but will help both IT and Business users see how it all works together. A greatly beneficial result should be the elimination of duplicate demands on business users and IT for implementing and managing these systems.
The convergence may seem obvious to you - obviously, this is where we've been trying to go all along. And certainly I've seen others talk about the need for a unified, broader information management approach.
But have you really thought through how you'll deal with it once all these projects start to come together? How will you manage such a "big picture" approach, because thus far, it's been a struggle?
It seems to me there's got to be some sort of high-level, thought integration to these challenges. Do IT executives and thought leaders, not to mention bloggers and tech journalists, need to de-silo how they think about, discuss and manage these issues?
I think the answer is yes, but I'm not sure how that shift would work or what it would look like for my own work as a tech journalist. And believe me, I'm not missing the irony that those of us who admonish IT to not be so "project-focused" have a hard time following that advice in our own work.