Mastering the 'ART' of Application Deployment

Michael Vizard
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Deploying Applications in the Cloud

While there's more talk than actual use of cloud computing in the enterprise, a Zeus Technology survey looks at the beginnings of a major shift under way. Clear expectations and planning can improve your experience and near-term success.

Many IT projects outright fail because IT organizations don't have a lot of real visibility into their readiness to adapt to changes in processes that are inherent in the deployment of any new application. In fact, it's not uncommon for end users to reject new applications wholesale; much like a body rejects an organ transplant.

To prevent that from happening, Hewlett-Packard has created an HP Adoption Readiness Tool (ART) that delivers best-practices knowledge derived from HP experts inside an e-learning application that end users can consult during and after an application is rolled out.

According to Susan Merriman, worldwide lead for emerging technologies education for HP Software, ART can be customized by organizations to provide both a structured training curriculum and a more modular set of resources that end users can consult at their own pace. In either case, the goal is to identify adoption problems before the application is formally rolled out. That information can then be used to either bolster training in specific areas or rework the application to overcome specific objections.


End users routinely remonstrate IT professionals who deploy cumbersome software that doesn't reflect the way the business operates. IT professionals routinely remind end users that they gave them what they asked for based on the application requirements they were given. Clearly, there is a general failure to communicate resulting in more "deploy and pray" scenarios than anyone cares to admit. Of course, it's not uncommon for the application project to be killed outright or for the amount of time it takes to achieve any business value to be extended indefinitely. All of this comes back to end-user training, which in most organizations is given short shrift or is just completely ignored.

The good news is that with the advent of e-learning systems there is an opportunity to fundamentally rethink training, both inside and outside the IT department. There's no doubt that setting up the first e-learning training system may take a little work. But it's also one of those investments that will not only get more valuable with each successive wave of applications that rolls out, but it should also help improve the image of the IT department across the entire organization.

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