Itâs up to you to make the focus on user experience a priority for your team. Itâs up to you to create an awareness in your team about the importance of working side-by-side with business colleagues on the system issues that are most important to them.
I'm sure you remember those types of experiences from your early days in IT. It's really what our job as IT professionals is all about. Unfortunately, when it comes to large projects, outsourced vendors, complex organizations and so on, it's easy be distanced from the real action, where the rubber meets the road. Here's where your job as the CIO comes in.
It's up to you to make the focus on user experience a priority for your team. It's up to you to create an awareness in your team about the importance of working side-by-side with business colleagues on the system issues that are most important to them.
What happens next? If your organization is like most, user experience reviews are going to uncover three types of issues:
Quick-hit wins that can easily be implemented through minor configuration changes or with targeted user training
Long-term issues that require significant budget but which have a real and meaningful payback
Nice-to-have features that aren't valuable to pursue
You know exactly what to do. Go for those quick hits. Work with the business to "find the budget" over time to meet the high impact goals, and manage expectations on the "nice-to-haves"--standard blocking and tackling for IT managers.
A renewed focus on improving user experience, facilitated by the IT leadership directly, is just the sort of initiative that tells the user community that, even when budgets are tight, you are there to work on the things that are most important to them. This builds influence and credibility like you can't imagine.
About the author
Marc J. Schiller, author of "The 11 Secrets of Highly Influential IT Leaders," is a speaker, strategic facilitator, and an advisor on the implementation of influential analytics. He splits his time between the front lines of client work and evangelizing to IT leaders and professionals about what it takes to achieve influence, respect and career success. Download a free excerpt of his book at http://11secretsforITleaders.com
This article was originally published on 08-23-2011