They say a house divided against itself cannot stand. Given the fact that most IT organizations are houses divided multiple times over, it’s a wonder there are any IT organizations at all.
Every time you turn around these days it seems like somebody in the IT organization has a beef with somebody else within the IT organization. For example, the application development team more than likely is at odds with the IT operations team. But within the application development team there is tension between advocates of various application development methodologies. And, of course, there is the perennial rivalry between proponents of mainframes and distributed computing systems.
It’s little wonder that most business executives are under the impression that IT people spend more time warring with each other than they do thinking through what the goals of the business really are. Against that backdrop, however, it’s worth noting the existence of a dashboard that may not solve all those conflicts, but at the very least will provide some visibility into what’s actually happening across IT.
At the SHARE 2012 conference this week, Serena Software released an upgrade to Serena IT Dashboard, a tool that creates a framework for application lifecycle management (ALM) across mainframe and distributed computing environments. According to Jeff Westenhaver, global product marketing manager for Serena Software, gaps in processes are starting to emerge all over IT. The Serena IT Dashboard is designed to help identify those gaps in an era where IT people are trying to unify the management of IT platforms across applications written in multiple computing languages. The new release makes that easier, says Westenhaver, by adding support for a variety of mobile computing devices.
What differentiates the Serena approach most, says Westenhaver, is that it accepts the state of IT as it finds it. Rather than forcing IT organizations to upgrade their systems to achieve some state of application management nirvana, Serena software is specifically designed to work across heterogeneous environments involving systems from IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Dell and Oracle.
The days when IT organizations could afford to have dedicated specialists for managing a particular IT environment are coming to a close. The new reality is that IT organizations need people who can manage multiple computing environments. But that’s never going to happen if the tools they have access to are optimized for one particular environment.
Today, there’s more external pressure than ever on internal IT organizations. External cloud service providers are banging on the door with offers to run application workloads more efficiently than IT. Perhaps that may provide the overdue impetus needed for internal organizations to become more unified; otherwise, it won’t take too much banging for those cloud service providers to start knocking down more than a few IT houses.